Eh, the ankle biting kooks who dare call him the ‘stupid man’s smart person’ would never debate him in person, they haven’t the intellect nor the facts to directly challenge him face to face. One Channel Four journalist who tried ended up looking like a fool,
Canadian psychologist Jordan Peterson: the ‘anti-snowflake’ crusader speaks out
To his fans, Canadian psychologist Jordan Peterson is a hero of rationality — but to his critics, he’s an alt-Right transphobe. Katie Law meets the controversial professor
This week Jordan Peterson has taken London by storm. The Canadian psychologist-turned-anti-snowflake crusader has been giving sell-out talks to promote his new book, 12 Rules for Life.
On Monday night at the Emmanuel Centre in Westminster, the 1,000-seat conference hall was packed to the gills with mostly white young men, from bearded hipsters to bespectacled nerds, already clutching copies of his book. Extra seats had been laid out and were quickly filled. Rock music was playing and the windows were lit with dramatic red spotlights that flanked an enormous black and white photograph of Peterson, who walked onto the stage to the roar of loud applause. It was as if their messiah had finally arrived.
Earlier in the day I met Peterson in a Holborn flat rented by his publisher to discover what all the fuss is about. A word-of-mouth phenomenon, according to his Penguin publicist, the 55-year-old professor of psychology at the University of Toronto lectures on subjects from the dangers of identity politics and use of gender-neutral pronouns, to the power of mythology and the Bible, to why the works of Jung, Nietzsche and Solzhenitsyn matter today more than ever.
Peterson’s fire-and-brimstone views form the basis of the 12-chaptered book, which offers positive advice about telling the truth always, avoiding losers, finding meaning, standing up straight, doing tough-love parenting and listening to others, among other things.
It is precisely the kind of hardline counselling for which he has long been revered, especially by 25 to 40-year-old men, who thank him profusely for helping turn their lives around. Peterson’s videos have clocked up 150 million views and he has 300,000 Twitter followers. But he is also accused of being an alt-Right, racist transphobe, and “the stupid man’s smart person”. In any event, he despises the far-Left and believes all ideologies are inherently evil.