Caoilfhionn N í Bheacháin Email: C.NiBheachain@ul.ie. Critical Thinking – Session 1.
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Negative triggers – any form of trauma or life transition
Positive triggers – moments of insight or self-awareness
The kind of thinking which probes important or crucial elements of our lives and values. These may be social or personal.
Personal - How will you cope with losing your job?
Social – What are the implications of high levels of unemployment for human happiness or liberty?
What is happiness?
What is the ‘good life’?
What is a ‘Consumer Society’?
What is ‘progress’?
Social / political / Business
Assumptions are our presuppositions and viewpoints that we take for granted. It is important to recognise our assumptions because they represent a ‘baseline’ for thought. If they are flawed or misunderstood, the reasoning that stems from them can also be flawed.
In a consumer society, what are our assumptions?
Find the premises that support the conclusion
Set out the relationship between premises and conclusion.
Identify irrelevant sentences, repetition of premises and rhetoric.
Set down the relationship in a tree diagram.
Unemployment - stabilised
Advance orders up
The indexes of recovery are optimistic
The US has turned the corner on the Depression
Free Enterprise vindicated
The environment tends to be just one factor that we consider when making decisions
Our behaviour is often driven by other, competing, factors
In a consumer society, we want things that are contradictory to our environmental beliefs
How can we address this?
Need to interrogate assumptions that underpin our consumer society. The stories of ‘things’, how we celebrate life events, etc.
Argument is rule governed – look at argument structure, evidence provided and context.
Tomorrow: Narrative and History / Resource Wars / A Case Study on Rubber