Jordan Peterson - why do practitioners not like him?

This section is for questions relating to therapy, assessment, formulation and other aspects of working with people in mental health services.

micke
Posts: 7
Joined: Tue Feb 04, 2014 8:58 pm

Jordan Peterson - why do practitioners not like him?

Post by micke » Thu May 16, 2019 9:38 pm

Hi there,

I find the talks by Jordan Peterson quite useful. Whilst I absolutely don't agree with everything the man says, I think I have really benefited as a clinician listening to what he has to say as well as in myself as a person. Patients I have worked with in IAPT have also reported back to me that they have found his online lectures useful and have implemented helpful strategies which have led to positive changes as a result (anecdotal I know). To be fair, a quick glance at public comments on his YouTube lectures also report pretty positive feedback.

I was lurking on another thread on this form recently where someone called Peterson evil and an embarrassment to the profession.I didn't want to derail that thread so I created a new one here if that's okay. Basically, I feel like I am missing something, I perceive him as having a successful effect in reducing suffering to lots of people globally that might not have an opportunity to access services or are unwilling to due to stigma.

Apologies if I am missing something blindingly obvious but this question has been bothering me for a while now = what are the criticisms of him as a Clinical Psychologist?

Thanks,

Micke

Advertisement
Pearson Clinical Assessment publishes a wide range of assessments to support psychology professionals including the Gold Standard Wechsler range. To view our range please visit: pearsonclinical.co.uk/cpf
User avatar
workingmama
Team Member
Posts: 1467
Joined: Thu Feb 28, 2008 1:54 pm
Location: UK

Re: Jordan Peterson - why do practitioners not like him?

Post by workingmama » Fri May 17, 2019 9:13 am

Awaiting this thread to fill up with eager anticipation. I typed out (and deleted) a few paragraphs referencing some of the utter twittery that has emerged from the mouth of this individual, but it's probably pithier if I summarise it for you here: I think this individual is an utter twunt of the highest order. The conviction with which he speaks troubles me, and the lack of evidence of any willingness to take on board an opposing viewpoint. I think he represents what many people are seeking - someone who looks as if they have 'the answers' in a complex and confusing world. His questionable views on race, sex, and religion are entirely acceptable as 'his own' (knock yourself out, Jordan), but when portrayed as 'truths' which he has 'revealed' for his followers, I think his arrogance and lack of ability to acknowledge his own lens and privilege represents a significant danger.

If I was to offer one single piece of twuntery, I'd go with his view that male violence would be resolved by enforced monogamy in which all males are entitled to a female. He feels that this is fairer, as otherwise women choose high status males and this leaves lower status males who aren't picked 'feeling bad'. This alone is enough to tip me into tooth-gnashing rage.

I'd suggest you google: Why Jordan Peterson is wrong/Why Jordan Peterson is dangerous/Jordan Peterson's views on women etc.
Fail, fail again, fail better.

lakeland
Posts: 931
Joined: Sat Oct 25, 2008 12:18 pm

Re: Jordan Peterson - why do practitioners not like him?

Post by lakeland » Fri May 17, 2019 9:26 am

My answer is far less eloqent than Workingmama's but I agree with everything she says and wanted to add that it irks me that he is probably the most famous clinical psychologist. I do not want people thinking that he speaks for my profession. He doesn't.

I would really appreciate some of our male colleagues chiming in on this thread, there's been an awful lot of work done by women on here this week and not much by men.

svr
Posts: 47
Joined: Fri Jun 24, 2011 4:22 pm

Re: Jordan Peterson - why do practitioners not like him?

Post by svr » Fri May 17, 2019 10:30 am

This article from The Guardian does a pretty good job of introducing some of the ridiculous right wing drivel Peterson peddles: https://www.theguardian.com/science/201 ... rnets-nest

User avatar
Spatch
Posts: 1372
Joined: Sun Mar 25, 2007 4:18 pm
Location: The other side of paradise
Contact:

Re: Jordan Peterson - why do practitioners not like him?

Post by Spatch » Fri May 17, 2019 12:25 pm

Quiz: Are you Jordan B. Peterson?

