Do we conduct our conscious propositional thinking in natural language? Or is such language only peripherally related to human conscious thought-processes? In this paper I shall present a partial defence of the former view, by arguing that the only real alternative is eliminativism about conscious propositional thinking. Following some introductory remarks, I shall state the argument for this conclusion, and show how that conclusion can be true. Thereafter I shall defend each of the three main premises in turn.
Main principles of the complex nonlinear thinking which are based on the notions of the modern theory of evolution and self-organization of complex systems called also synergetics are under discussion in this article. The principles are transdisciplinary, holistic, and oriented to a human being. The notions of system complexity, nonlinearity of evolution, creative chaos, space-time definiteness of structure-attractors of evolution, resonant influences, nonlinear and soft management are here of great importance. In this connection, a prominent contribution made to system (...) analysis and to a necessary reform of education and thinking by Edgar Morin is considered. (shrink)
This paper makes the case that when wishful thinking ill-founds belief, the belief depends on the desire in ways can be recapitulated at the level of perceptual experience. The relevant kinds of desires include motivations, hopes, preferences, and goals. I distinguish between two modes of dependence of belief on desire in wishful thinking: selective or inquiry-related, and responsive or evidence-related. I offers a theory of basing on which beliefs are badly-based on desires, due to patterns of dependence that (...) can found in the relationship between experiences and desires as well. This conclusion brings us a large part of the way to the conclusion that like beliefs, experiences can be ill-founded by depending on a desire. (shrink)
In Thinking without Words I develop a philosophical framework for treating some animals and human infants as genuine thinkers. This paper outlines the aspects of this account that are most relevant to those working in animal ethics. There is a range of different levels of cognitive sophistication in different animal species, in addition to limits to the types of thought available to non-linguistic creatures, and it may be important for animal ethicists to take this into account in exploring issues (...) of moral significance and the obligations that we might or might not have to non-human animals. (shrink)
As a philosophy professor, one of my central goals is to teach students to think critically. However, one difficulty with determining whether critical thinking can be taught, or even measured, is that there is widespread disagreement over what critical thinking actually is. Here, I reflect on several conceptions of critical thinking, subjecting them to critical scrutiny. I also distinguish critical thinking from other forms of mental processes with which it is often conflated. Next, I present my (...) own conception of critical thinking, wherein it fundamentally consists in acquiring, developing, and exercising the ability to grasp inferential connections holding between statements. Finally, given this account of critical thinking, and given recent studies in cognitive science, I suggest the most effective means for teaching students to think critically. (shrink)
After a brief outline of the topic of non-language thinking in mathematics the central phenomenological tool in this concern is established, i.e. the eidetic method. The special form of eidetic method in mathematical proving is implicit variation and this procedure entails three rules that are established in a simple geometrical example. Then the difficulties and the merits of analogical thinking in mathematics are discussed in different aspects. On the background of a new phenomenological understanding of the performance of (...) non-language thinking in mathematics the well-known theses of B. L. van der Waerden that mathematical thinking to a great extent proceeds without the use of language is discussed in a new light. (shrink)
I argue that entertaining a proposition is not an action. Such events do not have intentional explanations and cannot be evaluated as rational or not. In these respects they contrast with assertions and compare well with perceptual events. One can control what one thinks by doing something, most familiarly by reciting a sentence. But even then the event of entertaining the proposition is not an action, though it is an event one has caused to happen, much as one might cause (...) oneself to see a book by looking at it. I also discuss how this may support the view that thinking about the world is a source of information about it. (shrink)
For centuries, philosophy has been considered as an intellectual activity requiring complex cognitive skills and predispositions related to complex (or critical) thinking. The Philosophy for Children (P4C) approach aims at the development of critical thinking in pupils through philosophical dialogue. Some contest the introduction of P4C in the classroom, suggesting that the discussions it fosters are not philosophical in essence. In this text, we argue that P4C is philosophy.
This chapter takes up, and sketches an answer to, the main challenge facing massively modular theories of the architecture of the human mind. This is to account for the distinctively flexible, non-domain-specific, character of much human thinking. I shall show how the appearance of a modular language faculty within an evolving modular architecture might have led to these distinctive features of human thinking with only minor further additions and non-domain-specific adaptations.
