424 episodes

Vox Conversations brings you weekly discussions between the brightest minds and the deepest thinkers; conversations that will cause you to question old assumptions and think about the world and our role in it in a new light, including five years' worth of episodes hosted by Vox co-founder Ezra Klein.

Vox Conversations Vox

    • Society & Culture
    • 4.5 • 9.3K Ratings

Vox Conversations brings you weekly discussions between the brightest minds and the deepest thinkers; conversations that will cause you to question old assumptions and think about the world and our role in it in a new light, including five years' worth of episodes hosted by Vox co-founder Ezra Klein.

    Digital dictatorship

    Digital dictatorship

    The internet was first conceived as a tool to promote free expression, to foster and enliven debate, and to strengthen democratic ideals. But it didn’t quite work out that way. In this episode, Vox’s Zack Beauchamp talks with Steven Feldstein, author of The Rise of Digital Repression, about how governing regimes use digital technology to repress their citizens; the threats posed by surveillance, disinformation, and censorship; and how democracies can backslide into authoritarianism.
    Host: Zack Beauchamp (@zackbeauchamp), Senior Correspondent, Vox
    Guest: Steven Feldstein (@SteveJFeldstein), Author; senior fellow, Carnegie Endowment
    References: 


    The Rise of Digital Repression: How Technology is Reshaping Power, Politics, and Resistance by Steven Feldstein (Oxford University Press; 2021)


    “Maria Ressa: Philippine journalist found guilty of cyber libel” (June 15, 2020; BBC)


    “[Senator Leila] De Lima’s four-year struggle in prison” by Vince Ferreras (Mar 16; CNN Philippines)


    “Sandvine Technology Used to Censor the Web in More Than a Dozen Nations” by Ryan Gallagher (Oct. 8, 2020; Bloomberg)


    “Social media is rotting democracy from within” by Zack Beauchamp (Jan. 22, 2019; Vox)

     
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    This episode was made by: 


    Producer: Erikk Geannikis


    Editor: Amy Drozdowska


    Engineer: Paul Robert Mounsey


    VP, Vox Audio: Liz Kelly Nelson


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    • 59 min
    The man who proposed reparations in the 1860s

    The man who proposed reparations in the 1860s

    Vox’s Dylan Matthews talks with historian Bruce Levine about his book Thaddeus Stevens: Civil War Revolutionary and Fighter for Racial Justice. They discuss how Stevens — a person with anti-racist ideals so far outside the mainstream of his time — managed to be so effective, how he developed those ideals in the first place, and how to continue his fight today.
    Host: Dylan Matthews (@dylanmatt), Senior Correspondent, Vox
    Guest: Bruce Levine, Author; Professor (emeritus) of History, University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign
    References: 


    Thaddeus Stevens: Civil War Revolutionary and Fighter for Racial Justice by Bruce Levine (Simon & Schuster; 2021)


    Lincoln (2012; directed by Steven Spielberg; written by Tony Kushner, based on Team of Rivals by Doris Kearns-Goodwin)


    The Birth of a Nation (1915; directed by D.W. Griffith; written by D.W. Griffith and Frank E. Woods)


    Profiles in Courage by John F. Kennedy (1956)


    The Fall of the House of Dixie: The Civil War and the Social Revolution that Transformed the South by Bruce Levine (2014; Random House)

     
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    Support Vox Conversations by making a financial contribution to Vox! bit.ly/givepodcasts
    This episode was made by: 


    Producer: Erikk Geannikis


    Editor: Amy Drozdowska


    Engineer: Paul Robert Mounsey


    VP, Vox Audio: Liz Kelly Nelson


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    • 1 hr 7 min
    What pandemic recovery should look like

    What pandemic recovery should look like

    Vox's Emily Stewart talks with Janelle Jones, chief economist at the Labor Department, about what's actually going on with the US economy — and who are the workers most dramatically affected by the pandemic. They discuss the tasks ahead in an economic recovery, who should receive the most help, and how to put policies in place that do more than just return to the status quo.
    Host: Emily Stewart (@EmilyStewartM), Senior Reporter, Vox
    Guest: Janelle Jones (@janellecj), Chief Economist, Department of Labor
    References: 


    “U.S. Labor Shortage? Unlikely. Here’s Why” by Heidi Shierholz (May 4, The Commons blog, Initiative for Public Discourse)


    “Lumber mania is sweeping North America” by Emily Stewart (May 3, Vox)


    “Black workers have made no progress in closing earning gaps with white men since 2000” by Elise Gould, Janelle Jones, and Zane Mokhiber (Sept. 12, 2018, Working Economics Blog)


    “The U.S. economy could use some ‘overheating’” by Josh Bivens (Jan. 14, Working Economics Blog)

     
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    Support Vox Conversations by making a financial contribution to Vox! bit.ly/givepodcasts
    This episode was made by: 


    Producer: Erikk Geannikis


    Editor: Amy Drozdowska


    Engineer: Paul Robert Mounsey


    VP, Vox Audio: Liz Kelly Nelson


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    • 56 min
    The gift of getting old

    The gift of getting old

    Vox’s Sean Illing talks with Max Linsky, host of the new podcast 70 Over 70, which features intimate conversations with people over 70 years old. They discuss Max’s relationship with his aging father, the sometimes desperate search for wisdom, and the contradictions inherent in embracing life, while accepting the inevitable reality of death.

