Higher Channels

October 13, 2000

John Davies chooses some broadcasting highlights (all times pm unless stated).

Pick of the week

While Channel 4 is still focusing on doctors' mistakes (see Sunday and Tuesday), BBC1 presents medicine more favourably in the Robert Winston series Superhuman (Sunday 9.10). The theme is what Winston describes as "the innate powers our bodies possess" and how science can exploit them. In the first episode, "Trauma", he looks at recent medical developments such as the discovery, during the Falklands war, that badly injured people benefit from being left in the cold. A promising popular-science offering.

FRIDAY October 13

Twenty Minutes: Philosophical Lives (8.10 R3). Paul Ricoeur talks to Jonathan Ree.

Korubo: First Contact (11.00 National Geographic). Some Amazon rainforest tribesmen, their first contact with Brazilian settlers and the anthropologist go-between.

SUNDAY October 15

In the Psychiatrist's Chair (11.15am R4). Susan Greenfield interviewed.

5 Live Report (12 noon R5). John Sweeney investigates torture in Chechnya.

Sunday Feature: Faultline (5.45 R3). Part two of series on the Habsburg Empire's cultural legacy has Dennis Marks travelling through Slovenia, Croatia and Bosnia.

Doctors on Trial (7.55 C4). Does the medical profession place its interests above those of the public? Courtroom-style debate presided over by Jon Snow (see Tuesday).

Superhuman (9.10 BBC1). See pick of the week.

Panorama (10.15 BBC1). A new day for the old current affairs flagship: this week, how Gap and Nike are breaking their codes of practice on child labour.

MONDAY October 16

Start the Week (9.00am R4). With Edward Said and Luigi Luca Cavalli-Sforza, human population genetics expert.

The Top Job (8.00 R4). Historian Peter Hennessy on the role of Britain's prime ministers since the war.

University Challenge (8.00 BBC2). St John's, Oxford versus Birkbeck, London.

Equinox: Lethal Seas (9.00 C4). Whirlpools.

TUESDAY October 17

Twenty Minutes (8.00 R3; also Wednesday 8.35, Thursday 8.00). Three talks by Boston University English literature professor Christopher Ricks, on A. E. Housman, editing and offensive jokes.

Why Doctors Make Mistakes (9.00 C4). Final programme in series asks what can be done to reduce medical errors.

WEDNESDAY October 18

Thinking Allowed (4.00 R4) Noam Chomsky talks to Laurie Taylor.

A History of Britain (9.00 BBC2). Part four: "Nations". Simon Schama on 1216 to 1348.

THURSDAY October 19

Melvyn Bragg: In Our Time (9.00am R4). On the laws of nature and the theory of ubiquity with science writer Mark Buchanan and theoretical physicist Lee Smolin.

The Material World (4.30 R4). Antimatter and what Cern is finding out about it, with Rolf Landua and Liverpool University's John Fry.

Behind the Wire (8.00 R4). David Cesarani on the wartime internment of "enemy aliens". First of two programmes.

The Science of Secrecy (9.00 C4). Victorian mathematician Charles Babbage and the "unbreakable" Vigen re cipher.

Horizon: Conjoined Twins (9.00 BBC2). Pondering the value of separation surgery.

Bands Apart (11.20 BBC2). Focus on Radio Bantu, the broadcasting project set up under apartheid. Jazzman Courtney Pine meets black musicians and white managers and finds a rich recording archive.

More information and comment at The THES website: www.thesis.co.uk. Email: Davieses@aol.com.

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