The concepts of autonomy and of critical thinking play a central role in many contemporary accounts of the aims of education. This book analyses their relationship to each other and to education, exploring their roles in mortality and politics before examining the role of critical thinking in fulfilling the educational aim of preparing young people for autonomy. The author analyses different senses of the terms 'autonomy' and 'critical thinking' and the implications for education. Implications of the discussion (...) for contemporary practice are also considered. (shrink)
The concept of population thinking was introduced by Ernst Mayr as the right way of thinking about the biological domain, but it is difficult to find an interpretation of this notion that is both unproblematic and does the theoretical work it was intended to do. I argue that, properly conceived, Mayr’s population thinking is a version of trope nominalism: the view that biological property-types do not exist or at least they play no explanatory role. Further, although population (...)thinking has been traditionally used to argue against essentialism about biological kinds, recently it has been suggested that it may be consistent with at least some forms of essentialism—ones that construe essential properties as relational. I argue that if population thinking is a version of trope nominalism, then, as Mayr originally claimed, it rules out any version of essentialism about biological kinds. (shrink)
The present study investigated whether individual differences between psychologists in thinking styles are associated with accuracy in diagnostic classification. We asked novice and experienced clinicians to classify two clinical cases of clients with two co-occurring psychological disorders. No significant difference in diagnostic accuracy was found between the two groups, but when combining the data from novices and experienced psychologists accuracy was found to be negatively associated with certain decision making strategies and with a higher self-assessed ability and preference for (...) a rational thinking style. Our results underscore the idea that it might be fruitful to look for explanations of differences in the accuracy of diagnostic judgments in individual differences between psychologists (such as in thinking styles or decision making strategies used), rather than in experience level. (shrink)
The way that critical thinking has been framed as aneducational objective has led, on the one hand, to itssuccessful saturation of educational discourse and, onthe other, to an equation of critical thinking withdemonstrable rhetorical skills. This essay suggeststhat both critical thinking and obstacles tosuccessful critical thinking are most commonly foundin the activities of everyday life. Humans deploycritical thinking in expressions of socialimagination, illuminations of our selves andrelationship, and in ethical choices and publicengagements. By reframing critical (...)thinking,educators may find ways to enrich its exercise both inand out of the classroom. (shrink)
We conducted an on-line survey to investigate the professor’s idea of “morality” and then to compare their moral thinking at the abstract level with their moral thinking in the real life situations by sampling 257 professors from the University of Novi Sad. We constructed questionnaire based on related theoretical ethical concepts. Our results show (after we performed exploratory factor analysis) that the professor’s idea of “morality” consists of the three moral thinking patterns which are simultaneously activated during (...) the process of their abstract moral thinking. We have identified these patterns in the following manner: deontological, formal and subjective pattern. In addition, our results show that of the three, the subjective pattern is more activated than the other two during their process of the moral thinking at the abstract level. We also discovered that there is a statistically significant difference between professor’s moral thinking patterns activation level at the abstract level and their moral thinking patterns activation level in the real life situation. (shrink)
This book covers all the material typically addressed in first or second-year college courses in Critical Thinking: Chapter 1: Critical Thinking 1.1 What is critical thinking? 1.2 What is critical thinking not? Chapter 2: The Nature of Argument 2.1 Recognizing an Argument 2.2 Circular Arguments 2.3 Counterarguments 2.4 The Burden of Proof 2.5 Facts and Opinions 2.6 Deductive and Inductive Argument Chapter 3: The Structure of Argument 3.1 Convergent, Single 3.2 Convergent, Multiple 3.3 Divergent Chapter 4: (...) Relevance 4.1 Relevance 4.2 Errors of Relevance Chapter 5: Language 5.1 Clarity 5.2 Neutrality 5.3 Definition Chapter 6: Truth and Acceptability 6.1 How do we define truth? 6.2 How do we discover truth? 