Hey, we all know what the hectic world of clinical psychology is like. Between managing your caseload, having to reschedule supervision for the 3rd time and explaining to NHS managers why you need a room and can't conduct therapy in a car park, it is understandable that you may become confused at times and wonder whether or not you are the famous Canadian Psychologist Jordan B Peterson. Well you don't have to worry any more. You can just take this easy 7 question quiz below.

Question 1: You are trained at doctoral level in clinical psychology, are state licenced and have several years experience in clinical and academic psychology. This means you:

a) Have demonstrated knowledge and competency in a specific field. You have a certain amount of expertise in a given area and can talk about this when backed up by suitable evidence. You know enough to know what you don't know and think it may be a bad idea to go outside the limits of your competency.

b) are uniquely qualified to talk in almost every domain including (but not limited to) philosophy, history, postmodernism, law and the mating habits of lobsters with complete authority. There is no space for doubt and you can hold what you say as a fundamental self evident truth with the force of a toddler refusing to go to bed.

Question 2: Through hard work, ability and motivation you have attained a point in your profession where you can make a profound difference. You have enough self-possession and experience where you can defy conventional wisdom and norms. Where do you want to make a stand and devote your energy?


a) Somewhere I can make a real difference and improve things that are currently overlooked or not much work has been done. Maybe something highly stigmatised like complex trauma/ "Personality disorder" or complex like the de-schooling movement.

b) I would take a stand by refusing to accommodate people experiencing distress about gender identity. It is important that I assert my inalienable right to not show them basic respect and courtesy by allowing them to have some control over how they would like to be addressed. "There are men and there are women, goddamit!" is what I would like to be etched on my gravestone.

Question 3: You apply to a major government body for a grant to fund your research, which you are turned down for. You also openly acknowledge that this was not your strongest effort. Your view is:

a) In the last 20 years it has been increasingly harder to source research funding. There are a lot of strong applicants with good ideas and decreasing budgets. It is most likely a better application was successful on its individual merits.

b) See this as evidence that your political opponents are conspiring against you. Plus, you've done good work before, so they should just give you the money. Who the hell do they think they are?

Question 4:

"When people experience distress it can be overwhelming. Breaking this down into thoughts, feelings, bodily sensations and behaviours can be helpful in helping you manage tough situations. Tough situations are also caused by a range of factors such as the rising prominence of China, which is known for various human rights abuses and has been proven to engage in political and military activates counter to our best interests. In order to be able to manage our own psychological wellbeing, we must be wary of China."


What is your response to this statement?

a) For some reason you have taken some fairly sound, well established psychological principles that could be helpful for a lot of people and then extrapolated wildly so you have shoehorned in some fairly strident political views that aren't necessarily connected. At best this would constitute unaware bias, at worst this would be called Sophistry.

b) We must be wary of China. The argument presented is unassailable.

Question 5: How do you like to frame an argument?

a) I try to provide a clear, informed and thoughtful summary of my view. I am aware that this may not always be well received and would go out of my way to elicit different viewpoints that challenge my thinking. I may be wrong, or there may not be a single correct answer.

b) I prefer to use complex and obfuscating language. Ideally, I would talk at length and veer wildly across a range of territory including neuroscience, mythology and totalitarianism. I feel it necessary to assert my intellectual dominance at every possible point with the force of Sampras hitting tennis ball, to make sure you and I know the fact that I am clever. This is despite the fact that I hold a PhD from McGill and have taught at Harvard. It's also great when my followers then add clips on Youtube that are titled I DESTROY X,Y or W. As if concepts or domains like feminism, Journalism or Islam can be physically destroyed.

Question 6: You are out for drinks on a Friday night with your friends. After a few glasses of Prosecco, your perpetually single friend turns to you and sighs. "Where have all the good men gone?" You:

a) Say something pithy but reassuring and supportive. Compliment your friend. If the conversation turns that way, maybe discuss the range of options available to people, lifestyles and social/economic changes that may make dating harder in the modern world. Maybe think about a range of different ideas.

b) Tell her that all the good men have been systematically been demasculinised by not being allowed to throw snowballs. They are all on Nintendo. Conclude by telling her that she will be given future grandchildren by a psychopath. Do this dressed as if you are auditioning for your local amateur dramatic society's performance of Bugsy Malone.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OeL-Fn0V8iU

Question 7: Why do you feel that life is so difficult for many people?

a) Well this is a really complicated subject to discuss. If you had to guess it probably is about the numerous internal and external forces on people that pull them in many different, often contradictory, directions. It's good to think about these individually as they vary for each person.

b) Cultural Marxism.

