Intelligence Squared

Intelligence Squared

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Intelligence Squared is the world’s leading forum…


Outraged: Why Everyone is Shouting and No One is Talking, with Ashley ‘Dotty’ Charles and Ash Sarkar
Jul 10 • 45 min
In this week’s episode BBC presenter and DJ Ashley ‘Dotty’ Charles joins us to discuss her new book ‘Outrage’ and the insatiable appetite for anger in today’s world. In conversation with Ash Sarkar, she explores how outrage culture has limited capacity to…
Putin’s People with Catherine Belton and Edward Lucas
Jul 7 • 45 min
Former Moscow correspondent and investigative journalist Catherine Belton reveals the untold story of how Vladimir Putin and his entourage of KGB men seized power in Russia and built a new league of oligarchs. Through exclusive interviews with key inside…
Debate: Iran Is Not Our Enemy
Jul 3 • 60 min
Is Iran an enemy to be confronted or a potential ally to engage with? In this week’s podcast we debate ‘Iran is not our enemy’ with Mehdi Hasan, Azadeh Moaveni, Daniel Hannan and Salman Al-Ansari. The debate was chaired by the BBC’s Lyse Doucet.…
City on Fire: The Fight for Hong Kong, With Antony Dapiran and Shirley Yu
Jun 30 • 65 min
In this week’s episode writer and lawyer Antony Dapiran joins us from Hong Kong to discuss the protests and turmoil that have engulfed the city since the summer of 2019. He spoke to political economist Shirley Yu. Together they discussed the history of…
The Reckoning: Kwame Kwei-Armah and Idris Elba on the Arts and Black Lives Matter
Jun 26 • 59 min
A great reckoning is taking place in the wake of the brutal killing of George Floyd and the protests that followed his death. Companies and organisations are looking afresh at how they can do a better job of combatting institutional bias and racism.…
We Need To Talk: Me and White Supremacy, with Layla Saad and Emma Dabiri
Jun 23 • 64 min
Amidst the current global conversation around police brutality in the United States and the experience of black people the world over, this week we speak to Layla Saad to investigate the role each of us has to play in dismantling white supremacy. Layla…
Unravelling Unconscious Bias, with Dr Pragya Agarwal and Kavita Puri
Jun 19 • 46 min
In the wake of sweeping protests about racism and police brutality, this week we speak to Dr Pragya Agarwal to unravel the way our implicit or ‘unintentional’ biases affect the way we communicate and perceive the world. Dr Agarwal spoke to author and BBC…
Why do Evangelicals Worship at the Altar of Donald Trump? With Sarah Posner and Brian Klaas
Jun 16 • 47 min
Why does Donald Trump have such a good relationship with white evangelical christians despite his questionable conservative credentials? In this week’s episode Sarah Posner, author of ‘Unholy: Why White Evangelicals Worship at the Altar of Donald Trump’…
Statues, Slavery and the Struggle for Equality with David Olusoga, Dawn Butler and Susan Neiman
Jun 12 • 71 min
Following the death of George Floyd, global Black Lives Matter protests, and debates raging over statues from Colston to Churchill, Intelligence Squared hosted an online discussion with historian David Olusoga, Labour MP Dawn Butler, and philosopher Susan…
The New Long Life: Flourishing in a Changing World, with Lynda Gratton and Andrew J Scott
Jun 9 • 49 min
If we live to 100, will we ever really stop working? And how will an aging society change the way we love, manage and learn from others? In this week’s episode Andrew J Scott and Lynda Gratton speak to Tom Whipple about their book ‘The New Long Life: A…
Anand Giridharadas on Capitalism in the Time of Corona (Online)
Jun 5 • 57 min
In his 2019 book Winners Take All, Anand Giridharadas launched a searing attack on the global elites. Now he turns his thoughts to the post-pandemic world. Is the crisis an opportunity to create a more egalitarian society? How can the powerful be…
The Passion Economy with Adam Davidson and Hugo Lindgren
Jun 2 • 62 min
Are the middle classes really dying off? Will robots really take our jobs? Contrary to common belief Adam Davidson argues the twenty-first-century economic paradigm offers new ways of making money, fresh paths toward professional fulfillment, and…
Together: The Healing Power of Human Connection, with Dr Vivek Murthy and Ros Urwin
May 29 • 55 min
In this week’s episode former Surgeon General of the United States, Dr Vivek Murthy speaks to Ros Urwin about how he discovered first hand how loneliness lies behind some of our greatest personal and societal challenges, from anxiety and depression to…
Nervous States: How Feeling Took Over the World, with Will Davies and Carl Miller
May 26 • 52 min
Why do so many of us no longer trust experts, facts and statistics? Why has politics become so fractious and warlike? And how can the history of ideas help us understand our present? In this episode Professor Will Davies, author of Nervous States: How…
Putting Peer Pressure to Work with Robert H Frank and Linda Yueh
May 22 • 43 min
In this week’s episode Robert H. Frank, author of ‘Under the Influence: Putting Peer Pressure to Work’ speaks to Linda Yueh about how our social environments influence our behaviour more than we think. They discuss why behaviours from smoking to cheating…
No Visible Bruises: Why What we don’t know about domestic violence can kill, with Rachel Louise Snyder
May 19 • 50 min
In this week’s episode award-winning journalist Rachel Louise Snyder speaks to Helen Lewis about some common misconceptions about domestic violence: that it happens to an unlucky few; that it’s a matter of poor choices; that if things are dire enough,…
The Dragons and the Snakes: How the Rest Learned to Fight the West, with David Kilcullen and Carl Miller
May 14 • 53 min
In this episode, leading soldier-scholar David Kilcullen speaks to Carl Miller about how the West’s opponents have learned from twenty-first-century conflict and explains how their cutting-edge tactics and adaptability pose a serious threat to America and…
The Classical School, with Callum Williams and Linda Yueh
May 12 • 46 min
Intelligence Squared+. The world’s best speakers. Your questions. £4.99 per month. Intelligence Squared+ will bring you live, interactive events every week on our new online platform. Just like at our real-life events, you’ll be able to put your questions…
The Corona Crash: How Bad Will It Be? With Mark Blyth and Anne McElvoy
May 8 • 50 min
Intelligence Squared+. The world’s best speakers. Your questions. £4.99 per month. Intelligence Squared+ will bring you live, interactive events every week on our new online platform. Just like at our real-life events, you’ll be able to put your questions…
The Great Slowdown and Why It’s Good, with Danny Dorling and Linda Yueh
May 5 • 59 min
Intelligence Squared+. The world’s best speakers. Your questions. £4.99 per month. Intelligence Squared+ will bring you live, interactive events every week on our new online platform. Just like at our real-life events, you’ll be able to put your questions…
Abolish Silicon Valley, with Wendy Liu and Carl Miller
May 1 • 49 min
Intelligence Squared+. The world’s best speakers. Your questions. £4.99 per month. Intelligence Squared+ will bring you live, interactive events every week on our new online platform. Just like at our real-life events, you’ll be able to put your questions…
Ultras: Among The World’s Most Extreme Fans, with James Montague and Ros Urwin
Apr 28 • 45 min
Ultras are football fans like no others. A hugely visible and controversial part of the sporting game. This movement of extreme fandom and politics is also one of the largest youth movements in the world. In this episode, James Montague, author of ‘1312:…
Coronavirus and the Stats: Your Questions Answered
Apr 23 • 58 min
Feeling confused by all the data and metrics about coronavirus that are flying around? In this episode, Britain’s most eminent statistician David Spiegelhalter, biometrics expert Sheila Bird, and the American scientist John Ioannidis, who has written that…
Who We Listen To And Who We Don’t, with Stephen Martin, Joseph Marks and Helen Lewis
Apr 20 • 32 min
Why are self-confident ignoramuses so often believed? Why are thoughtful experts so often given the cold shoulder? And why do apparently irrelevant details such as a person’s height, their relative wealth, or their Facebook photo influence whether or not…
Coronavirus and the Economy: Your Questions Answered
Apr 17 • 61 min
What will the long-term economic impact of the coronavirus pandemic be? For the fourth in a new series of interactive events from Intelligence Squared - Coronavirus: Your Questions Answered - we brought together a panel of leading experts in a free live…
Hype, Smoke and Mirrors, with Gemma Milne and Carl Miller
Apr 14 • 53 min
Hype has a dark side. It can mislead, distract and blinker us from seeing what is actually going on. In this episode we are joined by Gemma Milne, tech journalist and author of Smoke and Mirrors: How Hype Obscures the Future and How to See Past It, in…
Coronavirus and Global Politics: Your Questions Answered
Apr 10 • 68 min
The coronavirus pandemic threatens to remake the world’s political systems. But how exactly? In the third in a new series of interactive events from Intelligence Squared - Coronavirus: Your Questions Answered - we brought together a panel of leading…
The Unravelling of the Modern Middle East, with Kim Ghattas and Brian Klaas
Apr 7 • 38 min
It all started in 1979. According to Kim Ghattas, the former BBC journalist and author of Black Wave: Saudi Arabia, Iran and the Rivalry That Unravelled the Middle East, this was the pivotal year that kickstarted a forty-year rivalry between Iran and…
Mind, Matter and Meaning, with Brian Greene and Tom Whipple
Apr 3 • 40 min
In both time and space, the cosmos is astoundingly vast, and yet is governed by simple, elegant, universal mathematical laws. In this episode we are joined by Brian Greene, theoretical physicist and author of Until The End of Time, in conversation with…
Coronavirus: Your Questions Answered
Mar 31 • 69 min
How can we protect ourselves from coronavirus? How long will the current situation last? Why has the death rate been so high in Italy? And why have some other countries apparently been more successful at reducing the spread of the virus? This episode is…
Coronavirus and Morality: Rabbi Jonathan Sacks and Ritula Shah in conversation
Mar 27 • 46 min
The UK’s former Chief Rabbi Jonathan Sacks appears in this special episode of the Intelligence Squared podcast, recorded remotely while he self-isolates in his home. In an in-depth discussion with the BBC’s Ritula Shah, he discusses how our society can…
A Century of Conflict, with Rashid Khalidi and Jonathan Freedland
Mar 24 • 65 min
The Israeli-Palestinian conflict has been raging for decades, with seemingly no end in sight. In this episode, we are joined by Rashid Khalidi, Palestinian-American historian and Edward Said Professor of Arab Studies at Columbia University. He is the…
Radical Uncertainty, with Mervyn King, John Kay and Jesse Norman
Mar 20 • 52 min
In these incredibly uncertain times, we’re exploring the concept of ‘radical uncertainty’ in this episode with Mervyn King, the former Governor of the Bank of England, alongside renowned economist John Kay and Jesse Norman MP. Mervyn and John are the…
Kate Murphy and Ros Urwin on the Importance of Listening
Mar 17 • 46 min
When was the last time you listened to someone, or someone really listened to you? At work, we’re taught to lead the conversation. On social media, we shape our personal narratives. At parties, we talk over one another. So do our politicians. We’re not…
Eighty Is The New Thirty: A Guide To Getting Older With Daniel Levitin and Camilla Cavendish
Mar 13 • 59 min
What are the most effective ways to keep our brains fit? Should we be learning a new language or using cognitive training apps? Should we ever retire? Will we soon be able to slow down the ageing process by taking special pills that work at the level of…
One Of Them, with Michael Cashman and Razia Iqbal
Mar 9 • 41 min
Michael Cashman has been an actor, a politician and one of the pioneers of the struggle for LGBT equality in the UK. He is the author of a new book titled One Of Them: From Albert Square to Parliament Square and in this episode of the podcast he was…
Difficult Women: The Defining Fights of Feminism, with Helen Lewis and Caroline Criado Perez
Mar 6 • 60 min
In this episode of the Intelligence Squared podcast we are joined by Helen Lewis, staff writer for the Atlantic, who claims that too many pioneers of women’s rights have been whitewashed or forgotten because society likes its heroines to be cuddly and…
Why Myanmar Matters, with Thant Myint-U and Ros Urwin
Mar 3 • 48 min
In this episode we are joined by Thant Myint-U, the Burmese historian, former adviser to the President of Myanmar, and author of The Hidden History of Burma: Race, Capitalism, and the Crisis of Democracy in the 21st Century. In this podcast, Thant…
Armando Iannucci, Jess Phillips and Jan Ravens on Satire in an Age of Absurdity
Feb 28 • 61 min
Has satire lost its power in this new world of fake news and ‘alternative facts’ - when our leaders lie so blatantly and frequently, and still manage to get away with it? Or is humour a more important tool than ever to hold those in power to account? We…
How Humanity Can Survive the Climate Crisis, with Christiana Figueres and Ritula Shah
Feb 25 • 39 min
In this episode we are joined by Christiana Figueres, the former UN Executive Secretary for Climate Change who was one of the key negotiators behind the Paris Climate Agreement and is the co-author of a new book The Future We Choose. In this in-depth…
To Stop Climate Collapse, We Must End Capitalism
Feb 21 • 67 min
According to some scientific predictions, human civilisation could completely collapse by 2050 if we don’t take drastic action to stop climate change now. So is capitalism responsible for the impending climate crisis, and should we abandon our economic…
More From Less, with Andrew McAfee and Hugo Lindgren
Feb 17 • 36 min
In this episode we are joined by Andrew McAfee, the co-director of the MIT Initiative on the Digital Economy and author of More From Less: The Surprising Story of How We Learned to Prosper Using Fewer Resources. In an interview with journalist Hugo…
Zombie Economics, with Paul Krugman and Linda Yueh
Feb 14 • 35 min
In this episode we are joined by Paul Krugman, Nobel prize-winning economist and author of Arguing With Zombies: Economics, Politics and the Fight for a Better Future. In a conversation with economist and broadcaster Linda Yueh, Krugman debunks what he…
Social Mobility and Making It in Modern Britain, with Hashi Mohamed and Razia Iqbal
Feb 11 • 41 min
This episode is an exploration of social mobility and inequality in contemporary Britain, featuring Hashi Mohamed, author of People Like Us. Hashi came to the UK aged nine, a refugee from the Somali civil war. He attended some of the country’s worst…
Trailblazers: Letters to my Younger Self
Feb 7 • 82 min
For the second installment of our Trailblazers series, Intelligence Squared has partnered with gal-dem to bring together a collection of outstanding women – and their letters – to our stage. They range from playwright Bonnie Greer and writer Afua Hirsch…
The Power of the Scrum, with JJ Sutherland and Hugo Lindgren
Feb 4 • 32 min
In this episode, we are joined by JJ Sutherland, the business expert and author of The Scrum Fieldbook. In conversation with the journalist Hugo Lindgren, he explores his ideas for how the world of business can be transformed through a set of practices…
Debate: There’s Not Much Great About Britain
Jan 31 • 61 min
In this episode, our panel of top speakers battle it out over whether Brits should be proud or ashamed of their country. Is the phrase ‘Great Britain’ an oxymoron, or is Britain one of the world’s most free, open and tolerant societies, therefore making…
The ‘Desk Killers’ of History, with Dan Gretton and Ros Urwin
Jan 28 • 59 min
In this episode we are joined by Dan Gretton, the author of I You We Them: Journeys Beyond Evil: The Desk Killer in History and Today. In an interview with Ros Urwin of The Sunday Times, he explores the psychology behind some of the least visible…
BJ Fogg on Redesigning Habits and Human Behaviour
Jan 24 • 48 min
BJ Fogg is a pioneering research psychologist and founder of the iconic Behavior Design Lab at Stanford which has taught everyone from the founders of Instagram to the leading technology ethicist Tristan Harris. In this episode Fogg speaks to Carl Miller…
The Philosophy of Polar Exploration, with Erling Kagge and Razia Iqbal
Jan 21 • 38 min
Erling Kagge, author of Philosophy for Polar Explorers, was the first man in history to reach all of the Earth’s poles by foot – the North, the South, and the summit of Everest. In this interview with the BBC’s Razia Iqbal, he brings together the wisdom…