6.3 How do we evaluate claims of truth? Chapter 7: Generalizations, Analogies, and General Principles 7.1 Sufficiency 7.2 Generalizations 7.3 Analogies 7.4 General Principles Chapter 8: Inductive Argument – Causal Reasoning 8.1 Causation 8.2 Explanations 8.3 Predictions, Plans, and Policies 8.4 Errors in Causal Reasoning (Three additional chapters – categorical logic, propositional logic, thinking critically about ethics – are available on the companion website.) -/- Special Features: -/- - The book takes a practice approach to learning how to think critically, so there are LOTS of exercises (within each chapter, focusing on discrete skills, and at the end of each chapter, focusing on more global skills in a cumulative fashion – thinking critically about what one sees, hears, reads, writes, and discusses). -/- - There is an extensive “Answers, Explanations, and Analyses” section that provides not just ‘the right answer’ but explanations as to why the right answer is right and why wrong answers are wrong; when the exercise is not a matter of providing an answer but of analyzing material, a detailed analysis is provided in this section; this feature is intended to help the student fully understand why some arguments are better than others (and why it’s not ‘just a matter of opinion’!). -/- - The regularly-appearing end-of-chapter “Thinking critically when you discuss” exercise is carefully graduated throughout the text, to gently lead students from sounding like a bad tv talk show to being able to hold an intelligent discussion. -/- - The regularly-appearing end-of-chapter “Thinking critically about what you write” exercise assumes almost no skill at the beginning and leads up to, in the last chapter, writing a 2,000 word position paper. -/- - A critical analysis template (a step-by-step approach to critical analysis) is presented in the first chapter and at the beginning of each subsequent chapter, and specific reference to it is made at the beginning of each end-of-chapter “Thinking critically about what you read” exercise (consisting of ten bits of increasing difficulty); this feature is intended to encourage the development of habitual, thorough analysis of arguments. -/- - Actual questions from standardized reasoning tests like the LSAT, GMAT, MCAT, and GRE are included. -/- - Ancillaries include an instructor’s manual; a test bank; PowerPoint slides; downloadable MP3 study guides; and interactive flash cards. (shrink)
Recent findings suggest that our capacity to imagine the future depends on our capacity to remember the past. However, the extent to which episodic memory is involved in our capacity to think about what could have happened in our past, yet did not occur (i.e., episodic counterfactual thinking), remains largely unexplored. The current experiments investigate the phenomenological characteristics and the influence of outcome valence on the experience of past, future and counterfactual thoughts. Participants were asked to mentally simulate past, (...) future, and counterfactual events with positive or negative outcomes. Features of their subjective experiences during each type of simulation were measured using questionnaires and autobiographical interviews. The results suggest that clarity and vividness were higher for past than future and counterfactual simulations. Additionally, emotional intensity was lower for counterfactual simulations than past and future simulations. Finally, outcome valence influenced participants’ judgment of probability for future and counterfactual simulations. (shrink)
This article provides somephilosophical ``groundwork'' for contemporary debatesabout the status of the idea(l) of critical thinking.The major part of the article consists of a discussionof three conceptions of ``criticality,'' viz., criticaldogmatism, transcendental critique (Karl-Otto Apel),and deconstruction (Jacques Derrida). It is shown thatthese conceptions not only differ in their answer tothe question what it is ``to be critical.'' They alsoprovide different justifications for critique andhence different answers to the question what giveseach of them the ``right'' to be critical. It is (...) arguedthat while transcendental critique is able to solvesome of the problems of the dogmatic approach tocriticality, deconstruction provides the most coherentand self-reflexive conception of critique. A crucialcharacteristic of the deconstructive style of critiqueis that this style is not motivated by the truth ofthe criterion (as in critical dogmatism) or by acertain conception of rationality (as intranscendental critique), but rather by a concern forjustice. It is suggested that this concern should becentral to any redescription of the idea(l) ofcritical thinking. (shrink)
Although higher education understands the need to develop critical thinkers, it has not lived up to the task consistently. Students are graduating deficient in these skills, unprepared to think critically once in the workforce. Limited development of cognitive processing skills leads to less effective leaders. Various definitions of critical thinking are examined to develop a general construct to guide the discussion as critical thinking is linked to constructivism, leadership, and education. Most pedagogy is content-based built on deep knowledge. (...) Successful critical thinking pedagogy is moving away from this paradigm, teaching students to think complexly. Some of the challenges faced by higher education moving to a critical thinking curricula are discussed, and recommendations are offered for improving outcomes. (shrink)
