Who is Steve Bannon? The evil mastermind of a far-right global counter-revolution that’s taking the world by storm; or a shallow, frumpy guy doing the bidding of his billionaire backers. Could he be both? One thing is for certain, Alison Klayman’s verite documentary The Brink, which follows Bannon in the months after his exit from the Trump White House, is the essential portrait of one of the central players in global politics. Klayman explains to co-hosts Eric Newman, Kate Wolf, and Medaya Ocher how she came to have such unlimited access to Bannon, and her reflections on his toxic politics and on the man himself — his character, his motivations, and what he hopes to accomplish. 

Also, Geoff Dyer, author of Broadsword Calling Danny Boy, returns to recommend Annie Ernaux’s “impersonal autobiography” The Years, an astonishing first-hand reflection on the cultural, political, and economic changes over the second half of the 20th century.