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Logic PY1070

The content of this course is sometimes called either ‘philosophical logic’ or ‘philosophy of logic’.​ The topics studied are closely related, and count among the most fundamental and challenging in philosophy. Some grounding in them is essential for an appreciation of what is discussed in all other branches of philosophy, and it is for this reason that logic is studied early on.​

Topics covered

Logic is the study of the central notions that figure in our most general attempts to understand reasoning. Included here are: validity, truth, necessity, identity, naming and reference, existence, conditionals and counterfactual conditionals, as well as a number of issues raised by the relationship of formal logic to natural language. 

(Formal logic – the systematic study of deductive reasoning – is a separate, although clearly related, course. It would deepen your understanding of this subject if you acquired some background in elementary formal logic, and you might do so by reading Guttenplan’s introduction to this subject (The Languages of Logic).

Assessment

One two-hour unseen written examination.

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