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Introduction to Logic [Hardcover]

by Irving M. Copi, Carl Cohen
4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (28 customer reviews)

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Book Description

August 1998 0130102024 978-0130102027 10th
For undergraduate-level courses in Introduction to Logic. The most complete, authoritative treatment of introductory logic - both deductive and inductive, classical and modern - this text prepares students to understand, recognize, and apply classical syllogistic logic and the more powerful techniques of modern symbolic logic. All concepts and techniques are carefully and thoroughly explained and are brought to life through a wealth of real-life examples of lively arguments and explanations. These examples are drawn from political speeches, classics of philosophy (ancient and modern), scientific articles, writings on economics, literature, religious texts, and many recent writings on contemporary moral and social controversies familiar to students - all demonstrating the application of logical principles by serious writers and thinkers trying to solve real problems in a wide range of fields.
--This text refers to an alternate Hardcover edition.

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

Copi and Cohen's Introduction to Logic, Ninth Edition, is by far the most complete treatment of introductory logic, both deductive and inductive, both classical and modern. It is the standard text in logic today--the paradigm of clarity and accuracy. This text enables all students to understand, recognize, and apply classical syllogistic logic and the more powerful techniques of modern symbolic logic. Lively argumentative excerpts from politics, philosophy, science, and contemporary controversies bring substance and life to the study of logic--demonstrating the application of logical principles by serious writers and thinkers trying to solve real problems. Arguments excerpted as illustrations and as exercise material include examples of fallacies to show students how arguments go wrong when logical principles are ignored or misapplied. A few examples of argumentative reasoning were constructed for the book to demonstrate principles; however, it is the wealth of current, up-to-date examples selected from actual texts representing many fields of interest that set this book apart. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Excerpt. © Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.

Many changes will be found in this new edition of Introduction to Logic, but instructors who have used previous editions may be assured that the integrity and spirit of this book have been retained. Much of the detail of previous editions and most of the exercises also have been retained. The changes introduced—of five different kinds—are designed to make this well-tested volume more accessible, and thus more effective as an instrument in the teaching of elementary logic. We recount these changes briefly here, addressing this report mainly to those acquainted with previous editions.

A Revised Chapter 1.

Structural changes have been made in the first part of the book. The expansion of the opening chapters in the preceding edition was found by many users to hinder student progress along what may be called "the main line" of instruction in logic. We have therefore compressed the material of what was Part One into a single opening chapter in which the same topics are addressed, but more crisply, and in ways likely to provide a better base for the more advanced material in the later chapters of the book. Chapter 1 has now become very hefty as a result—but it is also richer, more clearly formulated, and more fun to read.

Exposition-Rules and Definitions.

The most pervasive of the changes in this edition, and most important too, we think, are the very many adjustments in the ways in which theoretical matters are explained and expressed. We have long prided ourselves on the logical accuracy of Introduction to Logic, and of course we would do nothing to injure our hard-earned reputation for reliability. But our colleagues around the country have advised us, on many occasions, that our efforts to be exact, and to cut no corners, have in some parts of the book resulted in formulations rather difficult to digest—especially for beginning students.

This is not an easy matter to address. We have worked hard to ameliorate this problem—and if we have succeeded in this edition many of the resultant changes will be hardly noticeable. Explanations should be formulated in language that is transparent and thoroughly perspicuous, and (we hope) that will cause few brows to wrinkle.

Some illustrations of the kind of changes we have made are worth noting. Several of our colleagues observed that, where a set of rules or criteria have been put forward (as, for example, those to test the validity of categorical syllogisms, or to appraise the merit of analogical arguments), our exposition relied too heavily, in referring to a rule, upon the number assigned to it rather than to the substance of the rule itself. We have reformulated such exposition, consistently referring now to the rule itself.

Another example of reformulation will be noted in the chapter on definition. Previously, in explaining methods of defining, we caused needless confusion by using that much misunderstood word "connotation." The terms "connotation" and "denotation" were not employed erroneously, but to avoid confusion, we now rely fully upon the terms "intension" and "extension" in explaining techniques of definition.

