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Questions tagged [reference-request]

This tag should be used when the question is asking for specific references.

29
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16answers
26k views

What are some good introductions to philosophy?

I've been searching the questions posed here, and don't seem to find one that gives the answers I am looking for. I've proposed to start a list on meta but no one proposed anything, so I feel I must ...
40
votes
16answers
10k views

How to get started with philosophy without getting overwhelmed quickly?

I’ve spent a lot of time trying to find how to get started with philosophy but I can’t. It seems that getting started with computer programming is nothing in comparison - with computer programming it’...
92
votes
24answers
28k views

How does one know one is not dreaming?

How does one know one is not dreaming? How could one logically demonstrate to a skeptic that one is "really" there, awake and not just dreaming the entire situation/world around him? Specifically ...
2
votes
1answer
196 views

Is Reality an intersection of Incompatible Ontologies?

Empiricists do not ask questions about the ontological status of mathematical or logical structures. Idealists don't explain how Ideas are developed, or how technological advancement in general takes ...
8
votes
1answer
456 views

Does having free will presuppose consciousness, can philosophical zombies have it?

Philosophical zombies may lack a consciousness, but does this preclude the ability to have a free will? Why does consciousness matter, for agency, or at all, if determinism is real? (I've framed the ...
33
votes
11answers
7k views

Where and how can I get started in contemporary philosophy?

We are living in an unprecedented era of philosophical research and development where "big thought" is once again everywhere. And yet I feel like I hear this question so often: Where to begin ...
13
votes
2answers
702 views

What are the current topics in philosophy of logic?

I'm contemplating another attempt at completing my long delayed MA in Philosophy, and I need a new thesis topic. As a student I excelled in advanced symbolic logic, but my connection with academic ...
7
votes
3answers
1k views

Where is a good place to start reading about logic?

I would like to learn logic as an introductory subject. I am an undergraduate student and would appreciate any suggestions for books/articles where I can start from, also any books/articles about ...
10
votes
2answers
1k views

What is the difference between ethics and morals?

I am currently writing an essay on artificial moral agents, and I need to explain the difference between ethics and morals. However, I am finding it really hard to find a good book or research paper ...
1
vote
2answers
263 views

References for the justification of the use of Logic

Following that question : How to justify the use of logic? I'm looking for references of the justification of the use of Logic (the question above didn't ask explicitly for resources but rather for a ...
47
votes
6answers
17k views

What are the major branches of philosophy?

What are the major branches of philosophy? (For instance, as a first-order approximation, mathematics can be sub-divided into three main categories at the first level: Analysis, Algebra, and Geometry....
46
votes
12answers
19k views

Does Pascal's Wager contain any logical flaws or fallacies?

Blaise Pascal's famous wager was that even if the existence of God cannot be determined through reason, a rational person should wager as though God exists, because living life accordingly has ...
18
votes
6answers
958 views

What is the origin of the Continental vs. Analytic divide?

There's been much ado about the divisiveness between Heidegger and Husserl fans on the one side, with Frege and Russell stalwarts on the other. I'm mostly amused by accounts of name-calling between ...
11
votes
5answers
7k views

Which of Kant's writings would be a good introduction to his work?

I've been planning to read some of Kant's work for a while, but have no idea where to start. Which of his writings would be a good initial introduction to his philosophical views?
9
votes
2answers
548 views

Are there philosophers who examined the reasons for believing in the existence of other people?

While I am familiar with Descartes and the oft-quoted idea, I think therefore I am, I am not familiar with any philosophy that actively sought to rationalize that anybody else exists. Are there ...
4
votes
2answers
757 views

First book to self-learn logic, mainly to improve reading comprehension?

I read this and ask.metafilter.com, but desire to focus on improving comprehension of difficult writing. I never studied logic and prefer a textbook with practice problems with full detailed ...
2
votes
3answers
152 views

Can my attitude kill you?