Answers:

Mostly (a) You are a rank and file clinical psychologist. While you may not have a vast internet following or a 6 figure book deal, you do have access to CORE forms and as much NHS funded Nescafe Gold Blend you can drink.

Mostly (b) Congratulations. You are Professor Jordan B. Peterson. Only you stand in the way of the forces of darkness that conspire to take over the world.
Shameless plug alert:

Irrelevant Experience: The Secret Diary of an Assistant Psychologist is available at Amazon
http://www.amazon.co.uk/Irrelevant-Expe ... 00EQFE5JW/

User avatar
miriam
Site Admin
Posts: 7683
Joined: Sat Mar 24, 2007 11:20 pm
Location: Bucks
Contact:

Re: Jordan Peterson - why do practitioners not like him?

Post by miriam » Fri May 17, 2019 5:34 pm

Well said all.

And for the record, I stand by my view he is evil and an embarrassment to the profession.

Let us not forget that he first came to prominence for objecting strongly to Canadian laws that mention genders or families having their wording slightly revised to be inclusive of people who are gay, trans or live in any way outside of the traditional one-man-one-woman-and-their-shared-birth-children construct of the family. He tried to defend this position on the grounds that he feared it was a small step towards making deadnaming or using the wrong pronouns for people who have told you they don't identify with their assigned-at-birth gender a criminal offence, and that this would undermine freedom of speech and send right thinking men to prison for no good reason. I'll let you spot the logical errors in that piece of reasoning.

He has courted an audience of MRAs, incels and sexists, then incited threats and hate crimes towards a named trans individual on a university campus, and against numerous women and feminists. And he thinks lobsters show us the natural order for humanity is men picking women who are obligated to stay with them for life. He literally believes that women are the embodiment of chaos and evil, as proven by the fact there are coiled snake-like statues from most ancient societies. He has claimed to be things he has no qualifications in (a neuroscientist and an evolutionary biologist). He defends racists, rapists and mass shooters. Plus his parenting methods are also absolutely hideous, and he admits to various things I consider child abuse including force feeding his children foods they dislike to assert his authority over them.

I could go on and on and on. But in summary I think pretty much everything he has said since the gamergate movement has been toxic bile dressed in ambiguous terminology and scaffolded with pseudo-intellectual waffle. So I'll leave it to rational wiki.
Miriam

See my blog at http://clinpsyeye.wordpress.com

micke
Posts: 7
Joined: Tue Feb 04, 2014 8:58 pm

Re: Jordan Peterson - why do practitioners not like him?

Post by micke » Mon May 20, 2019 9:20 pm

Hi everyone,

I am definitely experiencing cognitive dissonance so thank you to everyone who chimed in their opinions/evidence, it has definitely helped me have a think. It might take me a bit of time to come back with my thoughts, I want to google/read all you suggested first. I think I'm reluctant to let go of the positives Peterson has given to patients I have worked with and I feel I need to separate what he has to say that regards what's helpful and what's unhelpful. I'll do my best not to let that bias what I read.

Thank you all again.

Michael

lingua_franca
Posts: 905
Joined: Tue Sep 14, 2010 11:29 pm

Re: Jordan Peterson - why do practitioners not like him?

Post by lingua_franca » Mon May 20, 2019 10:01 pm

Do you think Peterson's videos are actually that original? All of the useful things he says are things that are well known among psychologists. They aren't his original ideas. The only difference between him and those other psychologists are that he is a YouTube personality - and he owes that public profile largely to the atrocious things he says about minorities. You could recommend self-help CBT workbooks to clients and they'd derive just as much benefit from those.

