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101 Philosophy Problems [Paperback]

Martin Cohen
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)

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Book Description

15 Nov 2001
Now in its second edition, this ever-engaging, humorous and extremely popular book challenges readers to think philosophically about every day dilemmas. This fully updated new edition includes brand new problems, such as 'A Nasty Transplant' and the 'Three Embryos', from the field of medical ethics, and 'Deep Thought Speaks', which tackles issues in Artificial Intelligence.
These new conundrums accompany old favourites, such as the 'Hanging Judge', 'The Unexpected exam', 'The Sentence' paradox and 'Descartes' big problem', all explained and explored in Martin Cohen's clear, witty and individual style. 101 Philosophy Problems will stimulate hours of lively philosophical debate.

Product details

  • Paperback: 248 pages
  • Publisher: Routledge; 2 edition (15 Nov 2001)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0415261295
  • ISBN-13: 978-0415261296
  • Product Dimensions: 19.8 x 13.1 x 2.1 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 593,274 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description


'Are all moral claims synthetic? Or analytic? Or a priori? Or a posteriori? Or both? Or neither? What about tables? Can you see one? Ask yourself: does it exist? Too easy? Go out of the room and ask yourself again. The next sentence is true. The previous sentence is false. Obey the brain warning at the beginning and don't read all 101 problems at once. On free will: You don't always act yourself if you're suffering from a paranoid personality disorder.' - The Guardian

About the Author

Martin Cohen is editor of The Philosopher, the journal of the Philosophical Society in England, lecturer and a successful author and journalist.  His bestselling 101 Ethical Dilemmas, second edition, is also published by Routledge (2007). --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Inside This Book (Learn More)
First Sentence
Now Judge Dread had had many disagreeable people before him, this one, who styled himself 'the Philosopher', despite never having studied the subject, had really annoyed him. Read the first page
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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
16 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars masterpiece of eccentric genius 16 Dec 2002
By A Customer
I have read both the English edition and now have the Chinese edition too. I quite agree with what it says about the book, viz: this is a masterpiece of eccentric genius with a world-sweeping humorous philosophy. After all, does philosophy have to be cut and dried and boring? Dr Martin Cohen, would never agree even if he has to be bitten to death twice, as the Chinese proverb has it. Because what he hates most, are those boring philosophic theories and the boring philosophers. In the book, he even suggests some philosophers are like vampires, shuddering and covering their eyes in fear and loathing at the clarity of a well-constructed sentence.
The humorous Dr Martin Cohen is in fact the editor of the Philosopher, the highly respected English Journal, founded in 1923, for which the famous John Dewey, Bertrand Russell and so on used to write, as well as the frequent stirrer of waves and blower of wind in today's British philosophical world.
In his book, Dr Cohen has collected 101 interesting Philosophy Problems. Together with his humorous and sharp commentary, these provide readers with a unique experience and in-depth understanding that philosophy is actually a game which everyone is able to play.
The readers, as if charmed by Martin's spell, will follow his instructions and dance with him. The book has been translated into many other languages. Dr Martin Cohen says, "if the boring philosophers find this all too easy, let them answer some of the questions!"
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Food for thought 14 Feb 2009
Whilst we might like to believe that we spend our lives thinking, I suspect that there is more than a grain of truth in the view of George Bernard Shaw.

"Few people think more than two or three times a year. I've made an international reputation by thinking two or three times a week."

The book's aim is to present 101 prompts to thinking and seeing in new ways. I found it a great book for train journeys where you have a little time to yourself and perhaps the chance to relax and let your mind play with ideas. The good news is that the questions are posed in the spirit of fun and although the title describes them as philosophical problems, this simply means problems to think about. The collection provides a diverse range of questions categorised under 17 different headings. These for example cover paradoxical pictures, problems with numbers, logical loops, ethical issues and many more.

I particularly liked the problems with time and am still trying to think through my understanding of the consequences of the speed of light and the effects of black holes. I also was unaware that light had weight and that 160 tons of sunlight falls on the earth each day - where does it go? You can also try your hand at some of the classical problems which have provided the food to while away the time of philosophers for many years, including Zeno's paradox of Achilles and the tortoise featured in Zeno and the Tortoise: How to Think Like a Philosopher
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5.0 out of 5 stars Great book! Fascinating 28 July 2014
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Great book ! Fascinating ,funny well written. Arrived pretty quickly and was in excellent condition!!
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Entertaining 30 Jun 2004
A very interesting and challenging book covering a whole spectrum of problems. Some of the problems require some quite lateral thinking whereas others are quite focused.
The discussion section of the book provides food for thought. One improvement would be to have the discussion after each problem so you don't have to keep flicking back and forth. That aside, an entertaining read.
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4 of 8 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Interesting 11 April 2003
I thought that this book provided a lot of food for thought, but flicking about from page to page to read each problem and its associated discussion became rather annoying after a while. I learned a surprising amount from the book, but I really don't feel that it changed my way of thinking, or anything as exciting as that!
To summarise: Interesting, and well worth reading, but hardly life-changing.
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