The Jordan B. Peterson Podcast #169 – Jordan Peterson & Stephen Fry

Topics Discussed: Stephen Fry’s Background, Culture Wars & the Western World, the Radical Left, Free Speech, Empiricism, Rationality, The truths found in literature, fiction, drama, movies, Richard Dawkins, Future Good, Gods Within.

Jordan Peterson Stephen Fry

Stephen Fry

Stephen Fry is an English actor, broadcaster, comedian, director and writer. He first came to prominence in the 1980s as one half of the comic double act Fry and Laurie, alongside Hugh Laurie, with the two starring in A Bit of Fry & Laurie (1989–1995) and Jeeves and Wooster (1990–1993). He also starred in the sketch series Alfresco (1983–1984) alongside Laurie, Emma Thompson and Robbie Coltrane, and in Blackadder (1986–1989) alongside Rowan Atkinson. Since 2011, he has served as president of the mental health charity Mind. Find the books mentioned in his conversation with Jordan Peterson below.

Books Mentioned in this Podcast with Jordan Peterson & Stephen Fry:

Book Title: Mythos – The Greek Myths Retold

Author: Stephen Fry

Book Title: Heroes – Mortals and Monsters, Quests and Adventures

Author: Stephen Fry

Book Title: Troy – The Greatest Story Retold

Author: Stephen Fry

Book Title: The Origin of Consciousness In The Break Down of the Bicameral Mind

Author: Julian Jaynes

Book Title: An Appetite for Wonder – The Making of a Scientist

Author: Richard Dawkins

Book Title: The Golden Bough

Author: James George Frazer

Book Title: The Square and the Tower – Networks and Power from the Freemasons to Facebook

Author: Niall Ferguson

Book Title: The Book of Common Prayer

Author: Thomas Cranmer

Rudyard Kipling Works

Book Title: Flaubert’s Parrot

Author: Julian Barnes

Book Title: The Brothers Karamzov

Author: Fyodor Dostoevsky

Book Title: The Sign of Four

Author: Arthur Conan Doyle

Book Title: The Neuropsychology of Anxiety

Author: Jeffrey Gray, Neil McNaughton

Book Title: An Event Perhaps – A Biography of Jacques Derrida

Author: Peter Salmon

Summary of Jordan B. Peterson Podcast #169 - Stephen Fry

In this episode of The Jordan B. Peterson Podcast, Jordan Peterson interviews Stephen Fry, a British actor, comedian, and writer. They discuss a wide range of topics, including the role of storytelling in human culture, the challenges of being an artist in the modern world, and the dangers of political correctness.

The Power of Storytelling

Fry and Peterson both agree that storytelling is an essential part of human culture. Stories help us make sense of the world and give meaning to our lives. Fry argues that storytelling is a fundamental aspect of human nature, and that we need stories to help us understand who we are and where we come from. Peterson agrees, saying that stories are a way of communicating complex ideas and emotions in a way that is accessible and understandable.

Artistic Creativity and Mental Illness

The discussion turns to the relationship between artistic creativity and mental illness. Fry shares his own struggles with bipolar disorder, and how it has affected his work as an artist. He argues that there is a common misconception that mental illness is a prerequisite for artistic creativity. However, he believes that mental illness is not necessary for creativity, and that artists should not be romanticized for their struggles with mental health.

The Importance of Honesty

Fry and Peterson both emphasize the importance of honesty in both art and life. Fry argues that honesty is essential for good storytelling, as it allows the audience to connect with the story on a deeper level. Peterson agrees, adding that honesty is also important in personal relationships, as it allows us to build trust with others.

The Dangers of Political Correctness

The conversation then turns to the dangers of political correctness. Fry argues that political correctness can be a form of censorship, and that it can stifle creativity and freedom of expression. Peterson agrees, saying that political correctness can be a form of tyranny, and that it can limit our ability to think and speak freely.

Identity Politics and Intersectionality

Fry and Peterson also discuss the rise of identity politics and intersectionality. Fry argues that while identity politics can be a useful tool for marginalized groups to gain recognition and rights, it can also be taken too far and become divisive. Peterson agrees, saying that intersectionality can be used to create an infinite number of victim groups, and that it can be used to justify censorship and the suppression of free speech.

The Future of Society

The conversation ends with a discussion of the future of society. Fry argues that we need to find a way to balance our desire for progress with our need for stability and tradition. Peterson agrees, saying that we need to find a way to maintain the values that have served us well in the past while adapting to the changing world around us.


In conclusion, The Jordan B. Peterson Podcast #169 with Stephen Fry is a fascinating conversation that touches on a wide range of topics, from the power of storytelling to the dangers of political correctness. Fry and Peterson both emphasize the importance of honesty, and the need to balance our desire for progress with our need for stability and tradition. Overall, this podcast is an insightful and thought-provoking discussion that is well worth listening to.