There Is No Planet B, with Mike Berners-Lee and Matthew Taylor
Jan 17 • 44 min
In this episode we were joined by Mike Berners-Lee, the climate change expert and author of There Is No Planet B: A Handbook For The Make Or Break Years. He was interviewed by Matthew Taylor of the RSA in a discussion on the real, concrete steps that we…
Former UK Labour Deputy Leader Tom Watson Discusses How He Beat Obesity, and the Long Road Ahead for Labour
Jan 14 • 42 min
In this episode we were joined by Tom Watson, the Deputy Leader of the UK Labour Party who only recently stood down at last year’s general election. He is now the author of a new book Downsizing: How I Lost 8 Stone, Reversed My Diabetes and Regained My…
The Wonders of Nanotechnology, with Sonia Contera and Tom Whipple
Jan 10 • 42 min
In this episode we were joined by Sonia Contera, Professor of Biological Physics at the University of Oxford and the author of Nano Comes to Life: How Nanotechnology Is Transforming Medicine and the Future of Biology. In a wide-ranging conversation with…
Fighting Back Against Big Tech, with Rana Foroohar and Ros Urwin
Jan 7 • 35 min
In this episode we were joined by Rana Foroohar, FT global business columnist and author of Don’t Be Evil: The Case Against Big Tech, alongside Ros Urwin of the Sunday Times. According to Foroohar, Silicon Valley has lost its soul, and the tech behemoths…
Old World vs New World: The Great Wine Debate, with Oz Clarke and Jancis Robinson
Jan 2 • 61 min
France, Italy, Spain, Germany: these are the ancient Old World wine-growing regions of Europe, where continuity and history reign supreme. California, Australia, South Africa and Chile: these are some of the New World areas, where technology and science…
Privacy in an Age of Surveillance, with James Bennet and Jamie Bartlett
Dec 30, 2019 • 56 min
In this episode we were joined by The New York Times’ editorial page editor James Bennet, to discuss the The New York Times’ fascinating new editorial project, The Privacy Project. James was interviewed on the project by tech journalist Jamie Bartlett.…
The Education of an Idealist, with Samantha Power and Helen Lewis
Dec 26, 2019 • 51 min
In this episode we were joined by Samantha Power, the former United States Ambassador to the United Nations under President Obama from 2013 to 2017 and author of a new book The Education of an Idealist. She was interviewed on her fascinating career in…
The West Should Make Amends With Putin
Dec 23, 2019 • 52 min
Is it high time for a rapprochement with Putin? As the transatlantic alliance flounders and Britain wallows in Brexit psychodrama, Europe can no longer afford to keep Russian relations strained. In fact, a detente is now a geopolitical necessity.…
HOLIDAY BONUS: The Year in Review
Dec 20, 2019 • 90 min
As 2019 comes to a close, the Intelligence Squared team look back at some of their highlights from the year, both on the Intelligence Squared stage and on the podcast. They feature clips from big in conversation events with the likes of Thomas Friedman…
Chris Wylie on Whistleblowing the Facebook-Cambridge Analytica scandal
Dec 17, 2019 • 44 min
This episode features an interview from How I Found My Voice, another podcast by Intelligence Squared. Presented by the prominent BBC journalist Samira Ahmed, the podcast explores how some of the world’s greatest artists and thinkers became such…
Intelligent Times: Willem Dafoe on Adventure, Artistry and a Life in the Movies
Dec 13, 2019 • 59 min
Intelligent Times is a live event series collaboration between The New York Times and Intelligence Squared, bringing together leading New York Times journalists and thought leaders to discuss the key issues facing the globe today. Willem Dafoe is…
Learning to Speak Machine, with John Maeda and Ros Urwin
Dec 10, 2019 • 38 min
John Maeda is one of the world’s preeminent interdisciplinary thinkers on technology and design, and the author of How to Speak Machine. In this episode of the Intelligence Squared podcast, in conversation with Ros Urwin he explores a set of simple laws…
Conquerors and Liberators: War Leaders Who Shaped Our World
Dec 6, 2019 • 56 min
Managing a successful Premier League football team or a major company takes extraordinary fortitude and foresight. But try leading a nation of millions – and then persuading them to follow you into war, with all the pain and sacrifice that entails. That’s…
Ken Clarke: The Big Beast of British Politics
Dec 3, 2019 • 82 min
After 49 years as a Conservative MP, Ken Clarke will be stepping down at the UK general election on December 12. In this episode of the Intelligence Squared podcast – staged just ten days before the election – Clarke came to the Intelligence Squared stage…
Yanis Varoufakis and Brian Eno on Money, Power and a Call for Radical Change
Nov 29, 2019 • 62 min
The liberal order is under threat. Increasing inequality, the rise of far-right nationalism and the climate emergency pose unprecedented challenges. It’s time for some radical thinking. In November 2019 Intelligence Squared brought to its stage two of the…
Richard Branson: How I Found My Voice
Nov 26, 2019 • 42 min
This is an episode from the second series of How I Found My Voice, a podcast from Intelligence Squared. Presented by the prominent BBC journalist Samira Ahmed, the podcast explores how some of the world’s greatest artists and thinkers became such…
P.J. O’Rourke and Lionel Shriver on the Battle for the White House
Nov 22, 2019 • 61 min
This episode was from one of our live Intelligence Squared events, featuring satirist P. J. O’Rourke and bestselling author Lionel Shriver. They joined us for a night of withering satire, relentless ridicule and sharp political insight in a discussion…
Naomi Klein on Climate Change, Extinction Rebellion & the case for a Green New Deal
Nov 18, 2019 • 43 min
This is an episode from the second series of How I Found My Voice, a podcast from Intelligence Squared. Presented by the prominent BBC journalist Samira Ahmed, the podcast explores how some of the world’s greatest artists and thinkers became such…
Intelligent Times: Dean Baquet and Simon Schama on Trump, Politics and The Future of News
Nov 15, 2019 • 77 min
Earlier this week we were joined by executive editor of The New York Times Dean Baquet and historian Sir Simon Schama for an examination of the role of the media in today’s increasingly polarised politics. Baquet is the first African-American editor of…
The Survival of Democracy in Eastern Europe, with Ivan Krastev, Timothy Garton Ash and Brian Klaas
Nov 12, 2019 • 45 min
In November 1989, 30 years ago this month, the collapse of the Berlin Wall ushered in a new era of democracy in Eastern Europe. But today, with populist strongmen like Orban in Hungary and Kaczyński in Poland on the rise, the future of democracy in the…
The Poetry Pharmacy Returns with William Sieghart and Sarah Dunant
Nov 8, 2019 • 79 min
William Sieghart’s The Poetry Pharmacy: Tried-and-True Prescriptions for the Heart, Mind and Soul was one of the publishing sensations of the past few years. Anyone who came to the event Intelligence Squared built around it – when Jeanette Winterson,…
How I Found My Voice: Michael Palin
Nov 5, 2019 • 58 min
This is an episode from the second series of How I Found My Voice, a podcast from Intelligence Squared. Presented by the prominent BBC journalist Samira Ahmed, the podcast explores how some of the world’s greatest artists and thinkers became such…
Intelligent Times: Jodi Kantor and Megan Twohey on Breaking the Harvey Weinstein Story
Nov 1, 2019 • 91 min
Intelligent Times is a live event series collaboration between The New York Times and Intelligence Squared, bringing together leading New York Times journalists and thought leaders to discuss the key issues facing the globe today. On October 5th 2017, The…
The Gendered Brain Myth, with Daphna Joel and Rosamund Urwin
Oct 28, 2019 • 33 min
In this episode of the Intelligence Squared podcast we were joined by the Israeli neuroscientist Daphna Joel, author of Gender Mosaic: Beyond the Myth of the Male and Female Brain. In conversation with Ros Urwin of The Sunday Times, she outlined her…
John Humphrys: The Terrier of Today, in conversation with Justin Webb
Oct 24, 2019 • 59 min
Earlier this month, as John Humphrys stepped down after 32 years at Today and published a long-awaited memoir, A Day Like Today, he came to the Intelligence Squared stage to give an exclusive, behind-the-scenes account of his extraordinary career. Turning…
The Battle Over Gender, Race and Identity with Douglas Murray and Anne McElvoy
Oct 21, 2019 • 51 min
In this episode we were joined by the conservative thinker Douglas Murray, whose new book The Madness of Crowds examines this century’s most divisive issues: sexuality, gender, technology and race. He was interviewed on his ideas by Anne McElvoy, Senior…
Trailblazers: Women Leading the Way
Oct 17, 2019 • 90 min
Women of colour have to navigate a world of work where they are often discriminated against because of their race as well as their gender. But despite the challenges, they are increasingly making their way to the top and carving out a new ‘normal’ for…
The Underworld of the High Seas, with Ian Urbina and Razia Iqbal
Oct 14, 2019 • 37 min
In this episode of the Intelligence Squared podcast we were joined by the renowned investigative journalist Ian Urbina, who has a new book titled The Outlaw Ocean: Journeys Across the Last Untamed Frontier. In a conversation with the BBC’s Razia Iqbal, he…
Speeches and Letters That Changed The World, With Simon Sebag Montefiore and Kate Mosse
Oct 10, 2019 • 60 min
At the 2019 Cliveden Literary Festival, Intelligence Squared brought together historian Simon Sebag Montefiore and novelist Kate Mosse to discuss some of the speeches and letters in Sebag’s latest books Voices of History and Written in History. Bringing…
The Social Media Addiction-Machine, with Richard Seymour and Jamie Bartlett
Oct 7, 2019 • 55 min
In this week’s episode we were joined by Richard Seymour, the Marxist intellectual and author of The Twittering Machine, a book which uses psychoanalytic reflection and insights from users, developers, and security experts to examine the dystopian…
The West Should Pay Reparations For Slavery
Oct 3, 2019 • 64 min
This week’s podcast was a live debate on the motion ‘The West Should Pay Reparations For Slavery’. Should there be a broad programme of reparations – not just financial compensation, but acknowledgement of the crimes committed and the lasting damage…
Satire, Boris and Brexit with Ian McEwan and Razia Iqbal
Sep 30, 2019 • 47 min
In this week’s episode of the Intelligence Squared podcast we were joined by the acclaimed novelist Ian McEwan. He was interviewed by the BBC’s Razia Iqbal to discuss his new satirical novella The Cockroach, in which a man wakes up one morning having been…
Parliament’s War of Words: Women in Power, with Mary Beard, Rachel Reeves and Sandip Verma
Sep 26, 2019 • 87 min
With tensions running high this week in the U.K. Houses of Parliament over Brexit and allegations about PM Boris Johnson’s use of inflammatory language, Intelligence Squared staged an event with Labour MP Rachel Reeves, Conservative member of the House of…
How I Found My Voice: Benjamin Zephaniah
Sep 23, 2019 • 45 min
This is an episode from a new podcast strand launched by Intelligence Squared called How I Found My Voice. Presented by the prominent BBC journalist Samira Ahmed, the podcast explores how some of the world’s greatest artists and thinkers became such…
The Mindfulness Myth, with Ronald Purser and Helen Lewis
Sep 19, 2019 • 32 min
Mindfulness – the psychological practice of bringing one’s attention to the present moment through meditation – has gone mainstream. It has been enthusiastically co-opted by Silicon Valley and other large corporations as well as schools, governments and…
How I Found My Voice: Elif Shafak
Sep 16, 2019 • 42 min
This is an episode from a new podcast strand launched by Intelligence Squared called How I Found My Voice. Presented by the prominent BBC journalist Samira Ahmed, the podcast explores how some of the world’s greatest artists and thinkers became such…
An Evening With Salman Rushdie
Sep 12, 2019 • 62 min
Salman Rushdie is one of the world’s greatest storytellers. He came to the Intelligence Squared stage to discuss his career, his life and his new novel Quichotte with the BBC’s Razia Iqbal. The book is a wild ride through modern America — a society on the…
How I Found My Voice: Lyse Doucet
Sep 9, 2019 • 46 min
This is an episode from a new podcast strand launched by Intelligence Squared called How I Found My Voice. Presented by the prominent BBC journalist Samira Ahmed, the podcast explores how some of the world’s greatest artists and thinkers became such…
The Politics of Video Games, with Pete Etchells and Ros Urwin
Sep 5, 2019 • 45 min
Are video games harmful to society? Recently the World Health Organisation classified ‘gaming disorder’ as a clinical mental health disorder and a danger to public health. But how real is the threat of video game addiction, and what about the potential…
How I Found My Voice: Philip Pullman
Sep 1, 2019 • 40 min
This is an episode from a new podcast strand launched by Intelligence Squared called How I Found My Voice. Presented by the prominent BBC journalist Samira Ahmed, the podcast explores how some of the world’s greatest artists and thinkers became such…
The Age of Surveillance Capitalism, with Shoshana Zuboff and Rosamund Urwin
Aug 29, 2019 • 43 min
We live in an age of “surveillance capitalism” - where technologies that were meant to liberate us have deepened inequality and stoked divisions. Big tech companies gather our information online and sell it to the highest bidder, and entire industries now…
How I Found My Voice: Mark Millar
Aug 26, 2019 • 37 min
This is an episode from a new podcast strand launched by Intelligence Squared called How I Found My Voice. Presented by the prominent BBC journalist Samira Ahmed, the podcast explores how some of the world’s greatest artists and thinkers became such…
Ibram X. Kendi and Razia Iqbal on How To Be An Antiracist
Aug 23, 2019 • 40 min
What’s the difference between being merely non-racist and being an antiracist? And what will it take to completely uproot racism from our societies, institutions and our own selves? In this episode were were joined by Ibram X. Kendi, the founding director…
Michael Pollan and Xand Van Tulleken on the New Science of Psychedelics
Aug 15, 2019 • 47 min
In this episode of the Intelligence Squared podcast we were joined by the acclaimed food writer Michael Pollan, whose most recent book How To Change Your Mind is a deep dive into the world of psychedelic drugs and what they can teach us about…
Nessa Carey and Xand Van Tulleken on How Gene Editing Will Rewrite Our Futures
Aug 8, 2019 • 59 min
In this week’s episode of the Intelligence Squared podcast we were joined by Nessa Carey, the molecular biologist and author of Hacking The Code Of Life. She was interviewed by the doctor and TV presenter Xand Van Tulleken in a wide-ranging discussion on…
Chris Hirst and Helen Lewis on No Bullsh*t Leadership
Aug 1, 2019 • 42 min
In this week’s episode of the Intelligence Squared podcast we were joined by Chris Hirst, Global CEO for the advertising company Havas Creative Network and author of No Bullsh*t Leadership: Why the World Needs More Everyday Leaders and Why That Leader Is…
Mark Galeotti and Edward Lucas on what the West gets wrong about Putin
Jul 25, 2019 • 44 min
In this episode of the Intelligence Squared podcast we were joined by Mark Galeotti, Russia expert and author of We Need to Talk About Putin. He was interviewed by Edward Lucas of The Times in an in-depth examination of the Russian President who is one of…
Paul Mason and Jesse Norman on a Revolutionary Defence of Humanity
Jul 18, 2019 • 41 min
In this week’s episode of the Intelligence Squared podcast, the left-wing economics journalist Paul Mason was interviewed by the Conservative MP Jesse Norman. They discussed Mason’s vision for a utopian future, which he sets out in his new book Clear…
Old Testament vs New Testament: Passion, Poetry and the World’s Greatest Stories
Jul 11, 2019 • 60 min
Adam and Eve, Noah’s Ark, Moses and the Ten Commandments, the parting of the Red Sea. These are a few of the stories from the Old Testament. And then there’s the New Testament, with its account of the life of Jesus, the Good Samaritan, the raising of…
Jeffrey Sachs on the End of American Supremacy
Jul 4, 2019 • 60 min
Last month we were joined onstage by the University of Columbia economics professor Jeffrey Sachs, as he laid out his radical new vision for U.S. foreign policy. Instead of a world where America reigns as the sole superpower, Sachs argued for a new…
Mark Zuckerberg on Trial: Facebook is Damaging Society
Jun 27, 2019 • 60 min
