A Short Course in Intellectual Self-Defense: Find Your Inner Chomsky (Paperback)
What is the relationship between democracy and critical thinking? What must a citizen in a democracy know to make the word democracy meaningful? In A Short Course in Intellectual Self-Defense, historian and educator Normand Baillargeon provides readers with the tools to see through the spin and jargon of everyday politics and news reporting in order to decide for themselves what is at stake and how to ask the necessary questions to protect themselves from the manipulations of the government and the media. Whether the issue be the call to what we’re told will be a bloodless war, the "debate" around Intelligent Design, or the meaning of a military expenditure, Baillargeon teaches readers to evaluate information and sort fact from official and media spin.
About the Author
NORMAND BAILLARGEON is Professor of Education Fundamentals at the University of Québec in Montreal, where he teaches on the history of pedagogy and the philosophy of education.
“With charm, with, lucidity, and expert knowledge, this 'short course' carries the reader in easy steps from simple devices intended to "regiment the public mind" (in the words of one of the founders of the public relations industry) to more subtle modes of delusion and deceit of the kind that inundate us constantly. It does not just expose, though that is valuable enough, but also provides strategies for analysis of media and propaganda generally, a guide to resources, and a toolkit for critical inquiry that should be of great value to those who hope to understand a complex world that is made still more obscure when transmitted through the distorting prisms of ideology and doctrine.” –Noam Chomsky
“This book provides an amiable and effective guide through some of the pitfalls and mysteries of language, of logic—and of magic! Readers are sure to discover that its lucid analyses and discussions assist them considerably in avoiding or in overcoming the many obstacles that commonly stand in the way of clear thought and expression.” –Harry Frankfurt, author of On Bullshit