5 votes

Anyone interested in a philosophical logic study group?

Intermittently, for the past 15 years or so, logic has been an interest of mine. Back then I had trouble understanding exactly why certain things people said sounded so right/wrong, and how could I come up with proper responses.

Among others, in this time I've read one great book on informal logic (which I lost, unfortunately), quite a few articles, and studied the first chapters of the stupendous Gary Hardegree's symbolic logic.

Even though I love the subject, it is hard to sustain motivation alone. I wish to acquire a firmer grasp of logic and its applications to philosophy. Hence the suggestion of forming a study group.

It is my understanding that most Tilderinos are in STEM, especially areas surrounding computer science. So I anticipate that many users have an understanding of logic that greatly surpasses my own. Because of that, for some, a philosophical logic study group may seem too elementary to be of any value. Others may find it interesting to approach logic from a philosophical point of view.

In any case, the idea is to start from scratch. Besides the ability to read and write in the English language, no previous knowledge is required. No mathematics either.

I have two initial proposals.

1. An Illustrated Book of Bad Arguments

This one is ideal for a light, relaxed approach.

This awesome book describes 19 common logical fallacies using accessible language, with clear examples and suggestive illustrations. Not very technical, and a lot of it is well-known territory if you have an interest in logic. One chapter for each fallacy, each chapter is one page long. A great conversation starter.

2. Symbolic Logic: A First Course, by Gary Hardegree

I would choose this one myself. Hardegree is a wonderful teacher.

This book is one of the best teaching materials I have ever known, and surprisingly superior even to paid alternatives. A more proper introduction to logic. Hardegree is an excellent teacher, introducing concepts with precision in accessible language. The progression is smooth, you never feel that the exercises are either too easy or too hard. And there are plenty of exercises (with answers!) which are great for self-study.

We could start with either one of these books and follow from there. Just meeting once a week (or maybe biweekly) to discuss the chapter or chapter section we studied in that period.

I understand a lot of people like to do that kind of stuff on Discord, so that's a possibility.