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Videos of historical interviews


This list of 92 historical interviews attests to that fact. Browse through this collection to find video interviews from both the past and more recent time. Some of these interviews document specific eras such as interviews with those involved in the Civil Rights movement of the 1960s, while some are more recent interviews discussing the past, as when Walter Cronkite relates his news reporting when the first man walked on the moon. Still other interviews document history in the making, with current figures in academia, politics, business, and more sharing their knowledge.


From interviews with the likes of JFK to Noam Chomski, these videos record historical events and history in the making when it comes to politics and activism.

  1. Conversations with History: Noam Chomski. This famed linguist and political activist shares his views on politics and the role of the US in the global community.
  2. Cronkite Interview of JFK. This interview from Labor Day weekend 1963 shows Kennedy sharing his view of American involvement in Vietnam.
  3. Senators Ted Kennedy and Barack Obama on the Today show. This historic interview couples the late Ted Kennedy and Barak Obama before he was president as they talk about Kennedy’s endorsement of Obama for President.
  4. Conversations with History – Karim Sadjadpour. Sadjadpour, from the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, discusses American-Iranian relations.
  5. Frost over the World – Benazir Bhutto – 02 Nov 07. Sir David interviews the former Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto about her return to Pakistan just two months before her assassination.
  6. Conversations With History – Robert Baer. Former CIA operative, Baer discusses spying, US policy and options in the Middle East, and what we know about Iran.
  7. Visit of Golda Meir to the Council of Europe. Israeli leader Golda Meir talks about the freedom and lack of freedom of the Jewish people.
  8. Conversations With History – Zalmay Khalilzad. Khalilzad served as the US Ambassador to Afghanistan, Iraq, and the United Nations and speaks about the strategies needed by the US in shaping national security, including developing more diplomacy to complement military power.
  9. indira. Indian Prime Minister Indira Gandhi defends her stance in support of Bangladesh.
  10. Conversations with History – Mark Danner. Journalist and professor, Mark Danner discusses his articles for the New York Review of Books on torture in response to 9/11.
  11. Conversations with History – Leslie H. Gelb. Learn what Gelb, President Emeritus of the Council on Foreign Relations says about power, the American misconception of what power is, and his strategy for US foreign policy.
  12. Conversations with History – James A Leach. After 30 years in the US House of Representatives, Leach has plenty to share about politics in America, how it has changed, and what Americans might anticipate for the future of politics.


These scientists talk about their work, the role of science throughout history, and science for the future.

  1. PART 1: David Attenborough on Darwin – by Nature Video. Attenborough shares his views on Darwin, natural selection, and the role of the Bible in science.
  2. Conversations with History: Steven Chu. A Nobel Laureate in Physics, Chu talks about how his upbringing contributed to his education, his work as a scientist, and more.
  3. Conversations with History – Leon M. Lederman. Lederman discusses both his work in particle physics as well as his thoughts on the future of science in secondary school education.
  4. Conversations With History – Gibor Basri. This professor of astronomy from UC Berkeley shares what he is doing in the field of astrophysics.
  5. Conversations with History – Lucy Shapiro. Shapiro tells about her work in the biological sciences and also speaks on the threat of infectious diseases and how that impacts society.
  6. Conversations with History – Neil Shubin. Hear about paleontology from Shubin, Provost of the Field Museum and professor at the University of Chicago.
  7. Interview with Owen Gingerich, part 1. Professor Gingerich, astronomer and science historian, talks about his family, childhood, and his introduction to science.
  8. Conversations with History – John Harte. Going from physics to environmental science, Professor Harte discusses the shift in his professional focus, the current environmental crisis, and what should be done.
  9. Conversations with History – Leonard Shlain. Surgeon and professor Leonard Shlain shares his perspective on the connection between science and art as he has written about in his books.
  10. Conversations with History – Michael Pollan. This popular author talks about the food industry, national health and nutrition, and about science writing in general.
  11. Archive of American Television Interview with Robert…. Robert Adler, the developer of the wireless TV remote control, shares his history of the work he did.
  12. Conversations With History – Chikashi Toyoshima. Toyoshima discusses his remarkable breakthrough in the biological sciences as well as the role of creativity in science.
  13. Conversations with History – James Gustave Speth. The dean of the School of Forestry and Environmental Studies at Yale, Speth elaborates on why the future of the Earth depends on the radical transformation of capitalism.
  14. Conversations With History – John Heilbron. Heilbron discusses the history of science and the value science history holds for society.

Humanities and Social Sciences

These interviews include discussions on philosophy, psychology, and social issues.