You might also consider the negative effect recommending these videos might have on clients. If I were seeing a male psychologist and he recommended that I watch Jordan Peterson, I would immediately feel uncomfortable and I would probably start policing what I shared with that psychologist, for fear that he shared Peterson's views on women. Bear in mind that not all clients will feel able to voice such discomfort. The other message you might be sending out is, "OK, Peterson's views on minorities are bad, but not bad enough for me to stop boosting his profile." That makes it sound as though they're minor and can be easily overlooked. Can it be overlooked when someone denies that white people enjoy privilege that black people don't? A practical example: how might a black client feel about being pointed to Peterson as a therapeutic resource, especially given that structural racism often has an impact on black people's mental health?
"Suppose a tree fell down, Pooh, when we were underneath it?"
"Suppose it didn't," said Pooh, after careful thought.
Piglet was comforted by this.
- A.A. Milne.

micke
Posts: 7
Joined: Tue Feb 04, 2014 8:58 pm

Re: Jordan Peterson - why do practitioners not like him?

Post by micke » Mon May 20, 2019 11:28 pm

lingua_franca wrote:
Mon May 20, 2019 10:01 pm
Do you think Peterson's videos are actually that original? All of the useful things he says are things that are well known among psychologists. They aren't his original ideas. The only difference between him and those other psychologists are that he is a YouTube personality - and he owes that public profile largely to the atrocious things he says about minorities. You could recommend self-help CBT workbooks to clients and they'd derive just as much benefit from those.

You might also consider the negative effect recommending these videos might have on clients. If I were seeing a male psychologist and he recommended that I watch Jordan Peterson, I would immediately feel uncomfortable and I would probably start policing what I shared with that psychologist, for fear that he shared Peterson's views on women. Bear in mind that not all clients will feel able to voice such discomfort. The other message you might be sending out is, "OK, Peterson's views on minorities are bad, but not bad enough for me to stop boosting his profile." That makes it sound as though they're minor and can be easily overlooked. Can it be overlooked when someone denies that white people enjoy privilege that black people don't? A practical example: how might a black client feel about being pointed to Peterson as a therapeutic resource, especially given that structural racism often has an impact on black people's mental health?

I might not have been clear and apologies if so, but never have I ever recommended Jordan Peterson to anyone I have worked with. I definitely see massive problems with doing so. When they point out that they found his ideas helpful, I ask why and do my best to reinforce helpful leanings and resulting helpful changes in thinking and behaviour (strpping away Peterson, reinforcing CBT principles lets say) that had led to less suffering for the person.

You're right, he is not saying anything that is groundbreaking original.

Like I said, I really need to have a think. I just see an overwhelming amount of comments (again anecdotal, but I guess at least they are on Youtube for anyone to see) about people deciding not to end their lives because of what he has said. For me that has to stand for something - but again I could be wrong. But it's why I am really reluctant to throw out everything he is doing. Maybe one thing he is doing quite well is engaging people further upstream in a type of early intervention way - the types of people that wouldn't usually access services. For me, this is the biggest positive I was taking from what he was doing - catching people further upstream from ending their lives. But again, all of what people have said is definitely helping me to question this.

Thanks,

Micke

lingua_franca
Posts: 905
Joined: Tue Sep 14, 2010 11:29 pm

Re: Jordan Peterson - why do practitioners not like him?

Post by lingua_franca » Tue May 21, 2019 12:08 am

I'm sorry for misunderstanding you. When you said that you found his talks useful yourself, I extrapolated and assumed that the clients had discovered them through you.

Not to discount anyone's subjective experience, but if ever anyone said that the only reason they decided not to end their life was because of a video on YouTube, I'd hesitate. Suicidality is complex and I think there a multiple factors at play there, even if the person is not aware of all of them. A person who looks up mental health videos is clearly already searching for something to bolster their desire to live, and if they didn't encounter Peterson, it's likely that they would find something else to encourage them. So I'd be cautious of attributing a person's decision not to kill themselves to any one thing they found online (even if that thing happened to be written by a clinician I really admire), which makes me reluctant to credit Peterson with anything special. Clearly his videos were useful to those people in that moment, and of course that's a good thing, but even broken clocks are right twice a day. It would be much better to use a clock that's right at every hour.
"Suppose a tree fell down, Pooh, when we were underneath it?"
"Suppose it didn't," said Pooh, after careful thought.
Piglet was comforted by this.
- A.A. Milne.

User avatar
miriam
Site Admin
Posts: 7683
Joined: Sat Mar 24, 2007 11:20 pm
Location: Bucks
Contact:

Re: Jordan Peterson - why do practitioners not like him?

