Culture Call

Culture Call

By Financial Times

In the Financial Times culture podcast, editors Lilah Raptopoulos and Griselda Murray Brown get together to make sense of where culture is going. This season, with Gris on maternity leave, Lilah is presenting a special six-episode series about how culture is shifting shape. The pandemic has exposed deep cracks in our systems, giving us an unprecedented chance to reexamine and upend. Our question is: what’s possible now? Join Lilah, star guests and the team behind the Financial Times’ award-winning Life & Arts journalism to explore how culture is helping us envision what’s next. New episodes every two weeks.


Shantell Martin on how to draw a line. Plus: Gris returns!

Welcome to our Season 3 finale! To wrap up the year, Lilah is joined by the artist Shantell Martin. Shantell draws big, bold lines. Everywhere. She makes a strong case for taking out a pen. We discuss how to teach art to the next generation, what it means to 'sell out' in the art world, British versus American racism, and an urgent question for this time: who are you? Afterwards, co-host Griselda Murray Brown stops in during maternity leave to talk about motherhood and this season's themes.Thank you for joining us on this journey. You can keep in touch with Lilah on Instagram at @lilahrap, on Twitter at @lilahrap and @ftculturecall, and by email at from the show: For free 30-day access to all FT journalism, sign up to the Coronavirus Business Update newsletter with this special link. —Shantell on Instagram—Shantell's work at the New York City Ballet—Dear Grandmother, a collaboration between Dot and Shantell Martin—New Tricks, Shantell's British detective show recommendation, is on Amazon Prime—Janelle Monáe music video for Turntables—A great recent FT interview with Mary Gaitskill, author of Lost Cat—Morning Song, a poem by Sylvia Plath—Great back catalogue episodes: start the six-episode journey of this season with episode one: Miranda July! Some standout Gris interviews include Tyler Mitchell, George the Poet and Jia Tolentino. Some standout Lilah interviews include Ira Glass, Maaza Mengiste and Esther Perel.---“Turntables” is an original song by Janelle Monáe for the Liz Garbus and Lisa Cortés' 2020 documentary film All In: The Fight for Democracy. Courtesy Bad Boy, 2021  See for privacy and opt-out information.
18/12/2056m 9s

Maaza Mengiste on telling lost stories: 'Archives are not innocent'

Maaza Mengiste is one of the FT's Women of the Year, and author of the epic historical novel The Shadow King. Her book, which was shortlisted for the Booker Prize, is about the Italian invasion of Ethiopia at the start of WWII. It asks massive questions about how history is remembered, recorded and retold. Maaza and Lilah talk about collective memory, women warriors, decolonising the archives and who will tell the stories of 2020. It's full of wisdom. You'll laugh, you'll cry, you'll take notes. Plus: Alice Fishburn, editor of FT Weekend Magazine, drops by to discuss the novel, our Women of the Year issue, and commissioning in a pandemic. We love hearing your thoughts! Email us at Message Lilah on Instagram or Twitter @lilahrap, and the podcast @ftculturecall.Links:For free 30-day access to FT journalism, sign up to the Coronavirus Business Update newsletter with this special link.–Explore the FT Women of 2020 issue (paywall)–A Big Read on the crisis in Ethiopia (FT) and a Twitter thread from Maaza on the humanitarian disaster–What's going on currently in Armenia (Politico) and a history of the conflict in Nagorno-Karabakh (Jacobin)–Project 3541, Maaza's online archive of the 1935-41 Italo-Ethiopian war–An essay by Maaza on losing her father–Maaza's book recommendations: Afterlives by Abdulrazak Gurnah, Rainbow Milk by Paul Mendez and Trieste by Dasa Drndic–Alice mentioned two FT Magazine stories: The next pandemic: where is it coming from and how do we stop it? and Siri Hustvedt: ‘I think of the sirens as New York’s heartbreaking music’ –Alice's book recommendation: Hamnet by Maggie O'Farrell  See for privacy and opt-out information.
04/12/2048m 41s

Simon Schama on what history can teach us

Simon is one of the world’s premier historians and art historians, and also a colleague! After a tumultuous election, we've invited him on to help connect the dots and give us much-needed historical context. Plus: Neil Munshi, our west Africa correspondent joins us from Lagos to reflect on our conversation and discuss his recent piece on how companies are facing their brutal colonial histories. Two people with global and historical lenses through which to see 2020.What do you think is possible now, that seemed impossible before? Email us at You can message Lilah on Instagram or Twitter @lilahrap, and find the podcast on Twitter @ftculturecall. We love voice notes – so send those, too.Links from the episode:–Simon's piece The two Americas: LBJ, MLK and what the dramas of 1965 can teach a polarised nation –Simon's piece on statues: History is better served by putting the Men in Stone in museums–Simon's BBC series the Romantics and Us is on YouTube–Wendell Wilkie's One World–September, by Gerhard Richter–Midnight Diner: Tokyo Stories is on Netflix–Neil Munshi's piece, Belgium’s reckoning with a brutal history in Congo  See for privacy and opt-out information.
20/11/2043m 48s

iO Tillett Wright on the American experiment

“I feel like America was an experiment that right now is yielding really hideous, ugly results". In the days after the US election, Lilah explores how divided the US is with artist and activist iO Tillett Wright. iO created the hit true-crime podcast The Ballad of Billy Balls. He just finished a ten-year project travelling to all 50 states to photograph 10,000 queer Americans and has a unique lens on America. They discuss the election, how Americans were taught to hate, the dangers of groupthink, the ebb and flow of the fight for queer rights, this generation’s fight for civil rights and what effective activism looks like.iO's projects:–The Ballad of Billy Balls–His memoir, Darling Days–Self Evident Truths: 10,000 Portraits of Queer America–iO's Ted Talk, 50 Shades of Gay–A conversation between iO and King Princess (Interview Magazine)iO's recommendations:–Rabbit Hole podcast, from the New York Times–The Social Dilemma is on Netflix (here's an FT interview with its director, Jeff Orlowski)–Swindled, a podcast about white-collar crime & corporate greed–A General Theory of Love: a book about the science of human emotions and biological psychiatryAhead of our next episode, three pieces by Simon Schama:–The two Americas: LBJ, MLK and what the dramas of 1965 can teach a polarised nation–Simon Schama: History is better served by putting the Men in Stone in museums–Plague Time: Simon Schama on what history tells us   See for privacy and opt-out information.
06/11/2045m 21s

Who's afraid of Ai Weiwei? The Chinese dissident artist on what makes a powerful protest

After a summer defined by protest, we invite on Ai Weiwei, one of the most influential artists and activists of our time, to discuss whether we've changed. Weiwei describes how to protest creatively and powerfully ("you only see your power from your enemy's eye"), the symbolic meaning of this pandemic, and his view on the state of humanity. Plus: FT arts editor Jan Dalley joins Lilah to unpack the conversation and consider where art is going.Links from the episode:—Circa 2020 on Instagram. They're raising money for struggling UK artists with a £100 Ai Weiwei print here through October—Watch Human Flow on Amazon Prime or here—Watch Coronation, Ai Weiwei's most recent documentary, which compiled secret footage of Wuhan during the peak of the Covid crisis, on Vimeo—13 Ai Weiwei works to know (Royal Academy of Arts)—FT piece on the best new operas online (paywall)—Jan Dalley's review of the art world in the 2010sClip credit: AT SEA consists of footage filmed by Ai Weiwei during the making of “Human Flow” in 2016. Since 2015, hundreds of thousands of refugees have attempted the dangerous sea journey trying to reach Europe. Alongside these scenes are shots of physical barriers erected across Europe, the cold response to the plea for safety and shelter from the world’s most vulnerable. Video edited by: Autumn Rin Quotes: The border is not in Lesbos, it is in our minds and in our hearts. – Ai Weiwei, Chinese artist (b. 1957) Music Credit: Karsten Fundal  See for privacy and opt-out information.
23/10/2043m 18s

Bonus: Poet Natasha Trethewey on memory, grief and Black Lives Matter

In this bonus episode, we bring you a conversation between Lilah and Pulitzer Prize-winning poet and former US Poet Laureate Natasha Trethewey. In her recent memoir, Memorial Drive, Natasha shares the painful story of her mother's murder at the hands of her stepfather when Natasha was 19. Natasha was born to a black mother and white father in the Deep South during the civil rights movement. When she was an infant, the KKK burned a cross in her family's front yard. In this interview she speaks to the cyclical nature of history, the disease of racism, and the power of memory. This interview was originally recorded at the FT Weekend Live Festival in early September 2020.Get tickets to the virtual October 22 FT NextGen festival here for free, using the promo code FTPodcast.—Watch this conversation between Natasha and Lilah on YouTube —Read Natasha’s piece for the FT, America the Beautiful: three generations in the struggle for civil rights—Read the FT review for Memorial Drive, written by playwright Bonnie Greer—Read Natasha’s poem, Imperatives for Carrying On in the Aftermath   See for privacy and opt-out information.
16/10/2035m 5s

