Philippe Sands joins Hay board

News - Festivals Wednesday, 16 January 2019

Baillie Gifford-winning author appointed to board of Hay Festival

Sands, a leading human rights barrister, was appointed Queen’s Counsel in 2003 and is a Professor of Law at University College London. His most recent book East West Street: On the Origins of Genocide and Crimes Against Humanity was awarded the 2016 Baillie Gifford Prize and the 2017 Prix du Meilleur Livre Etranger (France).

He was appointed President of English PEN last January and has served as vice president of Hay Festival while appearing in numerous festival sessions around the world, including conversations with Jimmy Carter, Vanessa Redgrave, John le Carré, Nadezhda Tolokonnikova, Jane Birkin and Eric Hobsbawm.

Caroline Michel, chair of Hay Festival, said: "For 32 years Hay has lit a beacon for enlightenment. In a volatile world of anger and corrupted language, the festival champions empathy and curiosity. Stories and truths are told, ideas are shared, and everyone is encouraged to imagine the world from other perspectives and with renewed and audacious hope. We’re delighted to welcome Philippe Sands to the board as we look to a vibrant festival future here and around the world."

Sands said: "At a time of serious global challenges, when writers and ideas are under threat, I am delighted and honoured to be able to contribute to the fabulous, path-breaking, vital Hay Festival in this new way."

This year's event runs from 23 May - 2 June, with the programme revealed on March 29.

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