This study presents the results of an empirical analysis of the relationship between managerial thinking style and ethical decision-making. Data from 200 managers across multiple organizations and industries demonstrated that managers predominantly adopt a utilitarian perspective when forming ethical intent across a series of business ethics vignettes. Consistent with expectations, managers utilizing a balanced linear/nonlinear thinking style demonstrated a greater overall willingness to provide ethical decisions across ethics vignettes compared to managers with a predominantly linear thinking style. (...) However, results comparing the ethical decision-making of balanced thinking managers and nonlinear thinking managers were generally inconsistent across the ethics vignettes. Unexpectedly, managers utilizing a balanced linear/nonlinear thinking style were least likely to adopt an act utilitarian rationale for ethical decision-making across the vignettes, suggesting that balanced thinkers may be more likely to produce ethical decisions by considering a wider range of alternatives and ruling out those that are justified solely on the basis of their outcomes. Implications are discussed for future research and practice related to management education and development, and ethical decision-making theory. (shrink)
On the point that, in practices of critical thinking, we respond spontaneously in concrete situations, this paper presents an account on behalf of Wittgenstein. I argue that the ‘seeing-things-aright’ model of Luntley's Wittgenstein is not adequate, since it pays insufficient attention to radically new circumstances, in which the content of norms is updated. While endorsing Bailin's emphasis on criteria of critical thinking, Wittgenstein would agree with Papastephanou and Angeli's demand to look behind criteriology. He maintains the primacy of (...) the practical, and yet contends that a reasonable person lets rules of rationality compel her. These rules are not mere heuristics. I further examine Burbules' conception of communicative reason, and, among others, his interpretation of Wittgenstein's sign-post example. (shrink)
Philosophers speak—or, rather, they respond to various forms of speaking that are handed to them. This book by one of our most distinguished philosophers focuses on the communicative aspect of philosophical thought. Peperzak’s central focus is “addressing”: what distinguishes speaking or writing from rumination is their being directed by someone to someone. To be involved in philosophy is to be part of a tradition through which thinkers propose their findings to others, who respond by offering their own appropriations to their (...) interlocutors.After a critical sketch of the conception of modern philosophy, Peperzak presents a succinct analysis of speaking, insisting on the radical distinction between speaking about and speaking to. He enlarges this analysis to history and tries to answer the question whether philosophy also implies a certain form of listening and responding to words of God. Since philosophical speech about persons can neither honor nor reveal their full truth, speaking and thinking about God is even more problematic. Meditation about the archaic Word cannot reach the Speaker unless it turns into prayer, or—as Descartes wrote—into a contemplation that makes the thinker “consider, admire, and adore the beauty of God’s immense light, as much as the eyesight of my blinded mind can tolerate.”“Thinking is a work of genuine and original scholarship which responds to the tradition of philosophical thinking with a critique of its language, style, focus, and scope.”—Catriona Hanley, Loyola College, Maryland. (shrink)
It is human nature to wonder how things might have turned out differently--either for the better or for the worse. For the past two decades psychologists have been intrigued by this phenomenon, which they call counterfactual thinking. Specifically, researchers have sought to answer the "big" questions: Why do people have such a strong propensity to generate counterfactuals, and what functions does counterfactual thinking serve? What are the determinants of counterfactual thinking, and what are its adaptive and psychological (...) consequences? This important work brings together a collection of thought-provoking papers by social and cognitive psychologists who have made important theoretical and empirical contributions to our understanding of this topic. The essays in this volume contain novel theoretical insights, and, in many cases descriptions of previously unpublished empirical studies. The Psychology of Counterfactual Thinking provides an excellent overview of this fascinating topic for researchers, as well as advanced undergraduates and graduates in psychology--particularly those with an interest in social cognition, social judgment, decision judgment, decision making, thinking and reasoning. (shrink)
The aim of this article is to investigate possibilities for conceptions of critical thinking beyond the established educational framework that emphasizes skills. Distancing ourselves from the older rationalist framework, we explain that what we think wrong with the skills perspective is, amongst other things, its absolutization of performativity and outcomes. In reviewing the relevant discourse, we accept that it is possible for the skills paradigm to be change?friendly and context?sensitive but we argue that it is oblivious to other, non?purposive (...) kinds of rationality that are indispensable to critical thought. Our suggestion is that there is an aporetic element in critical thought that is missing from contemporary educational positions. We consider some other efforts to redeem the surplus of criticality that performativity fails to take into account and conclude that the aporetic element that we highlight accommodates better than other theories do the significance of thematizing the taken?for?granted instead of focusing on problem solving. (shrink)
