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Record Type: Review   ID: 286

How to Think About Weird Things: Critical Thinking for a New Age

Schick, Theodore, Jr., & Vaughan, Lewis

 The authors’ credentials are not presented. The senior author is listed simply as being at Muhlenberg College, but it is impossible to tell if he is a teacher or student. The glowing Foreword is by Martin Gardner, which tips it off as a book that is not disposed to credit paranormal and other anomalies. Nonetheless, anyone who has had an anomalous experience and wants to know more about it and to be able to evaluate it would do well to read one or more books of this type in order not to be deluded about the origins of his or her experience. This book emphasizes the principles of knowledge, reasoning, and evidence. These are applied to over 50 anomalous phenomena, including many we think of as exceptional experiences. The authors endeavor to apply the principles to the cases cited the chapter headings are Close Encounters with the Strange; The Possibility of the Impossible; Looking for Truth in Personal Experience; Relativism, Truth, and Reality; Knowledge, Belief, and Evidence; Mystical Knowing; How to Assess a "Miracle Cure," Science and Its Pretenders; Case Studies in the Extraordinary; and an Appendix on Informal Fallacies (unacceptable, irrelevant, and insufficient premises).
Publisher Information:Mountain View, CA: Mayfield, 1995. Pp. xvi + 299. Chap. refs; Ind: 294-299
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