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التفكير المستقيم والتفكير الأعوج

3.74  ·  Rating details ·  590 ratings  ·  99 reviews
An introduction to logical thinking and the tricks of argument, with 37 demonstrations of illogical and crooked thinking, and how they may be overcome by the use of straight thought.
Paperback, عالم المعرفة، #20, 220 pages
Published August 1979 by المجلس الوطني للثقافة والفنون والآداب-الكويت (first published 1930)
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Sanjay Gautam
Jun 03, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Life changing. Mind blowing, and expanding!
Loved it ❤️.
Sep 13, 2007 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: everyone
This is a timeless book by an eminent Cantabrian and this is what it says on the back cover of my paperback:
"Here is a practical book for everyone who has occasion to discuss controversial topics. The author believes that psychological factors often dangerously distort correct thinking. He shows, for instance, how the use of emotional words can obscure facts, and how fallacies in argument can often mislead an unwary audience. He lists 38 dishonest tricks commonly used in argument, with methods o
Mandie Lowe
Nov 27, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: students, politicians, scientists, all literate people
Recommended to Mandie by: Dr Erik Hofstee
Essential reading for students aiming for clarity in their writing. Once examples of "crooked thinking" are understood, it is easy to spot them. Unlike books with lists and examples of logical fallacies, this book makes for easy and entertaining reading. Some of the words used are outdated by now, but the examples remain fresh and relevant. ...more
Jake Turnbull
Dec 12, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book, although written in 1930, absolutely nails all of the bad logic and linguistic tricks that politicians, the media, indeed all of us use, in trying to persuade people of the veracity of our own beliefs and arguments. It's essential reading for anyone who doesn't want to get tricked into believing something is true or correct by those who employ sophistry. It's very readable, and very relevant, given all the crap that is peddled on the internet nowadays. ...more
Mark Rice
Jul 06, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A book everyone should read. It explains how to see through the smoke screens, emotionally charged language and outright lies used by politicians, the media and the military. Heralding logic, sound reasoning and the pursuit of truth above all else, 'Straight and Crooked Thinking' contains techniques for sharpening critical thinking skills and achieving mastery in the art of argument. This short book is crammed so full of useful information that it's difficult to absorb completely in one read. Wo ...more
Ankit Rana
It is not a book that one reads for fun. A person who is really motivated to pursue truth between the lines is the targeted audience of the book. It makes you think, it makes you labour. I had to read many passages twice to be clear about the exact meaning. But I would say it is totally worth all the effort.

In the rise of globalized mass media run by corporate houses, identifying and protecting one's interests has become difficult due to huge information asymmetry. This book helps in identifying
First read this about 30 years ago. The remarkable thing is that its diagnosis (and proposed cure) of poor/wilfully deceitful argument still rings true today.

If the book were published now, it'll probably be framed as an antidote to fake news/soundbite culture/twitter beefs/partisan 'journalism'. Of course, what it actually does (an unanticipated, but very important personal corrective) do is serve as a reminder that none of these things are new. Plus ca change...
George Roper
Nov 03, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A true classic. It is clear that the author did a lot of intellectual heavy lifting in writing the book. Best portion of the book is to be found in Appendix II. Read that Appendix along with the preceding one and you will get a good sense of what is in the book. It shows how unconsciously many of us engage in very crooked thinking.
Jun 18, 2011 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction, own
A great overview of errors in reasoning and dishonest rhetorical tricks.
Basil Miller
In a society where sensible conversation logical discussions rare, I think this book is a helpful to help you avoid logical fallacies. It added ways of thinking that I don't usually consider when having discussions with the very few people I get a chance to have with.

In all my 22 years of living I have found that most people dont like to have conversations about things with substance, but prefer to talk aboutanything that is mundane or things that are mainstream and the masses are into. Yet, ev
Jan 02, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction
Excellent start of the year with a philosophical book. It is about logic and language. Author talks about deception is statements and how to convey one's thoughts without any misunderstandings.
I am very happy to start with philosophy, and I must say it is highly underrated:)
Swathi Chandrasekaran
A very concisely edited book describing misplaced arguments (crooked thinking) and ways to overcome them. A few repetitions dulled the reading, but the book still overall makes for an informative read.
Joe Sampson
Jun 05, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: psychology, logic
Discusses errors in logical reasoning quite well. Gives lots of examples. Most authors of books on logic are philosophers or mathematicians; this author is a psychologist.
First published in 1930 this book has delineated concepts in thinking and also developing valid arguments. These are relevant even in today's vuca world. A bit of heavy reading but enjoyable. ...more
Aleksandar Ovnarski
May 01, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: media bias, political science
It is important to never take the ahistorical approach to a topic, and fall for the trap of only reading the most modern discoveries in it. To return to first principles by reading the first works in a field though, is often daunting, as anyone who's tries to open Newton's principia would attest. So it is a rare jem that is both the original source or a summary (introduction, manual) to a topic that is both very much relevant today, and happens to be written in an engaging and easy to understand ...more
Feb 08, 2021 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Read the 1930 original. The author’s grandson “edited” later additions to “update” the book. This was not necessary and detracts significantly. Straight thinking, as the author calls it, is sorely today. Types of crooked thinking identified within are everywhere today (news, entertainment, social media, political advertising, present day literature, etc.). While it never quite lives up to the phenomenal first few chapters, it is still entirely worth reading. The subject matter is essential and n ...more
Mark Rugless
Lots of useful tips to identify methods used to communicate a message, often masking the message within a shroud of prejudice, bias and distraction. It will be very interesing to watch future political debates and propaganda messaging. There's always another election just around the corner. ...more
Glen Thickett
May 14, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I've had this book for decades and never got round to it till now.
Written back in the thirties but revised later, its a fresh, methodical, clearly articulated account of how crooked talkers can try to pull the wool over your eyes.
Plus recommendations for countering.
Dryly humourous.
Jan 15, 2020 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Some thought-provoking moments but ultimately I didn't get that much from it ...more
Scott Judkins
Apr 05, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Many years back I stole this book whilst organising a village book sale and I think it's the most important non-fiction book I've ever read. ...more
Rachel Groves
I loved the idea and blurb for this book relishing a timeless classic enlightening me. I wasn't expecting a how to or a particularly slick book but I was expecting something readable and engaging. Unfortunately it's not either of those for me.