Even format can serve to confuse, or to clarify. It was and remains our practice, in presenting deductive exercises in symbols, to mark the conclusion of an argument with the three triangular dots (.-.) that commonly represent "therefore." But in earlier editions we had sometimes placed this sign on the same line as the last premise of the argument, after a slash; and sometimes we had placed this sign on a separate line of its own. This proved to be a source of distraction if not confusion, so we now consistently place the three-dot "therefore" sign of conclusion on a separate line. This format enables students to see more sharply the claim that the argument is making, and what the target of a needed proof must be.

Many such adjustments appear in this edition, far too many to permit their identification in this Preface. In some cases the change is no more than the clarification of a transition, in others the tightening of a paragraph in which the prose was blurred. A textbook in logic ought to be concise, but it must also be precise; precision and clarity we have prized above all.

Along with such adjustments we have sought, where feasible, to strike a lighter and more friendly tone in this edition, to introduce illustrations or observations that may amuse as they instruct. The study of logic is sometimes laborious, but it need not be forbidding.


Those who study logic with the help of this book differ very greatly in the range of their interests and in the degree of their preparation. We will not be satisfied if we fail to challenge those who are most well prepared and most acute; but those coming to systematic logic for the first time also deserve support and guidance appropriate for them. To this end, we have introduced a device that is wholly new to Introduction to Logic: We have sought to distinguish some portions in some chapters that may, for good reasons, be omitted in some learning contexts, or may be treated by instructors as tangential to "the main line." These portions can serve to challenge some students who feel ready for additional work.

Finding a way to do this without injury to the whole is problematic. We have adopted the simple device of a sidebar. These sidebars take two forms, "Advanced Material" and "For Enrichment." We emphasize that this contrivance is not meant to depreciate the passages so marked off, which are often especially interesting and demanding. But such sidebar material, we hope, will make it easier for instructors to guide their own students to a mastery of the elements of theory most critical for them—and perhaps to avoid some complexities not essential for their solid grasp of elementary logic. Many instructors will simply ignore these markings, and may do so without damage to the understanding of their students.

Technical Changes.

Some technical changes have been introduced into this edition of Introduction to Logic—changes that we think reduce ambiguity and thus support instruction.

For example, we have responded to the frequently expressed concern of colleagues by expanding the discussion of logical equivalence in Chapter 8, now more sharply emphasizing the differences between material equivalence as a truth-functional connective, and logical equivalence as a logical relation that justifies the rules of replacement. An entirely new section on this topic (section 8.6) has been inserted, and in this section we have introduced a new symbol for logical equivalence as well.

In earlier editions we allowed the equivalences expressed by the rules of replacement—the last 10 of the 19 Rules of Inference—to be symbolized by the same three-bar symbol with which material equivalence ("if and only if") is symbolized throughout. This practice had some justification, but it surely led to student confusion when, for example, rules of replacement were formulated in which the three-bar symbol appeared more than once, with more than one meaning. A distinct symbol was needed.

Selecting that symbol has been a matter of long-continuing deliberation. Many alternatives were considered and rejected for reasons pedagogical or theoretical or aesthetic. We have chosen to retain the three-bar symbol, over which a small T indicates that the equivalence confronted is a tautology. This achieves the teaching aim, we think, with a minimum of disruption. Students are rarely called upon to write the symbol for logical equivalence—but can (with this notation) recognize it unambiguously when it appears in the list of he rules of replacement that natural deduction employs.

Elsewhere in the treatment of deduction, we have changed the design of Venn diagrams in representing Categorical Syllogisms. Where previously we had used simple shading to mark off what the premises of the argument rule out, we have in this edition used slanted lines. This permits the impact of each of the two premises of a syllogism to be distinguished, and because their lines are slanted in opposite directions, a cross-hatching results when the logical impacts of the two premises overlap. Different colors we chose not to use, not wanting to convey the suggestion that students would need anything more than an ordinary pencil to employ Venn diagrams for themselves.

Revised Exercises.

Finally, exercise sets provided at the close of many sections have been enriched. Many exercises have been added, some removed. As in previous editions of Introduction to Logic, we have sought to provide a wide array of illustrative passages, where possible on controversial issues likely to be of genuine interest to college students. Some contrived exercises are still used, or course, but we take pride in the fact that the exercises are for the most part extracted from worthy books and periodicals of very great variety. We have not excluded the writing of classical, and even ancient philosophers—but we greatly favor arguments and illustrations produced in the push and pull of discourse in the twentieth and twenty-first centuries.