According to his critics, Mark Zuckerberg presides over a company which is undermining our basic freedoms. But should we give him the benefit of the doubt as he seeks to rebuild the world’s trust in Facebook? Defending Zuckerberg we had Dex…
Anti-Zionism is Anti-Semitism
Jun 20, 2019 • 65 min
Is there a country in the world that attracts so much criticism as Israel? Studies consistently show Israel to be one of the most disliked nations in the world (along with Iran and North Korea). But how much of this is to do with genuine concern about…
The Revolt Against The Rich, with Anand Giridharadas and Anne McElvoy
Jun 13, 2019 • 61 min
Thought-leaders, change agents, the new philanthropists. These are some of the terms used to describe rich and powerful figures who talk publicly and enthusiastically about their efforts to build a better world. But to Anand Giridharadas — Editor-at-Large…
The Daily: The Rise of Nationalism Across the Globe
Jun 6, 2019 • 55 min
In this week’s podcast, we hosted a live conversation from “The Daily”, The New York Times’ flagship podcast. In an event in partnership with The New York Times, we were joined by the podcast’s host Michael Barbaro, as well as Berlin Bureau Chief Katrin…
Identity Politics Is Tearing Society Apart
May 30, 2019 • 59 min
Is identity politics, with its emphasis on gender, ethnicity and sexual orientation, sowing division? Or is it a call for social justice for everyone? On 22nd May 2019 we were joined by a panel of experts to debate the motion “Identity Politics Is Tearing…
The Victorians Who Made Britain: Jacob Rees-Mogg vs Tristram Hunt
May 23, 2019 • 59 min
For Jacob Rees-Mogg the 19th century was a golden era. It was a time of moral certainty, of a global vision for Great Britain, and a confidence in the essential goodness of our great nation. And it is a period of history that offers us guidance as we…
Jennifer Eberhardt and Razia Iqbal on the Psychology of Racial Bias
May 16, 2019 • 38 min
For this week’s episode of the Intelligence Squared podcast we were joined by Jennifer Eberhardt, Social Psychologist at Stanford University and author of Biased: Uncovering the Hidden Prejudice That Shapes What We See, Think, and Do. In a wide-ranging…
Eric Kaufmann and Razia Iqbal on the End of White Majorities
May 9, 2019 • 48 min
In this week’s podcast we were joined by Eric Kaufmann, Birkbeck politics professor and author of Whiteshift: Populism, Immigration and the Future of White Majorities, in conversation with the BBC’s Razia Iqbal. In a challenging and wide-ranging…
Steven Pinker and David Runciman on Optimism, Enlightenment and Progress
May 2, 2019 • 46 min
In this episode of the Intelligence Squared podcast we were joined by Steven Pinker, cognitive psychologist and author of Enlightenment Now, in conversation with Cambridge University’s David Runciman. They discussed the advances made in our societies over…
Adam Higginbotham and Evan Ratliff on the Untold Story of Chernobyl
Apr 25, 2019 • 56 min
In this episode of the Intelligence Squared podcast, released on the 33rd anniversary of the Chernobyl disaster, journalist and author Evan Ratliff was joined by Adam Higginbotham, author of Midnight in Chernobyl: The Untold Story of the World’s Greatest…
Julia Shaw and Rosamund Urwin on the Science Behind Humanity’s Dark Side
Apr 18, 2019 • 54 min
In this episode of the Intelligence Squared podcast we were joined by Julia Shaw the psychologist and author of Making Evil, alongside Rosamund Urwin of the Sunday Times, in a wide-ranging exploration of evil — why do humans do and think bad things? See…
Thomas Friedman On The World In 2019
Apr 11, 2019 • 60 min
Earlier this month we were joined by Thomas Friedman as he brought his wisdom and insight to the world’s current predicaments: How should the West respond to an emboldened China? How do we rebuild the global economy so that it creates prosperity for…
Viral Sensation Rutger Bregman On How Utopian Ideas Can Become Reality
Apr 4, 2019 • 45 min
This week’s episode features Rutger Bregman, historian and author of Utopia for Realists: And How We Can Get There. In conversation with Helen Lewis, associate editor of the New Statesman, he discusses subjects ranging from Universal Basic Income, the…
How I Found My Voice: Rose McGowan
Mar 28, 2019 • 37 min
This week’s episode is something a little different: an episode of Intelligence Squared’s new podcast How I Found My Voice. How I Found My Voice is the podcast that explores how some of the world’s greatest artists and thinkers became such compelling -…
Nationalism is a Delusion: Our Futures Depend on Ever Closer Union
Mar 21, 2019 • 61 min
This week’s episode of the Intelligence Squared podcast is a special episode produced by Intelligence Squared Germany in collaboration with the ECFR. Arguing for the motion “Nationalism is a Delusion: Our Futures Depend on Ever Closer Union” were Polish…
Letters That Changed The World
Mar 14, 2019 • 85 min
Following on from Intelligence Squared’s acclaimed events on great speeches and poetry, when Carey Mulligan, Simon Russell Beale, Helena Bonham Carter and other stars took to our stage, we now present Letters That Changed The World, based on award-winning…
On The Brink Of A No-Deal Brexit: The Town Hall Debate
Mar 7, 2019 • 81 min
Britain is now facing one of the biggest constitutional crises in its history. As Brexit looms, Intelligence Squared staged a special town hall meeting with some of the country’s most prominent political leaders. We were joined on stage by former…
China: Friend or Foe?
Feb 28, 2019 • 82 min
Is China, with its unfair trade policies and shameless theft of intellectual property, an enemy that needs to be reined in? Or is it in the West’s best interests to view China as a strategic partner and aim for mutual respect and cooperation? We were…
Blame Liberals For the Rise of Populism
Feb 21, 2019 • 61 min
Have the left’s policies of high immigration and multiculturalism caused the disaffection which has given rise to populism? Or is it the right, with its tabloid scare stories about foreigners eroding national identity? We were joined by Matthew Goodwin,…
David Wootton and Giles Fraser on the Philosophy of Profit, Power and Pleasure
Feb 14, 2019 • 49 min
This week’s episode of the Intelligence Squared podcast features David Wootton, historian and author of Power, Pleasure, and Profit, in a wide-ranging conversation with the journalist and Anglican priest Giles Fraser. They examined the four centuries of…
The West Should Cut Ties With Saudi Arabia
Feb 7, 2019 • 61 min
Should the West end its alliance with the Saudi regime? Or should we give its Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Salman a chance? In this Intelligence Squared podcast we were joined by Mehdi Hasan, Madawi al-Rasheed, Mamoun Fandy, Crispin Blunt and Lyse Doucet.…
Leonard Mlodinow and Rosamund Urwin on the Power of Elastic Thinking
Jan 31, 2019 • 55 min
In this episode we were joined by Leonard Mlodinow, the theoretical physicist, Star Trek screenwriter and author of Elastic: Flexible Thinking in a Time of Change in conversation with Sunday Times journalist Rosamund Urwin. In a wide-ranging discussion,…
Germany Is Endangering European Stability
Jan 24, 2019 • 62 min
This week’s podcast comes from an event hosted by Intelligence Squared Germany, in collaboration with ECFR Berlin. Our panel of speakers, including representatives of the Five Star Movement, Fidesz and the ECFR asked: is Germany really the bastion of…
Bruce Daisley and Jamie Bartlett on Re-Envisioning the World of Work
Jan 17, 2019 • 59 min
In this episode of the Intelligence Squared podcast we were joined by Twitter’s European VP and author of The Joy of Work Bruce Daisley and tech journalist Jamie Bartlett, for a wide-ranging conversation on how to to re-imagine the world of work and fall…
Rachel Botsman and Helen Lewis on Technology and Trust
Jan 10, 2019 • 49 min
In this episode of the Intelligence Squared podcast we were joined by Rachel Botsman, world renowned trust expert, Oxford academic and author of Who Can You Trust? She was interviewed by Helen Lewis, associate editor of the New Statesman, for a…
Siva Vaidhyanathan and Helen Lewis on How Facebook Disconnects Us and Undermines Democracy
Jan 3, 2019 • 40 min
In this episode of the Intelligence Squared podcast we were joined by the cultural historian, media scholar and author of Antisocial Media Siva Vaidhyanathan in conversation with the New Statesman’s Helen Lewis. In this wide-ranging discussion, they…
Bruno Maçães and Linda Yueh on the Chinese World Order
Dec 27, 2018 • 37 min
In this episode of the Intelligence Squared podcast we were joined by Bruno Maçães, the former Europe minister of Portugal, in conversation with Oxford economist and broadcaster Linda Yueh. They talked about China’s Belt and Road strategy, widely…
Mishal Husain and Martha Lane Fox on Careers, Life and Leadership
Dec 21, 2018 • 59 min
Equal pay. Gender bias. Sexual harassment. A year on from the start of the #MeToo movement, conversations around these topics have exploded – and progress on many fronts can seem slow. Nearly 80 percent of British companies have a gender pay-gap; more…
LinkedIn Founder Reid Hoffman on Building a Billion-Dollar Business at Lightning Speed
Dec 13, 2018 • 60 min
Some of the world’s most successful and powerful companies began as tiny startups and became global giants within only a few years. The list is long and includes world-changing companies like Amazon, Google, Airbnb, Facebook, Uber and Alibaba. But what…
The Battle Over Free Speech: Are Trigger Warnings, Safe Spaces and No-Platforming Harming Young Minds?
Dec 6, 2018 • 59 min
Many would argue that these are the fundamental goals of a good education. So why has Cambridge University taken to warning its students that the sexual violence in Titus Andronicus might be traumatic for them? Why are other universities in America and…
Bonus Episode - The Brexit Deal: Decision Time
Dec 4, 2018 • 59 min
It’s a defining moment for British democracy. This December, Parliament will vote on whether to approve or reject Theresa May’s draft Brexit withdrawal agreement. With the nation’s future hanging in the balance, some have called this the greatest crisis…
Jeanne Marie Laskas and Bonnie Greer on Love, Hate, Anger, and Hope in the Obama Years
Nov 29, 2018 • 41 min
In this episode of the Intelligence Squared podcast we had Jeanne Marie Laskas, the American professor, journalist and author of To Obama, looking back at the Obama presidency through the lens of tens of thousands of letters the President received every…
Parenting Doesn’t Matter (Or Not As Much As You Think)
Nov 23, 2018 • 60 min
The multibillion-pound parenting industry tells us we can all shape our children to be joyful, resilient and successful. But what if it’s all bunk? Intelligence Squared are bringing together a panel of top geneticists and parenting experts to explore just…
Special episode with Anthony Scaramucci, former White House Director of Communications
Nov 16, 2018 • 42 min
In this episode of the Intelligence Squared podcast we were joined by Anthony Scaramucci, the former White House Director of Communications for a whopping 11 days. He was interviewed by Josh Lowe, Deputy Editor of Apolitical, for a wide-ranging and often…
Kamal Ahmed and Razia Iqbal on Identity, Race and Prejudice
Nov 9, 2018 • 50 min
This week’s episode of the Intelligence Squared podcast was a wide-ranging conversation about race and identity in Britain. In the studio we had Kamal Ahmed, BBC Editorial Director and author of The Life and Times of a Very British Man alongside the BBC…
Bonus Episode: The Impeachment Election? Trump, Mueller and the Fight for America
Nov 5, 2018 • 60 min
Is this the last stand for American democracy? That’s what many of Donald Trump’s opponents believe. The upcoming US midterm election is the last chance to prevent the United States from becoming a truly authoritarian state. That fear has the Democrats…
James Barr and Catherine Philp on the Secret British-American Rivalry in the Middle East
Nov 2, 2018 • 60 min
In this week’s episode of the Intelligence Squared podcast, the historian and author of Lords of the Desert James Barr sat down with Times journalist Catherine Philp to reveal the the story of the hidden 25-year rivalry between Britain and the United…
Kate Raworth and Matthew Taylor on Rethinking Economics For The 21st Century
Oct 26, 2018 • 42 min
In this week’s episode of the Intelligence Squared podcast, Oxford economist and author of Doughnut Economics Kate Raworth sat down with Matthew Taylor, chief executive of the RSA, to discuss her transformative ideas for a new economy. See…
Mistaken Identities: The Conflict Over Culture, Class, Gender and Nation with Kwame Anthony Appiah and John Gray
Oct 19, 2018 • 59 min
Race, religion and identity are being talked about as never before. While minority groups raise their voices for recognition and inclusion, others feel that their culture is being eroded. In these increasingly febrile times, Intelligence Squared brought…
Dickens vs Tolstoy: The Battle Of The Great 19th-century Novelists
Oct 12, 2018 • 89 min
Dickens. Tolstoy. Their names and reputations shake the ground – and so do their books, if you drop one. They are the two greatest novelists from the century when novels were really great. Both captured their countries’ very souls and, as vastly…
Peter Biskind and Helen Lewis on Vampires, Zombies, X-Men and Political Extremism
Oct 5, 2018 • 48 min
In this Intelligence Squared podcast we were joined by Peter Biskind, cultural critic and author of The Sky Is Falling, alongside the New Statesman’s Helen Lewis, in an examination of how popular culture has fuelled extremism in our politics. See…
Tristan Harris and Helen Lewis on how tech has hijacked our brains
Sep 28, 2018 • 48 min
In this episode of Intelligence Squared we were joined by Tristan Harris, former design ethicist at Google in conversation with the New Statesman’s Helen Lewis, as they discussed the threat that technology poses to society and our minds. See…
Mariana Mazzucato and Stella Creasy on Making and Taking in the Global Economy
Sep 21, 2018 • 59 min
In this week’s episode of the Intelligence Squared podcast, Mariana Mazzucato, UCL economics professor and author of The Value of Everything, sat down with the UK Labour MP Stella Creasy in a wide-ranging discussion of how real wealth is created in our…
Jeremy Corbyn Is Unfit To Be Prime Minister
Sep 14, 2018 • 62 min
When Jeremy Corbyn won the Labour leadership he was shrugged off as an unelectable oddball in a scruffy suit who would doom Labour to certain defeat. But last year’s shock election result forces us all to consider the real possibility of a Corbyn-led…
Linda Yueh and Jesse Norman on the Economists That Shaped History
Sep 6, 2018 • 39 min
Linda Yueh, renowned economist, broadcaster and author of The Great Economists, in conversation with Jesse Norman, MP for Hereford and South Herefordshire and author of Adam Smith: What He Thought, and Why it Matters, discussed the transformative legacies…
Tom Baldwin and Nina Schick on How the Information Age Crashed Our Democracy
Aug 30, 2018 • 48 min
Tom Baldwin, former Director of Communications for the UK Labour Party under Ed Miliband and author of Ctrl Alt Delete, has spent the best part of three decades at the centre of politics and journalism. In a wide-ranging conversation with Nina Shick,…
Tim Marshall in conversation with Catherine Philp on Why We’re Living in an Age of Walls
Aug 23, 2018 • 46 min
Tim Marshall, renowned journalist and author of Divided, in conversation with the Times diplomatic correspondent Catherine Philp, examine the fault lines that will shape our world for years to come. Walls are going up around the world. Nationalism and…
Jamie Susskind in conversation with Helen Lewis On How Tech Is Transforming Our Politics
Aug 16, 2018 • 43 min
Jamie Susskind, author of Future Politics, in conversation with the New Statesman’s Helen Lewis, discuss how digital technology will radically transform how we live together, exploring how the very concepts of democracy, liberty, justice and power could…
James Bloodworth in conversation with Matthew Taylor on the Gig Economy and the Reality of Low-Wage Work
Aug 9, 2018 • 48 min
Journalist James Bloodworth spent six months working undercover across Britain, taking on some of the country’s most gruelling and menial jobs for his recent book Hired: Six Months Undercover in Low-Wage Britain. In this Intelligence Squared podcast in…
Tom Whipple in Conversation With Rosamund Urwin on Why Gender Still Matters
Aug 2, 2018 • 56 min
Referencing the latest research on the science of sexuality, Tom Whipple talks about dating apps, Love Island, the relative testicle size of bonobos and chimpanzees, and gay penguins, to throw light on why men and women behave the way they do when it…
Blockchain: Quantum leap forward or digital snake oil?