Although it's been updated those examples that bring it to modernity don't help. It's a very dry book. It has a sort of conversational style but quickly becomes a very boring, repetitive conversation that made me zone out.

I'm sure it will be a shining lig
Jul 08, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
On page 102, I read "The capacity of many people to deceive themselves by rationalization is a formidable barrier to straight thinking". At first, I was thinking "How hackneyed this sounds", but now I'd rather say that I like this particular remark. Mainly because of the fine line between genuine causes and "made up"-reasons. How do you tell them apart?
The sentence above speaks my mind and therefore, five stars.
Amr Khaled
Oct 08, 2014 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: philosophy
To begin & try to enumerate all the things wrong with this book would be quite ironic. Because taking the time to further talk about this book will waste more time than this book wasted.

I think it's suffice to say that I began reading this book without looking it up. It was the recommendation of a friend & I trusted the recommendation far enough that I kept reading hoping the book would get better with time.
Big surprise: It didn't.

Bottom line : Avoid it
Tom Menke
Khalid Almoghrabi
Feb 25, 2011 rated it really liked it
Most arguments have bases to build itself upon it and we as humans wonder which opinion is right or close to righteousness. This book teaches the most tricks available to people to admonish the truth and deceive themselves and others as well. Good book to read
May 10, 2015 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction
This was an influential book at the time and is not without relevance today. If some company motivational seminar has ever told you to 'think outside the box' or mentioned 'blue sky thinking', this is the book they got it from (without the fancy buzz-phrases). ...more
Thos Thorogood
Slim enough to be a fine introduction to the bases of proper disagreement - but very outdated. Coherent and useful summary of fallacies etc.
Feb 09, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
It is great . I did enjoy reading the first 4 chapter so far , hope to keep the same momentium
Dean Mattox
Apr 24, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A primer on how to think logically. It is a little dated but the teaching is sound. It should be a must read for everyone.
Jun 26, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A must read for everyone.
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Robert Henry Thouless was a British psychologist and parapsychologist. He is best known as the author of Straight and Crooked Thinking, which describes flaws in reasoning and argument.

He studied at Cambridge University where he earned B.A. hons in 1914, an M.A. in 1919 and a Ph.D. in 1922. He was a lecturer in psychology at the universities of Manchester, Glasgow and a Fellow of Corpus Christi Col

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“وإذا وجدنا في أنفسنا أننا نغضب إذا تشكك أحدهم في معتقدات عزيزة علينا فيجدر بنا أن نظن أن تلك المعتقدات هي من قبيل التحيز المبني على أسس غير عقلية وعلى خلاف المعقول، تماماً كما نظن نفس الشيء إذا وجدنا شخصاً آخر سريع الغضب أو التأذي دون سبب معقول إذا تعرضنا بالتشكك في رأي له.

وإحدى نتائج هذا التأثير مثلاً أننا قد نغفل عن اكتشاف التفكير في كتابات أو خطب تتفق مع موقفنا وتصادف هوى في نفوسنا، مع أننا تحت هذا التأثير نفسه نكتشف في الحال الأخطاء في الكتابات أو الخطب التي لا تتوافق مع موقفنا وآرائنا.

ولهذا فإنه يجب في جميع الأمور الملتبسة التباساً شديداً بانفعالاتنا النفسانية الخاصة (إما معها أو عليها) أن لا نثق بأحكامنا عليها وأن نوازن بين هذه الأحكام وأحكام الآخرين الذين يخالفوننا. كما أن تحيزاتنا تنحو أيضاً إلى أن تجعلنا ننسى الحقائق الواقعية التي ليست في جانب آرائنا أو معارضة لها.

ومما يذكر عن (داروين) أنه كان يدون جميع المعلومات الواقعية والآراء المخالفة للنتائج التي توصل إليها، ولو لم يفعل ذلك لنسيها. ولهذا فإنه لما نشر في آخر الأمر ما توصل إليه من نتائج لم يكن لدى معارضيه شيء تقريباً من الاعتراضات لم يكن هو قد سبق أن نظر فيه.”
“وتكون الكتب في معظم الحالات غامضة الدلالة لأن الذين يكتبونها لا يفكرون تفكيراً واضحاً أو أنهم يرمون إلى جني ثمار الوجاهة باستعمال الغموض.” 11 likes
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