Attempts to persuade us - to believe something, to do something, to buy something - are everywhere. What is less clear is how one is to think critically about such attempts and whether any of them are sound arguments. Critical Thinking: A Concise Guide is a much-needed guide to thinking skills and a clear introduction to thinking clearly and rationally for oneself. Accessibly written, this book equips readers with the essential skills required to tell a good argument (...) from a bad one. (shrink)
This chapter considers in what sense, if any, planning and future thinking is involved both in the sort of behaviour examined by McCarty et al. (1999) and in the sort of behaviour measured by researchers creating versions of Tulving's spoon test. It argues that mature human planning and future thinking involves a particular type of temporal cognition, and that there are reasons to be doubtful as to whether either of those two approaches actually assesses this type of cognition. (...) To anticipate, it argues that there is a commonsense notion of planning according to which planning involves event-independent thought about time. It also argues that thinking about the future involves the ability to think about the potential temporal locations of events within a linear temporal framework in which temporal locations are unique rather than repeated. (shrink)
In this essay, I draw on Henri Bergson and Maurice Merleau-Ponty to interrogate what philosophy is and how it can continue to think. Though my answer is not reducible to the views of either philosopher, what joins them is an attempt to elaborate philosophy as a different way of seeing. In this light, I propose a view of philosophy as prosthesis—as a means and a way for seeing differently. Rather than a simple tool, philosophy as prosthesis is a transformative supplement, (...) one that our bodily perception calls for and wherein that perception is recast. Rather than a fixed or assured view, this prosthesis holds open the interval in which thinking can take place. Philosophy, I argue, must wait. It sees and thinks hesitatingly, for the temporality it inscribes is not a foreseeable development but the unfolding of life as tendency, as that which creates its own possibility as it comes into existence. (shrink)
The Bologna Framework for higher education has agreed on three “cycle descriptors”—knowledge, skill and general competence—which are to constitute the learning outcomes and credit ranges for the three cycles of higher education: The Bachelor, the Master and the PhD. In connection with the implementations of the national qualification framework these descriptors initiated a new debate on the possibility of Bildung within higher education in Norway. Pursuing this question of whether the triad knowledge, skill and general competences makes possible or prevents (...) Bildung within higher education I argue that regardless of how one conceptualizes Bildung, one must say something about the kind of thinking that initiates a process transforming knowledge to become internalised so as to influence one’s choices and actions. A vital aim for the initiative of the Bologna process as envisioned in the Bologna Declaration 1999 was to develop a “Europe of Knowledge”. Underpinning this and other educational documents it appears that lack of knowledge is seen as an important explanation to todays many challenges. A confidence in knowledge per se as having a transformative power in itself seems to be a belief supporting the knowledge policy that dominates official documents. Following Kierkegaard and his critique of becoming objective as nurturing disinterestedness, I am critical to an understanding of knowledge as transformative in itself if knowledge primarily is understood as objective knowledge. In this paper I argue that in order to take responsibility for the knowledge one holds, a thinking which Kierkegaard calls subjective is an important contribution to one kind of thinking involved if knowledge shall initiate a transformation of one’s life and thus foster responsibility. (shrink)
Should we always engage in critical thinking about issues of public policy, such as health care, gun control, and LGBT rights? Michael Huemer (2005) has argued for the claim that in some cases it is not epistemically responsible to engage in critical thinking on these issues. His argument is based on a reliabilist conception of the value of critical thinking. This article analyzes Huemer's argument against the epistemic responsibility of critical thinking by engaging it critically. It (...) presents an alternative account of the value of critical thinking that is tied to the notion of forming and deploying a critical identity. And it develops an account of our epistemic responsibility to engage in critical thinking that is not dependent on reliability considerations alone. The primary purpose of the article is to provide critical thinking students, or those that wish to reflect on the value of critical thinking, with an opportunity to think metacritically about critical thinking by examining an argument that engages the question of whether it is epistemically responsible for one to engage in critical thinking. (shrink)