Jul 27, 2018 • 59 min
Blockchain, the technology on which Bitcoin is based, has gone mainstream. Evangelists describe it as a thrilling and versatile foundation that will revolutionise everything from finance to governance. But is it really the radical new paradigm its…
The Rise of the Smart City: Urban Wonderland or Fool’s Paradise?
Jul 20, 2018 • 45 min
More humans than ever before live in cities. Technology is now being rolled out across the world’s urban areas, making day-to-day city living more pleasant, more efficient and more sustainable. For example, traffic flows are being improved by sensors that…
The Battle for the Countryside: Britain Should Rewild its Uplands
Jul 12, 2018 • 59 min
Imagine if swathes of the British countryside were allowed to be wild once again, if trees and rare plants could flourish and beavers, boars and white-tailed eagles could retake their place in the ecosystem. That’s the goal of the growing numbers of…
Mary Beard on Women and Power, with Miriam González and Laurie Penny
Jul 5, 2018 • 60 min
Mary Beard is Britain’s best known classicist. Widely admired for her scholarship and popular television programmes about the ancient world, she is also one of this country’s most prominent feminists. By refusing to be cowed by the misogynistic trolls who…
James Comey in Conversation with Emily Maitlis on Speaking Truth To Power
Jun 29, 2018 • 72 min
When President Trump sacked James Comey as FBI Director in May last year, he ignited a political firestorm with huge implications for American democracy. Comey’s dismissal led to the appointment of Special Counsel Robert Mueller to look at possible links…
The World Should Recognise Jerusalem As Israel’s Capital
Jun 22, 2018 • 60 min
Many of Israel’s supporters, including Donald Trump, claim Jerusalem should be recognised as the country’s capital city. After all, it has been the Jewish people’s spiritual capital for millennia. But will recognising Jerusalem be the death blow for the…
Anshel Pfeffer in conversation with Catherine Philp on Netanyahu and The Future of Israel
Jun 14, 2018 • 58 min
This week’s Intelligence Squared podcast features Anshel Pfeffer, Haaretz journalist and author of Bibi - The Turbulent Life And Times Of Benjamin Netanyahu in conversation with Catherine Philp, diplomatic correspondent on The Times. In this in-depth…
The Threat From Russia: Can Putin Be Stopped?
Jun 7, 2018 • 59 min
Is Vladimir Putin the most powerful – and dangerous – man in the world? With Putin in the Kremlin, we have returned to an era where former Russian spies are mysteriously poisoned on British soil and where Russia feels emboldened to roll its tanks into an…
The Disunited States: Is the Trump presidency causing irreparable damage to America?
May 31, 2018 • 58 min
America has never seen anything like this. Time and again, Donald Trump has attacked the very fabric of US democracy. He has called the press ‘the enemy of the American people’. He says that claims that Russia interfered in the US election are a hoax. And…
Jordan Peterson on Gender, Patriarchy and the Slide Towards Tyranny
May 23, 2018 • 57 min
In May 2018, we recorded a special episode of the Intelligence Squared podcast in London. Jordan Peterson, author of 12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos, was joined by Anne McElvoy, Senior Editor at The Economist and head of Economist Radio, to…
Revere or Remove? The Battle Over Statues, Heritage and History
May 17, 2018 • 58 min
Statues and memorials to famous figures of the past adorn our towns and cities. But what should be done when some of these figures have come to be seen by many people as controversial symbols of oppression and discrimination? In Britain, the Rhodes Must…
The nuclear deal with Iran won’t make the world a safer place
May 10, 2018 • 61 min
For this week’s episode we’re revisiting our debate from November 2015, “The nuclear deal with Iran won’t make the world a safer place”. Alan Dershowitz, one of America’s most formidable and celebrated lawyers, and Emily Landau, one of Israel’s top…
Send Them Back: The Parthenon Marbles Should be Returned to Athens
May 3, 2018 • 45 min
What’s all this nonsense about sending the Parthenon Marbles back to Greece? If Lord Elgin hadn’t rescued them from the Parthenon in Athens and presented them to the British Museum almost 200 years ago, these exquisite sculptures – the finest embodiment…
Jamie Bartlett in conversation with Helen Lewis on how the internet is threatening our freedoms
Apr 26, 2018 • 53 min
This week’s Intelligence Squared podcast features Jamie Bartlett, tech journalist and author of The People vs Tech in conversation with the New Statesman’s Deputy Editor Helen Lewis. In this in-depth discussion on the politics of technology, they explored…
Rembrandt Vs Vermeer: The Titans of Dutch Painting
Apr 19, 2018 • 58 min
(For a list of all paintings referenced by Simon Schama and Tracy Chevalier in this debate please go to: https://www.intelligencesquared.com/events/rembrandt-vs-vermeer-titans-of-dutch-painting-simon-schama-tracy-chevalier/ Rembrandt van Rijn is the best…
Psychiatrists & the pharma industry are to blame for the current ‘epidemic’ of mental disorders
Apr 12, 2018 • 60 min
Drug pushers. We tend to associate them with the bleak underworld of criminality. But some would argue that there’s another class of drug pushers, just as unscrupulous, who work in the highly respectable fields of psychiatry and the pharmaceutical…
Hilton Als and Afua Hirsch on Race, Gender and Identity
Apr 5, 2018 • 37 min
In March 2018, we recorded a special episode of the Intelligence Squared podcast at the Acast studio in east London. Pulitzer prize winning writer and chief theatre critic for The New Yorker Hilton Als was in conversation with Guardian columnist and…
Stop Brexit
Mar 29, 2018 • 60 min
It’s time we came to to our senses. Brexit is a disaster and must be stopped. Leave campaigners promised our exit from the European Union would herald a glorious new era – the sunlit uplands of ‘global Britain’, with new trade deals signed in a matter of…
If You Believe You Are a Citizen of the World, You Are A Citizen of Nowhere
Mar 22, 2018 • 61 min
When Theresa May uttered these words at the Tory party conference in 2016, there was uproar. May was targeting the liberal establishment, who flit business class from Mayfair to Monaco, from Davos to Doha; those in positions of power, who, as May put it,…
Disruption Ahead: Will Future Transport Systems Benefit Society Or Drive It Apart?
Mar 15, 2018 • 54 min
A transport revolution in our cities is under way. Ride-sharing schemes, driverless cars and electric vehicles look set to bring us all kinds of benefits, such as lower pollution, faster flowing traffic and fewer accidents. But these benefits won’t just…
The Power of Poetry, with William Sieghart, Jeanette Winterson and Helena Bonham Carter
Mar 8, 2018 • 84 min
For 15 years, the power of the spoken word has been at the heart of Intelligence Squared’s mission. Argument and debate, we believe, can move, persuade and create real change. Now, in these anxious and divided times, we held a special event that…
Western Parents Don’t Know How to Bring Up Their Children
Mar 1, 2018 • 59 min
Why are there so many Chinese maths and music prodigies? Because Chinese mothers believe schoolwork and music practice come first, that an A-minus is a bad grade, that sleepovers, TV and computer games should never be allowed and that the only activity…
The Left has right on its side
Feb 22, 2018 • 60 min
Letís be honest. Itís the political Left that has societyís best interests at heart, that works for the good of all. It has always been the Left that has struggled to protect the weak from the strong, that has fought for workersí rights, for sexual and…
James Rhodes And Armando Iannucci on the Transformative Power of Music
Feb 15, 2018 • 61 min
In February 2018 Intelligence Squared brought Armando Iannucci and James Rhodes to our stage to discuss the transcendent power of music. Rhodes is known as the wild man of concert pianists. His approach to the piano is raw and unbridled, his tousled hair…
Ten Years On: The Financial Crisis and the State of Modern Capitalism
Feb 8, 2018 • 60 min
It’s been ten years since we saw suddenly unemployed Lehman Brothers bankers carrying their possessions out of their offices in boxes; since whole neighbourhoods in suburban America turned into empty ghost towns; since the British and American governments…
Karen Armstrong on Religion and the History of Violence
Feb 1, 2018 • 59 min
Karen Armstrong has written over 16 books on faith and the major religions, studying what Islam, Judaism and Christianity have in common, and how our faiths have shaped world history and drive current events. She came to the Intelligence Squared stage to…
Brian Cox and Alice Roberts on the Incredible Unlikeliness of Human Existence
Jan 25, 2018 • 59 min
Who are we? Why are we here? Are we alone in the universe? How did we become the creatures that we are? How might we further evolve? These are some of the big questions that Brian Cox and Alice Roberts tackled when they came to the Intelligence Squared…
Break Up The Tech Giants
Jan 18, 2018 • 60 min
It is time to call the tech companies to account. In the space of just ten years, Google, Apple, Facebook, Amazon and Microsoft have become the biggest companies on the planet and have accrued a level of power that threatens us all. They control our data,…
Caitlyn Jenner on Identity and Self-Realisation
Jan 11, 2018 • 57 min
This week’s episode of the Intelligence Squared podcast was recorded in a studio in London’s Soho. We were joined by Caitlyn Jenner, the world’s most famous transgender woman, as she talked with the Guardian’s Jonathan Freedland about US politics,…
David Brooks on the Road to Character
Jan 4, 2018 • 59 min
In May 2015, New York Times columnist David Brooks came to the Intelligence Squared stage to share the insights of his latest book, ‘The Road to Character’. Brooks argued that today’s ‘Big Me’ culture is making us increasingly self-preoccupied: we live in…
Inside The Head Of Terry Gilliam
Dec 28, 2017 • 60 min
Terry Gilliam is one of the most multifaceted, visionary talents alive. He first found fame as a member of Monty Python, the surreal comedy troupe that has had a cult following since its inception in 1969 right up to today. Had Gilliam stopped there, his…
Joseph Stiglitz on the Great Divide
Dec 21, 2017 • 59 min
Inequality is an increasing problem in the Western world, leaving everyone – the rich as well as the poor – worse off. The dream of a socially mobile society is becoming an ever more unachievable myth. That’s the view of Nobel Prize-winning economist…
Stephen Fry and Friends on the Life, Loves and Hates of Christopher Hitchens
Dec 14, 2017 • 45 min
In this historic event, Stephen Fry and other friends of Christopher Hitchens came together to celebrate the life and work of this great writer, iconoclast and debater. Fry was joined on stage at the Southbank Centre’s Royal Festival Hall by Richard…
Words that Changed The World, with Jeremy Irons and Carey Mulligan
Dec 7, 2017 • 98 min
For 15 years, Intelligence Squared has vigorously championed the spoken word. The finest speakers from across the globe have come to our stage — to argue, to move, to persuade and change minds. Their speeches epitomise the vital role that public speaking…
Brave New World vs Ninety Eighty-Four
Nov 30, 2017 • 89 min
Dystopian books and films are in the zeitgeist. Reflecting the often dark mood of our times, Intelligence Squared are staging a contest between two of the greatest dystopian novels, Brave New World and Nineteen Eighty-Four. Each book captured the…
Michael Lewis On How Behavioural Economics Changed The World
Nov 23, 2017 • 60 min
Michael Lewis is one of the most successful non-fiction authors alive. He has been acclaimed as a genius by Malcolm Gladwell and as the best current writer in America by Tom Wolfe. In a series of titles that have sold 9 million copies worldwide, he has…
Jaron Lanier on the Future of Our Digital Lives
Nov 17, 2017 • 57 min
Jaron Lanier is one of the foremost digital visionaries of our times. One of Silicon Valley’s key early innovators, this dreadlocked digital prophet has been dubbed the ‘father of virtual reality’ and named as one of Time’s 100 most influential people in…
Neville Chamberlain did the right thing: Appeasement of Hitler was the best policy for the British government in the 1930s
Nov 9, 2017 • 60 min
If ever a politician got a bum rap it’s Neville Chamberlain. He has gone down in history as the British prime minster whose policy of appeasement in the 1930s allowed the Nazis to flourish unopposed. He has never been forgiven for ceding part of…
Me, My Selfie and I: Self-Expression in the Digital Age
Nov 2, 2017 • 58 min
We are living in the age of selfie mania. Everyone from the Pope to Obama has appeared in one. In the past, only a handful of people were able to propagate their own images, whether it was artists like Rembrandt or Van Gogh painting self-portraits,…
Warfare: The New Rules - The Cyber Threat to States, Businesses and All of Us
Oct 26, 2017 • 59 min
We are at war: cyberwar. Cyber attacks are becoming the weapon of choice for states, terrorists and criminal organisations. Through the fragile, interconnected structure of the web, anything can be hacked – from national infrastructure to an individual’s…
Oslo: Can We Bring Peace Between Enemies?
Oct 19, 2017 • 56 min
On October 17th Intelligence Squared staged a pre-theatre discussion, ‘Can We Bring Peace Between Enemies?’ before a performance of the award-winning play Oslo. The play is a political thriller which tells the true story of two maverick Norwegian…
Niall Ferguson on History’s Hidden Networks
Oct 12, 2017 • 59 min
Have historians misunderstood everything? Have they missed the single greatest idea that best explains the past? Niall Ferguson is the preeminent historian of the ideas that define our time. He has challenged how we think about money, power, civilisation…
Randall Munroe with Marcus du Sautoy on Making the Complicated Simple
Oct 5, 2017 • 59 min
On 2nd October, Intelligence Squared brought together two of the world’s best-loved masters of explaining and popularising science, who lifted the lid on the technology we love and on the cutting edge of current scientific research. Randall Munroe is a…
Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella on hitting refresh and seizing the opportunity of the digital revolution
Sep 28, 2017 • 60 min
Satya Nadella is one of the world’s most inspirational business leaders, as much a humanist as a technologist and executive. On September 28th, he comes to the Intelligence Squared stage to discuss his personal journey from a childhood in India to…
Napoleon the Great? A debate with Andrew Roberts, Adam Zamoyski and Jeremy Paxman
Sep 21, 2017 • 59 min
How should we remember Napoleon, the man of obscure Corsican birth who rose to become emperor of the French and briefly master of Europe? In 2014, as the 200th anniversary of the Battle of Waterloo approached, Intelligence Squared brought together two of…
The Great Realignment: Britain’s Political Identity Crisis
Sep 14, 2017 • 60 min
Is Britain facing an identity crisis? The traditional dividing lines of left and right seem to be dissolving into new political tribes – metropolitan liberals versus the culturally rooted working classes, graduates versus the uneducated, the young versus…
Sam Harris on the Science of Good and Evil
Sep 7, 2017 • 59 min
Where do our ideas about morality and meaning come from? Most people - from religious extremists to secular scientists - would agree on one point: that science has nothing to say on the subject of human values. Indeed, science’s failure to explain meaning…
Is London too rich to be interesting?
