Can Ordinary People Understand Advanced Logic?


Can Ordinary People Understand Advanced Logic?



Formal logic is complicated, abstract and daunting. Its precise language makes it virtually impossible to read without significant training. But logic is also tremendously important. At its best, it provides a focused framework for understanding the most human of abilities: rational thought.

We at Why? Radio wanted to ask whether logic is really out of reach for the general public? Is it actually too hard to understand? It turns out, the answer is “no, it is not.” On this episode, we explore what logic is, how it works, and investigate how it holds the key to good and bad thinking.

Host Jack Russell Weinstein says, “I was really nervous about this episode. The task we set for ourselves–talking about such an abstract and technical subject–was really difficult. But Otávio and I made it work; he was the perfect guest to guide us past the philosophical land mines. The episode is funny, compelling, challenging, and most of all, accessible to everyone. It is everything I had hoped for.”

Otávio Bueno is Professor and Chair of the Department of Philosophy at the University of Miami. He is the author of two books and almost 180 papers on the philosophy of science, mathematics, logic, metaphysics and epistemology. He is also editor in chief of he journal Synthese. His personal webpage can be found here.


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Institute for Philosophy in Public Life



Can Ordinary People Understand Advanced Logic?