Higher channels

February 18, 2000

John Davies beats a path through the schedules jungle (times pm unless stated).

Pick of the week

Should western students and tourists keep out of the Amazon basin? This week's offering in C4's To the Ends of the Earth series (Monday 8.00), which follows an expedition by Royal Holloway College students to Ecuador, does not offer a simple answer. The students want to study the potential impact of eco-tourism on the remote Huaorani tribe, but they find an American researcher already established there. Neither she nor the Huaoranis (or indeed John Groom, the ex-Marine survival expert with the expedition) seem happy with their British visitors' behaviour.

FRIDAY February 18

The Routes of English (4.00 R4). Final programme in series is a debate on the state of the language with Steven Pinker of MIT and actor/novelist Stephen Fry.

SATURDAY February 19

Parsing with Passion (2.30 R4). Michael Rosen is joined by actress Sin Phillips and professors Harold Rosen and Ted Wragg in a look back at English grammar teaching and the old exam papers that required parsing, phrase analysis, etc.

SUNDAY February 20

Time Team (6.00 C4). Basing House, Hampshire, and survivals from the civil war.

Six Experiments that Changed the World (7.00 C4). Ken Campbell takes a quick trot through the life of Marie Curie, and re-creates her pitchblend experiments with the help of Cambridge's Alessandra Quadrelli.

The Health List (8.00 C4). With a survey by King's Fund health economist John Appleby of the best and worst NHS regions.

Heart of the Matter: TV or Not TV? (11.35 BBC1; 12.15am in Scotland). Its role in modern life debated.

MONDAY February 21

Breaking the Seal (7.30 BBC2). British tax records of the centuries, from the poll tax of 1379 to the first income tax (1798).

They Never Set Foot on the Moon (8.00 National Geographic). About the Russian space programme, with interviews and archive footage. Followed by The John Glenn Story (9.00, same channel).

To the Ends of the Earth: Revenge of the Lost Tribe (8.00 C4). Pick of the week.

Biography: Malcolm X (10.00 History Channel). Portrait of the African-American leader, 35 years after his assassination.

TUESDAY February 22

Ape-man (9.00 BBC2). First of "major" series on human origins focuses on the rock paintings of France and South Africa.

The Enemy Within (9.00 R4). Geoff Watts on transplants, with Cambridge's Roy Calne and Andrew Bradley (on the alternative to blanket immuno-suppressant drugs) and Katherine Wood (Oxford) on cell tissue engineering.

The Secret World of Year Three (9.50 BBC2). Disgracefully intrusive series on a group of seven and eight-year-olds. Insights into child development are better gained from R4's Tuning into Children (Wednesday 11.00am).

Wednesday February 23

Frontiers (9.00 R4). Peter Evans visits a US observatory where gravitational waves, faint "ripples in space", are tracked.

A Child of Our Time (9.30 BBC1). Robert Winston follows a group of babies from conception to adulthood. The aim, to resolve the nature-nurture question.

THURSDAY February 24

The Material World (4.30 R4). Ian Stewart and Keith Moffatt on World Mathematical Year.

Leading Edge (9.00 R4). Another day, another Geoff Watts science series - this week, biotechnology and the marketplace.

More programme info can be found at www.thesis.co.uk. Email: Davieses@aol.com

The Times HigherJFebruary 18 2000features 21 allsport 'Materials scientists are developing fuel cells that will eliminate pollution; super-efficient power stations; materials for artificial hips; and materials for electronic chips to treat blindness'

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