Amol Rajan discusses faith and doubt. Religion is a recurrent theme in Naomi Alderman's novels. Her first book, Disobedience, explored a Jewish girl's split with orthodox religion, while in Liar's Gospel she told multiple stories of Jesus through the eyes of those around him.
Obedience was a virtue for the nuns of sixteenth-century Italy, but the music they wrote and sang was far less virtuous. Music professor and performer Laurie Stras has unearthed sensual and experimental works by nuns including the daughter of Lucrezia Borgia. And while many flocked to the nunneries to hear these women perform, others accused them of irreligious vanity.
Historian and Anglican priest Malcolm Guite tells the life of Samuel Taylor Coleridge and finds religious imagery permeating Coleridge's most famous work, The Rime of the Ancient Mariner.
And the writer and former Bishop of Edinburgh, Richard Holloway, asks how spiritual belief can help us face our mortality, in his new book Waiting for the Last Bus.
Producer: Katy Hickman. Show less