As in the past, we have scrupulously avoided partisanship in selecting these materials. When some passage provides a telling example of some mistake in reasoning, or a fine illustration of some argumentative technique, we have included it whatever our judgment of its conclusion might be. What we wrote in the Preface to the preceding edition we again affirm: The argumentative chips must be allowed to fall where they may.

Finally, we draw attention to the substantial influence of criticisms and suggestions received from colleagues, senior and junior—whose names and institutions are noted elsewhere in these pages. We strive to make Introduction to Logic a teaching instrument ever more finely tuned, and the responses of readers around the world have given us splendid help in spotting errors and identifying deficiencies. We earnestly welcome this thoughtful engagement-and for this continuing and widespread support we express here, not for the first or the last time, our heartfelt appreciation.

--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Product Details

  • Hardcover: 714 pages
  • Publisher: Prentice Hall College Div; 10th edition (August 1998)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0130102024
  • ISBN-13: 978-0130102027
  • Product Dimensions: 1.2 x 7 x 9.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.6 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (28 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #894,123 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
65 of 65 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best Overview and Introduction to Logic January 31, 2001
For the beginner, there's no better book to begin one's excursion into logic, both deductive and inductive, formal and informal, syllogistic and mathematical, propositional as well as predicate calculus. There is excellent competition, such as Bates' Introduction to Logic and Lemmon's book by the same name. But these books are limited in their scope, and not always as didactic and insightful as the Copi work. This book is certainly not exhaustive of all logical norms and forms, but it is quite comprehensive. I know of no other book which is so thoroughly diversified in the treatment of all logical styles and methods, and which does so with greater clarity and elegance of style. I wish this had been my textbook upon taking formal logic courses years ago; it is clearly superior to literally dozens of others that are either too simplistic or over the head of most beginning logicians.
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54 of 55 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Essential for Building Analytical Skills June 2, 2003
By A Customer
This textbook is the most valuable I've ever read. It covers all the basic stuff, like fallacies, syllogisms, truth-functional logic, and second-order predicate calculus, omitting only cutting edge stuff like modal and fuzzy logic--and gives full, lucid, elegant explanations. What's more, it shows you how logic applies to the real world by using a variety of interesting examples--something MY logic professor never bothered doing. I can guarantee you that, if you read this book carefully from cover to cover and do all the exercises and PRACTICE applying them, you will become a much smarter, more effective person. (Example: after working through this book, I was able to score in the 99th percentile on the LSAT). Anyone planning on becoming a lawyer, a scientist, or even a journalist will acquire extensive and essential analytical skills by using Copi's magnificent textbook.
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55 of 57 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Elementary, my dear reader... July 6, 2004
Logic is not just for Spock; deduction (which, if you read this book, you'll discover is rather different) is not just for Sherlock Holmes. Many if not most students of philosophy over the past 50 years have had their beginning logic training from an edition of this book, 'Introduction to Logic' by Irving M. Copi, now in its eleventh edition, also now with a co-author listed, Carl Cohen.

I first learned logic in a two-semester sequence through the philosophy department at my university from the fifth edition of Copi's text, supplemented by other material from Copi and a few others on symbolic logic. Logic was required of philosophy majors; it was strongly recommended of majors in sciences and mathematics; it was preferred for students in social sciences. Indeed, the principles of logic contained in Copi's text would not be out of place in most any discipline.

This introductory text is also recommended reading for those preparing for major placement examinations, such as the LSAT and the MCAT. Learning how to think, and recognising typical and non-so-typical flaws in argumentation and reasoning are vital in many professions; the applications for law and medicine are fairly clear.

