In 2009 we asked award-winning journalist David Aaronovitch to comment on his current work and ideas that have influenced him…

Which of your own ideas have you been thinking about most recently?
I have a dozen or so ideas roiling around at the moment, partly as a result of the series of crises we’re enjoying. Really big ideas, too. But vague! I’m also becoming fascinated by the tide of research, some of it remarkably shoddy, which we’re showered these days.

What idea of someone else has made most impact on you recently?
I’m a big fan of thoughtful historians, such as Ian Kershaw (whose Fateful Choices was a terrific examination of contingency and error in leadership).

What is the most important book/article of ideas that everyone shouldread and why?
Well, it still has to be Orwell’s essays, I guess. But I am also a big fan of Janet Malcolm, whose The Journalist and the Murderer put all the recent Myerson business into proper context.

Further information/

David Aaronovitch is an award-winning journalist, who has worked in radio, television and newspapers in the United Kingdom since the early 1980s. He lives in Hampstead, north London, with his wife, three daughters and Kerry Blue the terrier. His first book,Paddling to Jerusalem, won the Madoc prize for travel literature in 2001. His latest book is Voodoo Histories: The Role of the Conspiracy Theory in Shaping Modern History(2009). David appears at the Bristol Festival of Ideas on 13th May in discussion with Professor Bruce Hood (University of Bristol).