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The Pig That Wants to Be Eaten: 100 Experiments for the Armchair Philosopher Paperback – June 27, 2006
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Top Customer Reviews
The author drew upon many sources. The title of this book is from an issue brought up in the well-known book "The Restaurant At The End Of The Universe" by Douglas Adams. Not impressed? How about just some of the other sources, such as René Descartes, Thomas Nagel, David Hume, Antony Flew, and Bjorn Lomborg?
**** There is no need to be a doctor, professor, or anything else which requires higher education. Each experiment of philosophy is written in such a way that your intelligence will not be offended, no matter your normal or higher education status. If you are looking for a book that will make you actually sit back and THINK, then I highly suggest this one. ****
Reviewed by Detra Fitch of Huntress Reviews.
Don't get me wrong. The author does a good job of placing these concerns in context (although this book of 100 issues really only deals with a half dozen or so -- euthanasia, vegetarianism, utilitarianism, mind/body, theological philosophy, and another one or two minor issues), he doesn't really do much to illuminate them. Perhaps this would have been better produced as a book of 25 issues with cohesive and comprehensive arguments for each side. Instead, he (barely) gives us "talking points" for each of them (and frustratingly leaves us without any references for ANY of them...)
This is a good book to pick up if you want to run your ethical system through its paces, but it really won't change your mind about anything, so it is kind of tepid. In addition, there is little or nothing new here to even an armchair philosopher, whom this is intended to address (the cover says).
Pick it up as a discussion starter over the family dinner table, to get the kids started thinking about these concepts early. But, as others have posted, don't read the whole thing in series. There is too much repitition and too little depth to cause this to be an exercise of any merit.
Baggini explores philosophical issues from every philosophical discipline, logic, metaphysics, ethics, aesthetics, anything that can be named that is related to philosophy is addressed in one of the many thought exercises. The deceptively simple situations lead to hours of consideration after reading, as they're all open ended, though Baggini occasionally comes down hard on one side or another.
One of this text's many strengths is the readable way in which it addresses each philosophical concern. Background knowledge of even a passing nature of each problem would be superfluous as Baggini puts each issue into a context that's easily understood by laypeople.
Baggini's collection of thought exercises is a worthwhile read for any and everyone. Important moral and existential questions are raised by the text and it serves as a fantastic reference or coffee table book even after being read cover to cover.
These puzzles and brain teasers are like a greatest hits album covering the entire history of civilization. Some date back to Greek or Roman times, while others are far more modern, including the title entry which is based on a passage from Douglas Adams' Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy. Few, if any, of the entries are original, as the author readily admits.
Each entry is occupies a page or less, and is then followed by a page or two of commentary. You can read and think about one entry for five or ten minutes, then put the book down for a while without losing continuity. Of course, these brief discussions are anything but exhaustive. Personally, I had read most or all of these puzzles before. Still, I found it interesting to see them presented in one succinct collection.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Very fun book, that found a way to always disagree with you, no matter what you think.Published 1 month ago by Juan
Good survey of modern philosophy. Author needs a good editor to sharpen prose and to enforce consistency.Published 3 months ago by J D GOETTEE
My review is the average of a 5 and a 1. The first, 5 star rating goes for the collection of great short thought experiments, while the worst review is for the comments of the... Read morePublished 9 months ago by Amazon Customer
The boom likes other books of Julian Baggini tries to break the cliches and persudes us to ponder.Published 10 months ago by Mehdi Abbasi Azad
It is not a bad book for beginners of philosophy. It is written in simple language that most people can understand.Published 10 months ago by YIPLIU