This is a serious conversation with a very funny man.
Trevor Noah is the host of Comedy Central’s the Daily Show. He’s also a stand-up comic who grew up in apartheid South Africa, the son of a black mother and a white father. That was illegal in apartheid-era South Africa, so Noah grew up hiding his real parentage, only seeing his father in carefully controlled circumstances. Somehow, he managed to turn this into a very funny, very incisive stand-up act.
Today, he occupies one of the commanding heights of American comedy, and when you talk to him, you can see why: he’s funny, but he’s also damn smart, with an outsider’s perspective on America’s very unique problems. In this conversation, we talk about:
– What it was like growing up biracial in apartheid South Africa
– Noah’s experience watching South Africa’s post-apartheid truth and reconciliation commission, and what an American one might look like
– Noah’s thoughts on the right to be forgotten on the internet
– How Donald Trump’s superpower is his lack of shame
– The ways in which Obama’s presidency changed – and sometimes inflamed — the conversation about race over the last eight years
– What Obama does and doesn’t share with other Black celebrities in “transcending” race
– The parallels between experiencing catcalling and experiencing racism
– Noah’s critique of both “objective” news sources, and biased ones
– Why Noah was taken aback by the response he got criticizing Bernie Sanders
– Noah’s news diet, and why he doesn’t watch as much Fox News as you might think
– How Noah develops a joke, from start to finish
And much more. Enjoy!