Miranda July on releasing a feature film in a pandemic

Miranda July is an artist ahead of her time: a prolific filmmaker, writer, musician, actor and more. Her work deliberately leads us into discomfort – and then hugs us from behind. Her third feature film, Kajillionaire, now on US and UK general release, is an exploration of loneliness and love that feels especially prescient now. Miranda and Lilah discuss what it’s like to release a film during a pandemic, how to make art when we don’t know what we’ll want in the future, and how a weirder world has made her film a lot less weird. Plus: FT writer Harriet Fitch-Little joins Lilah to debrief on the interview and discuss why we all stopped going to digital events.The coronavirus pandemic has broken so much open. And that gives us a very unique chance to reimagine. Welcome to the first of a six-part season. From now to the end of 2020, Lilah will be posing the question “what’s possible now?” to different creators and thinkers, to FT Life & Arts journalists, and to you.What do you think is possible now, that seemed impossible before? Email us at You can message Lilah on Instagram or Twitter @lilahrap, and find the podcast on Twitter @ftculturecall. We love voice notes – so send those, too.Links from the episode: Our Next Gen virtual festival, hosted by the FT’s young editors, is on October 22! Buy tickets here, and use our discount code, NextGen2020Anthem, by Leonard CohenA deep dive on the line, “There is a crack in everything – that’s how the light gets in”Lilah’s piece about living through historyHarriet Fitch-Little’s profile of Miranda JulyFT’s Kajillionaire review by Danny Leigh (paywall)Jenny Odell interviews Miranda JulyBehind the scenes of Jopie, Miranda’s crowdsourced film An excerpt of John Giorno’s memoir, Great Demon Kings @newyorknico on Instagram  See for privacy and opt-out information.
09/10/2052m 32s

We're back for Season 3!

The season kicks off on Friday, October 9! With co-host Griselda Murray Brown on maternity leave, Lilah Raptopoulos presents a new series of conversations with creators and thinkers about our radically transformed cultural landscape.We are living through history. The pandemic has exposed deep cracks in our systems, giving us an unprecedented chance to reexamine and upend. This six-episode season is based around the following question: what’s possible now? Join Lilah, star guests and the team behind the Financial Times’ critically-acclaimed Life & Arts journalism to explore how culture is helping us envision what’s next.Want to say hi? Email us at, find Lilah on Instagram or Twitter at @lilahrap, and find the show on Twitter at @ftculturecall.  See for privacy and opt-out information.
02/10/202m 6s

Photographer Tyler Mitchell on black freedom

The world has changed. In the midst of the Black Lives Matter movement, Gris speaks to Tyler Mitchell, a 25-year-old photographer, filmmaker and political artist who shot to fame when he photographed Beyonce for the September issue of American Vogue in 2018. In his work, Tyler explores what freedom means for black Americans, and all the ways in which it is denied. Gris first spoke to Tyler in early May - three weeks before police killed George Floyd - and they talked again just before this episode was published.This is our finale for Season Two! Thank you for an incredible run. Gris is about to go on maternity leave, but Lilah will be back for Season Three in a few months’ time. In the meantime, you can still always find us talking about culture on Twitter @FTCultureCall or on Instagram at @lilahrap and @griseldamurraybrown, and you can email us at Links and notes from the episode:–Here is our massive list of listener recommendations for what to watch on streaming platforms. Thanks to all who shared their thoughts! There’s no paywall on this, so you can share it freely: –If you want free access to explore FT journalism for 30 days, sign up to the Coronavirus Business Update newsletter using this special link: –White Fragility by Robin DiAngelo (You can also listen to an interview with Robin here:– Why I’m No Longer Talking to White People About Race by Reni Eddo-Lodge –The Vanishing Half by Brit Bennett –I May Destroy You by Michaela Coel (BBC iPlayer and HBO)–Here’s an excellent recent episode of our sister podcast, Behind the Money, on the history of police funding in America:–Tyler Mitchell on Instagram:–Tyler’s new photo book I Can Make You Feel Good, published by Prestel on July 28:–Inside Tyler’s exhibition I Can Make You Feel Good:–Photographers who Tyler Mitchell cites as inspirations: Ryan McGinley, Larry Clark, and Petra Collins (who he calls ‘the first internet phenomenon photographer on some level’)–Jeremy O Harris’s tweets on...  See for privacy and opt-out information.
16/06/2059m 55s

Liana Finck, New Yorker cartoonist, on finding confidence and creativity in quarantine

This week, Lilah talks to Liana Finck, a graphic novelist and New Yorker cartoonist with a fan base on Instagram that’s half a million strong. Liana is known for her funny and astute explorations of what it means to be human. She talks about how to free yourself up to be creative in quarantine, where confidence comes from, the most interesting human expressions to draw and what it’s like to have Ariana Grande slide into your DMs.We also share some of your Netflix recommendations, which we are still collecting to publish! Let us know what we should be watching that the streaming algorithms are hiding from us. Fill out our short form at, or email us at If you want to get social, we're on Twitter @FTCultureCall and Instagram at @griseldamurraybrown and @lilahrap.Links and notes from the episode:–A special gift from us to you: sign up to the FT's Coronavirus Business Update newsletter and get free access to our journalism for 30 days About Liana Finck:–Liana's Instagram:–Her graphic memoir is called Passing for Human–Some of Liana’s New Yorker cartoons about quarantine:–Unpopular likes and unpopular dislikes:–Me/you/us, plotted:–Liana’s recommendations for which graphic novels to start with:Everything is Flammable, by Gabrielle BellCan't We Talk About Something More Pleasant? by Roz ChastWendy, by Walter Scott –Lilah and listener Martha O’Neill’s film recommendation, Three Identical Strangers, is on Netflix–Martin Wolf video: How might the world be different after the pandemic?–Martin Wolf column: Maintaining the lockdown and saving the economy are mutually compatible (paywall)–Apps about trees: Tree Talk (London) and Leafsnap (US and UK)–Gris' film recommendation, 120 BPM, is on Hulu and available to rent–Listener Victoria Amico's Netflix recommendations are 13th (Ava DuVernay's documentary on racialised mass incarceration in the US) and The Great Hack (on the Cambridge Analytica scandal)–Listener Kana Kamagae's Netflix recommendations are Never Have I Ever (Mindy Kaling’s TV series) and Tigertail  See for privacy and opt-out information.
29/05/2047m 32s

Slave Play author Jeremy O Harris on the future of theatre

This week, Gris talks to the brilliant 30-year-old playwright Jeremy O Harris about his Broadway sensation Slave Play and his autobiographical "Daddy". This is an interview that will stick with you for a long time. They discuss how black art is re-packaged by white institutions, how black and white audiences respond differently to his work, and how to make theatre more accessible — both for quarantine and for younger audiences (Harris is also an executive producer on Euphoria). Plus: a special appearance from Phoebe Waller-Bridge!As always, we want to hear from you. This week, we'd love to know what gems the Netflix algorithm is hiding from us. What are you streaming that we should be watching? We'll publish your list! Fill out our short form at, or email us at f you want to get social, we're on Twitter @FTCultureCall and Instagram at @griseldamurraybrown and @lilahrap.Links and notes from the episode:–A special gift from us to you: sign up to the FT's Coronavirus Business Update newsletter and get free access to our journalism for 30 days!–The recipe for kuku sabzi, a delicious Persian frittata:–A great piece about Jenny Odell's How To Do Nothing:–Wesley Morris on ESPN's The Last Dance–(More Wesley Morris content) Still Processing dissects Tiger King:–FT review of Becoming on Netflix (paywall):–Aisha Harris' review of Slave Play:–Slave Play's set designer on the choice behind the onstage mirror:–Genre defying women that Jeremy mentioned: Aphra Behn, Caryl Churchill, Suzan-Lori Parks–Jeremy's recommendation of Perfect Blue by Satochi Kon:–Jeremy on Instagram:  See for privacy and opt-out information.
15/05/2059m 23s

Bonus: Normal People author Sally Rooney

This week, we've dusted off a little gem from our archives. Gris spoke to the writer Sally Rooney in 2018, just before her bestselling novel Normal People was published in the UK. It went on to win tremendous acclaim, prizes and the hearts of many readers. Fast-forward eighteen months, and Rooney's tale of passionate young love has been turned into a gripping 12-part TV series on the BBC and Hulu. It's all we can talk about: Marianne, Connell — and Connell's neck chain. But what were the origins of the novel? And what does it have to say about sex, class and power?We love hearing from you. Have you watched Normal People? How do you think it compares to the book? Email us at or tweet us at @FTCultureCall. Also, we're still collecting your cultural recommendations: what are you watching, reading and doing at home? Fill out our short form at, or record a short voice note on your phone and email it to us. You can also find us on Instagram at @griseldamurraybrown and @lilahrap.Recommended links: –Sign up for the FT's Coronavirus Business Update newsletter and get free access to our journalism for 30 days: –Our colleague Horatia Harrod interviews film-maker Lenny Abrahamson about adapting Normal People (paywall): –You know it's a phenomenon when a BuzzFeed writer digs deep into Spotify to unearth Sally Rooney's playlists for Connell and Marianne: –The FT's book review of Normal People (2018):  –Neck chain hottake 1: 'Why Are Those Little Neck Chains So Sexy?': –Neck chain hottake 2: 'Is This the Sexiest Thing About Normal People?': –'Normal people takes sex seriously':  See for privacy and opt-out information.
06/05/2030m 21s

