"A vigorous cottage industry has established itself among conservatives in order to rhapsodize over this character type. Bill Bennett, Charles Murray, and Harvey Mansfield are among the legion of conservative pseudo-intellectuals who have used this model to condemn the failings of contemporary society; inevitably, it is liberalism’s fault that the model is no longer emulated and we now live amid perpetually adolescent girly-men. There seems to be a greater conservative demand for this sort of analysis than can be supplied from domestic sources: a newly popular import is the Canadian psychologist Jordan Peterson, whose stern admonitions to man up are laced with the inevitable Bible verses and platitudes against political correctness. There must be an alarming amount of gender panic among these folks."
I couldn't have said it better myself.
Suppose you wanted to pass down twelves rules for life to future generations. Write your list, and compare to Jordan Peterson's. I can almost guarantee that your rules will be similar, because they're basic golden rule, chicken soup for the soul things: tell the truth, treat yourself as well as you treat other people, pet cats. So why are people buying his rules and not yours? Long story short, they are written for certain groups who feel in need of guidance, especially white people perturbed by changing times, who want to change them back. It is not a book of professional, let alone medical advice. It pushes Peterson's conservative, Christian values (in all but name; it isn't just coincidence that the majority of his references to ancient literature come from the Bible.) In his world, belief is truth, the female principal is "chaotic", and women should accept that men are better at leadership -- because there are legends and books that say that, okay? And atheists aren't real, unless they're murderers (chapter four). The rules have fancy wrappings: psychology, biology, history, philosophy and so on that sound profound, though are often factually dubious. This is a writer who came to prominence by misrepresenting Bill C-16, after all. Okay if you want a book like that, but readers should know going in it's C.S. Lewis for 2018.
Awful simplicity covered up with ridiculous garble.
If you enjoy Peterson's lectures, then you'll enjoy this book. Like Peterson's talks, they're richly layered and packed with references to history, myth, religion, literature, and popular culture. Much of this advice is about taking responsibility for one's own life and, as the Gospels put it, taking the beam out of your own eye before complaining about the speck in anyone else's.
i read the book. I understood it. It is similar to his lectures, no surprise there. i would reread it in the future. It has a lot of information that there is no way to remember all of it. its such a book about both fiction and non fiction, i had to read the inside covers trying to find out what genre it is. turns out it classifies under 'philosophy'.
no slouch ++
a most famous work in 2018
I started this book because I was curious about Peterson. Over the course of the week that I read the book I became a bit Peterson obsessed. I watched hours and hours of his lectures, interviews and talks and I have to say that I like this guy. I don't agree with him in all matters - that's for sure, but he makes a lot of excellent points and he is a smart, articulate man who can back up whatever he says without effort. I admired that, even when he occasionally made me cringe. I found his views on education really worth thinking about. His indoctrination verses education argument. However, all this aside, his book was not an easy or enjoyable read. Sections of it were dense and wordy and his biblical references were way overdone. I'm glad I read it but could not easily recommend it. Overall the whole book amounted to a huge exercise in critical thinking and I value it for that reason alone.
Relatively straightforward and sensible "rules " to live by supported by somewhat rambling and convoluted (and somewhat tedious for me) combinations of anecdotes, scientific "evidence", biblical references and opinion. This was not an easy read (a bit odd given that one of the rules is to be precise in your speech), and I left feeling not that I had been informed or offered advice so much as lectured to and sort of hectored.
I've read lots of "shelf-help" and this is like most. Read the contents and the introductory sections and skim the rest. The religious references don't add anything, and put off some readers, myself included. Could have been one-third the pages, with nothing lost. If you've nothing else to do, go ahead and read it, but for those on the lengthy wait list, find some other material in the meantime.
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