• Episode 1 2 Jan
    Melvyn Bragg investigates the development of the written word and how it has shaped our intellectual history.
    410 Linguistics
  • Episode 2 3 Jan
    In the second instalment of his survey of the written word, Melvyn Bragg traces the evolution of writing technology from the time of classical antiquity to the invention of printing.
    000 Computer science, knowledge and systems
  • Episode 3 4 Jan
    Melvyn Bragg continues his survey of the history of the written word by investigating how writing has influenced the spread of religion.
    200 Religion
  • Literature 5 Jan
    Melvyn Bragg investigates how the written word, a technology originally used for accountancy, gave rise to all of human literature.
    800 Literature, rhetoric and criticism
  • Episode 5 6 Jan
    Melvyn Bragg concludes his survey of the written word by considering how the invention of writing made the scientific revolution of the Enlightenment possible - and examines influential documents, including the student notebooks of Sir Isaac Newton.
    500 Science
  • Melvyn Bragg and his guests discuss the Safavid Dynasty, rulers of the Persian empire between the 16th and 18th centuries.
    950 History of Asia
  • Melvyn Bragg and his guests discuss 1848, the year that saw Europe engulfed in revolution.
    900 History
  • Melvyn Bragg and his guests discuss the evolution of the Scientific Method, the systematic and analytical approach to scientific thought.
    500 Science







  • Scepticism 5 Jul
    Melvyn Bragg and his guests discuss Scepticism, the idea that it may be impossible to know anything with complete certainty.
    100 Philosophy
  • Melvyn Bragg and his guests discuss Hadrian’s Wall, the largest Roman structure and one of the most important archaeological monuments in Britain.
    930 History of the Ancient World