How is culture adapting to quarantine? Plus: our film critic on what to watch now

This week, we discuss the future of movies with FT film critic Danny Leigh. Will we see a wave of apocalypse dramas once this is over? Are mid-budget films under threat? And what little-known films should we be watching? In the second half of the show, Gris and Lilah take stock of how culture has been adapting to a new virtual reality, from online exhibitions to gigs on Instagram Live. What's working in URL vs IRL culture — and what isn't? Will the lockdown democratize the arts?We’d love to hear your thoughts. Which cultural experiences have you been enjoying from your sofa? What are you watching, reading or listening to right now? Let us know at, or record a short voice note on your phone and send it to You can tweet us at @FTCultureCall, and you can find us on Instagram @lilahrap and @griseldamurraybrown. Links from the episode: –Sign up for the FT's Coronavirus Business Update newsletter and get free access to our journalism for 30 days:–The TV adaptation of Normal People:,–Gris's podcast interview with Sally Rooney, author of Normal People, from 2018:–Danny Leigh's review of The Perfect Candidate (paywall), which you can stream online:–Danny Leigh's review of And Then We Danced (paywall), which you can stream online:–Fiona Apple's album Fetch The Bolt Cutters on Spotify:–BBC Museums in Quarantine - Warhol:–Cyprus Avenue at the Royal Court Theatre:–Dance Church on Instagram:–Gris's FT piece on having a ballet lesson with Adam Cooper: See for privacy and opt-out information.
01/05/2048m 11s

Bonus: Esther Perel's advice for coping in a pandemic

This week, we turn to Esther Perel, psychotherapist and host of the hit podcast Where Should We Begin?, to help put our fears and emotions around coronavirus in context. She also gives us useful strategies for living in lockdown. There are insights in this episode that we think will help listeners in any circumstance, so we've decided to drop it early.We hope you enjoy the episode, and would love to hear your thoughts. Email us at or tweet us at @FTCultureCall. We're also still collecting your cultural recommendations under quarantine: what are you watching, reading and doing at home? Fill out our short form at, or record a short voice note on your phone and email it to us. We'll use a selection in upcoming episodes.Links:–Our last episode with Esther, on surviving (and thriving) at work: –Esther Perel's podcast, Where Should We Begin? –Roxane Gay on the value of giving people money to help them get through Covid-19 –A great article on ways to help during this pandemic (US focus): –Another resource with ways to help (UK focus): –Lucy Kellaway's piece, "Is it okay to be happy in lockdown?" (paywall)  See for privacy and opt-out information.
22/04/2038m 21s

Chef Samin Nosrat on home cooking in trying times

We can't stop thinking about food: how to cook it, where to buy it, how many meals are too many meals and why everyone's making bread. This week, Lilah talks to Samin Nosrat, of bestselling cookbook and Netflix hit Salt Fat Acid Heat, about tips for cooking in a pandemic, the meaning of comfort food, her next cookbook — and the long-term effects of coronavirus on the restaurant industry.We’d love to hear what you're turning to these days. What are you watching, reading, listening to...or cooking? Let us know at, or record a short voice note on your phone and send it to You can also tweet us at @FTCultureCall. Stay safe, and stay in touch.Links from the episode–It's your last chance to tell us what you think of the podcast (and be entered to win a pair of Bose wireless headphones!):  –Christine and the Queens EP La Vita Nuova:–Samin's new podcast, Home Cooking –Samin's foccacia recipe:–Kenji Lopez's guide on food safety and coronavirus, recommended by Samin: –Sarah O'Connor's FT column on essential workers: "The people we need the most are often the ones we value the least." (free to read):  –FT piece on China retailers facing a hard truth: if you reopen, they won't come (paywall):–The FT Bunker Food series (paywall): –Every day, the FT makes a selection of our coronavirus coverage free to read. You can find it all here: –Lilah's interview with Mission Chinese chef Danny Bowien:–Pedro Almodóvar’s lockdown diary: (in English) and (in Spanish)–The two guides Lilah depends on for making sourdough bread: See for privacy and opt-out information.
16/04/2058m 1s

This American Life host Ira Glass on storytelling during Covid-19

Lilah chats with Ira Glass, the host of This American Life, the long running, seminal and wildly popular radio show that launched a genre of podcasting. But what does its name really mean? And what does American life look like today? They discuss reporting during a pandemic, whether the show has spurred or stifled creativity in audio, how having a more diverse staff has changed their stories — and why Ira is so often name-checked on online dating sites. We’d love to hear what's keeping you centered and whose work you're turning to in these uncertain times. Let us know here: You can also tweet us at @FTCultureCall. Stay safe, and stay in touch. Links from the episode Tell us what you think of Culture Call (and be entered to win a pair of Bose wireless headphones): A great example of New Journalism: Frank Sinatra Has a Cold, by Gay Talese FT piece on gardening as ‘weeding the psyche’ (paywall): DJ D-Nice, who hosts Club Quarantine funk and hip hop dance parties on Instagram Live: Salt Drop, Lilah’s workout recommendation: piece on the rise the lockdown celebrity (paywall):’ film recommendation, Honeyland, is on HuluLilah’s TV recommendation, Unorthodox, is on Netflix--- Recommended This American Life episodes 'The Test', a recent episode about coronavirus: 'We Come from Small Places', about Brooklyn’s West Indian Day Parade: 'Are We There Yet', about the refugee crisis in Greece: 'Tell Me I'm Fat', one of Gris' favourite episodes of TAL:   See for privacy and opt-out information.
02/04/201h 3m

We want to hear from you

Gris and Lilah here, coming to you between episodes to find out how you're holding up. As we live through this surreal pandemic together (and apart), we want to know what's going through your mind. What are you noticing around you? How have you seen culture already begin to adapt to this new reality? And what have you been watching, reading, listening to, crafting, cooking, etc to get through? This is our Culture Call Out. We want to hear from you.Let's put our observations, epiphanies and cultural recommendations together to try to get through this time. Send your voice memos to us at by Monday, and we'll put a bunch in our next episode.Here's how to send a voice memo: open the voice notes app on your phone, talk right into the mic, and email the file to If you're more comfortable in writing, feel free to email us the old fashioned way.And if you want to connect online, you can find us on Twitter at @ftculturecall and on Instagram at @griseldamurraybrown and @lilahrap.  See for privacy and opt-out information.
27/03/205m 38s

On culture in the time of coronavirus. Plus: novelist Eimear McBride

This week has been dominated by the spread of coronavirus. The situation is changing so fast that we decided to publish a couple of days early. In the first half of this episode, Gris and Lilah discuss how coronavirus is already changing daily life — and how it might impact culture in the longer term. Will we lose our fear of missing out? What will the 'experience economy' look like? And can the thrill of a live performance be replicated online? The second half of the episode is an escape from all that: Gris meets the Irish novelist Eimear McBride, who wrote the literary sensation A Girl Is a Half-Formed Thing. They discuss one-night stands, middle-aged women in literature, and her new novel Strange Hotel. We’d love to hear how you’re doing in these strange and scary times, and in particular which TV shows, films and books are bringing you comfort. We’ll put a selection of your recommendations in our next episode. You can tweet us at @FTculturecall or email us at Stay safe, and stay in touch. Links from the episode:Let us know what you think of Culture Call (and win a pair of headphones): Henry Mance’s FT piece ‘Will coronavirus change how we live?’ (paywall) forecaster Emily Segal discusses the experience economy on Culture Call: New Yorker on the Netflix show Love is Blind: FT review of Jenny Offill’s novel Weather: review of Eimear McBride’s novel Strange Hotel:‘Today I Learned That Not Everyone Has An Internal Monologue And It Has Ruined My Day’: York Times interview with Jeremy O Harris, our next podcast guest: in which Lilah recommends Jeremy O Harris’s Slave Play:  See for privacy and opt-out information.
17/03/2052m 24s