To grasp the truth in traditional Chinese classics, we need to uncover the long obscured xiang è±¡ (image) thinking, which has long been overshadowed by Occidentalism. xiang thinking is the most fundamental thought of human beings. The logic of linguistics all comes from xiang thinking . Through conceptual thinking, people can understand Western classics on metaphysics, yet they may not completely understand the various schools of Chinese classics. The difference between Chinese and Western ways of (...) class='Hi'>thinking originated in the difference of the basic views developed in the Axial period . Since Aristotle, Western metaphysical ideas have all been manifested in substantiality, objectivity, and being ready-made, whereas Chinese Taiji, Dao, Xin-xing, and Zen were manifested in the non-substantiality, non-objectivity, and non-ready-made-ness of a dynamic whole. To grasp substance, rational and logical thinking such as definition, judgment, and reasoning is necessary. On the other hand, to grasp Taiji, Dao, etc., which is a dynamic whole or non-substances, xiang thinking , which is related to perception and rich in poetic association, is essential. History has taught us a lesson, i.e., when we opened the window to logical thought, we closed that of xiang thinking . We should remember the words of Xu Guangqi, i.e., To mingle harmoniously and understand thoroughly so as to excel. (shrink)
In this paper, I characterize Susan Haack’s so called passes-for fallacy, analyze both what makes this inference compelling and why it is illegitimate, and finally explain why reflecting on the passes-for fallacy—and others like it—should become part of critical thinking pedagogy for humanities students. The analysis proceeds by examining a case of the passes-for fallacy identified by Haack in the work of Ruth Bleier. A charitable reconstruction of Bleier’s reasoning shows that it is enlightening to regard the passes-for fallacy (...) as an abuse of the application conditions of the concept of bias, rather than as an egregious case of Hasty Generalization. (shrink)
Dialogic or dialogical education is an umbrella term that encompasses a myriad of different and at times conflicting approaches. As there is no agreed-upon definition of ‘dialogue’ (not that there is or should be one unified definition), and even fewer clear and systematic guidelines for application, researchers and practitioners in the DE field are faced with countless questions and dilemmas. My aim in this paper is therefore to offer some ideas for a general outline of how to employ systematic (...) class='Hi'>thinking on DE. This outline can serve as a basis for the development of a methodological tool that can enable researchers and practitioners to think about and apply dialogical practices with greater clarity, coherency and consistency. Following a normatively oriented (rather than instrumental) systematic line of reasoning, this paper will begin by discussing the basic values of three central dialogical approaches and then move on to discuss more practical parameters that surpass strictly pedagogical and didactic concerns. (shrink)
The author describes a published symposium which debated Is Critical Thinking Biased? The symposium meant to address concerns about critical thinking that are being expressed by feminist and postmodern scholars. However, through the author's critique, and the symposium respondent's, we learn the participants ended up begging the question of bias. The author maintains that the belief that critical thinking is unbiased is based on an assumption that knowers can be separated from what is known. She argues that (...) critical thinking is a tool which has no life of its own, it only has meaning and purpose when fallible, biased people use it (weak sense bias). She challenges the idea of a transcendental epistemological perspective, thus all knowledge is provisional and perspectival (strong sense bias). The author begins to redescribe a transformed critical thinking as constructive thinking. (shrink)
In order to develop further the methods of scenario building and to facilitate the paths towards desirable and sustainable futures, we cannot do without a nonlinear evolutionary thinking. The theory of self-organization of complex systems, called also synergetics, is a scientific basis for such a thinking, the main principles of which are under consideration in the paper. Synergetics provides us with the knowledge of constructive principles of coevolution of the complex social systems, coevolution of countries and geopolitical regions (...) being at different stages of development, integration of the East and the West, the North and the South. (shrink)