  1. Conversations with History: David Harvey. Professor of Anthropology, David Harvey discusses his youth and education, his work in geography, and how knowledge of geography can promote understanding of the modern world.
  2. Conversations with History – Craig Calhoun. The president of the President of the Social Science Research Council talks about the challenges facing social science research.
  3. Vilém Flusser on History, Science & the Photograph. Watch this video of Czechoslovakian philosopher Flusser as discusses the flow of history and its relationship to science.
  4. Conversations with History – John Perry. This professor of philosophy from Stanford discusses identity, humor, and procrastination.
  5. Conversations with History – Joan Wallach Scott. A professor and writer, Joan Wallach Scott shares her work in the field of gender issues.
  6. Conversations With History – Jocelyne Cesari. Jocelyne Cesari, from Harvard, talks about the shifts in Islam as Muslims live in the western world.
  7. Conversations with History – Laurence R. Simon. Professor Simon discusses the role of non-governmental agencies in changing the inequalities of global poverty.
  8. Conversations With History – Bart D. Ehrman. This professor of Religious Studies elaborates on how the Bible explains human suffering.
  9. Conversations with History: Daniel Kahneman. Professor Kahneman shares his Nobel Prize-winning research on intuition and decision-making in this interview.
  10. Conversations with History: T.M. Scanlon. Hear about human rights, tolerance, and freedom of expression from Harvard’s Professor Scanlon.


Hear from famous artists from the world of music, TV, painting, and literature in these video interviews.

  1. Miles Davis interview, 1982. Listen to what renowned jazz musician, Miles Davis, has to say about jazz in this interview with Bryant Gumbel.
  2. Larry Dunn. Hear from legendary band Earth, Wind & Fire’s keyboardist and musical director as he talks about the creative process and creating music.
  3. Bob Keeshan – Archive Interview Part 1 of 7. This is the first of seven 30-minute interviews with Bob Keeshan, more commonly known as the beloved children’s TV show host, Captain Kangaroo. He talks about his past, the importance of imagination for people throughout their lives, and more.
  4. Art Linkletter – Archive Interview Part 1 of 6. With his trademark humor, this iconic TV figure tells about his childhood with his adoptive family and his introduction into radio and TV.
  5. Inside The Actor’s Studio Ron Howard 1. Ron Howard discusses his work on the famed Inside the Actor’s Studio.
  6. HITCHCOCK Content vs Technique. Hitchcock provides his take on the artistic process and an audience’s emotional reaction to the art.
  7. Conversations with History – Roya Hakakian. The author of the book Journey from the Land of No: A Girlhood Caught in Revolutionary Iran, Hakakian talks about the craft of writing as well as life in Iran.
  8. interview with marcel duchamps 01. In this interview from the early 1960’s, Duchamp talks about painting and his struggle with it.
  9. Conversations With History – Annabel Patterson. Find out what this professor of English at Yale has to say about literary scholarship and its relationship to society.
  10. An Interview with Michael J. Lewis. Lewis discusses art, architecture, and education in this interview.
  11. Francis Bacon Interview (part 1/2). This controversial painter shares his life and work in this interview from 1966.
  12. Howard Hodgkin (Part1/6). This British abstract painter explores what it’s like being a painter during the 20th century.
  13. Bob Marley Interview 1976. This rare interview with Bob Marley shows him talking about his musical influences, Rastafarianism, and his love life.


Watch a rare interview with a Rothschild, hear from Nobel Laureates, and learn from leaders in the field of business with these video interviews.

  1. Rothschilds need to save "The System" BBC. Sir Evelyn de Rothschild talks about the current financial state and what he feels should be done.
  2. Principles of Leadership. Several leaders in business talk about what it takes to become a successful leader.
  3. W. Edwards Deming on Business/Societal Transformation. This video from 1992 features the legendary W. Edwards Deming as he discusses the need for the people of society to instigate a transformation.
  4. Interview with 2006 Laureate in Economics Edmund Phelps. Believing in both great thinking and some amount of risk-taking as a means to success, Phelps shares his perspective on how to create a successful economic future.
  5. Interview with Paul Krugman, 2008 Economics Prize. Learn what Krugman attributes to the prevention of another Great Depression from happening during the most recent financial crisis.
  6. Conversations with History – Martin Wolf. Wolf, Associate Editor and Chief Economics Commentator of the Financial Times talks about the causes of the current global economic state and offers suggestions for the future.
  7. Effective Business Negotiations. CEO of Think! Inc., Brian J. Dietmeyer shares the basics of business negotiations in this interview.
  8. Entrepreneurs Moonlighting, Don’t Quit Your Day Job. Eddy Chavey, and independent web designer explains why it may be smart to keep your day job when starting your own business.
  9. Conversations with History – Niall Ferguson. Learn about the history and evolution of financial institutions such as banks, insurance, and the bond market.
  10. Strategic Management: Routes to Entrepreneurship Through Acquisition. Four successful entrepreneurs share how they acquired a small business as a start to entrepreneurship in this video from Stanford Graduate School of Business.
  11. Indra Nooyi, Chairman and CEO, PepsiCo.. Nooyi shares her views on the growth of business in India and the role of Indian women in business.
  12. Conversations with History – Barry Eichengreen. This economic historian talks about the current economic crisis and how society can learn from history in these situations.


From the powerful interview of Mister Rogers at the US Senate to students interviewing Holocaust survivors, these videos all touch on the subject of education.

