22 EpisodesProduced by The RSA

The podcast from the RSA investigating the political and cultural forces driving us further apart. Presented by the RSA's Matthew Taylor and the author of 'Born Liars' and 'Curious', Ian Leslie. New episodes fortnightly.

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Elections, Fatalism, and Twitter Storms

May 31st, 2019


Matthew Taylor speaks to French political journalist Marie Le Conte about the European elections, French politics and being in the eye of a Twitter …

Extinction Rebellion: what next?

May 18th, 2019


At long last, for a few weeks in April, climate breakdown finally seemed to be at the top of the political agenda.

Extinction Rebellion shut down the …


May 3rd, 2019


Is religion still shaping our politics? And has its decline led to a wider search for meaning in public life?

Matthew Taylor and Ian Leslie are …

How Change Happens

April 20th, 2019


Insights from three of the world's leading thinkers on how political and societal change happens: presidential historian Doris Kearns Goodwin, …

Capitalism and Conservatism, with Iain Dale and Jacob Field

April 5th, 2019


We’re living through the biggest backlash against neoliberalism for 40 years, and the biggest crisis over Britain’s relationship with Europe since …

Denialism, with Caroline Lucas MP & Keith Kahn-Harris

March 21st, 2019


From climate change to vaccines, there’s a worrying tendency in our culture to bury our heads in the sand, and for a growing number of people to turn …

Is the centre ground dead?

March 12th, 2019


Commentators say the financial crisis and its aftermath sounded the death knell for centrist parties. Is the centre ground of British politics really …

Responsible Parties

February 25th, 2019


Has the opening up of political parties been a vital force for change, or bad for democracy as a whole? How can politicians represent both their …

Talking to the Enemy, with Michael Sandel & Maria Exner

February 13th, 2019


This week Ian Leslie and Matthew Taylor are asking: what's the best way to talk to people we disagree with? If we want to understand the other side – to bridge divides, or even persuade people we disagree with to think …

Could a citizens' jury help break the Brexit deadlock?

January 17th, 2019


Two days after the biggest government defeat in the history of the British parliament, Matthew Taylor makes the case for another form of democracy that might help sort out the mess. With James Fishkin and David Runciman.

Identity, with Francis Fukuyama

December 24th, 2018


The phrase ‘identity politics’ has come to be used as a sort of political insult. It’s a short way of accusing someone of pandering to voters – based …

The psychology of tribalism, with Jonathan Haidt

December 6th, 2018


Is tribalism an indelible part of human nature? And if it is, can we overcome it? Matthew Taylor speaks to moral psychologist Jonathan Haidt, author …

Stories, Myths and Belonging

November 21st, 2018


It's been a turbulent week in UK politics. What could possibly happen next? Matthew Taylor and Ian Leslie talk Brexit predictions, and whether …

Is democracy failing?

November 1st, 2018


Is democracy falling apart? How worried should we be? And how can we fix it? With Niheer Dasandi, author of 'Is Democracy Failing?' (part of the Big …

Nervous States, with Will Davies

October 18th, 2018


Have feelings taken over the world? Have we lost our collective grip on rationality? And what can a panic about nothing at Oxford Circus last year …

Anger, with Claire Fox

August 24th, 2018


Anger is all the rage, but is anger itself the problem? Some people say we need to push back against anger in our politics, and respond with tranquil …

The Media and Echo Chambers

July 25th, 2018


Is it really true that we all live in our own echo chambers? Fake news and the filter bubble, post-truth and alternative facts… Are we all, as President Obama put it, ‘absorbing an entirely different reality’?

In this …

Inequality and Generation Wealth, with Faiza Shaheen & Lauren Greenfield

June 27th, 2018


Are economic divides to blame for everything else that’s broken in our politics? Does 'economic anxiety' explain the Trump and Brexit votes? And what …

How Internet Culture Poisoned Politics, with Whitney Phillips

June 20th, 2018


Is it inevitable that the internet and social media drive us to the extremes? Or do they just hold up a mirror to an already divided culture? And we …

Silicon Valley's Persuasion Machine

June 12th, 2018


By now, lots of us have heard at least part of the story of the Facebook election scandal. Cambridge Analytica, the company in the eye of the storm, has closed its doors and is under investigation. But how effective …

Liberals and Authoritarians

May 17th, 2018


Commentators have written at great length about left vs right, the young vs the old, ‘somewheres’ vs ‘anywheres’. But what if there’s one big divide …


May 11th, 2018


Polarisation is the buzzword of the moment. In a new series, the RSA's Matthew Taylor and the author of 'Born Liars' and 'Curious', Ian Leslie, …

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