Post by miriam » Tue May 21, 2019 1:33 am

micke wrote:
Mon May 20, 2019 11:28 pm
I just see an overwhelming amount of comments (again anecdotal, but I guess at least they are on Youtube for anyone to see) about people deciding not to end their lives because of what he has said. For me that has to stand for something - but again I could be wrong. But it's why I am really reluctant to throw out everything he is doing. Maybe one thing he is doing quite well is engaging people further upstream in a type of early intervention way - the types of people that wouldn't usually access services. For me, this is the biggest positive I was taking from what he was doing - catching people further upstream from ending their lives. But again, all of what people have said is definitely helping me to question this.

Thanks,

Micke
I think that tells me a bit about your clients and where you look for comments, as the single group that Peterson's message has resonated for is disenfranchised young white men who are fearful of social progress and want to attribute their lack of success in life to the unreasonable social changes that have made women too picky, and pushed good men like themselves down the social pecking order. I'm sure that message is received positively by some people, even though it is ultimately harmful for everyone (including the fearful disenfranchised young white men as he alienates them from the rest of society and turns them into repugnant women and minority hating people who could actually address their feelings of disconnection in many more helpful ways). I mean, he literally uses the term "cultural marxism" without irony, and is idolised by gamergaters, racists, trans-haters and antifeminists. As soon as you view his content as a person who is non-white, non-male, or has any awareness of prejudice in the world and our own relative privilege it is self-evidently repugnant and ignorant. The frightening thing is that so many miserable young white men who don't recognise their own privilege or understand what this means* think he is clever and insightful, and even some capable and well-meaning people (probably yourself included) also take it at face value without looking any deeper.

*for the record, it doesn't mean you aren't miserable or having a tough time as an individual, it means that in society in general people of your demographic group have less systemic barriers to face than minority groups, and statistically do better in numerous ways. It generally means that a lower proportion of people are miserable and having a tough time, and fewer people within that group reach power, wealth and other markers of success. For example, women earn less on average and are much less likely to make it into senior management than male peers. That doesn't mean there are no men who are low earners or have been knocked back from promotions they have applied for. You might think these systemic prejudices have been resolved by now. You'd be wrong. Yes, more men die by suicide than women. But that's also a symptom of narrow social constructions of gender. The narrative that men can't have feelings and shouldn't need help is reinforced rather than challenged by the sexists that claim to speak up for men.

Plus women clearly face systemic injustice by almost every other metric. To just pick one out the hat that I stumbled on recently, only 2.7% of investments of venture capital funding goes to women-founder businesses, and they receive half the proportion of their bid that male founders do, meaning they receive 1/36th of the total value of investment compared to their male peers. Black women founders get less than 0.2% of investments (and the figures before the last couple of years are 10x bleaker than that), and even when they do get funded the average value of that investment is $36k, compared to $1.3million for white men. You might think that reflects weaker businesses or less impressive ideas, but the stats say female founders create an average 35% better return on investment, and female founder companies that receive investment outperform male founder companies that get similar investments by 63%. But let's look closer to home. 90% of newly qualified clinical psychologists are female. 50% of those who rise to consultant grade are male, meaning men are ten times as likely to progress to consultant grade. Not ages ago, but right now, this figure is still applicable when comparing CPs in their 40s who qualified in the last 20 years. The same is true of junior doctors versus consultants and clinical directors, NQ nurses vs nurse consultants, teachers vs headteachers, employees vs board members.

And that's before we even look at how women are judged for their appearance, sexualised and sexually assaulted and raped. Yes, some of these things also sometimes happen to men (and each and every example is terrible and one too many), but women are 4x as likely to be raped. The perpetrators of sexual crimes are in the vast majority male, and the victims disproportionately female. Only 2.7% of rapes lead to a conviction (still better than the USA where for every 1000 rapes 230 are reported, 46 lead to arrests, and only 5 lead to convictions). Up to one third of men at universities and in sports teams and clubs endorse statements that suggest they normalise rape and sexual assault. One woman a week is killed by a male partner in the UK. Yes, stabbings and shootings do kill more men, but the perpetrators are again disproportionately male. Women killing men is still very much less frequent than the reverse.
Miriam

See my blog at http://clinpsyeye.wordpress.com

buenosaires
Posts: 16
Joined: Thu Mar 07, 2019 11:56 am

Re: Jordan Peterson - why do practitioners not like him?

