The Gray Area with Sean Illing

The Gray Area with Sean Illing takes a philosophy-minded look at culture, technology, politics, and the world of ideas. Each week, we invite a guest to explore a question or topic that matters. From the the state of democracy, to the struggle with depression and anxiety, to the nature of identity in the digital age, each episode looks for nuance and honesty in the most important conversations of our time. New episodes drop every Monday.

News Commentary
Why the coronavirus is so deadly for black America
David R. Williams on the science behind Covid-19’s massive racial disparities
76 min
Jenny Odell on nature, art, and burnout in quar...
A truly cathartic conversation with Jenny Odell
63 min
An unusually honest conversation about wielding...
Rep. Pramila Jayapal on stimulus negotiations, the economy, and progressive power.
81 min
What should the media learn from coronavirus?
Coronavirus exposed weaknesses in our media ecosystem. Can we fix them?
91 min
Bill Gates’s vision for life beyond coronavirus
Bill Gates saw coronavirus coming. Here’s his plan to beat it.
48 min
An epic conversation with Madeline Miller
Madeline Miller on myth, translation, and writing a perfect sentence
77 min
The loneliness pandemic/Betraying “essential wo...
We have something a bit different today. Two episodes from our extraordinary colleagues at Today, Explained, both of them close to my heart.
44 min
Why Bernie Sanders lost and how progressives ca...
Sean McElwee on what the left got wrong in 2020
96 min
Scott Gottlieb on how, and when, to end social ...
When will social distancing end? When will life return to “normal”? And what will it take to get there?
45 min
Toby Ord on existential risk, Donald Trump, and...
81 min
Elizabeth Warren has a plan for this, too
Sen. Elizabeth Warren on coronavirus, leadership, and intergenerational justice.
47 min
What social solidarity demands of us in a pandemic
Social distancing isn’t enough. We need social solidarity.
62 min
Coronavirus has pushed US-China relations to th...
What’s happening between the US and China is truly scary
56 min
Is the cure worse than the disease?
Are we overreacting to coronavirus? An economist and a bioethicist weigh in.
62 min
An economic crisis like we’ve never seen
Annie Lowrey on the coronavirus depression
79 min
"The virus is more patient than people are"
Obama's Ebola Czar on why coronavirus is much worse
75 min
A master class in organizing
116 min
Weeds 2020: The coronavirus election
Ezra and Matt on dueling pandemic response plans from Sanders and Biden, and Trump's oval office address.
51 min
Dan Pfeiffer on Joe Biden, beating Trump, and s...
The former Obama White House communications director has some critical feedback for the Democratic party
92 min
Are you a "political hobbyist?" If so, you're t...
Political scientist Eitan Hersh on how political hobbyism is ruining politics
80 min
What would a Sanders or Biden presidency look l...
Matt Yglesias and I talk foreign policy, staffing, the Democratic Party and more.
69 min
Rebecca Solnit on Harvey Weinstein, feminism, a...
The radical wisdom of Rebecca Solnit
102 min
Weeds 2020: The Bernie electability debate
Welcome to Weeds 2020! Every other Saturday Ezra and Matt will be exploring a wide range of topics related to the 2020 race.
55 min
Tracy K. Smith changed how I read poetry
America’s two-time poet laureate on love, language, and erasure
84 min
Barbara Ehrenreich on UBI, class conflict, and ...
Ezra Klein and Barbara Ehrenreich discuss our most pervasive cultural myths from rugged individualism to positive thinking
62 min