A discussion between Stephen Fry and Richard Dawkins

Here’s a conversation between Stephen Fry and Richard Dawkins at last year’s CSIcon meeting in Las Vegas. Curiously, none of these CSIcon videos have gotten many views; this one has only 337 views, and two of them are mine.

The moderator, Nick Little, a Center for Inquiry attorney, goes on a bit long in his introduction, but the rest is fine, though completely dominated by Stephen Fry. That’s okay by me, as I’ve listened to Richard many times but not so often to Fry. And Fry is a good raconteur, talking about mythology, the ancient Greeks, and the role that religion played in their lives. (About a year ago Fry published a book called Mythos: A Retelling of the Myths of Ancient Greece.) I could listen to that guy for hours. But here you only have to listen for 17 minutes.

There may be a further part to this discussion, but I can’t find it on YouTube.


  1. Merilee
    Posted February 5, 2019 at 1:19 pm | Permalink

    Saw Fry live last summer doing half of his Mythos opus for about 2 hours. Wonderful!

    • Diana MacPherson
      Posted February 5, 2019 at 2:27 pm | Permalink

      I thought about going but I always worry about making plans where I buy tickets and then being unable to go because of migraine. I’ll eventually get his Mythos books though.

      • Merilee
        Posted February 5, 2019 at 3:15 pm | Permalink

        He was at the Shaw Festival.

        • Diana MacPherson
          Posted February 5, 2019 at 4:06 pm | Permalink

          Yes, I went as far as looking at the available tickets but driving to NOTL and risking migraine made it too much to commit to for the price.

          • Posted February 6, 2019 at 4:56 am | Permalink

            That is bad – sorry it is so debilitating 😦

            • Diana MacPherson
              Posted February 6, 2019 at 7:36 am | Permalink

              Thanks. Yeah it’s a bummer. Most of my energy is put into working.

  2. Daniel Engblom
    Posted February 5, 2019 at 1:22 pm | Permalink

    I think there was a whole 1h20+ minutes of this event on facebook of all places around when it came out.
    That youtube video appears to be unlisted, meaning it won’t show up in public if anyone searches for Dawkins or Fry or anything that might be related, which would go some way to explaining the lack of views on it.

  3. infiniteimprobabilit
    Posted February 5, 2019 at 1:59 pm | Permalink

    Re Stephen Fry, I just came across this video of him deploring political correctness and tribalism, which seems apt in the light of current events


  4. Simon Hayward
    Posted February 5, 2019 at 2:09 pm | Permalink

    Sam Harris had Fry as a guest on his podcast recently. A couple of hours or erudite chatting.

  5. rom
    Posted February 5, 2019 at 2:30 pm | Permalink


    • Michael Fisher
      Posted February 5, 2019 at 4:37 pm | Permalink

      The convo took place on the CSICon stage.

  6. GBJames
    Posted February 5, 2019 at 2:57 pm | Permalink

    This video seems to be missing quite a lot of the conversation. Does anyone have a link to the whole discussion?

  7. Merilee
    Posted February 5, 2019 at 2:58 pm | Permalink

    I saw this Munk Debate last year. Fry was terrific, but unfortunately he was paired with the despicable Jordan Peterson.

    • infiniteimprobabilit
      Posted February 5, 2019 at 3:22 pm | Permalink

      That was a reply to the link I posted, I think.

      Fry deliberately chose to ‘cross the floor’ knowing he was going to be paired with Jordan Peterson, and as he said, the reaction he got in some circles demonstrated the ‘us and them’ mentality he was deploring. (That’s my recollection of what he said, it’s in the link anyway).


      (I’ve just realised that could be taken as accusing Merilee of ‘us and them’ – I don’t intend any such thing).

      • Merilee
        Posted February 5, 2019 at 11:41 pm | Permalink

        No, I wasn’t thinking us and them at all. The debate was really quite strange in that there weren’t really opposite “sides”, iirc. Fry and Petersen were both arguing against various kinds of political correctness but don’t think they were agreed on much else.
        I find Peterson to be a sanctimonious twit. Love Fry.

  8. Frank Bath
    Posted February 5, 2019 at 3:06 pm | Permalink

    Stephen Fry is very well known here in the UK as an actor, writer, raconteur and activist. The owner of a phenomenal intellect, a library of a mind and education, he is widely regarded as a National Treasure.

