Reith Lectures

If you’re looking for material to practise your listening skills, you might like to look at the BBC’s Reith Lectures.

Reith was the first Director General of the BBC, and the Reith Lectures are held every year in his memory. For each year’s lectures, an expert is chosen to speak on a topical subject.

This year’s lecturer is Professor Jeffrey Sachs, an economist, who is speaking on the challenges faced by the world’s economy in the decades to come. His second lecture was given on Wednesday in Beijing, at Beida. He will give a total of 5 lectures.

You can also listen to past lectures. I have been listening to the very interesting lectures on the philosophy of trust given in 2002 by Onora O’neill.

Recordings of the lectures are accompanied by transcriptions, so you can follow the text while you listen, and the lecturers generally speak very clearly, so I think these lectures are ideal for practising listening.

If you do listen to some of the lectures, please leave a comment to this post to tell me what you thought of it and whether it was useful.

4 Responses to “Reith Lectures”

  1. tony says:

    hi.Jon
    i listened the lecture for more than once.i think it’s great,because of its speed,clarity,
    i benefit a lot from it but the message is too large for me to handle ,so i think i need more practice.

  2. Jon says:

    great – i’m glad you listened. the reith lectures are pretty formal, so the speakers try to make their language clear and correct. which series of lectures did you listen to?

  3. tony says:

    oh,i listened to the latest,i mean ,the lecture given by the professor took place at 9th May,i tried to listen the rest,even those happened during 1999—2006,but i don’t know why,i just cannot be linked to the media. i really should have improved my computer skills.
    by the way,the professor sachs is an American,isn’t he?

  4. Jon says:

    Yes he is.

    The lectures for 1999 and 2000 are stored on the BBC news server, and that cannot be accessed from here. You should be able to access the other lectures with no problem though.

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