Ideas & Provocations

There are moments, from time to time, when I find myself being persuaded. Perhaps I’m hearing an argument, watching a debate, or having a conversation when I’m forced to confront an opinion I didn’t previously hold. I immediately look for errors in the argument but I find none. Against my own reservations, I am transported down a path on which I didn’t originally plan to travel. I become slightly uncomfortable at the prospect of leaving behind a cherished belief, but I keep going. There is a moment of limbo—between the loss of my own opinion and the feeling of gaining a new, better one. It’s the feeling of an unexpected and necessary course correction. 

I love those moments.

That’s why Zach Sizemore and I created Sojourn Review—a new online magazine publishing commentary on politics and international affairs.

Looking to the opinion pages of trusted newspapers for inspiration, we created an online magazine that defends the values we believe are necessary for fostering productive political discourse—free speech, reason, and empiricism. With these values in place, we are free to argue openly and reasonably about important issues without deteriorating into tribal signaling or anti-intellectualism.

Sojourn Review employs a politically diverse writing staff; therefore our published articles occasionally challenge and disagree with each other while still maintaining factual accuracy. This strategy prevents us from becoming static in our arguments and assumptions. In order to further cultivate an environment of free speech, Sojourn Review also publishes writing submitted by our readers via op-eds and letters to the editor.

In the marketplace of ideas, some are sure to provoke. When politics and identity are becoming inseparable, enabling diversity of opinion and committing to reasonable debate become paramount. To read only that with which you already agree is a costly disservice. At Sojourn Review, we believe that only good can come from debate. Either our arguments are strengthened and our opinions solidified, or our faults are laid bare and we are passively transported into an uncomfortable moment of course correction.

We love those moments.

Sojourn Review is a place for ideas and provocations.

We hope you enjoy reading.

Brandon Clarkson is the Editor in Chief of Sojourn Review. You can follow him on Twitter here.