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Humanities LibreTexts

1.7: Review and Discussion Questions

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  • The first quiz covers this chapter and Bertrand Russell’s essay “The Value of Philosophy.” You will find a link to the quiz in the course module for this chapter. Watch the course calendar for when to take the quiz. The following questions will help you prepare. Feel free to take these questions up on the discussion board.

    On this lecture note:

    • Why should we doubt that science covers all of human inquiry? 9
    • What are some metaphysical issues? Some epistemological and ethical issues?
    • What problem does the view that morality is simply a matter of the say-so of some authority lead to?

    On Russell’s “The Value of Philosophy”:

    • What is the aim of philosophy according to Russell?
    • How is philosophy connected to the sciences?
    • What value is there in the uncertainty that philosophical inquiry often produces?

    On the commentary on Russell:

    • Explain the “security blanket” paradox.
    • How can understanding of issues be advanced even when definitive knowledge can’t be had?
    • What’s the difference between saying we can’t know the answer to some question and saying that there is no truth of the matter?

    Finally, consider some of the definitions of philosophy offered by philosophers on the page linked at the opening of the lecture. A number of these would make for good discussion. Here’s the link again:

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