The central idea of the paper is that human thinking consists in a movement through which a person socially interacts with herself. Consequently, thinking does not offer the experience of a private refuge in the intimacy of the individual thinker's self-knowing, but a field where multiple points of view interact by contesting, distancing, approaching, agreeing or disagreeing, one to another. Classical (Isocrates, 1929/1968) and contemporary (Billig, 1987) rhetorical approaches to thinking stress that both “inner” and “social” discourse (...) are addressed to someone else, are determined by the anticipation of this audience, and both are interested in persuading it. In doing so, the discursive, rhetoric, and dialogic aspects of thinking become tied to argumentation. The paper tries to show, following the dialogical notion of discourse of Bakhtin (1986) and Vološinov (1929/1986) that, since every act of thinking consists in the raising of a point of view addressing another one and oriented by a particular interest, every stream of thought involves a rhetorical activity. A distinction between rhetoric and argumentation is proposed. On this basis, the rhetorical nature of thinking is discussed beyond argumentative discourse. Overall, this discussion contributes to a rhetorical approach to dialogism. (shrink)
This book is a rich collection of philosophical essays radically interrogating key notions and preoccupations of the phenomenological tradition. While using Heidegger’s Being and Time as its permanent point of reference and dispute, this collection also confronts other important philosophers, such as Kant, Nietzsche, and Derrida. The projects of these pivotal thinkers of finitude are relentlessly pushed to their extreme, with respect both to their unexpected horizons and to their as yet unexplored analytical potential. A Finite Thinking shows that, (...) paradoxically, where the thought of finitude comes into its own it frees itself, not only to reaffirm a certain transformed and transformative presence, but also for a non-religious reconsideration and reaffirmation of certain theologemes, as well as of the body, heart, and love. This book shows the literary dimension of philosophical discourse, providing important enabling ideas for scholars of literature, cultural theory, and philosophy. (shrink)
The article will argue that Charles Sanders Peirce's concepts of the ?Dynamics of Belief and Doubt?, the ?Fixation of Belief? as well as ?habits of belief? taken together comprise a theory of learning. The ?dynamics of belief and doubt? are Peirce's explanation for the process of changing from one belief to another. Teaching, then, would be an attempt to control that process. Teaching critical thinking represents an attempt to teach the learner to regulate and discipline his or her own (...) ?settlement of belief?. The ?settlement of belief? takes four different forms based on doubt. Peirce's concept of the ?habits of belief? refers to the inner and outer constraints placed both on belief as such and belief as it becomes action. The article may be read as both an exegesis of learning and as a pedagogical guide for teaching critical thinking to college students. (shrink)
Heidegger’s critique of metaphysics is central to his attempt to re-instantiate the question of being. This paper examines Heidegger’s critique of metaphysics by looking at the relationship between metaphysics and thought. This entails an identification of the intimate relationship Heidegger maintains exists between philosophy and metaphysics, an analysis of Heidegger’s critique of this association, and a discussion of his proposal that philosophy has been so damaged by its association with metaphysics that it must be replaced with meditative thinking. It (...) is not quite clear, however, how the overcoming of metaphysical thinking is to occur especially given Heidegger’s insistence that relying on human will to effect an alteration in thinking simply re-instantiates the metaphysical perspective to be overcome. While several critics have argued Heidegger has no solution to this issue, instead holding that thought must simply be open to being’s ‘self’-transformation if and when it occurs, I turn to Heidegger’s notion of trace and a number of scattered comments on the relationship between meditative thinking and willing as non-willing to show Heidegger: (a) was aware of this issue; and (b) tried to resolve it by recognising a reconceptualised notion of willing not based on or emanating from the aggressive willing of metaphysics. (shrink)
Thinking from A-Z is a lively and incisive introduction to critical thinking by the bestselling author of Philosophy: The Basics. The alphabetically-arranged entries cover a wide range of reasoning techniques, fallacies, rhetorical tricks and psychological obstacles to clear thought. The new entries in this updated edition include: catch-22, contraries, counterexample, domino effect, exception that proves the rule, Ockham's Razor, paradox, Socratic fallacy, "that's a value judgement," and truth by adage. Topical examples, extensive cross-referencing, and a witty, straightforward style (...) make this an indispensable reference tool, as well as an irresistible guide to dip into. (shrink)
In this paper I argue for a computational theory of thinking that does not eliminate the mind. In doing so, I will defend computationalism against the arguments of John Searle and James Fetzer, and briefly respond to other common criticisms.