  1. Mister Rogers defending PBS to the US Senate. This moving discussion between Mr. Rogers and Senator Pastore not only won funding for PBS, but also illustrates why quality education is important for the future of society.
  2. David McCullough Interview: The Value of Education. Historian David McCullough explains why education is important and the motivation for educating.
  3. Skull and Bones History. This video from the History Channel shows interviews with several people who have investigated the history and workings of this secret society at Yale.
  4. Conversations with History: Martha Nussbaum. Professor Nussbaum discusses women’s roles in education, religious freedom, and human development.
  5. Media Education and History. Robert Ferguson of the University of London Institute of Education discusses the intersection of media education and history.
  6. PBS "History Detectives" Host/Historian Gwendolyn Wright. Wright, an architectural historian, relates how she became involved in this influential and educational program at PBS and her work in historical architecture.
  7. Interview with Cordell Svengalis, Ph.D.. Veteran educator Dr. Svengalis discusses his work on identifying trends and projecting the future as it applies to education.
  8. "Art & Memory" – An Educational Project of the US Holocaust Memorial Museum. Students interview Holocaust survivors and create a work of art for this educational project.
  9. Interview with ABC News (Building With Books). The founder of Building With Books talks about his program that teaches students community service in which they help build schools for students in developing countries.
  10. Emery Stoops Interview. Emery Stoops was a visionary and highly regarded figure in education. This interview takes place three years before his death at the age of 106.

Historical Events

Watch interviews about historical events such as man landing on the moon or the Civil Rights movement in these videos.

  1. Walter Cronkite And The Lunar Landing (CBS News). Cronkite details what it was like to report on the first man landing on the moon.
  2. Conversations With History – Frederick S. Wyle, Esq.. Once a Pentagon official during the Kennedy administration, Wyle talks about the policy on nuclear weapons in Europe during the Cold War.
  3. Fathers of Revolution Vol. 1. Hear from leaders of the civil rights movement and those close to them in this video.
  4. Sidney Poitier speaks about Civil Rights. Poitier talks about his motivation and involvement in the Civil Rights movement.
  5. Conversations with History – David M. Kennedy. Learn about the Great Depression from writer David M. Kennedy as he analyzes Roosevelt’s role in the depression, among other topics.
  6. Hidden Agenda Norman Dodd 1 of 6. This is the beginning of a 1982 interview between G. Edward Griffins and Norman Dodd wherein Dodd discusses his investigations of the Reece Committee that implicated several high-profile non-profits in trying to shape history through the control of education.
  7. Presidential Inauguration, Interview w/ James Clyburn (D-SC). This influential congressman discusses his work in Congress as well as the historic inauguration of President Obama.

Historical Figures

From Rosa Parks to Ayn Rand, these historical figures are interviewed and recorded here.

  1. Academy of Achievement’s Exclusive Interview Rosa Parks. Rosa Parks describes that fateful day when she refused to give her seat to a white man on a bus.
  2. Malcolm X interview on Chicago TV with Jim Hurlbut. Listen to Malcolm X in this TV interview where he talks about his history, the history of African-Americans, and answers questions from panelists.
  3. Coretta Scott King. Mrs. King shares her experience being at the center of the Civil Rights movement.
  4. RetroBites: Gloria Steinem. Steinem discusses the difficulty of getting serious writing assignments as a women in this 1968 interview.
  5. Muhammad Ali…Recipe for Life. Muhammad Ali describes what he hopes people remember about him after he dies in this interview from 1972.
  6. The Panorama Interview Princess Diana Part 1. Princess Diana discusses her expectations of becoming a princess, her marriage, and more.
  7. Conversations with History – James M. McPherson. This Pulitzer Prize-winning novelist and professor enlightens viewers on the life and accomplishments of Abraham Lincoln as President of the United States.
  8. Interview with scribe Julie Seltzer. Seltzer is a scribe, or writer of sacred texts, and is currently working on writing out the Torah and will be one of the only known women to have written the Torah.
  9. Ayn Rand Phil Donahue Interview Part 1 of 5. Philosopher and author Ayn Rand discusses her life’s work, her philosophy, and politics in this five-part interview.


These videos touch on legal issues such as the traditional role of judges, human rights, and the survival of middle-class families.

  1. Conversations with History – J. Clifford Wallace. Senior Judge of the US Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, Wallace talks about the role of judges in a democracy.
  2. Conversations With History – Stephen Holmes. Holmes, a NYU law professor, discusses the implications of the Bush administration’s policies in response to 9/11 and ways future administrations can avoid errors.
  3. Svitlana Kravchenko & John Bonine – ELAW Interview Series. These two law professors discuss their individual work in the fields of human rights and environmental law, as well as their work together.
  4. Conversations With History – Amy Chua. This Yale law professor shares her knowledge on the rise and fall of hyperpowers, using historical figures to illustrate her discussion.
  5. Conversations with History: Elizabeth Warren. Warren explores the intersection of politics and the law where it concerns two-income families struggling to pay for housing, health care, and education.


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