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Critical Thinking Unleashed (Elements of Philosophy) [Paperback]

Elliot D. Cohen
3.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)

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Book Description

September 16, 2009 0742564320 978-0742564329
From alcohol and drug addiction to rage on national highways and in airports, many human beings have kept themselves in perpetual turmoil and despair. From encroachment on individual rights and liberties to wars of attrition and mass genocide, human history has continually repeated itself due to a failure to see the light. Containing numerous skill-building exercises, Critical Thinking Unleashed seeks to cultivate the reasoning skills required to overcome such destructive human tendencies and to live meaningful and productive lives in a democratic society. In contrast to other treatments of practical reasoning, Elliot D. Cohen not only teaches students how to identify and refute irrational premises_he also teaches them how to construct rational antidotes to combat the personal, social, and political obstacles they confront in everyday life. Moreover, Cohen encourages students to use the theories and ideas embodied in the history of philosophy in order to construct these rational guides, drawing examples from many contemporary sources. Demonstrating the practical relevance and import of many historically significant philosophers (e.g. Socrates, Aristotle, Epictetus, Hume, Kant, Mill, Sartre, and Nietzsche), the book presents a practical, non-technical, and comprehensive approach to critical thinking.

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Critical Thinking Unleashed (Elements of Philosophy) + The New Rational Therapy: Thinking Your Way to Serenity, Success, and Profound Happiness + What Would Aristotle Do? Self-Control Through the Power of Reason
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Editorial Reviews

Review

In Critical Thinking Unleashed, Elliot D. Cohen takes the reader through the various parameters of reasoning. It is complex, yet fascinating stuff. But what I found most important perhaps was how so much of what he wrestles with, from deconstructing the news stories behind Iraqi WMD to 'spin' in political campaign ads, cuts to the heart of the challenge we face as citizens in today’s democracy. (Peter W. Singer, Brookings Institution, author of Wired for War: The Robotics Revolution and Conflict in the 21st Century)

In welcome contrast to the many disembodied treatments of critical thinking that have been published, this book speaks with a warm, human voice that knows what is at stake in thinking and provides a thorough tour of the logic and rhetoric that every educated person should master. The author's deep interest in the practical application of the tools of philosophy comes through clearly in this text. Fresh treatments of familiar topics provide a comprehensive view of critical thinking that is distinguished by its humanity and realism. (Greg Tropea, California State University, Chico)

About the Author

Elliot D. Cohen is professor of philosophy and chair of the Department of Humanities at Indian River State College in Florida. He is executive co-director and co-founder of the American Society for Philosophy, Counseling, and Psychotherapy; professor and chair at the Indian River College; editor-in-chief and founder of The International Journal of Applied Philosophy and The International Journal of Philosophical Practice. Author of twelve books and numerous articles, his most recent books are New Rational Therapy: Thinking Your Way to Serenity, Success, and Profound Happiness and What Would Aristotle Do? Self-Control through the Power of Reason. Other recent books include Philosophers at Work: Issues and Practice of Philosophy; The Virtuous Therapist: Ethical Practice of Counseling & Psychotherapy; and News Incorporated: Corporate Media Ownership and its Threat to Democracy.

Product Details

  • Series: Elements of Philosophy
  • Paperback: 416 pages
  • Publisher: Rowman & Littlefield Publishers (September 16, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0742564320
  • ISBN-13: 978-0742564329
  • Product Dimensions: 1 x 6.7 x 9.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,104,428 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Very Practical! September 26, 2013
By Paul K
Format:Paperback
Not only does this book cover the full range of topics covered in other critical thinking texts (formal logic, induction, scientific method, etc.), it also has separate chapters on behavioral reasoning (reasoning that leads to action) and emotional reasoning (reasoning involved in emotions). The author, who is the founder of "Logic-Based Therapy," a type of philosophical therapy, shows clearly how irrational thinking can lead to regrettable actions as well as stressful emotions; and he does so in the context of teaching real-life, practical skills for avoiding this type of bad logic. There are many exercises for these purposes included throughout its chapter sections. Along the same lines, the author's treatment of informal fallacies is unique in that it not only covers the conventional types of informal fallacies (appeal to pity, argument from ignorance, personal attack, composition, etc.), but also covers fallacies like demanding perfection, damnation, catastrophic thinking, dutiful worrying, and others that are major roadblocks to rational thinking yet are not usually covered in other treatments of critical thinking.
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1 of 5 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Missing Option: 0 stars August 16, 2012
By Brian M
Format:Paperback
This was purchased as a required textbook for a course. The book poorly written, poorly edited, and poorly laid out. As the guide for an introductory level course, this was very unhelpful other then to generate tons of homework assignments.
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