The Washington Post's Presidential podcast explores how each former American president reached office, made decisions, handled crises and redefined the role of commander-in-chief. It was released leading up to up to Election Day 2016, starting with George Washington in week one and ending on week 44 with the president-elect. New special episodes in the countdown to the 2020 presidential election highlight other stories from U.S. presidential history that can help illuminate our current moment. Hosted by Lillian Cunningham, the series features Pulitzer Prize-winning biographers like David McCullough and Washington Post journalists like Bob Woodward. [When you're done, listen to Lillian's other historical podcasts: Constitutional and Moonrise]
Joe Biden: Triumph, tragedy and the fate of the center
Four years later, the “Presidential” podcast adds a new biography to its cadre of American presidents. This special episode explores Joe Biden's decades-long, hard-fought personal and political path to the White House, with the New Yorker’s Evan Osnos.
BONUS | What books about Trump say about America
Books published in the Trump era reveal the battles over, and changes in, the American presidency today. In this special episode of “Presidential,” Post nonfiction book critic Carlos Lozada shares what he’s learned from reading more than 150 of them.
BONUS | Pandemic, propaganda and the presidency
The 1918 influenza pandemic killed more than 675,000 Americans, but President Woodrow Wilson never made a single public statement about it. Why? Here’s what happens when efforts to promote patriotism and suppress free speech collide with a deadly virus.
BONUS | When a VP pick changes history
In ’84, a former VP got the Democratic presidential nomination, faced a Republican incumbent and chose the first female running mate in U.S. history. Sound familiar? Go behind history in this special episode, featuring an interview with Walter Mondale.
BONUS | Binding up the nation's wounds
A special episode of “Presidential” explores how a 1939 concert transformed the Lincoln Memorial into a stage for civil rights protests. Featuring Molefi Kete Asante, Doris Kearns Goodwin and Philip Kennicott.
LIVE EVENT | 'Unprecedented Presidents' live from WBUR CitySpace
Four years after making Presidential, host Lillian Cunningham led a panel examining what's really unprecedented--or not--about Donald Trump's presidency. Historians Alexis Coe, Drew Gilpin Faust and Julian Zelizer joined for this live event in Boston.
It’s above surface level
It’s not bad but you get almost nothing about each president. There’s surface level, then there’s this podcast in a helicopter hovering above surface level, not even scratching the surface. I know nothing about US presidents so I can’t say I’ve gotten nothing out of it, but you don’t get much.
Love this podcast
This podcast is fascinating! It’s the history class i wish I could have taken in high school or college! Listening for the 2nd time because I enjoyed it so much!
The changes through history
I loved how you humanized every president and how they were each a product of their time. I loved the questions asked and the unbiased and global look at each man. What I loved most was the line of how who we are now has been traced from who we were.