The reader Introduction to Philosophy challenges students to develop critical and analytical thinking skills by exploring substantive primary texts in philosophy. In addition to familiar, foundational philosophy texts, the book includes sections on service learning and Jesuit tradition as a way to focus on issues of justice, social responsibility, and the role of the individual in society.
The text opens with a reading on the what, why, and how of critical thinking to prepare students to fully and successfully engage with later material. This is followed by selections from great thinkers including Plato, Descartes, Kierkegaard, William James, Kant, and Martin Luther King, Jr. Students consider topics such as obedience to authority, the will to believe, the common good, and education for social justice and social action.
Introduction to Philosophy cultivates the habit of mind needed in the process of seeking answers to questions. Even more importantly, the material teaches students how to ask the questions themselves. Fostering individual thought through in-depth examination of seminal material, the book is well-suited to beginning courses in the discipline.
Devonya Havis earned her Ph.D. at Boston College and is now an associate professor of philosophy at Canisius College in New York. Dr. Havis's areas of specialization include the philosophy of race, African American philosophy, and continental philosophy.