Arguing for Our Lives
A User's Guide to Constructive Dialog
"Sonali Kolhotkar at KPFK's Uprising interviews Robert Jensen"
University of Texas Journalism Professor Robert Jensen has written a book called Arguing for Our Lives: A User's Guide to Constructive Dialog. In it he challenges us to use our human faculties of critical thinking on such important issues as politics, religion, the media, and more.
Nov 7, 2013
"Terror v. Surveillance? Keeping Americans safe in two simple steps"
-Robert Jensen/ Occupy.com
"In the frenzy over Edward Snowden's leak of classified information about government data-mining surveillance, public officials and pundits have tried to lock us into a narrowly defined and diversionary discussion that ignores the most important question we face about terrorism. . . . "
Jun 24, 2013
"Robert Jensen discusses "Avoiding false alternatives," an essay adapted from the new book Arguing for Our Lives"
-Robert Jensen, Truthout
"If a healthy political culture is rooted in conversation and based on honest argumentation, then one of the most corrosive rhetorical tactics is the use of false alternatives. An argument based on false alternatives keeps people from considering the full range of relevant possibilities. Typically, this involves presenting an issue as if there are two - and only two - possible courses of action, one of which is unattractive for practical and/or moral reasons. An argument from false alternatives also routinely builds into its claim one or more assumptions that could be challenged. . . . "
Jun 15, 2013
"Robert Jensen Interview with the Philadelphia Inquirer"
-Tirdad Derakhshani, Philadelphia Inquirer
"A potent attack on the rabid, irrational saber-rattling that passes for political and social discourse today, Arguing for Our Lives is a cogent, closely argued, sober, yet passionate call for ordinary men and women to help save our democracy by reclaiming our intellect, by honing our powers of rational argumentation."
May 28, 2013
"Robert Jensen on 'Getting Apocalyptic' "
-Robert Jensen, Yes! Magazine
Read Robert Jensen's article, "Get Apocalyptic" about turning despair into action in the face of life in a broken economy on a strained planet.
May 24, 2013
"Robert Jensen's book is excerpted on Rabble"
"The universe is an undifferentiated whole. About that we can say nothing more."
This catchy aphorism from political philosopher Bruce Wright may seem nonsensical at first glance, but is worth exploring in the service of deepening our intellectual humility. Facing multiple, cascading ecological crises, we humans need science more than ever—and more than ever we need to understand the limits of science. . . .
May 2, 2013
"Robert Jensen on UTNE Reader"
-Robert Jensen, UTNE Reader
Robert Jensen shows how critical thought and constructive dialogue are the necessary tools to claiming a social sphere working for the public interest.
May 1, 2013
"An excerpt from Arguing for Our Lives appears on Truthout"
"Politicians and pundits, on all sides, are quick to suggest that opponents are 'blinded by ideology'; competing proposals that have been successfully tagged as excessively ideological are easy to dismiss as being impractical. But the accusation begs a question: Does ideology always undermine our ability to understand the world? . . . "
Apr 17, 2013
"Interview with Robert Jensen by Dustin Hall"
An audio interview with Dr. Robert Jensen – author, activist and professor of journalism at the University of Texas at Austin.
In this wide-ranging interview, Jensen discusses his views on U.S. foreign policy, criticism that he is "anti-American," his religious beliefs as a Christian-atheist, the line between teaching and activism, and finding sources of hope in troubled times.
Feb 26, 2013
"Rationally Speaking, We Are All Apocalyptic Now"
-Robert Jensen, Truthout Op-Ed
If we are rational and consider objective scientific evidence of environmental collapse including groundwater depletion, topsoil loss, chemical contamination, ocean dead zones, species extinction, bio-diversity reduction and climate disruption, we need to be apocalypticists, argues Robert Jensen.
Feb 8, 2013
"The First Rule of Good Teaching"
-Robert Jensen, Counterpunch
Robert Jensen discusses the idea of living your life honestly in front of students as key to good teaching.
Jan 2, 2013
"Put religion and politics on Thanksgiving menu"
-Robert Jensen, USA Today
Robert Jensen discusses table conversation at Thanksgiving time, encouraging us to have thoughtful discussions about religion and politics no matter how hard that may seem.
Nov 22, 2012