Language IV – Prof. Yamina Gava & Natalia Dalla Costa - 2013 Language IV - Prof. Yamina Gava & Natalia Dalla Costa - 2013
Language IV - Prof. Yamina Gava & Natalia Dalla Costa - 2013
Bertrand russell critical thinking lang_iv_gava&dallacosta
Page 1BERTRAND RUSSELL ONCRITICAL THINKINGLanguage IV – Prof. Yamina Gava & Natalia Dalla Costa - 2013
Page 2Russells PhilosophyIntellectual and moral aspects:- Knowledge as difficult but not impossible toattain- The importance of freedom and independenceof inquiryCritical thinking-The nature of educational aimsChomskyWoodhouseStander
Page 3The threat of indoctrinationCritical thinking:What does it entail?Why does it matter in education?Related terminology:reflective thinking, straight thinking, clear thinking,scientific thinking, thinking simpliciter.
Page 4Critical thinkingThe ideal of critical thinking is, for Russell,embedded in the fabric of philosophy, science,rationality, liberalism and education.Critical thinking:- A virtue- Intellectual and moral aspects- Skills, dispositions and attitudes
Page 5The purpose of educationTo prepare students to be able to form "areasonable judgment on controversial questions inregard to which they are likely to have to act“.In addition to having "access to impartial suppliesof knowledge," education needs to offer "trainingin judicial habits of thought."
Page 6Critical thinking skillsThe ability to …form an opinion for oneself,find an impartial solution, andidentify and question assumptions.CRITICAL JUDGEMENT implies …1.weighing evidence and arguments (approximatetruth must be estimated),2. being critical about our own attempts at criticism,3. adopting an attitude of constructive doubt.
Page 7Rationality in education- Learning how to reach true conclusions oninsufficient data.- Rationality is a matter of degree.- Mental habits formation:- impartial inquiry,- weighing evidence,- attempting to see things truly, and- living from one’s own center (self-direction).
Page 8Rationality in educationA readiness to act and respond in various ways:- to admit new evidence against previous beliefs,- to discard hypotheses which have provedinadequate,- to adapt oneself to the facts of the world.
Page 9Attitudes of the critical person- A realization of human fallibility- An open-minded outlook- A refusal to think that our own desires andwishes provide a key to understanding the world- Being tentative
Page 10Attitudes of the critical personPRACTICAL ADVICE:We can try to hear all sides and discuss our viewswith people who have different biases, makingsure to face real opponents; we can stretch ourminds by trying to appreciate alternative picturesof the world presented in philosophy, anthropologyand history; we can learn to recognizeour own biases by, for example, notingwhen contrary opinions make usangry.
Page 11Attitudes of the critical person- Thinking for oneself to avoid indoctrination- Emphasis on feelings and relational skills:“What is needed is not merely intellectual. A wideningof sympathy is at least as important.”Detachment from those emotions which interfere withintellectual honesty and which prevent the emergenceof kindly feeling.The person who has no feelings, does nothing andachieves nothing.
Page 12The philosophers fallacy- Exaggerating the role of philosophy and logic inthe development of critical thinking to the neglectof subject knowledge.Russell does not equate critical thinking withlogical proficiency. Logic and mathematics are thealphabet of the book of nature, not the book itself.
Page 13ConclusionRussell stresses access to impartial sources ofknowledge; without such access, our criticalabilities cannot function. He is not, therefore, to beconvicted of a simplistic view about thegeneralizability of critical thinking.
Page 14Vocabulary developmentTask:Look up the meaning of the following words andphrases in a variety of bilingual dictionaries. Exploretheir various shades of meaning, possiblecollocations, and usage. Build word families (e.g. byadding prefixes and suffixes) and write meaningfulsentences using each of the words given.
Page 15Vocabulary developmentBigotry TritePoint up TruismAdept Unwarranted confidenceAscertain Cocksure prophetFacetious (facetiously,facetiousness)Dishonest charlatansTo be in the ascendant DisparageFallible (fallibility,infallible)The value of suspendedjudgmentIndubitability (dubious,dubitation)