Critical Thinking: An Introduction to Analytical Reading and Reasoning / Edition 2

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Overview


Extensively classroom-tested, Critical Thinking: An Introduction to Analytical Reading and Reasoning provides a non-technical vocabulary and analytic apparatus that guide students in identifying and articulating the central patterns found in reasoning and in expository writing more generally. Understanding these patterns of reasoning helps students to better analyze, evaluate, and construct arguments and to more easily comprehend the full range of everyday arguments found in ordinary journalism. Critical Thinking distinguishes itself from other texts in the field by emphasizing analytical reading as an essential skill. It also provides detailed coverage of argument analysis, diagnostic arguments, diagnostic patterns, and fallacies.
Opening with two chapters on analytical reading that help students recognize what makes reasoning explicitly different from other expository activities, the text then presents an interrogative model of argument to guide them in the analysis and evaluation of reasoning. This model allows a detailed articulation of "inference to the best explanation" and gives students a view of the pervasiveness of this form of reasoning. The author demonstrates how many common argument types--from correlations to sampling--can be analyzed using this articulated form. He then extends the model to deal with several predictive and normative arguments and to display the value of the fallacy vocabulary. Designed for introductory courses in critical thinking, critical reasoning, informal logic, and inductive reasoning, Critical Thinking features hundreds of exercises throughout and includes worked-out solutions and additional exercises (without solutions) at the end of each chapter. An Instructor's Manual, including solutions to the text's unanswered exercises and featuring other pedagogical aids, is available.
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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

"This is the best critical-thinking book on the market. Its strengths are its originality, thoughtfulness, attention to scholarship in informal logic/critical thinking, focus on the importance of critical-reading skills, and practical application to the kinds of reasoning we do every day through a remarkably careful discussion of inference to the best explanation."--Dale Turner, Cal Poly Pomona

"I have seen students understand what they are reading and evaluate arguments in a meaningful way in classes where this text is being used. This in itself motivates me to use it."--Sharon Crasnow, Norco College, Riverside Community College District

"Critical Thinking constitutes a unified approach to a whole trajectory of intellectual development; that is, it can take someone from 'able to read' all the way to 'able to think analytically and creatively about reasoning.'"--Chris Campolo, Hendrix College

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780199796229
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA
  • Publication date: 10/29/2012
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 2
  • Pages: 416
  • Sales rank: 456,811
  • Product dimensions: 7.50 (w) x 9.20 (h) x 0.80 (d)

Meet the Author

Larry Wright is Professor of Philosophy at the University of California, Riverside, where he has taught since 1970. He is the author of Practical Reasoning (1989), Better Reasoning: Techniques for Handling Argument, Evidence & Abstraction (1982), and Teleological Explanations: An Etiological Analysis of Goals and Functions (1976).

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Table of Contents

Chapters 1 and 4-8 open with an Introduction.
Each chapter ends with Supplemental Exercises and Answers.
Preface
PART ONE. PARAPHRASING
1. THE BARE-BONES PARAPHRASE
The Concept of Paraphrase
Reading and Paraphrase
Technique and Vocabulary
Human Understanding
Subtler Issues
Two Principles of Paraphrasing
Things to Keep in Mind
2. READING FOR STRUCTURE: DEPENDENCY AND SUBORDINATION
Complexity
Technique and Vocabulary
Useful Patterns
Tricks for Tough Cases
Systematic Features
Trial and Error Exercise
3. READING FOR REASONING: PARAPHRASING ARGUMENTS
Reading for a Particular Purpose
Reading for Reasoning
A Shortcut: Schematizing Directly from a Passage
Charitable Schematizing
PART TWO. ANALYZING REASONING
4. ARGUMENT ANALYSIS: ANSWERING QUESTIONS
The Purpose of Analysis
The Fundamental Concepts: Questions and Answers
Refining the Apparatus and Exercising Our Skills
Evaluating Arguments: How Good Are the Reasons?
Interim Summary: What We Have Learned So Far
Dealing with Disagreement
5. DIAGNOSTIC ARGUMENTS: REASONING BY EXPLAINING
Diagnostic Questions
Diagnostic Concepts
Objects and Resources: Different Kinds of Support
Refinements
Diagnostic Investigation
6. DIAGNOSTIC PATTERNS
Cause and Correlation
Testimony
Sampling
Counting Cases: Induction by Enumeration
Circumstantial Evidence
7. FURTHER APPLICATIONS: PREDICTION AND RECOMMENDATION
Prediction
Recommendation
8. FALLACIES
Fallacies of Construction
Critical Fallacies
APPENDIX. DEDUCTION
Introduction
Semantic Conflict
Semantic Evaluation
Deductive Arguments
Structure
Tests and Criteria
Relative Strength
Summary
Glossary of Important Terms
Index

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