Feminism after Weinstein, with Laura Bates, Emma Dabiri and Emilie Pine

To mark International Women's Day on March 8, and following Harvey Weinstein's recent conviction in New York, we're doing something a bit different. In this episode, Gris speaks to three of today's most compelling writers and campaigners about feminism now. They touch on everything from changing beauty standards to teens and social media to modern motherhood. Prepare to be surprised. Or as Lilah put it: "whatever I thought I was going to hear, that is not what I heard." (A warning if you're listening with kids: this episode contains some swearing.)The discussion was recorded at FT NextGen, a one-day festival in London in November 2019 — watch this space for details of this year's NextGen festivals in London and New York. Feminism is a subject that inspires strong reactions — and we'd especially like to know what you thought of this episode. Tweet us @FTCultureCall or email us at And if you enjoy the show, why not leave us a review on Apple Podcasts?  Links to some of the things we discussed: Gris's piece on female essayists, including Rebecca Solnit, Jia Tolentino and Emilie Pine:  Gris's podcast interview with Jia Tolentino:'s podcast interview with Lisa Taddeo:  A good piece about My Dark Vanessa: House & Home piece on maximalism and heritage interiors (paywall): Sant Pau in Barcelona: Lilah's tilapia recipe, stolen straight off the back of the Trader Joe's label (this is not sponsored!):  See for privacy and opt-out information.
05/03/2057m 7s

How to record sex, with podcaster Kaitlin Prest. Plus: fashion month explained by a trend forecaster

Award-winning podcaster Kaitlin Prest (of The Heart and Mermaid Palace) is one of the most innovative people making audio today. She chats with Lilah about sex, power and the grey areas around consent—as well as how her collective of queer anarchist outsiders climbed to the top of the audio world. Plus: trend forecaster Emily Segal, known for coining the term 'normcore', stops by to share her top five alternate takeaways from fashion month (including that trends may be entirely over!).As always, we'd love to hear from you. Say hi on Twitter @FTCultureCall, or by email at to tell us what you're reading, watching, listening to or otherwise obsessed with. And if you enjoy the show, why not leave us a review on Apple Podcasts?Recommended links: –Kaitlin Prest and Drew Denny's new audio show, Asking For it, comes out February 25. Trailer here: –The Heart's three part series on consent, 'No': –If you liked Emily Segal of Nemesis, this is a great conversation between her and star fashion designer Virgil Abloh: –Danny Leigh's piece about Amy documentarian Asif Kapadia ('the director who reinvented the documentary'): –Gris' Twitter thread about the best theatre on in London right now: –FT review of Tom Stoppard’s Leopoldstadt and Death of England (paywall): –Gris' Culture Call interview with Kristen Roupenian, author of Cat Person:  See for privacy and opt-out information.
20/02/2059m 23s

Noah Baumbach on his film Marriage Story. Plus: everything you need to know before the Oscars

We're back with a brand new season! In our pre-Oscars special, Gris talks to Noah Baumbach, director of the nominated film Marriage Story, about love, divorce — and how Netflix is changing film. Plus: the FT's film critic Danny Leigh drops into the studio ahead of the Academy Awards. Who's going to win? Who really should win? And do the Oscars — for which no female directors and just one actor of colour were nominated — still matter in 2020?As always, we'd love to hear from you. Say hi on Twitter @FTCultureCall, or by email at to tell us what you're reading, watching, listening to or otherwise obsessed with. And if you enjoy the show, why not leave us a review on Apple Podcasts?-------Recommended links: Kaitlin Prest's podcast The Heart - specifically the mini-series ‘No’ (she's our next guest): FT's Academy Awards package: Spotify soundtrack of Jagged Little Pill (the Alanis Morissette musical): review of Anna Wiener's book Uncanny Valley (paywall): Leigh's review of Uncut Gems (paywall): review of Charlotte Salomon at the Jewish Museum, London: review of Uncle Vanya, London (paywall): Eshun on Masculinities at the Barbican, London (paywall):  See for privacy and opt-out information.
06/02/2058m 51s

We're back for season two!

The season kicks off this Thursday, February 6! Join Gris and Lilah as they dig into the trends shaping life in the 2020s, interview the people breaking new ground and bring you behind the scenes of the Financial Times' Life & Arts journalism. In episode one, Gris speaks with director of Marriage Story Noah Baumbach, and our film critic stops by to chat about this year’s nominees. We also have an exciting line up of guests this season, including podcaster Kaitlin Prest and novelist Eimear McBride, as well as artists, chefs, trend forecasters and more.Want to say hi? Email Gris and Lilah at or follow us on Twitter at @ftculturecall.  See for privacy and opt-out information.
04/02/202m 41s

Our 2019 cultural roundup: the biggest and best of the year

From Lizzo and Fleabag to Greta Thunberg and the Impossible Burger, Lilah and Gris look back at the biggest themes, people and moments of the year. How did we go from talking about 'global warming' to the 'climate crisis'? How has technology opened up the generational divide? And how is culture reflecting the changing conversation around gender, race and representation? Plus: we asked our FT colleagues for their stand-out moments of 2019! Melissa Ingabire takes on the surprising ascendance of country music, via Lil Nas X and Kacey Musgraves. Alec Russell describes meeting the 89-year-old Irish novelist Edna O'Brien. Jo Ellison explains why Karl Lagerfeld's death marked the end of an era in fashion. And Anna Nicolaou argues that 2019 was a great year for movies - thanks, in part, to streaming platforms like Netflix. The episode rounds out with listener recommendations to help you with your holiday gift list.We're taking a short break -- we'll be back in late January 2020! Let us know who we should interview and which subjects we should tackle in our second season. You can get in touch on Twitter @FTCultureCall or by email at And if you like the show, the kindest gift you could give us is a review on Apple Podcasts.Links from the episode, arranged by theme: Gris's Lunch with the FT with superstar violinist Nicola Benedetti (paywall): Greta Thunberg has Lunch with the FT: renting your wardrobe makes fashion sense: of Eco-Visionaries exhibition at the Royal Academy (paywall): Anna Nicolaou on TikTok and how video shaped a generation: Thornhill's review of Shoshana Zuboff's book The Age of Surveillance Capitalism: of Euphoria on HBO: and female creators: Rebecca Traister on the toll of MeToo: Tett's review of She Said, Jodi Kantor and Megan Twohey's account of breaking the Weinstein story: of Fleabag series two on BBC/Amazon...  See for privacy and opt-out information.
19/12/1958m 2s

Why astrology is thriving in 2019

You may have noticed the revival of astrology in recent years: meme accounts are accruing millions of followers, horoscope apps are raising millions of dollars in venture funding, and Americans are spending more and more on 'mystical services' (it's currently a $2.2b market). Lilah and Gris explore what this growing trend says about our culture, digging into the renaissance of birth charts and moon signs with help from Culture Call listeners. Plus: one of New York's most prominent astrologers, Rebecca Gordon, stops by the show to talk about her growing clientele and her predictions for Brexit and the US 2020 election. She also takes a look at how compatible Culture Call's co-hosts really are. Also: we are putting together an episode of our cultural highlights from 2019, and we’d love to include yours. Which books, films, TV shows and other trends have you been recommending to your friends? Let us know on Twitter @FTCultureCall or by emailing us at Here are some links from this episode: – Lilah's FT article on astrology:–Suzi Feay's FT review of The Crown Season 3:–Meghan Markle's interview on ITV:–Liz Jobey's FT piece on artist Dora Maar, whose work is on view at the Tate Modern in London until March 15 (paywall):–Picasso's 1937 painting, Weeping Woman':–Witch, a book of poetry by Rebecca Tamás:–Recap of the Broad City episode Witches:  See for privacy and opt-out information.
05/12/1940m 52s

Novelist Ben Lerner on angry white men and the origins of Trump

Ben Lerner is one of the most acclaimed American writers working today. Gris meets him to discuss good parenting, male rage and why "autofiction" (fiction infused with autobiography) isn't narcissistic, despite what people think. One of the biggest books of 2019, Lerner's new novel The Topeka School is arguably his most ambitious to date. Set partly in Kansas in the 1990s, it tells the story of one family -- and of the US at large. Can it help us understand how we got here?Get in touch! We’re putting together an episode of our cultural highlights from 2019, and we’d love to know what yours have been. Which books, films, TV shows and other trends have you enjoyed this year? Let us know on Twitter @FTCultureCall or by emailing us at And if you like the show, you can help us out by leaving a review on Apple Podcasts or recommending it to your friends!Links from the episode:  - FT review of Ben Lerner's novel The Topeka School  (paywall) :  - Gris' podcast interview with Sheila Heti, another great writer of autofiction: Lilah's piece on the rebirth of astrology for the FT (paywall):  - India Ross's piece on the "OK boomer" meme for the FT (paywall): FT's NextGen package, featuring pieces about the post-millennial generation:    See for privacy and opt-out information.
21/11/1949m 21s

