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This is a full-length sample of one of our new segments called TransformU which is normally published in our NEW members-only website, Coffin Nation.
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In a short span of time, less than 18 months, Dr. Jordan B. Peterson has joined the club of public figures of whom we say they “need no introduction.”
He is not only a Canadian clinical psychologist and a professor of psychology at the University of Toronto, and author of Maps of Meaning: The Architecture of Belief and 12 Rules for Life: An Antidote To Chaos, Peterson is a bona fide internet sensation, with speaking gigs and debates arranged all over the world.
I first reached out to him in September of 2016, as he was beginning to shoot a series of videos on his YouTube channel in which he criticized political correctness and the Canadian government’s Bill C-16, which became law the next year, and which now forces speech regarding the made-up pronouns of deeply confused people known as non-binary or trans.
Back then, no one knew who we was apart from grateful student and some Canadians who were paying attention to the controversy. It’s been an honor to follow his meteoric rise, reconnect with him three additional times, and, God willing, more to come.
Peterson’s main areas of study are in abnormal, social, and personality psychology, with a particular interest in the psychology of religious and ideological belief, and the assessment and improvement of personality and performance.
Peterson studied at the University of Alberta and McGill University, before moving to Harvard University, where he was an assistant and then associate professor in the psychology department. In 1998, he moved back to Canada, as a faculty member in the psychology department at the University of Toronto, where he is currently a full professor.
This TransformU interview with him was recorded before my most recent sit-down interview in Los Angeles (the one that will be my first half million YouTube viewer video) but in some ways this is my favorite conversation with him of the four on-air times we have spoken. Dr. Peterson is quick-witted but more on the side of wisdom than cleverness. He has disclosed his own diagnosis with clinical depression. He tends to speak with a certain intensity that’s hard to describe. It’s like he’s on edge because he has so much to say but is constrained to say them one word, one sentence at a time.
The focus of the interview, after reviewing some basic facts about political correctness and his experiences being in some conflict with his employer, the University of Toronto, was his online writing program, the Self Authoring Suite.
This TransformU episode brings up many insights and provocative ideas well worth drilling into.
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