When computing is defined as the causal implementation of algorithms and algorithms are defined as effective decision procedures, human thought is mental computation only if it is governed by mental algorithms. An examination of ordinary thinking, however, suggests that most human thought processes are non-algorithmic. Digital machines, moreover, are mark-manipulating or string-processing systems whose marks or strings do not stand for anything for those systems, while minds are semiotic (or “signusing”) systems for which signs stand for other things for (...) those systems. Computing, at best, turns out to be no more than a special kind of thinking. (shrink)
Castoriadis views the project of autonomy as central to both political action and philosophical thinking. Although he acknowledges that the political project has retreated, he insists on its thinkability as a viable project. We argue that this insistence gives rise to an unresolved tension. Specifically, Castoriadis’ substantive response to the question ‘what ought we to think?’, which he gives in terms of the pursuit of the philosophical project of autonomy, ultimately fails to recognise the unavoidable effect of the political (...) project’s retreat on the thinker and this failure raises doubts as to whether Castoriadis’ own thinking has the potential to move beyond a merely journalistic style of critique, which he finds objectionable. (shrink)
This paper is concerned with Chisholm's "adverbial theory of sensing". An attempt is made to give a literal statement of what it means "to sense redly" which is consistent with what Chisholm says about sensing and also meets various objections to adverbial theories. The paper concludes with a brief consideration of why it is that Chisholm does not offer an adverbial theory of perceiving, or of thinking in general, as well as of sensing.
This paper is a philosophical study of the nature of thinking based on the philosophies of Martin Heidegger and Rudolf Steiner. For Heidegger, the pre-Socratic Greek philosophers exemplified genuine thinking, appreciating the meaning of Being. But this kind of philosophy was soon replaced by the onto-theological approach, in which Being was reductively objectified, and the question of the meaning of Being was forgotten. Hence, according to Heidegger, we still have to learn to think. Commentators on Heidegger point to (...) the similarities between his approach to thinking and that of various mystical teachings, such as those of Meister Eckhart or Zen Buddhism. Another less well known philosopher who devoted himself to this question was Rudolf Steiner. Like Heidegger, Steiner claims that we do not know what it means to really think. Steiner was however more outspoken in insisting that only through a kind of meditative practice can we directly experience the nature of thinking. Present day materialistic explanations of thinking as caused by the brain stand in clear opposition to his spiritual conception of thinking. Drawing upon Heidegger (somewhat) and Steiner (mostly) I argue against the materialistic understanding of thinking as jumping to unwarranted conclusions. The paper ends with describing some of the elements of Steiner Waldorf education which are intended to promote the development of living, creative thinking. (shrink)
A demanding introduction to logic and critical thinking, this book offers more traditional means of teaching the art of reasoning at a time when the field has become almost mathematical. Francis Dauer has rethought the framework for teaching reasoning in general and formal logic in particular, the desired epistemological context, and the role of the fallacies. The result is a coherent and very readable work, informed by Dauer's extensive experience teaching and writing on the subject.
The primary aim of this article is to bring the work of Deleuze and Guattari to bear on the question ofcommunication in the classroom. I focus on the mathematics classroom, where agency and subjectivity are highly regulated by the rituals of the discipline, and where neoliberal psychological frameworks continue to dominate theories of teaching and learning. Moreover, the nature ofcommunication in mathematics classrooms remains highlyelusive and problematic, due in part to the distinct relationship the discipline has with verbal language and (...) thought. I first discuss current attempts to better address the embodied nature ofcommunication in mathematics classrooms, and argue that these remain overly logo-centric and language-centric in their conception of thinking. I then show how the work of Deleuze and Guattari on thought as a radical disruptive event can be used effectively to critique current pedagogical practices that privilege a narrow conception of communication in the classroom. I examine a set of exemplary classroom videos used in mathematics teacher education to argue that the current approach fails to honor the highly creative and disruptive nature ofthinking. (shrink)
Assuming that critical thinking dispositions are at least as important as critical thinking abilities, Ennis examines the concept of critical thinking disposition and suggests some criteria for judging sets of them. He considers a leading approach to their analysis and offers as an alternative a simpler set, including the disposition to seek alternatives and be open to them. After examining some gender-bias and subject-specificity challenges to promoting critical thinking dispositions, he notes some difficulties involved in assessing (...) critical thinking dispositions, and suggests an exploratory attempt to assess them. (shrink)