    • Merilee
      Posted February 5, 2019 at 3:12 pm | Permalink


    • David Coxill
      Posted February 6, 2019 at 12:46 pm | Permalink

      True ,and the whole UK lie awake at night worrying that one day he will be proven wrong about something .HAHA ,just joking .

    • Posted February 7, 2019 at 4:42 am | Permalink

      This is one of my favorite Fry/Laurie sketches. Such a marvellous parody of the style of BBC “intellectual interviews” aimed at educating the unwashed public. Fry at his free-flow best…..

      • rickflick
        Posted February 7, 2019 at 8:24 am | Permalink

        The link leads to other videos showing Fry engaged in debate, which is also very rewarding to watch.

      • Merilee
        Posted February 7, 2019 at 9:51 am | Permalink

        + mucho

        • Michael Fisher
          Posted February 7, 2019 at 10:06 am | Permalink

          “vulva” *snigger*

  9. infiniteimprobabilit
    Posted February 5, 2019 at 3:31 pm | Permalink

    And here, just for fun, is Stephen Fry crossing the floor again and supporting (?) the Church of England:


    ‘Look, it’s got a little man on it’ 🙂

    (I do apologise if this causes any offence to our USAnian compatriots)


    • David Coxill
      Posted February 6, 2019 at 12:47 pm | Permalink

      “Do you want a plain one ,or one with a little man on it ?”

  10. rickflick
    Posted February 5, 2019 at 4:04 pm | Permalink

    From this segment it looks like Dawkins is interviewing Fry rather than engaging in a balanced discussion. Fry is good. I could listen for hours. Where’s part II?

    • Diana MacPherson
      Posted February 5, 2019 at 4:07 pm | Permalink

      I know – it’s always a pleasure to listen to Stephen Fry. Normally, I’m impatient when I speak to people, but I want to listen to Fry say whatever he wants to say because he does it so well.

  11. PeteT
    Posted February 5, 2019 at 4:19 pm | Permalink

    Among the many great things Stephen Fry has done, all of which I would wholeheartedly recommend:

    A Bit of Fry and Laurie
    Jeeves and Wooster (he was born to play Jeeves)
    Blackadder (especially Goes Forth)
    Wilde (born to play this role also)
    Harry Potter audiobooks
    Gosford Park
    Making History

    • Merilee
      Posted February 5, 2019 at 11:44 pm | Permalink

      Agree with all

  12. Larry Smith
    Posted February 5, 2019 at 10:46 pm | Permalink

    Lovely, thanks for the link!

    Up to something like 670 views, so it’s doubled since earlier today.

  13. Posted February 5, 2019 at 10:54 pm | Permalink

    I started to comment on this that I had seen the Fry – Dawkins debate and thought Fry was exceptional. Then,it dawned on me that the debate I watched was Fry- Hitchens and I thought Fry was superb in that. When is he not?

  14. Posted February 6, 2019 at 6:27 am | Permalink

    Reblogged this on The Logical Place.

  15. Posted February 6, 2019 at 7:24 pm | Permalink

    Yes, Nick Little’s intro was longer than usual, but I thought it was apt. At least it wasn’t about him!

    Please post the rest of the discussion if anybody ever finds it (I can’t).

    • Michael Fisher
      Posted February 6, 2019 at 7:45 pm | Permalink

      I’ve looked with various search engines. The part that’s available [above in the OP] is YT “unlisted” – maybe the video content owners plan to monetise the full video or the people who videoed it are trying to gain ownership. I emailed Cfi asking what the plan is and who owns the content.

      No reply yet:

  16. Posted February 7, 2019 at 4:29 am | Permalink

    I’ve always been terrifically fond of Greek mythology myself. Aside from the fact that it provides a marvellous example of a religion that NOBODY can believe is true, it’s also got so much else going for it. Compared to the Bible the tales in in are ripplingly enjoyable and fascinating. And from a theological perspective the myths are totally aligned with the actuality of human existence and require no contorted excuses to explain the problem of evil. The gods are indifferent to human suffering, immoral and capricious in action themselves. Explains everything quite perfectly.

  17. Forse
    Posted February 13, 2019 at 11:13 pm | Permalink

    It’s been removed….
    I wonder why??

    • Michael Fisher
      Posted February 14, 2019 at 7:49 am | Permalink

      Almost certainly a video content ownership dispute. I emailed Cfi twice & they can’t be bothered to reply.


  18. Michael Fisher
    Posted February 22, 2019 at 11:22 am | Permalink

    55 mins, CSICon 2018, Las Vegas, Oct 20th

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