Would it be morally reprehensible to tell a truth to someone if I know or suspect that it may cause them harm or discomfort? Of course there are trivial instances like telling a dying man he is going ...
1
vote
2answers
198 views

What textbooks should I read after reading many short introductions? [closed]

I do not feel prepared to read primary sources yet. What should I read, after reading these short introductions? Are there exhaustive introductory textbooks? If not, then is the next step to branch ...
25
votes
3answers
1k views

What are the major research programmes in contemporary logic?

As an interested outsider who is prone to reading about different formulations of logic, I've become interested in better understanding the big picture of what people are trying to accomplish as they ...
7
votes
3answers
8k views

How can I start learning about political philosophy?

I'm interested in learning about political philosophy. What are the best ways to start? Are there any websites for beginners? Are there any books such as the "For Dummies" series? Are there any audio ...
21
votes
11answers
22k views

What are some criticisms of Epicurus' “death is nothing to us”?

Epicurus famously asserted that death should not be feared, with roughly the following argument: When we die, we no longer exist; Since we no longer exist, we can feel neither pain nor pleasure. ...
16
votes
7answers
3k views

Are all paradoxes reducible to one “fundamental” paradox?

I may need to refine this question, since I am mostly grappling with a murky intuition and haven't yet done the real work. When I encounter many of the well-known paradoxes, such as Zeno's dichotomy, ...
6
votes
3answers
528 views

Introductory book on philosophy of logic?

I know that there are quite a few questions like this here already, but I haven't yet found an answer that would satisfy me. I'm looking for an introductory logic book. My main goal is to work ...
5
votes
3answers
2k views

What would a fractal universe tell us about Time?

To begin with let's look at what is known as the coastline paradox. Briefly it goes like this: If you measure the circumference of Britain with a 1km long stick, and then do the same with a 100m long ...
8
votes
2answers
280 views

How to diminish the gaps in my knowledge about philosophy?

I have some formal training in philosophy, but I have lots of gaps in my knowledge. I mainly read what interests me, so the same gaps tend to remain - usually about things that doesn't draw my ...
15
votes
1answer
748 views

What sources discuss Russell's response to Gödel's incompleteness theorems?

In his book My Philosophical Development Russell writes, In my introduction to the Tractatus, I suggested that, although in any given language there are things which that language cannot express, ...
15
votes
7answers
876 views

Why is it so difficult to write good Philosophy textbooks?

Why is it so difficult to write good Philosophy textbooks (exempting textbooks on logic)? There are plenty of useful and introductory textbooks to Mathematics, Economics, Physics, Psychology and ...
4
votes
5answers
1k views

Does anyone argue that Karl Popper's theory of critical rationalism does not meet its own conditions?

I am a huge fan of Dr. Popper's work, and particularly his theory that the property of falsifiability separates the scientific from the non-scientific. However, it struck me that this theory does not ...
3
votes
3answers
405 views

Fundamental Questions of Contemporary Philosophy

In John Searles 'Making the Social World" (2010), the chapter 'the purpose of this book' starts with declaring the following question as a fundamental question of contemporary philosophy: How, if ...
9
votes
6answers
628 views

Which authors have discussed death in philosophy?

Could anyone point me to some authors who have discussed the ideas surrounding death in western Philosophy? (Not whether we know we exist but rather the concept of mortality and immortality).
9
votes
3answers
299 views

What are the historic stances on the epistemological status of mathematics?

I know that Plato and Kant thought it was synthetic a priori (although Plato would not have phrased it in that way). What other major thinkers have weighed in on this issue, on both sides of both the ...
5
votes
7answers
220 views

What books offer a philosophical interpretation of contemporary physics?

What books which offer a philosophical interpretation of contemporary physics? Something just like Russell's Analysis of Matter but not horrid out of date.
4
votes
3answers
141 views

Is there a philosophy of things that could not be discovered?

