Jump to content
Objectivism Online Forum
Saurabh

Critical Thinking

Rate this topic

Recommended Posts

Hi all,

I am about to launch a University-level course in Critical Thinking. This course will help me promote the Virtue of Rationality (The basic virtue under Objectivism).

For this, I am looking for some good examples that could make the course more exciting.

These examples could be in any of the categories below:

  1. Specific instances of Path-breaking Men showing Critical Thinking (e.g. Buddha, Darwin )
  2. Fiction/Movies that capture Critical Thinking (e.g. 12 angry men)
  3. Any other source of info that I could use (e.g. a book, article, etc)

I just wanted to check with members on this forum for any suitable examples that I could use.

Please let me know. Thanks!

Saurabh

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The world of business is a excellent source of examples of people who saw and opportunity that others did not, or stuck with some good idea in the face of public opinion. The added advantage of business examples is that these are people who don't just stop at a good idea. Instead, they also have the right character: a commitment to action, etc.

Edited by softwareNerd

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Yeah - business world will have good examples..Thx!

Since this audience is Indian kids (and not very highly aware of western Phiosophers), I want to avoid using examples of Aristotle, etc.

They will better relate to Buddha. And as I read Buddha's biography (by Deepak Chopra), I see instance where he applies CT.

I am interested in specific/isolated instances, at this point. So, I will even use examples of intellectuals whose Philosophical system I may not agree with.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Dr. Vilayanur Ramachandran comes to mind. Your students might identify better with examples from India. When Ramachandran speaks, he often walks his audience through his thought process in seeing a psychological problem, then identifying it. My favorite example is of his treatment for phantom limb pain. If you've got the time, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Rl2LwnaUA-k. He discusses phantom limb at about 9:30, but I reccomend the whole video.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

This sounds like an interesting course! It would be neat if you were able to videotape the lectures and post them online (as part of OpenStudy). Either way, a good movie that comes to mind is Inherit the Wind (it's main setting is also in a courtroom, but it's about Darwinian Evolution and the famous Monkey Trials).

There are also a lot of interesting things happening in Biology/BioInformatics! Two articles I recently read about Bacterial Altruism are entitled "Nice Bacteria Finish Last" and "Bacterial charity work leads to population-wide resistance." It might be a nice change to discuss some technical topics of this sort, which can also be connected with philosophy (and would make for an interesting debate). A strong biology background isn't needed to get the main concepts out of these articles.

Similarly, there's some cool projects about "collective behavior," which has been a very profitable area. Basically, there are three simple rules that organisms such as birds and fish follow. Practically all video games and movies use some derivation of the algorithm: in movies, it can be seen in the Lion King, Jurassic Park, etc..but in real life, people have created "robotic birds" and "robotic fish" that can be used for all sorts of things (for example, "robotic spiders" might follow this algorithm to quickly clear minefields).. the possibilities are endless. Here's a

that shows some of the aircraft created. After explaining the concepts, you might have your students write a paper (or a group paper) that discuses a new project idea. They could even present their idea in class and get feedback on its feasibility. :) Edited by Michele Degges

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Guys,

Thanks for your suggestions.

Based on your suggestions, I have already looked at Business examples, Dr Vilayanur, Lie to me, etc. I will also look at other examples suggested (e.g. Inherit the Wind, etc).

Thanks again!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

×
×
  • Create New...