What Should I Believe?: Philosophical Essays for Critical Thinking

Overview

This book is unique in its treatment of critical thinking not as a body of knowledge but instead as a subject for critical reflection. The purpose of the anthology is to turn critical thinking classes into invitations to philosophical conversations. The collection introduces students to difficult philosophical questions that surround critical thinking, moving away from dogmatism and towards philosophical dialogue. In developing these discussions, the anthology introduces students to issues in the philosophy of ...

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Overview

This book is unique in its treatment of critical thinking not as a body of knowledge but instead as a subject for critical reflection. The purpose of the anthology is to turn critical thinking classes into invitations to philosophical conversations. The collection introduces students to difficult philosophical questions that surround critical thinking, moving away from dogmatism and towards philosophical dialogue. In developing these discussions, the anthology introduces students to issues in the philosophy of science, epistemology, and philosophy of religion. Selections include works by Charles S. Peirce, Stephen Jay Gould, Elizabeth Anscombe, and Richard Dawkins.

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Editorial Reviews

Hilary Putnam Harvard University
"This is a wonderful selection of readings for a course in Critical Thinking, as well as wonderful reading for anyone who wonders what critical thinking about difficult and controversial topics consists in—a question that concerns all of us as citizens and as human beings."
Arthur Fine University of Washington
"This is an exciting, path breaking anthology. In taking critical thinking itself as a topic for philosophical reflection, What Should I Believe? moves us on from John Dewey's famous How We Think. Gomberg's insightful commentary molds these essays into a new framework for thinking about society, science, religion — and indeed about the very character of belief. This is a fresh approach to "critical thinking" both for the classroom and for our lives."
S.C. Schwarze
"What Should I Believe? is an excellent little volume that takes its title question seriously and tries to answer with both prudential and normative meanings. Gomberg (Chicago State Univ.) has assembled a worthy set of essays to answer this question, ranging from the classic essays of Peirce, Clifford, and James to his own sincere efforts to guide students in their understanding of belief."
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781554810130
  • Publisher: Broadview Press
  • Publication date: 5/27/2011
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Pages: 250
  • Sales rank: 766,042
  • Product dimensions: 5.90 (w) x 8.70 (h) x 0.50 (d)

Meet the Author

Paul Gomberg is Professor of Philosophy at Chicago State University.

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Table of Contents

Preface
To the Instructor: Making Critical Thinking Classes More Philosophical
Introduction: The Philosophical Problems Raised by Critical Thinking
I. Two Defenses of Critical Belief
1. Introduction
2. from "The Fixation of Belief" (Charles S. Peirce)
3. from "The Ethics of Belief" (William K. Clifford)
II. Uncertainty and Scrutiny in Science
1. Introduction
2. "Miracles and Scientific Research" (Paul Gomberg)
3. from Origins: Fourteen Billion Years of Cosmic Evolution The Origin of Life on Earth (Neil deGrasse Tyson & Donald Goldsmith)
4. from "Sex, Drugs, Disasters, and the Extinction of Dinosaurs" (Stephen Jay Gould)
5. "Are We Related to Other Life?" (Paul Gomberg)
6. from "The Perplexing Case of the Female Orgasm" (Elisabeth Lloyd with Natasha Mitchell)
7. "The Health of Black Folk: Disease, Class, and Ideology in Science" (Nancy Krieger and Mary Bassett)
8. from Against Method: Outline of an Anarchistic Theory of Knowledge (Paul Feyerabend)
III. Why Do We Believe Others?
1. Introduction
2. "Of Miracles" (David Hume)
3. from "The Ethics of Belief" (William K. Clifford)
4. "The Epistemology of Testimony" (Nicholas Wolterstorff)
5. from "What Is It To Believe Someone?" (Elizabeth Anscombe)
6. "Trust and Modesty in Belief and Knowledge" (Paul Gomberg)
IV. Religious Beliefs and Critical Scrutiny
1. Introduction
2. from "A Scientist's Case Against God" (Richard Dawkins)
3. from "The Will to Believe" (William James)
4. "Clifford's Principle and James's Options" (Richard Feldman)
5. "Believing Can Be Right or Wrong" (Allen Wood)
6. from "Renewing Philosophy: Wittgenstein on Religion" (Hilary Putnam)
7. "The 'Faith' of an Activist: A Comment on Putnam" (Charles Freeman)
V. Epilogue
1. What Should I Believe?

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