    Host: Sean Illing (@seanilling), Interviews Writer, Vox 
    Guest: Max Linsky (@maxlinsky), Host, 70 Over 70 podcast; co-founder, Pineapple Street Studios
     
    References: 

    70 Over 70 on Apple Podcasts 

    Arthur Schopenhauer, “On the Sufferings of the World” (1913)

     
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    This episode was made by: 


    Producer: Erikk Geannikis


    Editor: Amy Drozdowska


    Engineer: Paul Robert Mounsey


    VP, Vox Audio: Liz Kelly Nelson


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    • 58 min
    Freedom, and what it means to have a body

    Freedom, and what it means to have a body

    Vox's Anna North talks with author Olivia Laing about her book Everybody: A Book About Freedom. Through the surprisingly connected lives of artists, activists, psychoanalysts, and sexologists, they discuss the different ways our bodies are persecuted, imprisoned, and policed — and the ways our physical selves can be liberated.

    Host: Anna North (@annanorthtweets), Senior Reporter, Vox
    Guest: Olivia Laing, Author
    References: 


    Everybody: A Book About Freedom (Picador, 2021)


    The Lonely City (Picador, 2017)


    “Wilhelm Reich: the man who invented free love” by Christopher Turner (The Guardian, July 8, 2011)

    Susan Sontag, Illness as Metaphor (1978)


    “Overlooked No More: Ana Mendieta, a Cuban Artist Who Pushed Boundaries” by Monica Castillo (New York Times, Sept. 19, 2018)


    Agnes Martin, 1912–2004 (MoMA)


    Philip Guston, 1913–1980 (MoMA)


    “Cloudbusting” by Kate Bush (1985), music video dir. by Julian Doyle

     
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    This episode was made by: 


    Producer: Erikk Geannikis


    Editor: Amy Drozdowska


    Engineer: Paul Robert Mounsey


    VP, Vox Audio: Liz Kelly Nelson


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    • 56 min
    Why are we so worried about Satan?

    Why are we so worried about Satan?

    Vox's Sean Illing talks with Sarah Marshall, co-host of the You're Wrong About podcast, about the Satanic Panic of the early 1980s. They discuss America's penchant for moral panics, why the country latches onto outlandish stories, and what the Satanic panic and its echoes today say about America's collective psyche.

    Host: Sean Illing (@seanilling) Interviews Writer, Vox
    Guest: Sarah Marshall (@Remember_Sarah) Author; host of the You're Wrong About podcast

    References: 

    You’re Wrong About, “The Satanic Panic” (May 2018)


    “Why Satanic Panic never really ended” by Aja Romano (Vox, March 31)


    “Michelle Remembers and the Satanic Panic” by Megan Goodwin (The Revealer, Feb. 4)


    “There’s a bear in the woods” (Ronald Reagan campaign ad, 1984)

    The McMartin preschool trial


    “Baseless Wayfair child-trafficking theory spreads online” by Amanda Seitz and Ali Swenson (AP, July 2020)

    The Mann Act (a.k.a. “White-Slave Traffic Act of 1910”)


    Enjoyed this episode? Rate Vox Conversations ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ and leave a review on Apple Podcasts.
    Subscribe for free. Be the first to hear the next episode of Vox Conversations by subscribing in your favorite podcast app.
    Support Vox Conversations by making a financial contribution to Vox! bit.ly/givepodcasts
    This episode was made by: 


    Producer: Erikk Geannikis


    Editor: Amy Drozdowska


    Engineer: Paul Mounsey


    VP, Vox Audio: Liz Kelly Nelson


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    • 1 hr 4 min

Customer Reviews

4.5 out of 5
9.3K Ratings

9.3K Ratings

Linkin Steff ,

Getting the Thaddeus Stevens story out — Dylan Matthews / Bruce Levine

An excellent show, a model interview with a ready guest on a subject as pertinent as ever, maybe even more. I learned a lot, a real beginning.

PARFAWI ,

The Gift of Getting Old - Wow!

What a wonderful episode! Thanks to both Sean Illing and Max Linsky for what I found to be a great interview. I’m not sure I would have found Max’s ‘70 over 70’ if not for Sean. As someone pushing that age myself, I was so excited, encouraged by what you both had to share and the understanding that our elders have gained such insight on life, aging and death.

Mango4515 ,

voice

i love the concept and the topic of conversation, but holy cow. i could not get past 2 minutes. the voice of this podcast is super harsh on the ears. this person seems to be forcing a valley girl accent with intense vocal fry at the end of EVERY sentence. I understand if it were a character or comedy podcast but this is not.

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