Aug 31, 2017 • 58 min
It used to be so easy. You left university, came to London and got yourself a flatshare in one of the cheaper areas: Notting Hill, Maida Vale or Highgate. Living was cheap and if it took you a while to find out what you really wanted to do with your life…
Atheism is the new Fundamentalism, with Richard Dawkins and Richard Harries
Aug 24, 2017 • 60 min
Does God exist? Has atheism replaced religion as the new faith of the secular age? Are today’s atheists as blinkered and dogmatic as they claim religious believers to be? This Intelligence Squared debate from November 2009 was recorded at Wellington…
The Elders in conversation with Jon Snow (Pres. Jimmy Carter, Archbp. Desmond Tutu & Mary Robinson)
Aug 17, 2017 • 60 min
Independent, free now from the constraints of office, with a wealth of experience and the ability to open doors at the highest level, The Elders are helping tackle some of the world’s most intractable problems. Brought together by Nelson Mandela in 2007,…
The Allied bombing of German cities in World War II was unjustifiable
Aug 10, 2017 • 58 min
No one doubts the bravery of the thousands of men who flew and died in Bomber Command. The death rate was an appalling 44%. And yet until the opening of a monument in Green Park in 2012 they had received no official recognition, with many historians…
Britain Should Not Have Fought in the First World War
Aug 4, 2017 • 58 min
The First World War is not called the Great War for nothing. It was the single most decisive event in modern history, as well as one of the bloodiest: by the time the war ended, some nine million soldiers had been killed. It was also a historical full…
Marina Abramović on art, performance, time and nothingness
Jul 27, 2017 • 59 min
Marina Abramović is the most celebrated performance artist in the world. Over a career spanning four decades she has pioneered performance as an art form and accumulated a devoted following that includes Jay-Z and Lady Gaga. Using her body as both subject…
The EU is Failing Europe’s Citizens
Jul 20, 2017 • 55 min
In the eyes of pro-Europeans, the founding of the EU after WWII secured peace across the continent for decades. But one needn’t look further than Brexit to see that the EU is teetering on the edge. By showing itself blind to the concerns of ordinary…
Francis Fukuyama with David Runciman - Democracy: Even the Best Ideas Can Fail
Jul 13, 2017 • 59 min
In September 2014, Professor Francis Fukuyama came to the Intelligence Squared stage to square up with one of Britain’s most brilliant political thinkers, David Runciman, to assess how democracy is faring in 2014. We certainly haven’t attained the rosy…
Naomi Klein on Donald Trump and the new shock politics
Jul 6, 2017 • 50 min
Earlier this week we recorded a special episode of the Intelligence Squared podcast at the Acast studio in east London. We were joined by author and activist Naomi Klein and BBC economics editor Kamal Ahmed as they discussed Klein’s bestselling new book…
Sheryl Sandberg, Malala Yousafzai and Adam Grant on Facing Adversity, Building Resilience And Finding Joy
Jun 29, 2017 • 60 min
‘I learned about the depths of sadness and the brutality of loss. But I also learned that when life sucks you under, you can kick against the bottom, break the surface and breathe again.’ – Sheryl Sandberg Sheryl Sandberg is the COO at Facebook and…
Daniel Dennett on Tools To Transform Our Thinking
Jun 22, 2017 • 59 min
Daniel Dennett is one of the world’s most original and provocative thinkers. A philosopher and cognitive scientist, he is known as one of the ‘Four Horseman of New Atheism’ along with Richard Dawkins, Sam Harris and the late Christopher Hitchens. In 2013…
It’s time to bring Russia in from the cold: Rapprochement is in the West’s best interests
Jun 15, 2017 • 59 min
Is it in the West’s interests to bring Russia in from the cold? Or should we be on our guard against an ascendant, belligerent country on Europe’s borders? For this major debate, Intelligence Squared put together a stellar line-up. Making the case for…
Europe on the Edge
Jun 8, 2017 • 60 min
What’s happening to Europe? The fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989 was seen as a triumph for liberal democracy. True, the ‘end of history’ narrative didn’t play out across the world as many predicted. But in Europe political liberalism seemed unshakable,…
Can innovation transform London into a carbon neutral city?
Jun 1, 2017 • 51 min
Could London be the first carbon neutral city? Listen to this exciting debate hosted by Intelligence Squared. Gadget guru Jason Bradbury is the chair, plus guests including award winning actor and broadcaster Richard Ayoade. See acast.com/privacy for…
Fake News: The Facts
May 25, 2017 • 61 min
There are lies, damn lies, and then there’s fake news. Manipulating the facts for political gain is as old as politics itself, but due to the rise of social media and search engine algorithms false stories can now spread like wildfire. In the run-up to…
How to Think Like a Freak: Learn How to Make Smarter Decisions with the authors of “Freakonomics”
May 18, 2017 • 59 min
The books ‘Freakonomics’ and ‘SuperFreakonomics’ have been worldwide sensations, selling tens of millions of copies. They have come to stand for challenging conventional wisdom using data rather than emotion. Questions they examine are typically: Which is…
Between You and I The English Language Is Going To The Dogs
May 11, 2017 • 60 min
Speaking and writing correct English are the hallmark of an intelligent person. No one who cares about language wants to be caught splitting an infinitive or muddling up ‘infer’ and ‘imply’. Which is why the bestseller lists are regularly topped by books…
An Evening with Slavoj Žižek
May 4, 2017 • 60 min
Radical philosopher, polymath, film star, cult icon, and author of over 30 books, Slavoj Žižek is one of the most controversial and leading contemporary public intellectuals, simultaneously acclaimed as the ‘Elvis of cultural theory’ and denounced as ‘the…
Trump is Making America Great Again
Apr 27, 2017 • 60 min
As Donald Trump approaches the first 100 days of his presidency, things couldn’t be worse. His administration has been more gaffe-prone, incompetent and unstable than any other in American history. Trump has been engulfed in a scandal over his campaign’s…
Anne-Marie Slaughter on Our Hyper-Networked World
Apr 20, 2017 • 60 min
Anne-Marie Slaughter is one of the world’s top foreign policy thinkers, admired by influential global leaders such as Joe Biden, Condoleeza Rice and Eric Schmidt. A former senior adviser to Hillary Clinton in the State Department, she hit the headlines in…
Has the Political Establishment Failed America?
Apr 13, 2017 • 69 min
Has the political establishment failed America? Whether they voted for Trump or Sanders or none of the above, millions of Americans say the answer is yes – and that the system benefits the elites at the expense of everyone else. Others say that despite…
Whose Prosperity? How Can We Build Inclusive and Sustainable Economies?
Apr 6, 2017 • 61 min
A debate on the eve of the Second PAGE Ministerial Conference (http://bit.ly/2jhYyaX). Filmed at the Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation, Building and Nuclear Safety (BMUB) in Berlin on March 26th 2017. Globalisation has created…
Social Media is Killing Art
Mar 30, 2017 • 59 min
Social media is like fast food – rapidly consumed for instant gratification. No wonder social media demeans art. Artworks that instantly seduce online become tedious when contemplated over time in the flesh. Once art goes viral, it gains traction,…
Niall Ferguson On The Six Killer Apps Of Western Civilisation
Mar 23, 2017 • 58 min
Niall Ferguson is the most brilliant British historian of his generation. In this talk from February 2011, based on his book ‘Civilisation: The West and the Rest’, he asks how Western civilization came to dominate the rest of the world. His answer is that…
Don’t give them what they want: Terrorists should be starved of the oxygen of publicity
Mar 16, 2017 • 60 min
Why do they do it? Again and again, after every attack, our media react by giving the terrorists exactly what they want – maximum publicity. Of course, the public should be told that an atrocity has taken place. But each attack dominates the news for days…
Feminism Is For Everyone
Mar 9, 2017 • 59 min
A year ago, you could have been forgiven for thinking that gender equality was on an unstoppable trajectory. America stood poised to elect its first female president. On this side of the Atlantic, members of the political and cultural establishment…
Jeffrey Sachs on America and a New World Order
Mar 2, 2017 • 60 min
‘America first!’ Donald Trump hammered out this message over and again in his inauguration speech a week ago today. He promised tariffs, a crackdown on immigration, and a restoration of American military might. He entered the White House as the least…
Daniel Dennett on the Evolution of the Mind, Consciousness and AI
Feb 23, 2017 • 60 min
How come there are conscious minds? How do language and culture evolve? Should we still teach children things which computers can do better? Will our smart electronic devices rob us of our intelligence? Will human intelligence and AI co-evolve? These are…
The Bittersweet Truth About What We Eat
Feb 16, 2017 • 60 min
What should we be eating to live a long and healthy life? How is it that some people can eat absolutely anything and stay slim, while others on a ‘healthy’ diet get fat? Why is it that Cubans are much healthier than Americans, despite eating on average…
Steven Pinker on Good Writing, with Ian McEwan
Feb 9, 2017 • 60 min
Steven Pinker is one of the world’s leading authorities on language, mind and human nature. A professor of psychology at Harvard, he is the bestselling author of eight books and regularly appears in lists of the world’s top 100 thinkers. In 2014 he…
Queen Elizabeth I vs Queen Victoria
Feb 2, 2017 • 74 min
Intelligence Squared’s historical and cultural combat events have been thrilling our audiences with their unique blend of entertainment, information and live performance. Here we present the battle of the queens. Both Queen Elizabeth I and Queen Victoria…
Thomas Friedman on Thriving in the Age of Acceleration
Jan 26, 2017 • 60 min
He has been called ‘the most influential columnist in America’, and is read by everyone from small-business owners to President Obama. As a star columnist of The New York Times, Thomas Friedman has won the Pulitzer Prize three times. Although he has been…
The New Optimism, with Matt Ridley, Johan Norberg, David Runciman and Laura Kuenssberg
Jan 19, 2017 • 60 min
Are you an optimist or a pessimist? And why should it matter? After what for many of us has been an annus horribilis in 2016, pessimists seem to have all the best tunes. Terror attacks, horror headlines from Syria, a tide of hatred and resentment…
Steven Pinker on The Better Angels of Our Nature
Jan 12, 2017 • 60 min
In 2011, we welcomed world renowned American cognitive scientist Steven Pinker to the Intelligence Squared stage. He argued that, contrary to popular belief, we are living in the least violent period of history, and that even the horrific carnage of the…
The Hand that Rocks the Cradle Cannot Rock the Boardroom
Jan 6, 2017 • 45 min
Is it a myth that women can have it all, all of the time? Or do the rising numbers of female executives in Hong Kong and around the world suggest otherwise? Does the glass ceiling exist as a barrier to the boardroom, or is the only limitation to a woman’s…
William Gibson on ‘Zero History’, with Cory Doctorow
Dec 29, 2016 • 59 min
On 5th October 2010, Intelligence Squared paired author William Gibson with popular blogger and science fiction writer Cory Doctorow in a wide-ranging conversation that gives a fascinating insight into the mind of the man heralded as the “architect of…
Dan Pink on the Science of Buoyancy
Dec 22, 2016 • 59 min
It happens to all of us every day. You get rejected. Your customer doesn’t buy. Your boss doesn’t agree. Your crush doesn’t say yes. In this provocative and entertaining talk, exclusive to Intelligence Squared, American author Daniel H. Pink harvested a…
Tim Harford on the Importance of Being Messy
Dec 15, 2016 • 60 min
Have the forces of tidiness marched too far? Would we all benefit from being a bit messy? That’s the big question that the FT’s star economist Tim Harford will be asking in this exclusive Intelligence Squared event. In Harford’s view, we need to be tidy…
Trump: An American Tragedy?
Dec 8, 2016 • 61 min
It’s one month since we woke up to the shock news that the next president of the United States will be Donald Trump, and the whole world is trying to read the runes and work out what the next four years will hold for America and the rest of the world.…
Ian Fleming vs John le Carré
Dec 1, 2016 • 97 min
They are the titans of the spy novel, who have elevated thrillers to the level of literary fiction. Much imitated, much adapted by the big and small screens, Ian Fleming and John Le Carré have painted our picture of post-war espionage: Fleming through the…
The Rise of Populism and the Backlash Against the Elites, with Jonathan Haidt and Nick Clegg
Nov 25, 2016 • 60 min
What is going on in the Western democracies? From Britain’s vote for Brexit, to Donald Trump’s election victory in America and the growth of populist movements across Europe, voters are expressing their dissatisfaction with the status quo. Economic…
No Backsliding On Brexit: Britain Should Prioritise Controlling Its Borders Over Staying In The European Single Market
Nov 17, 2016 • 60 min
Intelligence Squared brought out the big guns for our debate on what a post-referendum deal between Britain and the EU should look like. Douglas Carswell, Patrick Minford, Anna Soubry and Alexander Stubb did battle over this all-important decision, and…
One size doesn’t fit all: Democracy is not always the best form of government
Nov 10, 2016 • 46 min
Democracy is the worst form of government except all the others that have been tried. So said Winston Churchill and who would disagree? One man, one vote, the rule of law, equality and a free press. These are the Enlightenment principles the West has…
Let Them Eat Meat: There is Nothing Wrong With Rearing and Killing Animals for Human Consumption
Nov 3, 2016 • 61 min
Fancy a nice juicy steak? Most of us do from time to time, and we don’t trouble our consciences too much with the rights and wrongs of eating meat. Others, while vaguely aware that we ought to go vegan, just can’t face the rest of our lives denying…
An Anatomy Of Truth: Conversations on Truth-Telling
Oct 27, 2016 • 60 min
Not everyone tells the truth. ‘Read my lips: no new taxes.’ ‘This isn’t going to hurt.’ ‘I see no ships, my lord.’ ‘Of course I love you.’ When can we know what to believe? Four out of five of us don’t think politicians tell the truth, according to a…
Pornography is Good For Us: Without it We Would Be a Far More Repressed Society
Oct 20, 2016 • 59 min
Hooray for porn! What would we be without it? Bored, repressed, frustrated. Porn allows the timid to indulge fantasies they’d never live out in real life and the adventurous to experiment with new forms of pleasure. Now that it has stepped down from the…
PJ O’Rourke on the US Presidential Clash
Oct 14, 2016 • 60 min
As Donald Trump faces Hillary Clinton in what has been one of the most vitriolic and unpredictable races in recent US election history, we were joined by America’s leading political satirist PJ O’Rourke, just a month ahead of US election day, as he cast…
The Gene: Unlocking the Human Code, with Siddhartha Mukherjee
Oct 7, 2016 • 60 min
Genetics has revolutionised not just how we think of biology but how we think of ourselves. We are, in the words of one geneticist, the first organism that has ‘learned to read its own instructions’. Now, with the breakthrough of gene-editing technology —…
Karl Marx Was Right
Sep 30, 2016 • 59 min
We can’t say Karl Marx didn’t warn us: capitalism contains the seeds of its own destruction. In their chase for ever higher profits, the capitalists shed workers for machines. The higher return on capital means that the share of profits rises and the…
The End of Antibiotics?
Sep 23, 2016 • 68 min
This panel discussion took place at the New York Academy of Sciences in September 2016 and was produced by Intelligence Squared, in partnership with the World Health Organisation and the Wellcome Trust. There’s a time bomb ticking that is going to affect…
Yuval Noah Harari on the Myths we Need to Survive
Sep 19, 2016 • 61 min
Myths. We tend to think they’re a thing of the past, fabrications that early humans needed to believe in because their understanding of the world was so meagre. But what if modern civilisation were itself based on a set of myths? This is the big question…
David Eagleman on the Science of De- (and Re-) Humanisation (and Why it Matters)
Sep 16, 2016 • 60 min
Which side were you on? The Jets or the Sharks? The Capulets or the Montagues? The Greeks or the Trojans? Antony or Caesar? William or Harold? And so the list goes on … Indeed, maybe the whole of human history is the story of group-making and…
Yuval Noah Harari on the Rise of Homo Deus
Sep 9, 2016 • 61 min
“Studying history aims to loosen the grip of the past… It will not tell us what to choose, but at least it gives us more options.” – Yuval Noah Harari Yuval Noah Harari is the star historian who shot to fame with his international bestseller ‘Sapiens: A…
Museums are Bad at Telling us Why Art Matters
Sep 2, 2016 • 58 min
Museums are our new churches, as is commonly agreed. Millions of people flock to them to be uplifted, inspired, or distracted from everyday cares for an hour or two by encountering magnificent art. But while churches know exactly how to present art in…
P J O’Rourke: The Funniest Man in America
Aug 10, 2016 • 59 min
P.J. O’Rourke is America’s premier political satirist and has more citations in ‘The Penguin Dictionary of Humorous Quotations’ than any other living writer. In this live appearance for Intelligence Squared in 2010, he discussed his new book, ‘Don’t Vote…
Brexit Britain – Our Divided Nation
Jul 31, 2016 • 50 min
This panel session was part of Brexit Britain, an afternoon of debate and discussion produced by BBC Newsnight in partnership with Intelligence Squared at the Royal Geographical Society in London. In this, the first session of the day, folk…
Brexit Britain - Political Fallout
Jul 31, 2016 • 44 min
This panel session was part of Brexit Britain, an afternoon of debate and discussion produced by BBC Newsnight in partnership with Intelligence Squared at the Royal Geographical Society in London. In this, the second session of the day, Guardian columnist…
Carlo Rovelli and Christophe Galfard on the Architecture of the Universe
Jul 29, 2016 • 60 min
Does time exist? Was our universe born from a Big Bang, or from a Big Bounce triggered by a former universe imploding? Is this the only universe, or are there infinite ones, all expanding in parallel and out of sight of each other? These are just some of…
Richard Dawkins: The Rational Revolutionary
Jul 22, 2016 • 60 min
In the 1960s and 70s, a revolution took place in the way we understand human nature. Out went Marx and Freud, and in came a rational, scientific approach to the way we see ourselves. At the vanguard of that revolution was Richard Dawkins, the evolutionary…
Ancient Worlds: A Meeting of East and West
Jul 15, 2016 • 60 min
There’s a new school of history that’s revolutionising the way we look at the past. For centuries, our history has been taught in separate chunks, with the classical, European world divided from China and the East. This traditional, somewhat lazy history…
Brexit: What Next?
