First published in 2012, Doing Philosophy presents the basics of how ‘to do’ philosophy — what philosophy is, how we can think, the nature of logic, some special terms — in a straightforward and easy to understand style. Then, using questions and exercises as well as everyday examples, the author takes the reader on a wide-ranging tour of key philosophical topics which, as well as the ‘standard fare’ of logic, epistemology, mind, God etc., also includes ethical, social, scientific, cultural and human issues such as time, cosmology, war, animal rights, euthanasia, abortion, genetics, evolution, and the meaning of life.
The author’s emphasis throughout is that philosophy is accessible to anyone keen enough to try and do it and that, as a subject, philosophy is practical, fascinating and exciting. By encouraging independent critical thinking and being succinct yet informative, the book involves the reader with the history, the breadth of subject matter, the skills of philosophising and the benefits that philosophy can offer to the enquiring individual.
The book accesses major philosophical topics briefly, breaking them down into convenient points, with challenging questions throughout and exercise questions at the end of each chapter, whilst introducing major thinkers and their ideas. There is an extensive further reading list to help those who wish to take this absorbing subject further.
Table of Contents
Introduction. 1. Doing Philosophy 2. Some Philosophical Terms 3. Argument and Logic 4. Possibility 5. What Do We Know? 6. Perceiving the World 7. Mind 8. Right and Wrong 9. Equality 10. God 11. Science 12. Time 13. Human Rights 14. Freedom and Determinism 15. Politics, Political Equality and the State of the World 16. War 17. Punishment 18. Abortion 19. Euthanasia 20. Animal Rights 21. Genetics 22. Life, Death, Immortality and Reincarnation 23. Evolution 24. Cosmology 25. The Meaning of Life. Annotated Bibliography. Extended Reading. Internet Resources. Index
Gerald Rochelle has worked as a visiting philosopher in schools for the Royal Institute of Philosophy Jacobsen Scheme and was editor of the journal Practical Philosophy. He has conducted workshops in Europe and in the US. His work with practical philosophy, in particular Café Philosophy, led him to write this simple down to earth guide to how to do philosophy.