In this episode of Life, the Universe & Everything Else, Ashlyn is joined by Laura, Ian, Lauren, and Gem to discuss some of the advantages and shortcomings of using labels to describe ourselves.

Life, the Universe & Everything Else is a program promoting secular humanism and scientific skepticism that is produced by the Winnipeg Skeptics.

Note: If you’re in Winnipeg for the Fringe Festival and are interested in coming out to see Of Blood and Ashes, written by Ian James and Adam Johnstone and featuring Gem Newman, we’re at Venue #3 (The Playhouse Studio) at 180 Market Avenue. Here are the showtimes:

Thursday, 16 July 2015, 9:00 pm
Saturday, 18 July 2015, 5:15 pm
Sunday, 19 July 2015, 7:00 pm
Tuesday, 21 July 2015, 12:00 pm
Wednesday, 22 July 2015, 5:15 pm
Thursday, 23 July 2015, 10:30 pm
Saturday, 25 July 2015, 3:30 pm

Links: The Power Of Categories: Invisibilia (NPR) | Ban Bossy. Encourage Girls to Lead | Let’s ban ‘bossy’ – and not just because Sheryl Sandberg and Beyoncé said so (The Guardian) | ‘Ban Bossy’ Campaign Misses the Mark Concerning Girls’ and Women’s Leadership Skills (Huffington Post) | Atheism (Wikipedia) | Agnosticism (Wikipedia) | Profiles of the Godless: Results from a Survey of the Nonreligious (Center for Inquiry) | Diagnostic attributions versus labeling: impact of Alzheimer’s disease and major depression diagnoses on emotions, beliefs, and helping intentions of family members (ResearchGate) | 5 Ups and Downs of Special Education Labels ( | The Fallaway Slam Podcast (The only podcast that matters!)

Contact Us: Facebook | Twitter | Email

Listen: Direct Link | iTunes | Stitcher | RSS Feed

About Gem Newman

Medical student and former software developer. Host of the Life, the Universe & Everything Else podcast. Past organizer of the Winnipeg Skeptics. Former board chair at Bad Science Watch. Writer of things. Grower of beards. He/him.

One response

  1. My personal description of the word ‘skeptic’ in reference to personality would refer to a personality whose architecture of individuality suffers from wanting consensus in reasonable or logical matters through asking for or otherwise compulsively requiring correction.

    I don’t care if people are ‘familiar’ with my work – to any extent. If I choose to tell people I’m a writer when I meet them, firstly not one person has ever questioned my being a writer, usually more questions are asked about WHAT I have written or am currently writing. Luckily I’ve had good luck if not – some of the best luck in that. However if it comes down to describing my ‘beliefs system or similar’ I usually say ‘Non-supernatural spiritualist’.

    Conversations about what it means to have a ‘skeptic’s identity’ always feels like people hashing out how they are reasonable, or otherwise ‘well assimilating’ human beings. Personalities who are not totally defined by ‘paths of least resistance’* and may be contrary to personality types which suffer from an abundance of integral least resistance personality pathing**.

    *Suppression of the self within a space to social, moral, emotional, mental survive, etc.
    **Integral Least Resistance Personality Pathing isn’t a thing. If it were a thing it would point at the lowest common denominator personalities who seek to feel, think, and operate on a low level of cognition within a low mental capacity/range. Conversely a skeptic may have integral pathing which is in place specifically because they want to so strongly avoid L.R. pathing by working hard and trying to stay in a high capacity/high range mode of cognition or whatever.