Logic Paperback – 29 Nov 2001
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'A lively and stimulating book' Philosophy
About the Author
Wilfrid Hodges is a Professor of Mathematics at Queen Mary and Westfield College, University of London. He has held visiting appointments in the US.
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Top Customer Reviews
It covers many of the basics of modern logic, and serves as a good introduction for anyone, student or layman. I believe it was used for many years, and until very recently, as the set text for Oxford's first year logic course for philosophy students; so it's very reliable. One cannot really learn logic without doing exercises, so this book has a small set of exercises for every topic; if you're looking for something more discursive and readable, this might be the wrong choice. Working alone I have not found it overly difficult - in fact it's good fun - but it must be approached as a course of study rather than the way you might approach a popular science book. You won't be reading ABOUT logic - you'll be DOING logic.
There are a few things to bear in mind:
It tries to be two things at once - a layman's introduction and a textbook - and in some ways fails at both. For those studying independently there are some sticking points: just where one would hope to find much more discussion and easing in - such as the sections on formalization - you find impenetrable proofs written out in English. Minimizing the mathematics here only succeeds in confusing the reader (though maybe it was just me). And as a textbook it is also somewhat lacking, in that its small paperback format makes it difficult to work with: you'll struggle to keep it open while you've got a pencil in your other hand, and it necessitates constant flicking back and forth. I would have preferred a large format text with extensive glossary, appendices, lists of symbols and rules, all easily accessible at the back.Read more ›
The book is divided into many short chapters, each on a distinct topic, which are bought together at two key points, the first to introduce propositional logic, and finally, at the end, first order predicate calculus. There are exercises throughout each chapter, and since to learn logic one has to do it, it is necessary to engage with these exercises if genuine comprehension is to be acquired. Most of the chapters are trivially easy, and Hodges' friendly and informal style makes them a pleasure to read. There are a handful of places where an idea is introduced, and one would really like to be able to clarify one's understanding with the author, or where, despite immediate understanding, it has implications later on which do not seem obvious. Nonetheless, it is possible to go with these questions and still get to the end having comprehended the broad structure and most of the detail of the subject. The exercises vary from trivially easy to rather opaque.Read more ›
Admittingly some of the methods seem perhaps a bit dated but this is still a good book to have to start you off. Just enough to raise your game but easy enough for beginners to get a grasp of. Of course if you do get into logic properly though this only really scratches the surface.
I found this a good clear introduction for someone with no background in philosophy. Obviously not the most advanced text, but a simple introduction for beginners with definitions and plenty of question sets for you to try (answers in the back).
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I bought this book to help me with the Oxford University on-line course on logic, which I can thoroughly recomend, especially as it is free. Read morePublished on 7 Feb. 2014 by Mrs Charlotte Ward
A good solid introduction to logic (in the philosophical sense), with sensible exercises to work through to test your understanding along the way. Read morePublished on 14 Oct. 2013 by Stuart
... A must have, as a very good introduction to predicate logic & first-order logic.
Also, Hodges does a excellent job on Tableaux... Read more