Excuse me for such nonsensical question, but for some time, the idea of things that could not be discovered bothers me. I guess that this is an interesting object of investigation, and I also guess ...
2
votes
3answers
92 views

Can my attitude kill you? Part 2

This question follows on (sort off): Can my attitude kill you? Taking attitude to mean: The unique medley of ideas that makes the person. Suppose I'm a doubly depressed neurotic pessimist. Who can ...
9
votes
2answers
175 views

Contemporary objections to “human nature”

Motivation The sentiment that Human Rights are not universal poses legal, political, and philosophical problems. Stephen C. Angle cites the head of a Chinese delegation, Liu Huaqiu (1995), in his ...
1
vote
1answer
169 views

Best philosophy of mathematics (text)book? [closed]

What work (or works) are best for beginning an independent study of the philosophy of mathematics?
8
votes
5answers
584 views

Are there philosophies that call for things which are not mind nor matter?

Physicalism is the idea that everything is matter. Idealism is the idea that everything is made up of a mental substance. Dualism claims that there are both matter and mind in the universe. It ...
6
votes
1answer
430 views

How do psychoanalysts like Freud and Lacan interpret the concept of “proof”?

How do psychoanalysts interpret the epistemological concept of "proof" in their theoretical work? Not necessarily of psychoanalysis.
15
votes
1answer
11k views

Difference between implication/conditional and logical entailment?

What is the difference between the implication/conditional truth function and the notion of logical entailment? My naive understanding as a computer programmer is that the conditional is a function ...
26
votes
7answers
1k views

What are some works that apply an axiomatic method to something other than mathematics?

The axiomatic method is today mostly associated with mathematics. However, historically there have been some works, as for example Spinoza's Ethics, that have applied axiomatic method to philosophy, ...
8
votes
4answers
2k views

Most effective ways to self-learn philosophy

I am interested in self-learning philosophy, but I am faced with a seemingly insurmountable obstacle: being dyslexic (metaphorically speaking) while reading serious philosophical works (including ...
8
votes
8answers
6k views

Which philosophers have written about fear?

It occurred to me some time ago that fear is the result of a lack of control, and try as I might I cannot conceive fear existing without this vacancy. Looked at from the other direction, in a ...
10
votes
3answers
1k views

What hierarchies exist in different branches of Philosophy?

If you were to map out different branches of Philosophy in a hierarchical nature on multiple levels in order to compare them what would some look like or could you point me to a reference that sorts ...
6
votes
10answers
6k views

Can there be an argument without premises?

After a lengthy discussion with WillO here, we can't seem to find a common ground and I am interested in whether there really could be an argument without a single premise. Another question whose ...
18
votes
5answers
890 views

What responses are there to Singer's “Should this be the last generation?”?

The article can be found here. It deals with many issues, but what I would really like to see a response to is the following paragraph: [W]hy don’t we make ourselves the last generation on earth? ...
13
votes
1answer
2k views

What responses have there been to Popper's idea of theory-laden observation?

One of the most appealing parts of Karl Popper's philosophy for me is the idea of theory-laden observation. To provide an unjust summary: whenever you are making an observation-statement to question ...
9
votes
9answers
6k views

Which of Nietzsche writing would be a good introduction to his work?

Similar to Which of Kant's writings would be a good introduction to his work? I've been planning to read some of Nietzsche's work for a while, but have no idea where to start. Which of his ...
7
votes
6answers
278 views

What are some good resources for Analytically trained philosophers to get into more “continental” figures?

My question is similar to this one and this one, but with a slightly different spin. I am interested in knowing who are some analytically trained philosophers who write on historically "continental" ...
7
votes
4answers
1k views

What are some good resources for philosophy in laymen's terms?

What are some good resources for a layman to get a basic overview of modern philosophical theories, positions, and open questions in plain language? I'm reminded somewhat of Bryan Magee's videos, ...
4
votes
4answers
302 views

Is existence a feature of life? Can a stone exist without life to recognize it?

First of all I would like to make clear I am not an expert in philosophy. With the question "Is existence a feature of life?" I mean the following: Could something exist without the presence of an ...