Jul 5, 2016 • 83 min
The UK has made the momentous decision to leave the EU. Intelligence Squared staged an emergency event to discuss the ramifications. A panel including Douglas Carswell, Jonathan Freedland, Josef Janning, Liz Kendall, Anand Menon and Adair Turner will…
Yes, he Can! No, he couldn’t. Obama Is A Failed President
Jun 23, 2016 • 60 min
Eight years ago the banners said ‘Behold the new Kennedy!’ Tears flowed and expectations were sky-high as Obama spoke on election night surrounded by his young family. Here was America’s saviour, the man who could overcome the legacy of slavery, heal a…
One Size Doesn’t Fit All: Democracy is Not Always the Best Form of Government
Jun 22, 2016 • 39 min
Democracy is the worst form of government except all the others that have been tried. So said Winston Churchill and who would disagree? One man, one vote, the rule of law, equality and a free press. These are the principles which tens of thousands have…
The Return of History and the Death of Democracy, with Peter Frankopan and Kwasi Kwarteng
Jun 17, 2016 • 60 min
25 years ago, with the fall of the Berlin Wall, the future looked rosy. Liberal democracy, freedom and individual rights were on the march, triumphing over tyranny and repression. The end of the Cold War had brought an end to history, declared Francis…
The Benefits System Perpetuates Misery
Jun 11, 2016 • 59 min
Beveridge would be turning in his grave. The benefits system that his 1942 report introduced has become a travesty. Right now there are some 4.5m people in the UK living in households where nobody has a job. Behind that figure lies a subsection of society…
Let the bad guys be: foreign intervention does more harm than good
Jun 3, 2016 • 59 min
In February 2012 Intelligence Squared Asia presented leading voices and influential figures in a debate about foreign intervention. This discussion raised questions such as: Does foreign intervention lend itself to long-term partnerships characterized by…
The Great Intelligence Squared Brexit Debate
May 27, 2016 • 79 min
How do we decide? The in-out referendum on the UK’s membership of the European Union on June 23 is a once-in-a-generation vote. For some of us it’s a matter of gut political instinct: we are natural inners or outers. But for many, coming to an informed…
Is the Party Over for Economic Growth? When economic stagnation becomes the new normal
May 20, 2016 • 59 min
It was a blast. Since the Industrial Revolution, we enjoyed unprecedented economic growth, propelled by a seemingly unstoppable wave of technological innovation. For 100 years from around 1870, life in the West was transformed by inventions such as…
Assisted suicide should be legalised
May 13, 2016 • 60 min
The law allows me to kill myself, but what if I have a progressive illness and reach a stage when I long to end my life but cannot do so unaided. Isn’t it needlessly cruel and illogical that as the law stands, no friend or family member or doctor can then…
Michael Sandel on the Moral Limits of Markets
May 6, 2016 • 60 min
Michael Sandel is one of the world’s most acclaimed and popular political philosophers. He has given the Reith lectures, been called “the most influential foreign figure of the year” by China Newsweek, and his online video lectures for Harvard University…
Tony Blair on Trial
Apr 29, 2016 • 61 min
When Tony Blair became prime minister in May 1997, he had a landslide majority, an approval rating of 93 per cent, and he went on to become Labour’s longest-serving premier. At his last PMQs he got a standing ovation in the chamber of the House of…
The Future of Health: When Death Becomes Optional
Apr 22, 2016 • 60 min
What if doctors no longer played God and you became CEO of your own health? What if medicine were tailor-made for your own DNA? What will the world be like when people start living to 150 – or even forever? If only the wealthy can afford super-longevity,…
Art Today Has Sold Out To The Market
Apr 15, 2016 • 60 min
Today’s global art market is reminiscent of a roller coaster - even as it rotates and retrenches - the ride continues to propel, excite and surprise. With a tenfold increase in buyers over the last decade, unprecedented numbers of influencers are playing…
Democracy is India’s Achilles’ heel
Apr 8, 2016 • 59 min
We assume that democracy is what every country should have. But what has democracy done for India? Easy. It has stimulated corruption on a massive scale, and if you want to get rich in India the most direct way is to run for parliament and reap the…
George Steiner on the Poetry of Thought
Mar 31, 2016 • 60 min
Renowned polyglot and polymath, George Steiner has long been recognised as one of the most original minds and brilliant lecturers of our generation. In this talk from April 2009, he argued that at the deepest level there is no essential difference between…
The United Nations is terminally paralysed: the democratic world needs a forum of its own
Mar 24, 2016 • 46 min
In January 2009, a panel of experts came to the Intelligence Squared stage to debate the motion “The United Nations is terminally paralysed: the democratic world needs a forum of its own”. Speaking for the motion were Radek Sikorski, Foreign Minister of…
Obama’s foreign policy is a gift to America’s enemies
Mar 18, 2016 • 46 min
Barack Obama’s foreign policy came under expert scrutiny in this Intelligence Squared debate from 2010, as influential hawks and doves debated whether the president’s policies have left America looking feeble on the world stage. Historian and academic…
Both Britain and the EU would be happier if they got divorced
Mar 10, 2016 • 46 min
Some people just can’t bring themselves to acknowledge that a relationship is over. Finished. Unsalvageable. David Cameron, for instance. His long awaited speech on Europe has been one big exercise in denial. Yes, we should stay married to Europe, he…
The Trouble with This Country Is the Daily Mail
Mar 4, 2016 • 59 min
“Immigrant-bashing, woman-hating, Muslim-smearing, NHS-undermining, gay-baiting”. That’s how one critic has described the Daily Mail. It depicts a world where traditional British values are under siege – from the EU, rising crime, and benefit scroungers –…
Umberto Eco in conversation with Paul Holdengräber
Feb 26, 2016 • 59 min
RIP Umberto Eco, bestselling Italian author and semiotician perhaps best-known for his novel ‘The Name of the Rose’, who sadly died aged 84 earlier this week. This week’s podcast revisits our event from November 2011, when we were lucky enough to host Eco…
Defeating Isis means Western Boots on the Ground
Feb 19, 2016 • 61 min
Enough is enough. Paris, Sharm El-Sheikh, Istanbul, Jakarta. Isis is the global crucible of terrorism and must be stopped using all means available. After the Paris attacks last November, the US and its allies stepped up the bombing of Isis targets in…
The Catholic Church is Beyond Redemption: Pope Francis Cannot Save it
Feb 12, 2016 • 58 min
Mired in allegations of sexual abuse, corruption in the Vatican and the first papal resignation in six centuries, the Catholic Church is in crisis. Two thousand years of arcane methods, tired dogma and unpalatable lies have left the papacy crippled and…
Greece versus Rome, with Boris Johnson and Mary Beard
Feb 5, 2016 • 61 min
On November 19th Intelligence Squared hosted the ultimate clash of civilisations: Greece vs Rome. It was also the ultimate clash of intellectual titans. Boris Johnson, Mayor of London and ardent classicist, made the case for Greece; while Mary Beard,…
What Next For Feminism?
Jan 29, 2016 • 60 min
Anne-Marie Slaughter is the Washington power player who upset the feminist applecart. At the peak of her career — as first female Director of Policy Planning at the US State Department — she turned her back on her dream job with Hillary Clinton in order…
From The Library: The Art World Is A Boys’ Club
Jan 18, 2016 • 60 min
Botticelli’s Venus. Warhol’s Marilyn. Chen Yifei’s Beauties. Historically, the creation of art has been largely the preserve of men. And not a lot has changed. In recent years, the top 100 highest grossing living artists at auction were men, selling…
Anthony Sattin on Cairo
Jan 15, 2016 • 57 min
Cairo. The facts say one thing: the biggest city in Africa and the Middle East and now so chaotic and polluted that most visitors to Egypt prefer to avoid it. This same city also speaks to us of history and humanity – Moses and Jesus, Arab poets and…
From the Library - Daniel Goleman On Focus: The Secret to High Performance and Fulfilment
Jan 8, 2016 • 61 min
Psychologist Daniel Goleman shot to fame with his groundbreaking bestseller ‘Emotional Intelligence’. The premise of the book, now widely accepted, is that raw intelligence alone is not a sure predictor of success in life. A greater role is played by…
From the Library: The Parthenon Marbles Should Be Returned To Athens
Dec 30, 2015 • 46 min
What’s all this nonsense about sending the Parthenon Marbles back to Greece? If Lord Elgin hadn’t rescued them from the Parthenon in Athens and presented them to the British Museum almost 200 years ago, these exquisite sculptures – the finest embodiment…
From the Library: Terry Eagleton in conversation with Roger Scruton
Dec 18, 2015 • 62 min
What really divides the left and the right? To answer this question, Intelligence Squared brought together two giants of British intellectual culture for an ideological reckoning: Terry Eagleton, literary critic and long-time hero of the radical left, and…
The Right To Bear Arms Is A Freedom Too Far
Dec 10, 2015 • 50 min
Filmed at the Sadler’s Wells Lilian Baylis Studio on 27th March 2013. Arguing in favour of the motion was journalist, novelist and broadcaster Will Self. Arguing against the motion was author and Mail on Sunday columnist Peter Hitchens. Joining us via…
Effective Altruism: A Better Way to Lead an Ethical Life
Dec 4, 2015 • 60 min
Almost all of us want to make a difference in our lives. So we give to charity, recycle, volunteer, or cut down our carbon emissions. But are we getting it right? In a world where ever more data is available, shouldn’t we be paying closer attention to the…
The Great European Refugees And Migrants Debate
Nov 27, 2015 • 61 min
Europe is gripped by the biggest migrant crisis since the Second World War. The parallels with that earlier crisis are hard to avoid. When in 1938 tens of thousands were fleeing Nazi Germany, not a single European country agreed to raise its quotas. In…
Fight Your Own Battles: Foreign powers shouldn’t intervene in the Middle East
Nov 18, 2015 • 61 min
Filmed at Sadler’s Wells on 17th July 2013. Speaking for the motion were Palestinian-American writer, human rights campaigner and political commentator Susan Abulhawa and Former British Ambassador to Syria Sir Andrew Green. Speaking against the motion…
The Nuclear Deal With Iran Won’t Make the World a Safer Place
Nov 12, 2015 • 62 min
What’s not to like? The deal reached between Iran and six world powers in July is a major diplomatic breakthrough. In exchange for Tehran halting its nuclear weapons programme, the West will lift the sanctions that have been crippling Iran’s economy for…
Karl Ove Knausgaard: The Alchemist of the Ordinary
Nov 6, 2015 • 60 min
Novelists worship him. Critics fall over themselves to explain his genius. His celebrity fans say his books are like drugs. ‘I just read 200 pages and I need the next volume like crack. It’s completely blown my mind,’ Zadie Smith tweeted. What they’re all…
The Art of Political Power, with Robert Caro and William Hague
Oct 30, 2015 • 61 min
Every industry has its guru. And when it comes to the dark arts of political statecraft, the American biographer Robert Caro is the mentor politicians turn to for guidance. His biography of President Lyndon B. Johnson has been described as ‘the greatest…
China picks better leaders than the West
Oct 23, 2015 • 58 min
As Chinese President Xi Jinping visits the UK for a four-day state visit and David Cameron hails a “golden era” in the relationship between the two countries, we revisit the Intelligence Squared Asia debate “China picks better leaders than the West”,…
Niall Ferguson: Henry Kissinger Reappraised, with Andrew Roberts
Oct 16, 2015 • 61 min
No American statesman has been as revered and as reviled as Henry Kissinger. To the late Christopher Hitchens he was a war criminal who should be prosecuted for crimes against humanity. To his admirers he is the greatest strategic thinker America has ever…
Inside The Head Of Terry Gilliam
Oct 9, 2015 • 60 min
Terry Gilliam is one of the most multifaceted, visionary talents alive. He first found fame as a member of Monty Python, the surreal comedy troupe that has had a cult following since its inception in 1969 right up to today. Had Gilliam stopped there, his…
Let’s end the tyranny of the test. Relentless school testing demeans education
Oct 2, 2015 • 72 min
British children are the most tested in the industrialised world. Is regular testing worthwhile training for success in later life, or have our schools become exam sausage factories? Our panel of experts debated whether regular school testing helps our…
Yuval Noah Harari on the myths we need to survive
Sep 25, 2015 • 61 min
Myths. We tend to think they’re a thing of the past, fabrications that early humans needed to believe in because their understanding of the world was so meagre. But what if modern civilisation were itself based on a set of myths? This is the big question…
From the Library: Western Liberal Democracy Would Be Wrong for China
Sep 18, 2015 • 63 min
People everywhere are better off living in liberal democracy: that has been the reigning assumption of the western world. But could it be we’ve got it wrong? If you were one of the world’s billions of poor peasants might you not be better off under a…
Ten Years After 9/11: The World Remade
Sep 11, 2015 • 61 min
Fourteen years on from 9/11, we revisit our event “Ten Years after 9/11: The World Remade” from 2011. In this special Intelligence Squared event, former Foreign Secretary David Miliband and other leading experts from Oxford Analytica, the global strategic…
From the Library: Jimmy Carter in Conversation with Jon Snow
Sep 4, 2015 • 59 min
President Jimmy Carter is a Nobel Prize winner, author, humanitarian, professor, farmer, naval officer and carpenter. In this special Intelligence Squared interview with Channel 4 News’s Jon Snow, which took place in October 2011, President Carter talks…
Europe is failing its Muslims
Aug 28, 2015 • 46 min
The debate “Europe is failing its Muslims” took place on February 23rd at Cadogan Hall in London, in association with BBC World News and the British Council. Arguing in favour of the motion were Tariq Ramadan and Petra Stienen; against the motion were…
From the Library: Robert Macfarlane on Landscape and the Human Heart
Aug 20, 2015 • 61 min
How do the landscapes we love shape the people we are? Why do we walk? For several years and more than a thousand miles, celebrated travel writer Robert Macfarlane has been following the vast network of old paths and routes that criss-cross Britain and…
Norman Stone on Istanbul
Aug 14, 2015 • 60 min
In this talk from October 2011 the historian Norman Stone, who has lived in Turkey since 1997, took us on a journey through the country’s turbulent history, from the arrival of the Seljuks in Anatolia in the 11th century to the modern republic applying…
Israel Is Destroying Itself With Its Settlement Policy
Aug 7, 2015 • 60 min
Patriacide. Nationcide. Whatever you want to call it, that is what Israel is doing with its settlement policy: it is killing itself. If ever greater numbers of Jewish settlers are installed on land regarded by Palestinians as the basis for a state of…
Roberto Saviano on the War Against Organised Crime
Jul 31, 2015 • 48 min
Roberto Saviano made a rare appearance in the UK in July 2015 when he came to the Intelligence Squared stage. In conversation with Intelligence Squared’s very own Robert Collins, Saviano talked about his life in hiding and his beginnings as a reporter on…
John Gray and Adam Phillips in conversation on humankind’s search for immortality
Jul 24, 2015 • 60 min
Political philosopher John Gray and psychotherapist and essayist Adam Phillips came to the Intelligence Squared stage in 2011 to discuss themes of science and immortality. Can we in the 21st century claim to be no longer gripped by the hope that somehow…
Digital Summit Highlights: ‘London’s Star Tech Enterprise’ and ‘Who we are on the Web’
Jul 15, 2015 • 53 min
This week’s episode of the Intelligence Squared podcast features two sessions from our recent Digital Summit with Vanity Fair. In the first session, ‘Who are we on the web?’ we examined how deeply the internet is affecting us as human beings. Our panel of…
Churchill was more a liability than an asset to the free world
Jul 10, 2015 • 55 min
Does the fact that Winston Churchill is routinely cited as Britain’s greatest hero say more about us than it does about him? Yes, he warned us of the need to face down Hitler when others were urging appeasement and yes, he gave a good speech. But what of…
Digital Summit Highlights: ‘The Hopes of the Pioneers’ and ‘Artificial Intelligence’
Jul 2, 2015 • 48 min
This week’s episode of the Intelligence Squared podcast features two sessions from our recent Digital Summit with Vanity Fair. In the first session, ‘This is For Everyone: The hopes of the pioneers’, we explored the hopes and memories of the internet’s…
From the library: Angela Merkel is destroying Europe
Jul 1, 2015 • 48 min
The stakes couldn’t be higher, as Greek prime minister Alexis Tsipras seeks a new agreement on a bailout and German chancellor Angela Merkel refuses any talks before this Sunday’s referendum. What will happen is anyone’s guess, but for anyone looking for…
The West should get out of bed with the House Of Saud
Jun 25, 2015 • 46 min
Have we no morals? We know that the Saudis created the monster that is Islamic terrorism, allegedly spending some $100 billion on exporting fanatical Wahhabism to other Muslim nations around the world. We know about the public beheadings and floggings,…
The internet is a failed utopia
Jun 18, 2015 • 52 min
This week’s podcast comes from the closing session of our recent Digital Summit with Vanity Fair. See intelligencesquared.com for more information about the summit. To many the hopes we had for the internet when it first emerged have been smashed by the…
Faramerz Dabhoiwala on the Origins of Sex
Jun 10, 2015 • 56 min
Rising star historian Faramerz Dabhoiwala came to the Intelligence Squared stage in February 2012 to describe how the permissive society arrived in Western Europe, not in the 1960s as we like to think, but between 1600 and 1800. It began in England and is…
David Brooks on the Road to Character
Jun 4, 2015 • 59 min
On May 26th 2015, New York Times columnist David Brooks came to the Intelligence Squared stage to share the insights of his latest book, ‘The Road to Character’. Brooks argued that today’s ‘Big Me’ culture is making us increasingly self-preoccupied: we…
Joseph Stiglitz on the Great Divide
May 28, 2015 • 59 min
Inequality is an increasing problem in the Western world, leaving everyone – the rich as well as the poor – worse off. The dream of a socially mobile society is becoming an ever more unachievable myth. That’s the view of Nobel Prize-winning economist…
Spotlight On Piketty
May 21, 2015 • 57 min
In this rare appearance in London, French economist Thomas Piketty appeared centre stage for Intelligence Squared, along with a panel of experts, to debate his findings of his book ‘Capital in the 21st Century’, an analysis of the causes and growth of…
Post-Election Dissection
May 14, 2015 • 59 min
On May 12th, before the dust had settled on the General Election, Intelligence Squared hosted a post-election dissection with pundits and politicians of all persuasions. They battled it out over what the outcome means for the future of British politics.…
Simon Sebag Montefiore on Jerusalem
May 8, 2015 • 63 min
Jerusalem. How did this small, remote town became the Holy City, the desire of every empire, and the key to Middle East peace? In this dazzling talk from February 2011, Simon Sebag Montefiore revealed the ever-changing city through its many incarnations,…
The World Needs Religion Even if it Doesn’t Need God
Apr 29, 2015 • 62 min
God is dead and man has no need of the myths and false consolation that religion offers. That’s the battle-cry of Richard Dawkins and other tough-minded critics of religion. And yet millions cling to their faith, finding value and meaning in the concepts…
The Future of Parliamentary Democracy
Apr 24, 2015 • 66 min
In the wake of the MPs’ expenses scandal (May-June 2009), we brought a panel of politicians and journalists to the Intelligence Squared stage to discuss the state of democracy in Britain – is the system rotten to the core, or was the expenses scandal…
Can art be taught to the Facebook generation?