Esther Perel on surviving (and thriving) at work

Psychotherapist Esther Perel shot to fame with her TED talks and podcast on sex, infidelity, and the secret to long-term relationships. Lilah meets her in New York to learn about her latest podcast – How's Work? – which puts a microphone in her therapy sessions between co-founders. They discuss how the same dynamics that exist in our romantic relationships also exist in our professional lives – and how best to navigate them. Gris and Lilah also dissect how therapy has been depicted in culture over the years.As always, we'd love to hear from you. We are still looking for your thoughts on astrology – record an audio message and email it to us at You can also always tell us about your favorite cultural trends on Twitter @FTCultureCall. And if you enjoy the show, please recommend us to your friends!––––Links from the episode:–Lilah's written piece on Esther Perel (paywall):–How's Work? on Spotify:–Tom Faber's piece for the FT on London's club scene (paywall):–FT NextGen, a package of stories about how the next generation lives:–Tickets to the FT's NextGen festival, in London on November 16 (where you can hang out with Gris!):–Lilah and James Fontanella-Khan's story on why it’s time to stop ignoring mental health at work:–More about Flights, by Olga Tokarczuk:–The rise of Succession, TV’s new must-watch show (Vox):  See for privacy and opt-out information.
07/11/1950m 53s

Chef Danny Bowien of Mission Chinese: "we're living in a post-authentic world"

Award-winning chef Danny Bowien has never fully fit in. Adopted from Korea, Bowien was raised by a white, Christian family in Oklahoma, in "the buckle of the Bible Belt." In 2010, as a young chef in San Francisco, he started the first pop up restaurant ever as an experiment – it became wildly popular for turning Szechuan Chinese food upside down. He now runs two successful Mission Chinese restaurants in New York.Bowien is known in the food world for subverting not just Chinese cuisine, but also what chefs should look like and the rules they should follow. He speaks with Lilah about why authenticity is no longer the benchmark for good food, what it has been like to publicly fail, and how a restaurant becomes an institution.Also: we want to hear your stories about astrology! Do you have a memorable experience to share with us? When do you turn to it? And if you're a skeptic, what doesn't sit right? Record an audio message with your thoughts, and email it to You can also chat with us on Twitter @FTCultureCall.––––Links from the episode:–Patricia Lockwood's hilarious essay on John Updike in the London Review of Books–Tickets to the FT's NextGen festival, in London on November 16 (where you can hang out with Gris!):–Danny Bowien's Instagram:  See for privacy and opt-out information.
24/10/1941m 44s

Artist Mark Bradford peels back layers. Plus: is Netflix losing steam?

At almost seven foot tall, Mark Bradford is one of the most towering figures in the art world, in every sense. Gris asks him how it felt — as a gay, black artist — to represent the US at the Venice Biennale in the era of Trump. Mark also discusses growing up in his mother's beauty salon in Los Angeles, his new exhibition in London, and how his foundation makes art accessible to everyone — not just privileged communities. Later in the episode, Lilah speaks to the FT's US media correspondent Anna Nicolaou about Fortnite, the digital streaming wars and why Netflix keeps paying millions for 90's sitcoms.As always, we'd love to hear from you. Chat with us on Twitter @FTCultureCall, and tell us about the cultural trends you can’t get out of your head at Links from the episode:Mark Bradford's exhibition Cerberus is at Hauser & Wirth in London until December 21 - Lilah's piece on visiting Armenia for the first time - Nicolaou's piece on Fortnite - Nicolaou's piece on the future of Netflix (paywall) Broadway ready for Slave Play? (New York Times)  See for privacy and opt-out information.
10/10/1953m 44s

On sex and bias with comedian Sara Pascoe

How does evolutionary biology shape our attitudes towards desire? Is it always possible to confront your own prejudice? Gris talks to Sara Pascoe about making jokes in the age of woke speak, the highs and lows of life as a comedian, and her new book Sex Power Money.We love hearing from you. Come chat with us @FTCultureCall on Twitter, and tell us about your favourite cultural trends at    See for privacy and opt-out information.
24/09/1934m 56s

Unpacking the internet with Jia Tolentino

As The New Yorker magazine's go-to millennial, Jia Tolentino writes cultural criticism about the internet and how it affects us. She recently published Trick Mirror, a wildly popular collection of essays that explores contemporary culture. On this episode, Jia speaks with Gris about how the internet is moulding us in its image ("and it's important to remember that we are very mouldable!"). She also considers how it feels to find professional success on Twitter, a platform that can be ultimately harmful. Trick Mirror doesn't attempt to solve these problems; it just exposes and untangles them. Later in the episode, Lilah and Gris discuss whether that's enough.Want to discuss the episode? Come chat with us @FTCultureCall on Twitter. You can also tell us about the cultural trends you can’t get out of your head at links:Jia's New Yorker piece on vaping: FT book review of Trick Mirror (paywall):  See for privacy and opt-out information.
10/09/1946m 10s

From rap to representation with George the Poet

He opened the royal wedding of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle with a love poem. His series Have You Heard George's Podcast? won multiple awards for its commentary on black inner city culture in the UK and beyond. George the Poet tells Gris about why he gave up rapping, and the privilege ⁠— and emotional toll ⁠— of representing his community. Later on, we discuss the latest mind-blowing discoveries in science, from our early ancestors to extraterrestrial life.Talk to us on Twitter! We're at @FTculturecall. And let us know about the cultural trends you can’t get out of your head at links:George the Poet at London Podcast Festival, September 6:'s Lunch with the FT with Alexis Ohanian: (paywall)The Financial Times Masters of Science series: Financial Times review of The Doctor at the Almeida Theatre, London: (paywall)  See for privacy and opt-out information.
27/08/1953m 6s

Talking fame, trauma and fiction with Taffy Brodesser-Akner

Gris and Lilah return with a revamped show: welcome to Culture Call! Lilah visits New York Times feature writer Taffy Brodesser-Akner at home in suburban New Jersey to talk about how she constructs her viral celebrity profiles (think Gwyneth Paltrow and Nicki Minaj). We also discuss her first novel, Fleishman is in Trouble. Good news: you can now find us on Twitter! It’s @FTculturecall. As always, feel free to email us with the cultural trends you can’t get out of your head at links:Gris’s piece on how women essayists are shifting the rules in the literary world (paywall):’s GQ cover story on Tom Hiddleston and his bolognese: Financial Times’ book review of Fleishman is in Trouble:  See for privacy and opt-out information.
13/08/1946m 42s

Introducing Culture Call

We're changing our name to Culture Call! We'll be bringing you everything that was great about Everything Else, plus an added emphasis on conversations with people who are shifting culture — writers, musicians, chefs, comedians and more. For regular listeners, there's no need to re-subscribe: we'll be back in your feeds on August 13!  See for privacy and opt-out information.
02/08/194m 23s

Love, lust and workplace burnout: Three Women’s Lisa Taddeo

Three Women is one of the most talked-about books of the summer: a true story of female desire that took eight years to write. Lilah talks to its author, Lisa Taddeo, about what it was like to report on real women's sex lives — and why Woody Allen was wrong: there is such a thing as a bad orgasm. Plus: Lilah and James Fontanella-Khan, FT corporate deals editor, discuss their investigation into workplace stress and burnout. Why is it getting worse? And what can we do? Read it for free at, subscribe, rate and review on Apple Podcasts.  See for privacy and opt-out information.
12/07/1948m 1s

Our big summer books episode 2019. Plus Simon Schama on Wordiness

Our big summer books episode! Plus, Simon SchamaLooking for a book that will give you an existential crisis on holiday? Gris and Lilah talk with Innovation Editor John Thornhill about what this summer’s best tech books say about our cultural psyche. (John sees a future in which a machine can write about its experience being a machine.) Plus, a conversation with resident genius Simon Schama, who defends the value of wordy writingListen, subscribe, rate and review on Apple Podcasts.  See for privacy and opt-out information.
28/06/1938m 2s

The secret life of a Cannes film critic. Plus: Big Little Lies and the internet wife

FT film critic Raphael Abraham brings us behind the scenes at Cannes — and recommends the best movies to see this summer. Plus: to welcome season two of HBO's Big Little Lies, Gris and Lilah unpack the changing role of the housewife, and what the new internet sensation 'the wife guy' is doing for modern feminism.Listen, subscribe, rate and review on Apple Podcasts.  See for privacy and opt-out information.
14/06/1942m 23s

Black Mirror and a date with Rihanna

Gris meets Charlie Brooker and Annabel Jones, the pair behind Black Mirror, the hit Netflix show that explores the darker side of our relationship to technology; its latest season begins next week. Plus: FT fashion editor Jo Ellison tells us what it was like to interview Rihanna in Paris.  See for privacy and opt-out information.
31/05/1942m 38s

Jon Ronson on free porn, anxiety and empathy

Gris meets the author and podcaster Jon Ronson (The Butterfly Effect, The Psychopath Test, So You've Been Publicly Shamed) to ask him why he’s drawn to secretive subcultures — from sites like 4chan to the Ku Klux Klan — and to discuss his latest podcast, The Last Days of August, and the ethics of reporting on the death of a young porn performer.Listen, subscribe, rate and review on Apple Podcasts.  See for privacy and opt-out information.
17/05/1934m 17s

