We are often led to believe that human reason is limited: it is vulnerable to errors and fallacies, often draws erroneous conclusions, offers weak arguments, and falls prey to temptation and false promises. In short, reason is a feeble guide for shaping our individual and social behaviour. This awareness has led to repeated calls for greater education efforts in support of critical thinking and logical skills, especially in schooling environments. This book adopts a contrarian view and states that our minds are not quite as frail as widespread opinion suggests. Even when human reason falters, the causes of such failures are quite different from those that we usually assume. This book offers a novel perspective, providing readers with practical tools and useful exercises for training the mind, refining their reasoning skills, and identifying insidious thought traps. Even when it is sound, we must always take care of our good sense.
Fabio Paglieri is a researcher at the Italian National Research Council’s Institute for Cognitive Science and Technologies in Rome.