Page last updated at 11:48 GMT, Thursday, 14 January 2010

Sir Terry Pratchett to give Richard Dimbleby lecture

Sir Terry Pratchett
Sir Terry Pratchett is the first novelist to participate

Author Sir Terry Pratchett will deliver the 34th annual Richard Dimbleby Lecture, held in honour of the veteran broadcaster, the BBC has announced.

Writer of the bestselling Discworld series, Sir Terry revealed he was suffering from a rare form of early-onset Alzheimer's disease in 2007.

His lecture will explore how modern society needs to redefine how it deals with death.

Shaking Hands With Death will be broadcast on BBC One on 1 February.

Sir Terry, who is the Patron of The Alzheimer's Research Trust, is the first novelist to be asked to participate.

Jay Hunt, Controller of BBC One, says: "I'm absolutely delighted that one of our most popular and best-loved authors has agreed to give this lecture.

"Sir Terry Pratchett has spoken with great bravery and honesty about his battle with Alzheimer's and I look forward to an intelligent and thought-provoking speech."

Previous Richard Dimbleby lecturers include the Prince of Wales, Bill Clinton, Dame Stella Rimington and Dr Rowan Williams.

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