DeRay Mckesson on Black Lives Matter. Plus: the meaning of Games of Thrones

Gris meets the activist, podcaster and author of On the Other Side of Freedom to discuss rising police violence against African Americans, what he learnt from meeting Obama, what Extinction Rebellion can learn from Black Lives Matter, and the role of social media (DeRay has over 1m followers on Twitter, including Beyoncé).Plus: the FT's Alec Russell and India Ross discuss Game of Thrones. India recently wrote a blockbuster essay on the series for the FT; Alec, meanwhile, having never watched it before, has been attempting to consume every episode before the finale.Listen, subscribe, rate and review on Apple Podcasts.  See for privacy and opt-out information.
03/05/1931m 32s

Ways of Seeing: Sheila Heti on Pierre Bonnard

This week, Gris meets the Canadian writer Sheila Heti at Tate Modern's Pierre Bonnard retrospective to discuss the unlikely parallels between their work, from the depiction of everyday life to the role of memory.Listen, subscribe, rate and review on Apple Podcasts.  See for privacy and opt-out information.
19/04/1933m 57s

Comedian Nish Kumar, Brexit and the best goodbyes

Gris talks to The Mash Report host Nish Kumar about comedy, the role of the political satirist and the painfully endless Brexit goodbye. And Gris says her own goodbye to Al, who is leaving the podcast to embark on a new career in ASMR. As he does, Al and Gris look back on some of their favourite farewells in film and fiction.Listen, subscribe, rate and review on Apple Podcasts.  See for privacy and opt-out information.
30/03/1935m 50s

Kristen Roupenian on 'Cat Person', dating and overnight success. Plus: we discuss consent

When Kristen Roupenian's short story 'Cat Person' was published in December 2017, it became a viral sensation — and a focal point for conversations in the early days of #MeToo. How does she look back on it now? And what does her new collection You Know You Want This have to say about relationships, horror and awkward sex? Later, Gris and Al head to the pub for a frank discussion about consent.Listen, subscribe, rate and review on Apple Podcasts.  See for privacy and opt-out information.
16/03/1944m 16s

Chiwetel Ejiofor, The Boy Who Harnessed The Wind and It's Not About the Burqa

Chiwetel Ejiofor, The Boy Who Harnessed The Wind and It's Not About the BurqaThe actor talks to Al about his debut as a film director, directing himself and Hollywood after Harvey Weinstein. Later, Salma Haidrani joins Gris and Al to discuss her writing in It's Not About the Burqa, a new collection of essays by Muslim women on faith, feminism, sexuality and race.     See for privacy and opt-out information.
02/03/1934m 19s

Tracey Emin, the Oscars and Frieze in LA

History catches up with Tracey Emin: the artist on love, loss and #MeToo. And it's the Academy Awards...who should win, who should not and who cares anyway? Plus: Frieze LA — local artist Martine Syms drives around Los Angeles, exploring the relationship between cars, culture and life through the windscreen.  See for privacy and opt-out information.
16/02/1944m 0s

Richard E Grant, Oscar nominee. Plus: is Netflix good for TV?

The star of Withnail and I discusses his new movie Can You Ever Forgive Me?, actors, acting and why sex is key to getting into character.And we debate the startling growth of Netflix - is it remotely healthy?  See for privacy and opt-out information.
02/02/1944m 10s

Fiction special: Alexander Chee reads The Rosary

Our coda for 2018 is something rather different: the American writer reads a meditative personal essay from his acclaimed new collection, How To Write an Autobiographical Novel.   See for privacy and opt-out information.
21/12/1853m 20s

Best books of 2018. Plus: Sally Rooney on sex, class and the internet

In our penultimate episode of the series, we discuss the year's best novels and non-fiction works — as well as some old favourites — with Arifa Akbar, literary critic and a judge of the 2019 Women's Prize for Fiction, and Alice Fishburn, editor of FT Weekend magazine. Later, Gris chats to Sally Rooney about her award-winning novel Normal People.  See for privacy and opt-out information.
15/12/1850m 48s

Christmas Food & Drink Special with Tim Hayward, Polly Russell and Chef Cyrus Todiwala

Is Christmas best for six-year-olds? And was it better in the olden days? We rediscover the joy of festive excess. The Indian British chef discusses the future of food, his own unique style of cooking and why now is the best moment in history to be an aspiring chef.  See for privacy and opt-out information.
01/12/1848m 54s

How to make it as a rapper in 2018. Plus: Thomas Page McBee, the first trans man to box at Madison Square Gardens

Hip-hop is now the dominant genre in pop. But how do artists get big? We ask the London beat maker and producer Mutual Soundz and the FT's pop critic Ludovic Hunter-Tilney. Plus: a trans writer on 'toxic masculinity' and the beauty of being a man.  See for privacy and opt-out information.
17/11/1844m 25s

‘The Big Lebowski’ at 20. Plus: John Cooper Clarke, the Baudelaire of Salford, is ‘The Luckiest Guy Alive’

As the Dude hits 20, has cult movie The Big Lebowski aged well? And, after 30-odd years, John Cooper Clarke, the ‘people’s poet’, has a new book of verse – he also has two pairs of glasses but no mobile phone.  See for privacy and opt-out information.
27/10/1848m 32s

Kerry James Marshall on painting African-American life

His paintings of black Americans - families and lovers, parks and hair salons - have earned Kerry James Marshall a reputation as one of our greatest living artists. Gris talks to him about representation, the western canon and who decides the value of art.  See for privacy and opt-out information.
13/10/1830m 58s

Sally Rooney, David Shrigley and comedy in contemporary art

Sally Rooney, author of Conversations with Friends and now Normal People, discusses sex, class and the internet - and why she simply couldn't stand being at school. Plus - can visual art be very funny? We ask the great David Shrigley.  See for privacy and opt-out information.
29/09/1845m 9s

Comedian Phil Wang - Live

Recorded at the FT Weekend Festival, Phil Wang riffs on the science of comedy, racial stereotypes and being funny on demand.  See for privacy and opt-out information.
15/09/1823m 31s

Can you be a writer and a good parent? Plus: The Guilty Feminist

Is the pram in the hall really the enemy of good art? We ask Lara Feigel, author of Free Woman: Life, Liberation and Doris Lessing, and the FT's Isabel Berwick. And later, Gris talks to comedian Deborah Frances-White, host of the hit podcast The Guilty Feminist, about self-confidence, male privilege and her years as a Jehovah's Witness.  See for privacy and opt-out information.
08/09/1842m 30s

Matthew Macfadyen: from Mr Darcy to the 'dork' in Succession

The actor unpicks his role as a "human grease stain" in the new, hit HBO TV series. Gris and Al will interview comedian Phil Wang live at the FT Weekend Festival on September 8. Tickets are available at  See for privacy and opt-out information.
01/09/1819m 56s

Stephen Mangan's Hang Ups. Plus essential summer songs

Actor Stephen Mangan reveals everything about acting, death, boarding school and his new role as an online therapist. And - what makes the perfect summer song? Fluff or poignant melancholy? From Justin Bieber to Mungo Jerry, we dig deep with music writer David Cheal and arts critic India Ross.  See for privacy and opt-out information.
18/08/1843m 22s

Loneliness and the search for a new reality

In the age of Instagram, Twitter and ubiquitous screens, are we lonelier than ever? We chat to Olivia Laing, author of The Lonely City, and Jo Ellison, the FT’s fashion editor. Plus: Laurence Scott dissects his book, Picnic Comma Lightning, a touching exploration of identity in the 21st century.  See for privacy and opt-out information.
04/08/1837m 24s

Lehman Brothers, Lauren Greenfield and how capitalism turned sour

Ten years after the financial crisis, The Lehman Trilogy, a play by Stefano Massini, has opened in London. We chat to FT comment editor Brooke Masters and theatre critic Sarah Hemming about what happened then and what we see on stage. Plus: Gris speaks to provocative filmmaker Lauren Greenfield about her new documentary Generation Wealth  See for privacy and opt-out information.
21/07/1835m 34s

Simon Schama on satire in the age of Trump

As the US President descends on Britain — and a great big inflatable baby blimp Trump floats above Westminster — we ask Simon Schama whether this is a good time for political comedy, how satire has adapted to Donald Trump and whether it can really change anything.   See for privacy and opt-out information.
13/07/1821m 10s

Trendy food and faddish diets. Plus: artist Cornelia Parker

Kombucha? Purple food? Spirulina? Food trends might seem mostly fatuous, but do we need them? Tim Hayward identifies what’s hot now. And Gris meets the witty Cornelia Parker, destroyer of silver spoons, brass instruments and garden sheds.  See for privacy and opt-out information.
07/07/1849m 21s

1968 and the spirit of protest today. Plus: comedian Fern Brady

Fifty years after the uprisings in Paris, Prague and the US, protest is back. There's Black Lives Matter, #MeToo — and the Stop Trump march in London next month. But what has changed? We talk to FT architecture critic Edwin Heathcote. Later, Al meets the supremely funny (and supremely dark) Scottish comedian Fern Brady.   See for privacy and opt-out information.
23/06/1845m 43s