Post by buenosaires » Thu May 23, 2019 8:09 pm

micke wrote:
Thu May 16, 2019 9:38 pm
Hi there,

I find the talks by Jordan Peterson quite useful. Whilst I absolutely don't agree with everything the man says, I think I have really benefited as a clinician listening to what he has to say as well as in myself as a person. Patients I have worked with in IAPT have also reported back to me that they have found his online lectures useful and have implemented helpful strategies which have led to positive changes as a result (anecdotal I know). To be fair, a quick glance at public comments on his YouTube lectures also report pretty positive feedback.

I was lurking on another thread on this form recently where someone called Peterson evil and an embarrassment to the profession.I didn't want to derail that thread so I created a new one here if that's okay. Basically, I feel like I am missing something, I perceive him as having a successful effect in reducing suffering to lots of people globally that might not have an opportunity to access services or are unwilling to due to stigma.

Apologies if I am missing something blindingly obvious but this question has been bothering me for a while now = what are the criticisms of him as a Clinical Psychologist?

Thanks,

Micke
I preface this by saying that I don't agree with many of JP's views, but also struggle to understand the intense vilification that seems to be out there.

One of the main issues I see is this - JP has some opinions which are very unpopular, particularly in the current climate (i.e. the gender pay gap does not exist, speaking out against legislation which states that people must address the transgender community by their preferred pronouns), which makes it very easy to understand why he gets labelled a sexist, transphobe etc. etc. However, what I find troubling about JP is that his views, for what I have seen, are based on really quite logical arguments. And before I invite negative comments for saying that, I mean logical in the purest sense of the word, not that his views are right, kind or true.

For example, he argued that gender was just one of many variables which contributed to the perceived wage gap, noting that other factors, such as scoring high on the Agreeableness scale, were more important predictors of a person's earnings. Statements like this are QUITE CLEARLY going to ruffle feathers (including mine!), especially when they seem to be so at odds with people's lived experiences.

I don't want to undermine all of the negative opinions out there, but I do feel like many of these are based on comments which are taken out of context, review articles which offer their own interpretations, or click-bait type soundbites (Cathy Newman interview *cough cough*). Maybe I have too much time on my hands, but I have watched hours and hours of his interviews and lectures, and have found that his views are very coherent, well articulated and it is clear that he has done his research. However, where I feel he goes wrong is denying that there may be any other way of interpreting the research base, so he veers towards presenting opinions as facts.

For me, taking the time to really listen to his rationale (and RESISTING the temptation to immediately get offended) has been a useful exercise. I realised that I didn't actually have much of a rebuttle for - or even really considered - many of his points (i.e. the dangers of compelled speech, the relative contribution of gender vs other factors to the pay gap). These didn't change my opinions, but it did lead me to think more carefully about my position and encourage me to better express my reasoning - something that JP does exceptionally well. So, with all his faults, I don't think it is a bad thing to have someone out there who can spur on some intellectual gymnastics.

Instead of smearing his name, I would like to see him go head-to-head with someone with the same cool head, precision in their words and sniper-like debate style... a CP version of Sam Harris perhaps?

User avatar
Spatch
Posts: 1372
Joined: Sun Mar 25, 2007 4:18 pm
Location: The other side of paradise
Contact:

Re: Jordan Peterson - why do practitioners not like him?

