Humanities - Philosophy
Bradley H. Dowden, California State University Sacramento
The goal of this book is to improve your logical-reasoning skills. These skills are also called "critical thinking skills." They are a complex weave of abilities that help you get someone's point, generate reasons for your own point, evaluate the reasons given by others, decide what or what not to do, decide what information to accept or reject, explain a complicated idea, apply conscious quality control as you think, and resist propaganda. Your most important critical thinking skill is your skill at making judgments─not snap judgments that occur in the blink of an eye, but those that require careful reasoning.
Catherine Wilson, University of York
Metaethics from a First Person Standpoint addresses in a novel format the major topics and themes of contemporary metaethics, the study of the analysis of moral thought and judgement. Metathetics is less concerned with what practices are right or wrong than with what we mean by ‘right’ and ‘wrong.’
Jeffery L. Johnson, Portland State University
Inferring and Explaining is a book in practical epistemology. It examines the notion of evidence and assumes that good evidence is the essence of rational thinking. Evidence is the cornerstone of the natural, social, and behavioral sciences. But it is equally central to almost all academic pursuits and, perhaps most importantly, to the basic need to live an intelligent and reflective life.
Russ W. Payne
The goal of this text is to present philosophy to newcomers as a living discipline with historical roots. While a few early chapters are historically organized, the goal in the historical chapters is to trace a developmental progression of thought that introduces basic philosophical methods and frames issues that remain relevant today. Later chapters are topically organized. These include philosophy of science and philosophy of mind, areas where philosophy has shown dramatic recent progress. This text concludes with four chapters on ethics, broadly construed. Traditional theories of right action is covered in a third of these. Students are first invited first to think about what is good for themselves and their relationships in a chapter of love and happiness. Next a few meta-ethical issues are considered; namely, whether they are moral truths and if so what makes them so. The end of the ethics sequence addresses social justice, what it is for one's community to be good. Our sphere of concern expands progressively through these chapters. Our inquiry recapitulates the course of development into moral maturity. Over the course of the text, the author has tried to outline the continuity of thought that leads from the historical roots of philosophy to a few of the diverse areas of inquiry that continue to make significant contributions to our understanding of ourselves and the world we live in.
Jody Ondich, Lake Superior College, Duluth, Minnesota
Words of Wisdom can come from anyone. In this text we discuss topics ranging from "Are Humans good by nature?" to "Is there a God?" to "Do I have the right to my own opinion?" Philosophy is the study of wisdom, and can emerge in our conversations in social media, in school, around the family dinner table, and even in the car. The text uses materials that are 2,500 years old, and materials that were in the news this year. Wise people come in all shapes and types, and from every culture on earth. We have poetry and folktales, sacred writings and letters. Dialogues and interviews, news columns, Ted Talks, You Tube recordings and even comedy are all a part of the content in this text.You will be most successful reading this on line. The formatting in the downloadable versions is not wonderful. There is work being done by the software, but in the meantime, you will want to use it by clicking here on "read book:".
Alam Payind, Ohio State University
Melinda McClimans, Ohio State University
This book is intended for readers who have never studied the Middle East, or experts who may wish to fill gaps in their knowledge of the region from other disciplines. Whether for establishing or deepening one's knowledge of the region, these fundamentals are important to know. The languages, cultural, religious and sectarian communities of the region, and selected turning points and influential people in history are starting points for gaining an understanding of the diverse contexts of the region. It isbased on introductoryand graduatecourseson thecontemporaryMiddle East, which the Center's director, Dr. Alam Payind, has been teaching for the past 30 years. The book's co-author,Melinda McClimans,hastaught these and other courses with him, as well as her own,for the past 15years. The material isintendedengage with diverse – even conflicting – culturaland historicalperspectives,andways of perceivingboth Middle Easternandworld historyfrom perspectives within the region. It is not intended to reinforce a monolithic or matter-of-fact perception of the region.For this and many other reasons, images are an important aspect of the knowledge presented. Each chapter starts with links to its image galleries, along with other visual aids and key elements.
Dale Cannon, Western Oregon University
The book proposes the hypothesis that six generic ways of being religious may be found in any large-scale religious tradition such as Christianity or Buddhism or Islam or Hinduism: sacred rite, right action, devotion, shamanic mediation, mystical quest, and reasoned inquiry. These are recurrent ways in which, socially and individually, devout members of these traditions take up and appropriate their stories and symbols in order to draw near to, and come into right relationship with, what the traditions attest to be the ultimate reality.
Matthew Knachel, University of Wisconsin - Milwaukee
Fundamental Methods of Logic is suitable for a one-semester introduction to logic/critical reasoning course. It covers a variety of topics at an introductory level. Chapter One introduces basic notions, such as arguments and explanations, validity and soundness, deductive and inductive reasoning; it also covers basic analytical techniques, such as distinguishing premises from conclusions and diagramming arguments. Chapter Two discusses informal logical fallacies. Chapters Three and Four concern deductive logic, introducing the basics of Aristotelian and Sentential Logic, respectively. Chapter Five deals with analogical and causal reasoning, including a discussion of Mill's Methods. Chapter Six covers basic probability calculations, Bayesian inference, fundamental statistical concepts and techniques, and common statistical fallacies.
Mark Dimmock, Torquay Boys' Grammar School
Andrew Fisher, University of Nottingham
What does pleasure have to do with morality? What role, if any, should intuition have in the formation of moral theory? If something is ‘simulated', can it be immoral?
Craig DeLancey, SUNY Oswego
A Concise Introduction to Logic is an introduction to formal logic suitable for undergraduates taking a general education course in logic or critical thinking, and is accessible and useful to any interested in gaining a basic understanding of logic. This text takes the unique approach of teaching logic through intellectual history; the author uses examples from important and celebrated arguments in philosophy to illustrate logical principles. The text also includes a basic introduction to findings of advanced logic. As indicators of where the student could go next with logic, the book closes with an overview of advanced topics, such as the axiomatic method, set theory, Peano arithmetic, and modal logic. Throughout, the text uses brief, concise chapters that readers will find easy to read and to review.