Apr 17, 2015 • 60 min
We were joined at the Saatchi Gallery in July 2009 by Turner Prize-winning artists Grayson Perry and Antony Gormley; author, philosopher and television presenter Alain de Botton; design critic, author and columnist Stephen Bayley and founder of the…
Burgundy vs Bordeaux, with Hugh Johnson and Jancis Robinson
Apr 9, 2015 • 61 min
Among wine lovers, there is no greater divide than that between Burgundy and Bordeaux. These are the world’s most celebrated wine regions, different places producing different styles of wine. What separates them and why the great rivalry? Many wine buffs…
The Extreme Present: An Evening of Self-Help for Planet Earth
Apr 2, 2015 • 60 min
Shumon Basar, writer, thinker and cultural critic, Douglas Coupland, the renowned author of ‘Generation X’, and Hans Ulrich Obrist, one of the world’s best-known curators, joined forces for a special event with Intelligence Squared to explore the…
The Art World is a Boys’ Club
Mar 26, 2015 • 60 min
Botticelli’s Venus. Warhol’s Marilyn. Chen Yifei’s Beauties. Historically, the creation of art has been largely the preserve of men. And not a lot has changed. In recent years, the top 100 highest grossing living artists at auction were men, selling…
Muhammad Yunus on a new kind of capitalism
Mar 20, 2015 • 60 min
‘Making money is a happiness. And that’s a great incentive. Making other people happy is a super-happiness.’ These are the words of Muhammad Yunus, the Nobel Peace Prize-winning Bangladeshi economist world-famous for starting the microfinance movement.…
Be afraid, be very afraid: the robots are coming and they will destroy our livelihoods
Mar 13, 2015 • 58 min
They are coming to an office near you: job-gobbling robots that can do your work better and more cheaply than you can. One in three jobs could be taken over by a computer or a robot in the next 20 years. Most at risk are less skilled workers such as…
Rembrandt Vs Vermeer: The Titans of Dutch Painting
Mar 5, 2015 • 60 min
Rembrandt van Rijn is the best known of all the Dutch masters. His range was vast, from landscapes to portraits to Biblical scenes; he revolutionised every medium he handled, from oil paintings to etchings and drawings. His vision encompassed every…
Money can grow on trees: what’s good for nature is good for business
Feb 27, 2015 • 60 min
Capitalists don’t care about the environment. Industry, agriculture and commerce have long exploited nature’s resources. The pursuit of profit pays scant regard to the underlying cost of using up the planet’s capital. That’s the familiar story that we…
Keep ‘em off the streets and behind bars: tough prison sentences mean a safer society
Feb 19, 2015 • 60 min
Lock them up. That’s the way we’ve always dealt with offenders. Criminals deserve to be put away for their crimes. Prison works because it keeps those criminals out of circulation, and acts as society’s most effective deterrent. Rehabilitation is all well…
Magna Carta: Myth and Meaning
Feb 12, 2015 • 60 min
June 2015 will see the 800th anniversary of Magna Carta, the ‘Great Charter’ which was signed at Runnymede by King John to resolve a political crisis he faced with his barons. Buried within its 69 clauses is one of immeasurable importance. This is the…
Art must be beautiful
Feb 5, 2015 • 58 min
In May 2011, Intelligence Squared Asia presented four leading voices in the arts to argue the motion “Art must be beautiful”. Can aesthetic standards of the day dictate the long-term value of art? Who defines taste? Do parameters of institutional…
An evening with Britain’s best poets
Jan 29, 2015 • 84 min
Love. Sorrow. Anger. Death. Laughter. God. Sex. Hell. Home. Only one profession can get to the heart of that lot – the poets. And not any old poets but amongst Britain’s very best: Wendy Cope, Andrew Motion and Don Paterson – plus Clive James who’s been…
The High Street is dead, long live the High Street
Jan 22, 2015 • 89 min
A screen, an image, a click. Proceed to checkout. Sign for it the next day. We are the first generation to enjoy the thrill and convenience of online shopping. No queuing, no frustration at going home empty-handed, because we can always find what we’re…
The War on Terror was the right response to 9/11
Jan 15, 2015 • 47 min
Have the West’s efforts to eradicate Al-Qaeda around the world simply been fuelling the flames of hatred and violence? Or would we have suffered even more atrocities if we’d left the militants to plot in their hiding places? Is the US right to be pursuing…
Bernard-Henri Lévy on the Libyan intervention and universal values
Jan 8, 2015 • 80 min
Bernard-Henri Lévy is France’s best-known public intellectual, passionately committed to the causes he believes to be just. A writer, journalist, and film-maker, he has the status of a rock star in France where he is known simply as BHL, and has…
Beware of the dragon: Africa should not look to China
Dec 23, 2014 • 98 min
We all know that the Chinese are the neo-colonialists of Africa. They’ve plundered the continent of its natural resources, tossing aside any concern for human rights and doing deals with some of the world’s most unsavoury regimes. The relentless pursuit…
Umberto Eco In Conversation With Paul Holdengräber
Dec 18, 2014 • 91 min
The persistence of conspiracies. Grasping the infinity of lists. Writing fiction about the real. The future of books. These are some of the topics Umberto Eco discussed with Paul Holdengräber, Director of LIVE at the New York Public Library, when he came…
Brian Cox & Alice Roberts on the Incredible Unlikeliness of Human Existence
Dec 11, 2014 • 87 min
Who are we? Why are we here? Are we alone in the universe? How did we become the creatures that we are? How might we further evolve? These are some of the big questions that Brian Cox and Alice Roberts tackled when they came to the Intelligence Squared…
P.J. O’Rourke: The Funniest Man in America
Dec 4, 2014 • 90 min
P.J. O’Rourke is America’s premier political satirist and has more citations in The Penguin Dictionary of Humorous Quotations than any other living writer. In this live appearance for Intelligence Squared in 2010, he discussed his new book, “Don’t Vote -…
I’d rather Be a Roundhead than a Cavalier
Nov 26, 2014 • 88 min
In the 1640s England was devastated by a civil war that divided the nation into two tribes – Roundheads and Cavaliers. Counties, towns, even families and friends were rent apart as the nation pledged its allegiance either to King Charles I (supported by…
David Grossman in conversation with Linda Grant
Nov 20, 2014 • 86 min
One of Israel’s most acclaimed writers, David Grossman is the author of numerous pieces of fiction, nonfiction and children’s literature. His work has dealt with Jewish history, the occupation of the West Bank, the cost of war and the dramas of family…
Psychiatrists & the pharma industry are to blame for the current ‘epidemic’ of mental disorders
Nov 13, 2014 • 92 min
Drug pushers. We tend to associate them with the bleak underworld of criminality. But some would argue that there’s another class of drug pushers, just as unscrupulous, who work in the highly respectable fields of psychiatry and the pharmaceutical…
William Gibson on ‘Zero History’ with Cory Doctorow
Nov 7, 2014 • 76 min
On 5th October 2010, Intelligence Squared paired author William Gibson with popular blogger and science fiction writer Cory Doctorow in a wide-ranging conversation that gives a fascinating insight into the mind of the man heralded as the “architect of…
Stop Bashing Christians! Britain has become an anti-Christian country
Oct 30, 2014 • 108 min
Are Christians victims of a hateful animus, or are they demanding special treatment in a secular state which in fact applies the law equally to all? Peter Hitchens fears that without Christianity, we might end up undermining the whole foundation of law in…
Is London too rich to be interesting?
Oct 23, 2014 • 86 min
It used to be so easy. You left university, came to London and got yourself a flatshare in one of the cheaper areas: Notting Hill, Maida Vale or Highgate. Living was cheap and if it took you a while to find out what you really wanted to do with your life…
Karen Armstrong on Religion and the History of Violence
Oct 16, 2014 • 83 min
Karen Armstrong has written over 16 books on faith and the major religions, studying what Islam, Judaism and Christianity have in common, and how our faiths have shaped world history and drive current events. She came to the Intelligence Squared stage to…
Napoleon The Great?
Oct 9, 2014 • 85 min
How should we remember Napoleon, the man of obscure Corsican birth who rose to become emperor of the French and briefly master of Europe? As the 200th anniversary of the Battle of Waterloo approaches in 2015, Intelligence Squared brought together two of…
Steven Pinker on Good Writing with Ian McEwan
Sep 30, 2014 • 78 min
Steven Pinker is one of the world’s leading authorities on language, mind and human nature. A professor of psychology at Harvard, he is the bestselling author of eight books and regularly appears in lists of the world’s top 100 thinkers. On September 25th…
Francis Fukuyama in Conversation with David Runciman
Sep 25, 2014 • 83 min
Professor Francis Fukuyama came to the Intelligence Squared stage in September, to square up with one of Britain’s most brilliant political thinkers, David Runciman, to assess how democracy is faring in 2014. We certainly haven’t attained the rosy future…
Marina Abramović on art, performance, time and nothingness
Sep 18, 2014 • 82 min
Marina Abramović is the most celebrated performance artist in the world. Over a career spanning four decades she has pioneered performance as an art form and accumulated a devoted following that includes Jay-Z and Lady Gaga. Using her body as both subject…
History Shows Us That Scotland and England Would Be Better Off as Separate Kingdoms
Sep 11, 2014 • 59 min
This event was recorded at the Chalke Valley History Festival in July 2014. The future of the Union will be voted for in a referendum soon, and this debate explored the historical relationship between Scotland and England, and the direct bearing that has…
London Should Love Its Bankers
Sep 4, 2014 • 95 min
Do the British have a death wish? You’d be forgiven for thinking so the way so many of them seem to want to cripple the most dynamic part of their own economy. What is the world’s largest market for dollars? London. Where does the Chinese State…
Has Martin Luther King’s Dream Been Realized?
