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Getting Curious with Jonathan Van Ness


A weekly exploration of all the things Jonathan Van Ness (Queer Eye, Gay of Thrones) is curious about. Come on a journey with Jonathan and experts in their respective fields as they get curious about anything and everything under the sun.

A weekly exploration of all the things Jonathan Van Ness (Queer Eye, Gay of Thrones) is curious about. Come on a journey with Jonathan and experts in their respective fields as they get curious about anything and everything under the sun.


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A weekly exploration of all the things Jonathan Van Ness (Queer Eye, Gay of Thrones) is curious about. Come on a journey with Jonathan and experts in their respective fields as they get curious about anything and everything under the sun.




Are We Hearing A Crescendo of Anti-Racism in Classical Music? with Dr. Kira Thurman and Ashleigh Gordon

This week on Getting Curious, Dr. Kira Thurman and Ashleigh Gordon join Jonathan to discuss the remarkable work of Black classical composers and musicians through history and today. Dr. Thurman is an assistant professor of History and Germanic Languages and Literatures at the University of Michigan. Ashleigh Gordon is the co-founder, Artistic and Executive Director, and violist of Castle of our Skins, a Boston-based concert and educational series devoted to celebrating Black Artistry through...


Are Cicadas The Only Ones Having a Hawt Gurl Summer? with Entomologist Dr. Jessica Ware

On this week’s Getting Curious, Jonathan is taking the creepy out of crawly with entomologist and evolutionary biologist Dr. Jessica Ware. We’re talking periodical cicadas, cockroaches, dragonflies, and more. Dr. Ware is a curator of Odonata and non-Holometabolous insect orders at the American Museum of Natural History, New York and a professor at the Richard Gilder Graduate School. She is also the VP-Elect of the Entomological Society of America, and the President of the Worldwide Dragonfly...


How Can We Shablam on Voter Suppression? with Stacey Abrams

Voting rights activist, author, lawyer, and politician Stacey Abrams joins Jonathan to discuss the history of voting rights in the United States, the current state of voter suppression, and how we can work towards fair voting and a robust civic engagement. Abrams served in the Georgia House of Representatives from 2007 to 2017, and as minority leader from 2011 to 2017. In 2018, she became the first Black woman to run as a major-party gubernatorial nominee in the US. She is the founder of...


Is Trump An Autocratic Basic B? with Journalist Masha Gessen

In Masha Gessen’s return to Getting Curious, the journalist and staff writer at The New Yorker speaks with Jonathan about their new book Surviving Autocracy. They discuss the ways in which Trump has consolidated power since his election, what the stakes are if he continues to trample American institutions, and what we can do to resist his autocratic ambitions. Follow Masha Gessen on Twitter @mashagessen, and learn more about Surviving Autocracy here. Find out what today’s guest and former...


How Can Democrats Be Anti-Racist? with Alicia Garza

In this re-release of an episode first recorded in July 2019, Jonathan sits down with Alicia Garza, Co-founder of Black Lives Matter and Director of Strategy & Partnerships for National Domestic Workers Alliance, to discuss the origins of the Black Lives Matter movement, Alicia’s work with the Black Futures Lab, and how Democratic Party candidates, campaigns, and elected officials need to be—and can be—more accountable to Black constituents. Follow Alicia Garza on Twitter @aliciagarza and on...


How can District Attorneys help fight police brutality? with DA Rachael Rollins

Suffolk County District Attorney Rachael Rollins joins Jonathan to discuss the killings of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Tony McDade, and other victims of police violence; the deep roots of police brutality and systemic racism; and how District Attorneys can play a role in police reform. DA Rollins was elected to represent Boston, Chelsea, Winthrop, and Revere on a progressive platform in 2018, and is the first woman of color to serve as a DA in Massachusetts. Follow DA Rollins on Twitter...


What Was Poppin’ In Prehistoric America? with Paleontologist Dr. Julia Clarke

On this episode of Getting Curious, we’re digging deep with Dr. Julia Clarke, Wilson Professor of Paleontology at The University of Texas at Austin and a Fellow of the Royal Society of Biology. She and Jonathan get to the bottom of how Texas looked 250 million years ago, which dinosaurs roamed prehistoric America, and what Pangaea’s got to do with the age of dinosaurs. Follow Dr. Clarke on Twitter @jclarkepaleolab, and learn more about her work here. Find out what today’s guest and former...


How Did You Become So F*#%!ng Fierce? with Christian Siriano

You're invited to a very special episode of Getting Curious, and the dress code is whatever makes you feel stunning! The guest of honor is the CFDA designer Christian Siriano, who launched his brand in 2008 and has since risen to the top of the fashion world, dressing icons like FLOTUS Michelle Obama, Billy Porter, and Lady Gaga. Christian joins Jonathan to discuss his groundbreaking designs, his commitment to body diversity and inclusive pricing, and the more than 25,000 masks he and his...


When Did We Start to Demonize Poverty? with writer Mary O'Hara

Journalist and author Mary O'Hara returns to Getting Curious to discuss her reporting on poverty, her new book The Shame Game: Overturning the Toxic Poverty Narrative, and her work reimagining how we talk about poverty with Project Twist-It. She and Jonathan discuss her own experience of childhood poverty, common misconceptions around poverty in the United States and the United Kingdom, and how we can start to see social services as springboards for success. You can find Mary O’Hara’s...