The text is divided into different sections, including Language, Induction, and Deduction. Language issues look at aspects such as definitions, informal fallacies in language, the question of meaning, truth and validity, and how to recognise argument forms. Deduction, what Sherlock Holmes always claims to be engaging, is a method whereby the validity of the premises provide the truth of the conclusion. In fact, Holmes usually engages in Inductive reasoning, including arguments by analogy and establishing probabilities, but not certainties.
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34 of 35 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Ideal Text for Self-Study August 11, 2003
By A Customer
I bought this book (along with the study guide) and began self-studying the material to improve my logical ability. The book is relatively easy to understand even for novices with no prior training in logic and uses examples that are entertaining and interesting. The answers to select homework questions (about 1/4) are in the back so I would suggest that for self-study, either the study guide (which includes another 1/4) or the complete answer guide should also be purchased. The text itself is very fun to go through and I think Copi and Cohen do an amazing job as teachers. For those planning on taking the LSAT, this book may prove more beneficial than a test prep course if you want to understand the actual reasoning behind the test and not just regurgitate formulaic test-taking strategies.
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24 of 24 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Superb May 18, 2003
By A Customer
All I can do is echo the many enthusiastic reviews this book has already received. Copi covers a wide array of logics, formal and informal, classical and modern, and demonstrates their applications using real-life examples drawn from science, political journalism, and the law. He is lucid, nuanced, and insightful. Reading this remarkable textbook is the equivalent of taking introductory courses in symbolic logic, rhetoric, philosophy of science, and legal reasoning. I learned more from this one book than from an entire year at UC Berkeley. It's a keeper!
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24 of 24 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars using words with the precision of mathematics June 2, 1999
By A Customer
Few books have been as influential in my academic career as this text. There is a very good reason why it has been published and purchased for over 30 years: excellence continues to sell. You must study this text. It is not a weekend read. It is an intoduction to a powerful, timeless and significant area of scholarship. True, in order to appreciate this book you must be willing to dedicate a fixed amount of time for serious study. Your instuctor must understand the subject also; a teaching assistant may not do the text justice. Having said that, it is a text and course of study that any serious college student can master. You do not need to be an engineering or math/science major to master the topic or enjoy the contents. Moreover, it can become a text you do not resell. Rather you will want to keep it on your shelf for many years to remind yourself of the intellectual acumen possible from dedicated and disciplined thinking. The endeavor will bear fruit for a lifetime. One caveat: after studying this book you may find yourself impatient with others who engage in unreasonable and illogical reasoning. But then, in important projects, do they really count?
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars The single best textbook on the subject, better than anything newer or...
I've sampled some later editions of Copi's book, and they are crap compared to this. Like so many things nowadays, the information is very watered down. Read more
Published 2 months ago by Uker laying
4.0 out of 5 stars Good Book, not "like new" condition
The book I bought said it had no writing or highlighting- it was supposed to be in "like new" condition, but it ended up having writing on the pages with the question... Read more
Published 7 months ago by Nellie Praetzel
4.0 out of 5 stars The basics of classical logic
It is a classic book to learn the basic tools of deductive reasoning, definitions and fallacies. I like it for the amount of exercise that presents, but I dislike that only some... Read more
Published 7 months ago by Luis Alfonso Zazueta Bastidas
4.0 out of 5 stars Textbook approach ...
This is a textbook of some quality dealing with pure aspects of logic and reason. It presents itself in a somewhat daunting manner to those unfamiliar with the subject. Read more
Published 7 months ago by cathcartboy
5.0 out of 5 stars great study guide
Well put together and detailed. A lot of examples that I used with a later addition to intro to logic.
Published 9 months ago by veronica Parker
5.0 out of 5 stars The standard
I have been a student and teacher of logic for a long time. This is the book I would recommend. We are suffering the loss of reason, and have a lot of problems in this country to... Read more
Published 15 months ago by Dennis L. Allen
5.0 out of 5 stars nice transaction.
I used this book for my undergrad and still I have it with me. Ever so often some course work request logic in their assignments and I always look back to it as a reference.
Published 16 months ago by Rosemary B. Dall
5.0 out of 5 stars Will serve you for a lifetime
Absolutely great book. It has served me for a lifetime. And it's fun besides. The logic problems are fun puzzles to work out.
Published on June 5, 2009 by Michael Schuyler
5.0 out of 5 stars The BEST for a first course in Logic.
This was a standard text when I took a philosophy course many moons ago. At that time I focused mainly on getting through the quizzes and exams. Read more
Published on August 24, 2008 by Kersi Von Zerububbel
5.0 out of 5 stars Introduction to Logic
I read this book in early 1980.Because of my background in mathematics, I read the language and deduction portion, of my own in just few days. Read more
Published on November 22, 2004 by T. S. Dhaliwal
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