Our World Cup hopes and fears. Plus: Akram Khan

As the World Cup "kicks off" in Russia, we chat to two FT football fanatics, theatre critic Sarah Hemming and magazine associate editor Neil O'Sullivan, about the beautiful game. Later, Gris meets the choreographer and dancer Akram Khan. You can read the FT's World Cup coverage at  See for privacy and opt-out information.
14/06/1833m 32s

The birth (and death) of American cool. Plus: Complicité's Simon McBurney

Detachment, poise, charisma: "cool" can mean many things. In our season finale, Gris is joined by the academic Sarah Churchwell and arts writer Peter Aspden to discuss its evolution from the 1920s to today. Later, theatre director Simon McBurney tells the story of a journey into the Amazon rainforest.  See for privacy and opt-out information.
31/03/1851m 28s

Peak TV — from The Sopranos to Skam

We discuss the evolution of television's so-called "golden age", from The Sopranos and The Wire to Atlanta and Broad City. What really changed? And what's next? Will original shows from Facebook, Apple and YouTube threaten Netflix and Amazon — or even change the way we watch TV? Plus: author Joy Press on how female showrunners are revolutionising the small screen.  See for privacy and opt-out information.
24/03/1837m 6s

Peter Carey on Australia's original sin. Plus: a new short story by JM Coetzee

This week: two titans of literature with four Booker Prizes between them. First up, Peter Carey on tackling the relationship between Australia's white and Aboriginal populations in his new novel, A Long Way from Home. Later, JM Coetzee reads 'The Dog', a story from his forthcoming collection, Seven Moral Tales. It was recorded at the Hay Literary Festival in Cartagena, Colombia; for more highlights from the festival, listen to our episode "JM Coetzee on the problem with English. Plus: Ghanaian-American novelist Yaa Gyasi".  See for privacy and opt-out information.
17/03/1826m 36s

Women After Weinstein, with Laura Bates and Reni Eddo-Lodge. Plus: Leila Slimani on motherhood

What’s the role of feminism in the #MeToo era? We talk to Laura Bates, founder of the Everyday Sexism project, and Reni Eddo-Lodge, author of the bestselling Why I’m No Longer Talking to White People About Race, about where we are — and where we’re heading. Plus: French writer Leila Slimani on work, motherhood and her Prix Goncourt-winning novel Lullaby.Listen to Everything Else on iTunes or Stitcher, and let us know what you think on our Facebook page.  See for privacy and opt-out information.
08/03/1855m 17s

Oscars 2018: the movies and the moment. Plus: Ekow Eshun on Black Panther

Film special! We debate the Academy Awards, why they matter and who should win: Get Out, Call Me By Your Name or Lady Bird? And what does Three Billboards — its success and backlash — say about the current climate? Later, Griselda talks to Ekow Eshun about why Black Panther is a cultural turning point.  See for privacy and opt-out information.
02/03/1851m 24s

Simon Schama on Civilisations. Plus: artist Eddie Peake

Art historian Simon Schama on why he's updating Kenneth Clark's landmark TV series from 1969 and what 'civilisation' means today. Plus: we visit provocative artist Eddie Peake's new exhibition at White Cube and chat to him about nudity, desperation and the changing face of London.  See for privacy and opt-out information.
24/02/1844m 29s

JM Coetzee on the problem with English. Plus: Ghanaian-American novelist Yaa Gyasi

This week: a special episode from the Hay Literary Festival in Cartagena, Colombia. Nobel Prize for Literature and two-time Booker Prize winner JM Coetzee reads a powerful short story from his forthcoming collection — and discusses the troubling dominance of the English language. Later, FT Weekend editor Alec Russell asks Ghanaian-American novelist Yaa Gyasi about writing on slavery in the age of Trump; and polar explorer Erling Kagge advises Alec on where to find silence in the modern world.  See for privacy and opt-out information.
17/02/1848m 57s

Genius versus mediocrity. Plus: The Wire's Clarke Peters

We're back! First up: we talk to Lucian Msamati, star of the National Theatre's Amadeus, and journalist Peter Aspden about the nature of genius. Is Kanye West today's Mozart? And in an age obsessed with self-improvement, is mediocrity underrated? Later, we catch up with actor Clarke Peters about life after The Wire — and his new movie Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri.  See for privacy and opt-out information.
10/02/1837m 12s

Introducing series four

Everything Else is back on February 10! First up, we debate the nature of genius from Mozart to Kanye West — and we meet Clarke Peters, star of The Wire and the Oscar-tipped film Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri. In the coming weeks, we've got interviews with Peter Carey, Yaa Gyasi, Simon McBurney, Leila Slimani and many more. Don't miss out — subscribe on Apple Podcasts, Acast, Stitcher or wherever you get your podcasts.  See for privacy and opt-out information.
03/02/181m 40s

A new short story by Ali Smith, read by Olivia Williams

In a festive special episode, the actor Olivia Williams reads 'I Heard it on Classic FN', a new short story by Ali Smith, author of the novels How To Be Both, Autumn and Winter. The story was commissioned by FT Weekend; you can read it at Everything Else returns in January."Maybe because they could hear the Beach Boys greatest hits playlist. We were playing it because Bel had insisted. It's not winter. It's summer.  It was winter, obviously. But all through Christmas she'd been playing the new game she'd invented, which she called Classic FN. (The F and the N stood for the words fake and news.) You played this game simply by claiming that something that was true wasn't true. You said the false thing as if it was true, then you added the words I heard it on Classic FN, or just said Classic FN at the end of whatever your statement was, like that fashion that people had of adding the word not after something they'd said. I'm so looking forward to spending all of Christmas with you. Not."  See for privacy and opt-out information.
29/12/1728m 53s

Best films of 2017. Plus: Hayley Atwell on Weinstein culture

In our season finale we reveal our favourite films of the year, from The Florida Project to Call Me By Your Name. And as Hollywood's sex scandals dominate headlines - can we separate the art from the artist? Later, we catch up with actor Hayley Atwell, star of a new adaptation of Howards End. We'll be back next year. Until then, happy holidays!  See for privacy and opt-out information.
25/11/1751m 58s

Food special! To tip or not to tip? Plus: chef Ravinder Bhogal

Chef and TV star Ravinder Bhogal describes how women cook differently to men. We explore London’s Borough Market, asking stallholders what makes Christmas Christmas for them. And is tipping on the way out? A quarrel about the bill with food writer and restaurateur Tim Hayward.  See for privacy and opt-out information.
18/11/1746m 50s

From Lenin with love

Comrades! 100 years since the October Revolution we examine the Russian soul and speak to Pussy Riot's Masha Alyokhina.  See for privacy and opt-out information.
11/11/1754m 20s

The lurid appeal of true crime. Plus: Roisin Conaty

Is the genre as compelling as ever? Or is it biting the dust? We discuss hit podcast Dirty John and Netflix spoof American Vandal. Later, Al talks to comedian Roisin Conaty about the deathtrap of the perfect heckle.  See for privacy and opt-out information.
06/11/1747m 6s

Lionel Shriver

In this special episode, Lionel Shriver, the American writer best known for her novel We Need to Talk About Kevin, reads a new short story inspired by the news of 2017. She wrote it for the Word Factory and New Writing North for 'Citizen: The New Story, London's first festival exploring Citizenship', which takes place on November 10-12.  See for privacy and opt-out information.
03/11/1732m 38s

Why we sleep. Plus: Chris Kraus on I Love Dick

Is sleep the answer to health and happiness? Or is the future sleepless? We talk to neuroscientist Matthew Walker about his new book Why We Sleep. Gris is quizzed on famous sleepers. And later, she meets Chris Kraus author of cult feminist novel I Love Dick.  See for privacy and opt-out information.
30/10/1755m 35s

Class and comedy at the movies. Plus: women respond to Harvey Weinstein

This week, we compare a London comedy (Sally Potter's The Party) with a New York one (Noah Baumbach's The Meyerowitz Stories). Gris is conflicted about #MeTo, the social media campaign highlighting the prevalence of sexual harassment. And Al speaks to the poet and playwright Inua Ellams.  See for privacy and opt-out information.
23/10/1749m 5s

What's the naughtiest thing you ever did? Plus writer Amit Chaudhuri

Can you buy good taste? Kelly Hoppen and Nicky Haslam have the answers. Chaudhuri discusses his mini masterpiece 'Friend of My Youth'. Later, Vince Cable, Ruth Rogers and Jeremy Paxman confess their darkest secrets.  See for privacy and opt-out information.
16/10/1751m 17s

Boards and barricades – political theatre. Plus: adventurer Natalia Cohen

Can plays improve the world? We ask playwright James Graham and journalist Helen Lewis. Then we meet Natalia Cohen, who rowed across the Pacific Ocean in a little boat called Doris.  See for privacy and opt-out information.
09/10/1747m 59s