How Can We Stop Being Such Grumpy Nightmares? with Happiness Professor Dr. Laurie Santos

Queen, did you know that there was a literal doctor teaching a class on happiness at literally Yale?! Dr. Laurie Santos, a professor of psychology at Yale University and the host of The Happiness Lab podcast, gives Jonathan a redux version of her iconic Yale course about the science of happiness and shares tips for boosting our spirits even when we're not near the people and places that usually bring us joy. It's time to get in touch with our vagus nerves! Follow Dr. Laurie Santos on Twitter...


What Happened After WW2? With Pascale R. Bos Part 2

Pascale R. Bos is an Associate Professor of Germanic Studies, Netherlandic Studies, and Comparative Literature at The University of Texas, Austin. Pre-social distancing, Jonathan and Pascal sat down together to talk about the Holocaust and WW2. In part 2, Jonathan and Pascale continue their conversation from last week and go on to discuss how the US became involved in the war, the Berlin Wall, and why it's so important to learn from history! Find out what today’s guest and former guests are...


Do We Understand How the Holocaust Happened? With Pascale R. Bos Part 1

Pascale R. Bos is an Associate Professor of Germanic Studies, Netherlandic Studies, and Comparative Literature at The University of Texas, Austin. Pre-social distancing, Jonathan and Pascal sat down together to talk about the Holocaust and WW2. In part 1 of our first ever 2 part episode, Jonathan and Pascale discuss how the term Holocaust came to be, the alarming statistics reflecting a surprising number of people who’ve never heard of the Holocaust, and examine how Hitler came into power....


How Do We Stay Healthy in the Age of Coronavirus? With Dr. Saralyn Mark, MD

Dr. Mark served as the Senior Policy Advisor to the White House Office of Science and Technology during the Obama administration working on the Ebola outbreak in 2014. At the Department of Health and Human Services and NASA, she was the first Senior Medical Advisor to the Office on Women’s Health. She joined Jonathan remotely to answer his questions on how coronavirus spreads, steps we can take to improve our immune system, and the importance of personal protective equipment (PPE) for...


How Funny Are You, Queen?! With Mawaan Rizwan

Comedian Mawaan Rizwan got his start creating YouTube sketches that turned his mother into a Bollywood Star. Now as an established writer and actor, he has written for Netflix’s “Sex Education” and can be seen in the upcoming “Two Weeks to Live” on Sky. In the fall of 2019, he joined Jonathan on his Road to Beijing tour opening in sold-out theaters across the UK, Ireland, Australia, and New Zealand. On a tour stop in Brisbane, Jonathan and Mawaan sat down to discuss his family’s immigration...


What Happened to the Racist F***ing A**hole Dick Officials of the Confederacy After the End of the American Civil War? With Robert Icenhauer-Ramirez Ph.D.

Lawyer, Historian, and Author Robert Icenhauer-Ramirez’s book, “Treason on Trial: United States v. Jefferson Davis.” exposes the legality behind why no one was held accountable for starting the Civil War. As a regular lecturer at the University of Texas, Austin he shares his extensive knowledge of mid-19th century politics. He sat down with Jonathan to answer his questions about confederate officials, the abolishment of slavery, Lincoln’s presidency, and much more! *This episode was recorded...


Do We Know Enough About Queer History? With Matthew Riemer & Leighton Brown

Matthew Riemer & Leighton Brown are the co-creators of the Instagram @LGBT_History, and co-authors of the book “We Are Everywhere.” Both use powerful images of love, protest, inclusivity, and stories, to spotlight movements and people throughout Queer history. They joined Jonathan to discuss why they started these projects, the importance of visibility to avoid erasure and share some interesting stories about important figures from the past! Follow Matthew and Leighton on Instagram and...


Is Our Economy Going to Survive This Pandemic? With Bradley M. Gold

Attorney and Professor of Business Law and Ethics at the University of Texas - McCombs School of Business, Bradley M. Gold joins Jonathan to discuss the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on our economy. With his background in lecturing, counseling, negotiating for several high profile companies, and his unwavering passion for spreading the power of entrepreneurship, he informs Jonathan why we need to be creative and work hard to get through these unprecedented times. To find out more about...


What is Ableism and How Does it Affect Your Life? With Carson Tueller

Carson Tueller is an LGBTQ+ and Disability Advocate, and most recently a policy advisor for Andrew Yang’s 2020 Presidential campaign. His life changed in 2013 when an accident left him paralyzed. Through his journey, he’s brought to light many issues the Disabled community faces including shame, how to talk about sexuality and human worth. He joined Jonathan to explain what ableism is, how he came out to his family after serving his LDS mission, and why investing in accessibility is great...


How Are You Rescuing the Animals in Australia? With Tanya Dominguez

Tanya Dominguez is a Lead Inspector and Senior Manager for the RSPCA NSW in Sydney Australia. With them, she’s provided care to wild and domestic animals for over 21 years and has always been passionate about animal care education. She joined Jonathan backstage at his last comedy show in Australia to discuss what she does as an RSPCA Inspector, how the wildlife is doing since the bushfires started, and why it’s so important to adopt, not shop! Follow RSPCA and Tanya on Twitter and Instagram...


How Do Firefighters Fight Bushfires? With Fiona Macken

CONTENT WARNING: This conversation contains details about scenes that emergency first responders encounter which include car accidents, suicide, house fires, and bushfires. Fiona Macken is a volunteer Firefighter with the Country Fire Authority and 3rd Lieutenant of the Diamond Creek Fire Brigade. In 2009 she was deployed during the Black Saturday Bushfires, which are considered Australia’s most devastating fires to date. She’s witnessed the lasting impact these catastrophes have on...