Aug 29, 2014 • 65 min
This event was on the 50th anniversary of Martin Luther King’s ‘I Have a Dream’ speech. On 28 August 1963, civil rights campaigners marched on Washington to secure equality before the law. Today, America’s first black president sits in the White House,…
Money Can’t Buy Happiness
Aug 21, 2014 • 90 min
Leading voices from the fields of science, philosophy came to the Intelligence Squared Asia stage for this thought-provoking debate about the pursuit of wealth and its relationship to happiness. Among other topics, this debate raised questions about the…
University is an unwise investment
Aug 14, 2014 • 62 min
For many Western teenagers university has long been considered a passport to the good life: a rite of passage consisting of mind-expanding reading and writing or the acquisition of a professional qualification, and meeting like-minded people often over a…
It’s Time to End The War on Drugs
Aug 4, 2014 • 131 min
To liberalise or prohibit, that is the question. Prohibitionists argue that legalising anything increases its consumption. The world has enough of a problem with legal drugs like alcohol and tobacco, so why add to the problem by legalising cannabis,…
“Contemporary Art Excludes the 99%”
Jul 31, 2014 • 76 min
What is the role of contemporary art museums today? Are biennales and art fairs platforms for experiment and exchange, or little more than social attractions for the elite? Have collectors become the new curators? Are private and corporate interests in…
America’s Drone Campaign Is Both Moral And Effective
Jul 24, 2014 • 116 min
Bug splats. That’s what the American operators of drones, sitting in safety thousands of miles away, call the casualties of a drone attack in Pakistan or Yemen. Why bug splats? Because that’s what a human body zapped by a drone looks like on those…
Sex, bugs & video tapes: the private lives of public figures deserve more protection from the press
Jul 17, 2014 • 46 min
Would you like the details of your sex life, private conversations, and hidden passions splashed across the pages of a British tabloid or published online? Could you do anything to stop it? In Britain, unlike in the USA or France, there is no right to…
Art Schools Are Bad At Producing Good Artists
Jul 10, 2014 • 91 min
What makes a good artist? Can creativity can be taught? What kind of education ups the ante for success in today’s global culture? These are some of the questions that were explored in this Intelligence Squared Asia debate in Singapore in January 2013.…
Jesus Would Have Voted Democrat
Jul 3, 2014 • 101 min
Remember the rich man and the eye of the needle? Blessed are the meek? The last shall be first? Jesus didn’t hold much truck for wealth or power, nor was he exactly a supporter of family values. He didn’t even encourage hard work (“Consider the lilies of…
Shakespeare vs Milton: The Kings of English Literature Debate
Jun 26, 2014 • 132 min
Nearly four centuries after his death, no writer has come close to matching Shakespeare’s understanding of the world – or his gift for dramatic poetry. It’s not just kings and queens that he captured so uniquely in his transcendent verse. Shakespeare…
A Journey Into Outer Space, With Brian Cox
Jun 19, 2014 • 114 min
Are they out there? Intelligent beings from another world. Will we ever make contact with them? Is it even sensible to make guesses about whether life exists in other galaxies billions of light years from our own? How much do we know about outer space?…
VS Naipaul in Conversation With Geordie Greig
Jun 12, 2014 • 78 min
Nobel laureate and giant of Western letters, Trinidad-born V. S. Naipaul has excelled in both fiction and non-fiction. His latest book The Masque of Africa: Glimpses of African Belief is a travelogue in which Naipaul sets out to discover how far the old…
Stop Poking the Bear: The West Needs to Engage with Putin Not Castigate Him
Jun 5, 2014 • 46 min
You don’t have to like Vladimir Putin, or doubt that he’s a nasty piece of work, to recognise that the Russian president’s reaction to the crisis in Ukraine is largely justified. The promise that Russia managed to extract from the West, as it watched its…
How to Think Like a Freak: Learn How to Make Smarter Decisions with the authors of “Freakonomics”
May 29, 2014 • 89 min
The books Freakonomics and SuperFreakonomics have been worldwide sensations, selling tens of millions of copies. They have come to stand for challenging conventional wisdom using data rather than emotion. Questions they examine are typically: Which is…
Look West Not East: South America Will be the 21st Century’s Superpower
May 21, 2014 • 99 min
Conventional wisdom tells us that a new star will rise in the East, and all eyes have been looking towards China or India as the 21st century’s new superpower. But remarkable as their recent economic growth may have been, the institutional frailty of both…
The Allied Bombing of German Cities in World War Two Was Unjustifiable
May 12, 2014 • 87 min
No one doubts the bravery of the thousands of men who flew and died in Bomber Command. The death rate was an appalling 44%. And yet until the opening of a monument in Green Park this year they have received no official recognition, with many historians…
Calm Down Dears: State Snooping Is A Price Worth Paying For Our Security
May 7, 2014 • 93 min
So now we know: our spooks and their spooks are hoovering up and exchanging massive amounts of data on our private lives: not just whom we phone and email but the actual content of our communications; not just which websites we visit but what we choose to…
Western Parents Don’t Know How to Bring Up Their Children
May 1, 2014 • 89 min
Why are there so many Chinese maths and music prodigies? Because Chinese mothers believe schoolwork and music practice come first, that an A-minus is a bad grade, that sleepovers, TV and computer games should never be allowed and that the only activity…
The Making Of The Modern Middle East: Lawrence of Arabia and King Faisal I
Apr 24, 2014 • 88 min
How much blame for the current troubles in the Middle East lies with the decisions made by the West in 1919 – when the Ottoman Empire was carved up arbitrarily into the modern states we know today? Is it true that Arab society has tended to define itself…
Britain Should Not Have Fought In The First World War
Apr 17, 2014 • 100 min
As we approach the centenary of the outbreak of the First World War, books, television documentaries and articles on the subject abound. So do different opinions, especially as to whether Britain’s engagement was worth it. Was it a vitally important…
Stephen Fry and Friends on the Life, Loves and Hates of Christopher Hitchens
Apr 11, 2014 • 46 min
In this historic event, Stephen Fry and other friends of Christopher Hitchens came together to celebrate the life and work of this great writer, polemicist and orator. Fry was joined on stage in London by Richard Dawkins where the two discussed Hitchens’…
The Hand that Rocks the Cradle Cannot Rock the Boardroom
Apr 3, 2014 • 46 min
Is it a myth that women can have it all, all of the time? Or do the rising numbers of female executives in Hong Kong and around the world suggest otherwise? Does the glass ceiling exist as a barrier to the boardroom, or is the only limitation to a woman’s…
The Best Chance For Peace In Israel And Palestine Is For Uncle Sam To Butt Out
Mar 27, 2014 • 108 min
Is it surprising that the Israelis and Palestinians are still unable to come to some sort of agreement? After all if the adjudicator in a mediation is firmly on your side why bother to concede anything to the enemy? Conversely, why accept anything…
One Size Doesn’t Fit All: Democracy is Not Always the Best Form of Government
Mar 20, 2014 • 46 min
Democracy is the worst form of government except all the others that have been tried. So said Winston Churchill and who would disagree? One man, one vote, the rule of law, equality and a free press. These are the principles which tens of thousands have…
Sam Harris on the Science of Good and Evil
Mar 13, 2014 • 82 min
Where do our ideas about morality and meaning come from? Most people - from religious extremists to secular scientists - would agree on one point: that science has nothing to say on the subject of human values. Indeed, science’s failure to explain meaning…
Between You and I The English Language Is Going To The Dogs
Mar 6, 2014 • 102 min
Speaking and writing correct English are the hallmark of an intelligent person. No one who cares about language wants to be caught splitting an infinitive or muddling up ‘infer’ and ‘imply’. Which is why the bestseller lists are regularly topped by books…
Jane Austen Vs Emily Bronte: The Queens of English Literature Debate
Feb 27, 2014 • 117 min
Who was the Queen of English literature. Was it Jane Austen with her sensitive ear for the hypocrisy lurking beneath the genteel conversation in the drawing rooms of Georgian England? Or Emily Brontë with the complex tale of violent attraction, thwarted…
Niall Ferguson On The Six Killer Apps Of Western Civilisation
Feb 20, 2014 • 83 min
Niall Ferguson is the most brilliant British historian of his generation. In this talk from February 2011, based on his book ‘Civilisation: The West and the Rest’, he asks how Western civilization came to dominate the rest of the world. His answer is that…
“Let The Bad Guys Be: The Perils of Foreign Intervention” with David Aaronovitch and Rory Stewart
Feb 13, 2014 • 83 min
Some leaders are so objectionable – Bashar al-Assad, Robert Mugabe – that it may seem only right to strain every sinew to get rid of them. But ghastly as their regimes may be, is there any reason to think that foreign intervention makes the situation…
Daniel Goleman On Focus: The Secret to High Performance and Fulfilment
Feb 6, 2014 • 78 min
Psychologist Daniel Goleman shot to fame with his groundbreaking bestseller ‘Emotional Intelligence’. The premise of the book, now widely accepted, is that raw intelligence alone is not a sure predictor of success in life. A greater role is played by…
We’ve Never Had It So Good
Jan 30, 2014 • 96 min
It’s 2014 and what does Britain have to look forward to? Osborne’s welfare cuts. An umpteenth series of Celebrity Big Brother. Adult children still living at home and cadging off the Bank of Mum and Dad (repayment not guaranteed). That’s the gripe of the…
An Evening With Slavoj Zizek
Jan 23, 2014 • 90 min
Radical philosopher, polymath, film star, cult icon, and author of over 30 books, Slavoj Žižek is one of the most controversial and leading contemporary public intellectuals, simultaneously acclaimed as the ‘Elvis of cultural theory’ and denounced as ‘the…
Let Them Come: We Have Nothing To Fear From High Levels Of Immigration
Jan 16, 2014 • 108 min
Does mass immigration boost our economy and cultural richness or undermine them? Hear Times columnist David Aaronovitch, former Mayor of London Ken Livingstone and the economist Susie Symes go head to head with UKIP’s Nigel Farage, Demos director David…
Steven Pinker on The Better Angels of Our Nature
Jan 9, 2014 • 88 min
We launch our first podcast of the year today – our 2011 talk by the world renowned American cognitive scientist Steven Pinker. In it he argues that, contrary to popular belief, we are living in the least violent period of history. And that even the…
Verdi vs Wagner: The 200th Anniversary Debate with Stephen Fry
Dec 23, 2013 • 110 min
Think opera and you think Verdi. Verdi created some of the most beloved operas of all time, from the romantic tragedy of La traviata and Rigoletto to the Shakespearian dramas of Macbeth, Otello and Falstaff Verdi’s music transcends the barriers between…
Eric Schmidt On The New Digital Age
Dec 20, 2013 • 79 min
Eric Schmidt is one of the leading visionaries of our time. He has taken Google from a small start-up to one of the world’s most influential companies. In this conversation with Bryan Appleyard from May 2013, he sets out the themes of his new book ‘The…
An Anatomy Of Truth: Conversations on Truth-Telling
Dec 20, 2013 • 96 min
Not everyone tells the truth. ‘Read my lips: no new taxes.’ ‘This isn’t going to hurt.’ ‘I see no ships, my lord.’ ‘Of course I love you.’ When can we know what to believe? Four out of five of us don’t think politicians tell the truth, according to a…
Putin Has Been Good For Russia
Dec 19, 2013 • 96 min
There’s not a lot to like about Vladimir Putin: he’s autocratic, vain and runs a corrupt government. And he doesn’t give a fig for human rights. The repression in Chechnya, the jailing of the (now pardoned) businessman Mikhail Khodorkovsky and the Pussy…
Nate Silver On The Art And Science Of Prediction
Dec 19, 2013 • 84 min
Nate Silver is the 35-year-old data engineer and forecaster with superstar status. He shot to fame in 2008 for correctly predicting the outcome in 49 out of 50 states in the US presidential election. In 2012, when most media pundits and political analysts…
Angela Merkel is Destroying Europe
Dec 18, 2013 • 47 min
They’re calling her the devil. Inflammatory words, but Europe has every reason to be livid with the German Chancellor. Angela Merkel’s austerity measures are strangling the economies of the southern nations of Europe, creating huge unemployment and…
Jimmy Carter in Conversation with Jon Snow
Dec 18, 2013 • 71 min
President Jimmy Carter is a Nobel Prize winner, author, humanitarian, professor, farmer, naval officer and carpenter. In this special Intelligence Squared interview with Channel 4 News’s Jon Snow, which took place in October 2011, President Carter talks…
Send Them Back: The Parthenon Marbles Should be Returned to Athens
Dec 16, 2013 • 46 min
What’s all this nonsense about sending the Parthenon Marbles back to Greece? If Lord Elgin hadn’t rescued them from the Parthenon in Athens and presented them to the British Museum almost 200 years ago, these exquisite sculptures – the finest embodiment…
The West Has Failed Syria
Dec 16, 2013 • 88 min
To say “The West has failed Syria” tempts us into the dangerous belief that had we only got stuck into this conflict from the off, things would now be better. It’s a belief, as recent history shows, we badly need to resist. So speaks the voice of caution.…
The Catholic Church is a Force For Good in The World
Dec 13, 2013 • 46 min
Can anything good really be said of an institution that has such a warped attitude to sex that it tries to stop the world from wearing a condom, is bitterly opposed to gays leading a fulfilled life and regards women as unworthy of officiating in its…
Daniel Dennett on Tools to Transform our Thinking
Dec 12, 2013 • 83 min
Daniel Dennett is one of the world’s most original and provocative thinkers. A philosopher and cognitive scientist, he is known as one of the ‘Four Horseman of New Atheism’ along with Richard Dawkins, Sam Harris and the late Christopher Hitchens. On May…
Thomas Friedman: A Manifesto For Rescuing America
Dec 11, 2013 • 60 min
14. Thomas Friedman: A manifesto for rescuing America Thomas L. Friedman is an internationally renowned author, reporter, and columnist – the recipient of three Pulitzer Prizes and the author of six bestselling books, and writes a twice-weekly column for…
David Eagleman on the Science of De- (and Re-) Humanisation (and Why it Matters)
Dec 11, 2013 • 77 min
Which side were you on? The Jets or the Sharks? The Capulets or the Montagues? The Greeks or the Trojans? Antony or Caesar? William or Harold? And so the list goes on … Indeed, maybe the whole of human history is the story of group-making and…
Naomi Wolf on ‘Vagina: A New Biography’
Dec 10, 2013 • 94 min
American author Naomi Wolf made her name with The Beauty Myth, a book that exposed the tyranny of the ideal of female beauty. Now she’s back with a no less dramatic or controversial new work. In Vagina: A New Biography Wolf makes the case that the vagina…
Chris Anderson on the Democratisation of Manufacturing, Design and Technology
Dec 10, 2013 • 82 min
In an age of custom-fabricated, do-it-yourself product design and creation, the collective potential of a million garage tinkerers and enthusiasts is about to be unleashed… Check out today’s Advent podcast where Wired Magazine editor Chris Anderson takes…
Jeffrey Sachs on JFK and His Quest For Peace
Dec 6, 2013 • 80 min
How can leadership lessons from the past be applied to intractable international problems today? In this talk from July 2013, shortly before the 50th anniversary of President John F Kennedy’s assignation, the world renowned economist Jeffrey Sachs…
Terry Eagleton in conversation with Roger Scruton
Dec 6, 2013 • 87 min
What really divides the left and the right? To answer this question, Intelligence Squared brought together two giants of British intellectual culture for an ideological reckoning: Terry Eagleton, literary critic and long-time hero of the radical left, and…
Dan Pink on the Science of Buoyancy
Dec 4, 2013 • 79 min
It happens to all of us every day. You get rejected. Your customer doesn’t buy. Your boss doesn’t agree. Your crush doesn’t say yes. In this provocative and entertaining talk, Daniel Pink, author of the New York Times best seller Drive, harvests a rich…
Michael Sandel on the Moral Limits of Markets
Dec 4, 2013 • 66 min
Should we pay children to get good grades? Is it ethical to pay people to test risky new drugs or to donate their organs? What about hiring mercenaries to fight our wars, or selling citizenship to immigrants willing to pay? Michael Sandel is one of the…
Robert Macfarlane on Landscape and the Human Heart
Dec 4, 2013 • 75 min
How do the landscapes we love shape the people we are? Why do we walk? For several years and more than a thousand miles, celebrated travel writer Robert Macfarlane has been following the vast network of old paths and routes that criss-cross Britain and…
Western Liberal Democracy Would be Wrong for China
Dec 2, 2013 • 99 min
People everywhere are better off living in liberal democracy: that has been the reigning assumption of the western world. But could it be we’ve got it wrong? If you were one of the world’s billions of poor peasants might you not be better off under a…
Pornography is Good For Us: Without it We Would Be a Far More Repressed Society
Dec 1, 2013 • 86 min
Hooray for porn! What would we be without it? Bored, repressed, frustrated. Porn allows the timid to indulge fantasies they’d never live out in real life and the adventurous to experiment with new forms of pleasure. Now that it has stepped down from the…
Both Britain and the EU Would Be Happier if They got Divorced
Dec 1, 2013 • 46 min
Some people just can’t bring themselves to acknowledge that a relationship is over. Finished. Unsalvageable. David Cameron, for instance. His long awaited speech on Europe has been one big exercise in denial. Yes, we should stay married to Europe, he…
Intelligence Squared Presents the Elders
Nov 28, 2013 • 110 min
Independent, free now from the constraints of office, with a wealth of experience and the ability to open doors at the highest level, The Elders are helping tackle some of the world’s most intractable problems. On 2nd July 2012, we brought together three…