Peace and love. Plus: Teju Cole

The power of pop, Monty Python's 'Every Sperm is Sacred' - and Gris's big news. FT pop critic Ludovic Hunter-Tilney joins us to discuss how music can change the world. Then we talk to writer and photographer Teju Cole about Confederate statues and ways of seeing.  See for privacy and opt-out information.
02/10/1744m 31s

Extra scoop: S-Town's Brian Reed

A short but sweet extra episode for fans of 'S-Town'. We talk to the host and co-creator of the hit podcast ahead of his UK tour. Contains spoilers!  See for privacy and opt-out information.
29/09/1712m 44s

Basquiat, Banksy and Hollie McNish

We're back! We head to the Barbican's Basquiat show 'Boom for Real' - then chat to Ekow Eshun about this 'radiant child'. Later, poet and YouTube phenomenon Hollie McNish drops by.  See for privacy and opt-out information.
25/09/1750m 45s

Introducing series three

The FT's culture podcast is back with a bang on September 25. We've got a new co-host and interviews with Pussy Riot, Teju Cole, Hollie McNish and many more. In our first episode, we discuss Basquiat, Banksy and stripping off on stage. Don't miss out — subscribe on iTunes or wherever you get your podcasts  See for privacy and opt-out information.
22/09/171m 24s

Love summer, love lowbrow. Plus: Elizabeth Strout

From Baywatch to Justin Bieber, we discuss the best (and worst) of this summer's trashy film and music. Plus: the Pulitzer Prize-winning novelist Elizabeth Strout on writing about class in the age of Trump.  See for privacy and opt-out information.
22/06/1740m 21s

Why 2017 is the year of queer

Finally, gay art and writing is getting the attention it deserves. We celebrate with novelist Philip Hensher and critic Jackie Wullschlager. Plus: Twitter's favourite poet Patricia Lockwood remembers growing up in the American Midwest with her gun-toting Catholic 'priestdaddy'.  See for privacy and opt-out information.
15/06/1736m 26s

Dystopian dreams and robotic sculpture

From Orwell to The Hunger Games, dystopian fiction is back in fashion. But can it offer comfort in troubled times? We discuss the best books, films and the new TV adaptation of Margaret Atwood's 'The Handmaid's Tale'. Plus: sculptor Conrad Shawcross on the sinister beauty of machines.  See for privacy and opt-out information.
08/06/1735m 22s

Netflix versus Cannes

It's the story that dominated the world's premier film festival: we discuss how Netflix is reshaping the future of cinema. Plus: the writer Reni Eddo-Lodge on her new book 'Why I'm No Longer Talking to White People About Race'.  See for privacy and opt-out information.
01/06/1732m 54s

Older, wiser — and happier? Plus: Will Self

'Happiness data' says youth is carefree, retirement is bliss, and you muddle through in between. We argue with the FT's Lucy Kellaway about which stage of life is the best. Then: novelist Will Self hotboxes the studio and holds forth on our obsession with smartphones and the future of London.  See for privacy and opt-out information.
25/05/1732m 25s

Sorry, you're not on the list

Soho House is taking over the world. But can members' clubs ever be cool? We're divided – even after visiting The Ned, London's £200m new hangout. Plus: Irish novelist Eimear McBride on the magic of modernism and 'knicker-sniffing reviews'.  See for privacy and opt-out information.
18/05/1734m 58s

We talk to Jude Law. Plus: Trump's wall

Hello again! We're back — with a Hollywood A-lister and an architectural conundrum. Jude Law visits the FT to discuss masculinity, "method" and music (he's learning how to play the piano). But first we ask: who will build Donald Trump's wall? What will it look like? And when did architecture turn nasty?  See for privacy and opt-out information.
11/05/1737m 40s

Introducing series two

The FT's culture podcast Everything Else is coming back soon — featuring interviews with Jude Law, Eimear McBride, Will Self and lots more  See for privacy and opt-out information.
05/05/171m 53s

When fake news is funny (and when it's not)

In our season finale, we discuss hoax stories and Facebook "filter bubbles"; Nigerian novelist Ayobami Adebayo explores love and childlessness; and the FT's editor Lionel Barber has lunch with Jean-Claude Juncker.  See for privacy and opt-out information.
23/03/1738m 49s

Elena Ferrante and the perils of adaptation

The bestselling Neapolitan Quartet is now a two-part play in London. But are adaptations always second best? Plus, 24-year-old writer Edouard Louis on growing up poor and gay in rural France - and why his family will vote Marine Le Pen next month.  See for privacy and opt-out information.
16/03/1739m 1s

It's the sharing economy, stupid! Plus comedian Nish Kumar

No doubt Uber and Airbnb are convenient, but what kind of impact does the so-called 'sharing economy' have on culture? Then, Nish Kumar on the bizarre experience of seeing his image become an internet meme called 'Confused Muslim' (he’s not a Muslim, but he was confused)  See for privacy and opt-out information.
09/03/1729m 54s

The art of trolling

Following Milo Yiannopoulos' downfall, we ask the online provocateur Nimrod Kamer whether 'bad trolls' are ruining the internet. Plus: fashion's rising star Molly Goddard on why she hates being called girly  See for privacy and opt-out information.
02/03/1729m 32s

We need to talk about masculinity, and Deliciously Ella

Men in crisis? What crisis? Plus, the food world's social media star and author of the fastest selling debut cookbook ever on why vegetables are cool - and why she hates to be called the 'queen of clean-eating'  See for privacy and opt-out information.
23/02/1739m 27s

How Girls turned TV upside down

Lena Dunham's show skewered millennial culture - but did it revolutionise TV? Plus: artist Ryan Gander on why he never does the same thing twice  See for privacy and opt-out information.
16/02/1741m 29s

Self-help special! Featuring smartphones and an Agony Uncle

We tested the apps that promise to make us more productive, mindful and all-round better versions of ourselves, and discuss the (mixed) results with Tim Harford. Plus: your Valentine's Day sorted.  See for privacy and opt-out information.
09/02/1732m 59s

Culture stands up to Trump. Plus: Elif Shafak

From museum strikes to a micro-penis, how artists are responding to the US president; Turkey's most popular female novelist on Islam, feminism and her unconventional marriage; and lunch with the man who taught the world how to beat the casinos.  See for privacy and opt-out information.
02/02/1734m 17s

The Oscars dissected, and the man behind Brexit

Are La La Land, Moonlight and Manchester by the Sea worth the hype? Does Daniel Hannan have any regrets about Britain’s vote to leave the EU? And why did one British artist photograph every page of the Koran?  See for privacy and opt-out information.
26/01/1738m 37s

The death of new music? Plus: Wayne McGregor

Did pop itself die alongside David Bowie and Prince last year? Or is it constantly reinventing itself? We debate the state of new music and look forward to the albums of 2017. Plus, choreographer Wayne McGregor on raving in 1990s – and why he’s turning Virginia Woolf into ballet.  See for privacy and opt-out information.
19/01/1737m 27s

'Pig-killing day' by David Szalay

'It is over before either of us has really understood what is happening.' David Szalay, whose novel 'All That Man Is' was shortlisted for the 2016 Man Booker Prize, reads his short story, specially written for the FT.  See for privacy and opt-out information.
29/12/1637m 12s

2016: the good, the bad and the ugly, with Simon Schama

We try to make sense of the biggest cultural moments in a crazy year, from the brilliance of Beyoncé to the hideousness of hygge. Plus, the chefs behind the London restaurant Honey & Co talk about feasting, the secrets to Middle Eastern cooking, and their working life as a couple.  See for privacy and opt-out information.
22/12/1634m 40s

Politics and culture in the age of anger

Pankaj Mishra and Helen Lewis join us to discuss why everyone is so full of rage right now; Nigerian-American artist Njideka Akunyili Crosby on depicting her naked husband in her work; and what to look out for in the FT's interview with South African comedian and Daily Show host Trevor Noah  See for privacy and opt-out information.
15/12/1632m 42s

Literary prizes as 'posh bingo'. Plus: writer/rapper Kate Tempest

The power - and politics - of prize-giving, from Dylan's Nobel to Beatty's Booker; Kate Tempest on what William Blake and Wu-Tang have in common; and a buffet with the man who jailed Iceland's bankers.  See for privacy and opt-out information.
08/12/1637m 15s

Don't worry, you’re not a narcissist (probably)

FT critics discuss our age of self-admiration and why it troubles us so much; 'bad boy' theatre director Ivo van Hove on how his punk origins still inspire his work; and what it's like to have lunch with the radical performance artist Marina Abramovic.  See for privacy and opt-out information.
01/12/1637m 41s

Introducing Everything Else

A new culture podcast from the Financial Times in which we talk about film not finance, music not markets, and style not stocks. Featuring star guests and presented by John Sunyer and Griselda Murray Brown. First episode out on Thursday December 1.  See for privacy and opt-out information.
24/11/161m 23s
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