Writing About Childhood

Tuesday 7 Jun 2011, 6.30pm–8.30pm

Do you want to explore your early life? Are you trying to make sense of your upbringing by writing about it? Psychologies Magazine has joined with Penguin Books to bring you an event dedicated to writing about childhood.You’ll hear from Penguin authors Charlotte Moore, who wrote about raising her autistic sons in George And Sam: Autism In The Family, and the history of her family home in Hancox: A House And A Family; and Sathnam Sanghera, Times columnist and author of the highly acclaimed book The Boy With The Topknot: A Memoir Of Love, Secrets And Lies In Wolverhampton. The evening will get under way with a welcome drink for all guests, after which the two authors will explain the process of writing their books, and offer invaluable insights for would-be writers who are seeking to document their own experiences. You’ll go home with a bag of books and a magazine, plus a reading list of the best fictionalised and real-life writing about childhood. Tuesday 7 June, 6.30pm–8.30pm, Penguin HQ, 80 Strand, London WC2R 0RL. Tickets cost £20, including pre-discussion wine and nibbles, and are available to buy here.


Am I Tone Deaf?

Thursday 9 Sep 2010, 11am

If you are tone-deaf can your brain be re-tuned by singing lessons? Author and journalist Sathnam Sanghera has spent his life miming to songs. Like one in 15 of us, he believes he is tone deaf. But is he? In this programme he braves both scientific testing and singing lessons in the hope of finding his voice. Vocal coach Heather Mair Thomas believes that whatever the diagnosis, she has ways of making him sing. But will doctors who argue that congenital tone deafness cannot be cured by training alone eclipse her optimism? As Sathnam navigates his way between science and song, he will meet key experts who are dedicated to exploring the scientific highs and lows of tone deafness. For the past decade, neurologists have developed a number of techniques aimed at identifying the root cause of amusia known more commonly as tone deafness. If they can understand more about this relatively common condition it will help them to understand more complex neurological disorders that can affect speech or sound perception. Sathnam will also take on board the sound advice that fellow sufferers have to offer. Retired Reverend Jim Cross was occupationally obliged to lead his church in song, however his congregation gave him special dispensation to simply say the lines aloud following his diagnosis of amusia. BBC Radio 4, 11am, Friday September 9th

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