Andy West

Teacher, philosopher

Andy West teaches philosophy in prisons, discussing questions like, ‘What does freedom really mean?’ with people who are locked up and ‘Is shame a teacher or a tyrant?’ with people who are contemplating their own crimes. His book The Life Inside combines stories from the prison classroom with West’s personal journey to heal from growing up with his dad, brother and uncle in prison.

Andy West is the author of The life Inside: A Memoir of Prison, Family and Philosophy (Picador 2022), which was listed as a Book of the Year in The Irish Times and The I Paper. He has written for The GuardianAeon3AM MagazineHuckThe Big Issue, Open DemocracyThe LeadThe Times Education Supplement and Bloomsbury. He is philosopher in residence at HMP Brixton.


Andy West appears in the following sessions. Select a session to find out more:
The Life Inside
Sun 5th March 2023
The Frog and the Scorpion
Sat 4th March 2023
The Ship of Thesus
Sat 4th March 2023

Want to hear Andy West?

If you’d like to see Andy West speak at this year’s Malvern Festival of Ideas, you can book onto their session(s), or get tickets to a wide range of talks.