Giles chats to the former leader of the Canadian Liberal Party and now rector of the Central European University, Michael Ignatieff, about how his family went from Russian nobles to Canadian refugees, why the Brexit debate was good for the UK’s democracy and what threat populism poses to liberalism.
Giles chats to former MP and convict and now ordained chaplin, Jonathan Aitken, about the importance of diversity in politics, the power of forgiveness and how a tweet led him to become ordained.
In a Good Friday special, Giles chats to Anglican priest and pioneer of the Alpha Course Nicky Gumbel about the moment he changed from atheist to a Christian, why his father never talked about his being Jewish and doubting God after tragically losing his best friend.
Giles talks to former Governor of the Bank of England Mervyn King about why economists don’t understand human nature, what caused the 2008 financial crisis and the mistake both sides made in the Brexit referendum.
Giles talks to former Chief Rabbi Jonathan Sacks about the power of community, antisemitism in the 21st century and the 72-hour bus journey across America that changed his life.
In a ‘Blue Monday’ special, Giles talks to economist and happiness expert Richard Layard about his journey from the humanities to science, why individualism is making us depressed and how we can be more happy.
Giles talks to Margaret Thatcher’s biographer and former Telegraph editor Charles Moore about becoming a Catholic, how the BBC licence fee is dividing ‘somewheres’ and ‘anywheres’ and why he’s never liked the Conservative Party.
Giles talks to historian and former Supreme Court Justice Jonathan Sumption about leaving academia behind for a career in law, the problem with human rights and the art of persuasion.
Giles talks to Professor of Political Economy Helen Thompson about not fitting in at Warwick University Labour Club, why Margaret Thatcher would have voted Leave and what to look out for in politics in 2020.
In a Christmas special, Giles chats to novelist Susan Hill about writing ghost stories, the coffin maker who taught her how to whistle and losing her 5-week-old daughter.
Giles talks to political theorist Patrick Deneen about why liberalism has failed, how the Conservatives became the party of the working class and the revolution yet to come.
Giles chats to philosopher and chess grandmaster Jonathan Rowson about the beauty of chess, the importance of spirituality and why the political spectrum is fake news.
Giles talks to author and political commentator Andrew Sullivan about his troubled home life, how moving to America liberated him and why Jeremy Corbyn is the real ‘Britain Trump’.
Giles chats to environmental activist and “professional troublemaker” George Monbiot about the horrors of boarding school, why he’s a eurosceptic Remainer and how he escaped a near-death experience in Indonesia.
Giles chats to Turkish author Elif Shafak, whose latest novel is shortlisted for the Booker Prize, about being a citizen of the world, the dangers of populism and why fiction is more important now than ever.
Giles chats to Alan Johnson, former Labour MP and Shadow Chancellor about growing up, being a postman and Jeremy Corbyn’s Labour Party.
In a special episode recorded in Jerusalem, Israeli philosopher Yoram Hazony tells Giles about the time he almost quit working for Benjamin Netanyahu, why the English are most parallel to Israelis and what he is most theologically afraid of.
Giles chats to Jesse Norman MP about the compatibility of conservativism and capitalism, what we get wrong about Adam Smith and if the proroguing of parliament really is a coup.
Giles talks with Sir Larry Siedentop, Oxford philosopher and author of Inventing the Individual: The Origins of Western Liberalism, about being taught by Isaiah Berlin, how Brexit is going to federalise the UK and why liberalism isn’t dead yet.
Giles talks to broadcaster and journalist Julia Hartley-Brewer about being an atheist, working in a nightclub at 14 and why she doesn’t agree with Margaret Thatcher.
Giles talks to Labour MP for Vauxhall and long-standing Brexiteer, Kate Hoey, about the future of the Labour Party, meeting Nigel Farage on a boat and her plans for retirement.
Giles chats with former member of 80s pop band The Communards turned Vicar Richard Coles about finding God, facing the black dog and being a curate in the highest voting Leave constituency.
Giles talks to journalist and historian Simon Heffer about inventing the ‘Essex man’, why he voted for the Brexit Party and what it’s like to work with Boris Johnson.
Giles chats to the education reformer and headteacher dubbed “Britain’s strictest headmistress”, Katharine Birbalsingh, about knife crime, bad education and why ethnic minorities should be swing voters.