Post by Spatch » Fri May 24, 2019 10:53 am

Really thoughtful post Miranda.
For me, taking the time to really listen to his rationale (and RESISTING the temptation to immediately get offended) has been a useful exercise. I realised that I didn't actually have much of a rebuttle for - or even really considered - many of his points (i.e. the dangers of compelled speech, the relative contribution of gender vs other factors to the pay gap). These didn't change my opinions, but it did lead me to think more carefully about my position and encourage me to better express my reasoning - something that JP does exceptionally well. So, with all his faults, I don't think it is a bad thing to have someone out there who can spur on some intellectual gymnastics.
This really resonates for me, and it was what I was (clumsily) trying to allude to in the other thread about diversity. I do my best to engage with views/people I find offensive to sharpen my own justification/reasoning/rhetoric, but I also realise that I am in a good place where I can do that, and not everyone is.
Instead of smearing his name, I would like to see him go head-to-head with someone with the same cool head, precision in their words and sniper-like debate style... a CP version of Sam Harris perhaps?
Me too. I sometimes reflect on why this hasn't happened already as somone could probably build a good career doing what you have just said. Personally if I am being candid, I would dread going toe-to-toe in open debate with this guy. For starters, I accept he is more intelligent than I am and accomplished more on most objectively measurable indices of sucess in clinical psychology and/or writing. I am aware that a lot of his strengths are also my areas of weakness such as maintaining presense in front of media, not falling into traps like over explaining or losing patience. He also has a real skill of giving information in a way that makes his audience feel smart and validated (even if that information is incorrect) without threatening their world view or challenging their beliefs, which I recognise is really potent.

For others maybe it is more motivational and that they would rather spend time providing therapy, research or doing the things they are trained to do rather than face off against people like him?

Also I am struggling to think of many others who would do well when put up against him. I have no real evidence of this, but I feel he would quickly take apart people like Tanya Byron and come across better to a general audience than intellectual heavy hitters like Paul Salkovskis or Paul Gilbert. That said, I think someone like Ben Goldacre, possibly could.
Shameless plug alert:

Irrelevant Experience: The Secret Diary of an Assistant Psychologist is available at Amazon
http://www.amazon.co.uk/Irrelevant-Expe ... 00EQFE5JW/

User avatar
miriam
Site Admin
Posts: 7683
Joined: Sat Mar 24, 2007 11:20 pm
Location: Bucks
Contact:

Re: Jordan Peterson - why do practitioners not like him?

Post by miriam » Fri May 24, 2019 11:20 am

The problem with any of these alt-right versus progressive debates is it is like putting petrol against water - the rules of the game are not the same for both parties. One can start fires everywhere, whilst the other then becomes preoccupied with putting them out, and can't make any points of their own. One argues from evidence and respect for diversity, the other argues from opinion. The latter always appears more certain, more persuasive, more charismatic. But it doesn't change the fact the other is right, because they better reflect the facts and incorporate perspectives outside of their own demographic. It takes knowledge and critical thinking to see the problems in Peterson's rhetoric, and this thread proves that even people with an interest in psychology often lack that.

BTW a preface in which you have to turn off critical thinking in order to see why someone appeals is a pretty huge bar for me. I'd rather encourage people to apply critical thinking!
Miriam

See my blog at http://clinpsyeye.wordpress.com

AnsweringBell
Posts: 475
Joined: Wed Aug 03, 2011 11:01 am

Re: Jordan Peterson - why do practitioners not like him?

Post by AnsweringBell » Fri May 24, 2019 2:47 pm

Well said Miriam. It's not directly related... but this stance (and the 'debate' about gender in the other thread) makes me think of a podcast where the author Marlon James was talking about intolerance to intolerance. He was saying that, with things like race, the objective can't be to debate and talk people round and convince. Because that legitimises an illegitimate position. It's saying that there's room to compromise and meet in the middle, except you're starting from a place that is entirely invalid. He spoke incredibly eloquently about it, and actually I've just listened again to quote him directly. Adam Buxton (host) was asking about The Green Book and asking if there was a view that perhaps the directors/producers thought it was a small step to changing the minds of people with deeply entrenched discriminating views. He replied:

"No. Because it ties into the myth of progress. It's [racism] not something to progress out of, it's an illegitimate position and it's always been illegitimate. So for me to encourage you to evolve your attitudes is suggesting that you're moving from one sort of legit state to the next. You're doing something wrong. Stop it. As opposed to, this is your culture and let us progress out of it. If your culture is murdering children, I'm not going to say "okay murder 4 today, 3 tomorrow, 2 the day after." I'm going to say "No. Stop murdering children now." It's like rape culture, that we also think men need to 'evolve' out of. No, men need to stop raping women. And that's my problem with how racism has been treated by liberals. You're not supposed to evolve out of a crime to not doing crime; you're supposed to stop doing crime!"

(I've cut out a few details/examples) - I think it relates to why I have zero time and tolerance for people like JP, or negotiating up when its coming from a place of intolerance, discrimination or hatred. Just, no. No it's not okay.

Post Reply

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 2 guests