Date: Jun 29, 2018
Atlas Shrugged has been aptly described as “a hymn to logic.” But today what one finds in logic textbooks are sterile, formalistic diversions from real-life issues. This course, in contrast, will focus on the most personally important — and most neglected — topic in logic: concepts. It is proper conceptualization, not facility with syllogisms, that makes the difference between clarity and confusion, rational and irrational functioning, adhering to reality and wandering through dreamland. Drawing on Ayn Rand’s revolutionary identifications in logic, these five classes focus on the proper formation, definition, maintenance, and use of concepts. Emphasis will be given to working on practical exercises. The course is based on the material in chapters six and seven of How We Know, with class exercises to practice applying the principles to concrete cases. Class 1. What is logic? The axioms of logic. Why logic is an absolute. Aristotle and Ayn Rand: their respective contributions to logic. The never-taught but transformative area of logic: concepts. The identity of consciousness: two essentials and their implications for logic.