Giles talks to the man behind Twitter’s woke queen Titania McGrath about coming out at 18, being a hero of the far-Right and why individualism is more important than identity politics.
In a live recording at HowTheLightGetsIn Festival, Giles talks to Momentum founder and Labour Party activist Jon Lansman about the European Elections, losing his wife to cancer, and cleaning chicken coops in an Israeli kibbutz.
Giles speaks to classicist Mary Beard about the ethnic diversity of Roman Britain, why there’s more to democracy than just voting and how it feels when the Twitter mob comes after you.
Giles talks to Kehinde Andrews, the first ever professor of black studies, about discovering black psychology, why the EU is racist and his grandmother’s letter from Robert Mugabe.
Giles speaks to columnist and author Peter Hitchens about motorways, leaving the Communist party, and why changing your mind will lose you friends.
Giles chats with journalist, film-maker and author Paul Mason about his musical family, why neoliberalism killed culture and the socialist ideal of cricket on a summer’s evening.
Giles chats with Israeli chef, food writer and restaurateur Yotam Ottolenghi about ham sandwiches, swapping ‘futile’ academia for cooking, and being a poster boy for Israeli-Palestinian harmony.
In our Holy Week special, Giles talks to composer and conductor Sir James MacMillan about Scottish sectarianism, joining the Communist Party, and why composing is like having a photo developed.
Giles chats with novelist and columnist Lionel Shriver about growing up in a deeply religious family, living in Belfast during the Troubles, and Britain’s great divide.
Giles talks to the author Margaret Drabble about family secrets, coping with depression and unwittingly writing feminist literature.
Giles Fraser talks to broadcaster and politico Iain Dale about growing up on a farm, coming out as gay, his love of politics and how Brexit is driving us mad.
Giles Fraser talks to journalist and campaigner Marina Cantacuzino about founding The Forgiveness Project, the power of stories, channelling her anger and losing her brother at a young age.
Giles speaks to Alan Rusbridger, former Guardian editor and Principal of Oxford University’s Lady Margaret Hall, about his thrifty family, battling fake news and the fate of journalism.
In the first of Confessions Season 2, Oxford’s Simonyi Professor for the Public Understanding of Science, Marcus du Sautoy, talks to Giles Fraser about being terrible at sums, his love of music and whether code will develop consciousness.
In the last of this season’s Confessions, journalist and life-long provocateur Melanie Phillips joins Giles for a revealing discussion about falling into journalism, rediscovering Judaism and her perennial self-doubt.
Giles Fraser talks to distinguished human rights lawyer Helena Kennedy QC about growing up in Glasgow’s tenements, living her faith, gender discrimination, and how the law has failed the working class.
Giles Fraser talks to academic and writer Jacqueline Rose about growing up in a family with ghosts, transgenerational trauma, Israel as a moral project and the ferocious pressure of motherhood.
Giles Fraser talks to Director of Faith Matters Fiyaz Mughal about founding Tell MAMA, the scale of Islamophobia, and why Saudi Wahhabism has ripped the heart out of Islam.
Giles Fraser talks to educator and writer Claire Fox about growing up Catholic, life in the Revolutionary Communist Party, her passion to reanimate the public square and why she’s positive about the state of democracy.
Giles Fraser talks to writer and philosopher Sir Roger Scruton about the importance of faith and family, finding Conservatism, humanity in architecture, and being a class traitor.
Giles Fraser talks to political theorist and Blue Labour founder Lord Glasman about Judaism, Brexit, and why his philosophy was a love letter to his parents.
Giles Fraser talks to best-selling novelist and poet Salley Vickers about communist camaraderie, finding her faith and great fiction.
Giles Fraser talks to distinguished historian Tom Holland about Islam, rock star Gods, the collapse of ancient empires and being on the side of Pontius Pilate.
Giles Fraser talks to the editor of the New European Matt Kelly about growing up in Liverpool, how journalism was the perfect career and why Hemingway made him a Remainer.
Giles Fraser talks to distinguished philosopher Baroness Warnock about morality, being an atheist Anglican and how she dealt with her own #MeToo experience.
Giles Fraser talks to eminent psychologist and ethicist Jonathan Haidt about the ‘wisdom of repugnance’, the importance of belonging and the closing of the American mind.
Giles Fraser talks to distinguished QC Philippe Sands about his family history, crimes against humanity and his fears about Brexit and Trump.