Cover image for 101 philosophy problems
101 philosophy problems
Cohen, Martin, 1964-
Personal Author:
Second edition.
Publication Information:
London ; New York : Routledge, 2002.
Physical Description:
xviii, 229 pages : illustrations ; 20 cm
Reading Level:
1250 Lexile.

Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
BD21 .C635 2002 Adult Non-Fiction Central Closed Stacks

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Now in its second edition, this ever-engaging, humorous and extremely popular book challenges readers to think philosophically about every day dilemmas. This fully updated new edition includes brand new problems, such as 'A Nasty Transplant' and the 'Three Embryos', from the field of medical ethics, and 'Deep Thought Speaks', which tackles issues in Artificial Intelligence.
These new conundrums accompany old favourites, such as the 'Hanging Judge', 'The Unexpected exam', 'The Sentence' paradox and 'Descartes' big problem', all explained and explored in Martin Cohen's clear, witty and individual style. 101 Philosophy Problemswill stimulate hours of lively philosophical debate.

Reviews 1

Choice Review

This brief volume does deal with 101 problems, some more seriously than others; all sections are brief with little essays that bring out the important points with respect to divergent answers to each problem. The problems run through logical puzzles and paradoxes, including Zeno's paradoxes; encompass a variety of moral and personal issues; and include topics in metaphysics, epistemology, and the philosophy of religion. The section stating the problems is followed by another section with possible solutions. Well-written throughout, the serious is spaced with the humorous--the latter is not always found in philosophy texts. Although this book really could not be used as an introductory text, it would serve superbly as supplementary reading and a fertile source of ideas. Anyone with a passing interest in philosophy will enjoy it. Cohen provides a glossary and a nice guide to further reading, but even those who have already read the suggested works will find the book enjoyable. Highly recommended for all levels of readers. F. Wilson University of Toronto

Table of Contents

Forward!p. xiii
How to Use This Bookp. xvii
Ten Logical Loops and Paradoxical Problems to Get Started Withp. 1
Problem 1 The Hanging Judgep. 2
Problem 2 The Cow in the Fieldp. 3
Problem 3 Protagoras' Problemp. 4
Problem 4 The Hairdresser of Hindu Kushp. 5
Problem 5 The Ravenp. 6
Problem 6 The Tuck-Shop Dilemmap. 7
Problem 7 The Unexpected Examp. 8
Problem 8 Soritesp. 10
Problem 9 The Society for Useless Information's Problemp. 12
Problem 10 The Sentencep. 13
Six Ethical Storiesp. 15
Problem 11 Diktatiap. 16
Problem 12 Diktatia IIp. 17
Problem 13 A Relative Problemp. 18
Problem 14 The Dog and the Professorp. 20
Problem 15 The Dog and the Professor IIp. 21
Problem 16 Problems in the Lost Kingdom of Marjonp. 22
Problem 17 Problems in the Lost Kingdom of Marjon IIp. 23
Problem 18 The Lost Kingdom and the Pesky-Fly Problemp. 24
Problem 19 The Lost Kingdom and the Pesky-Fly Problem IIp. 25
Problem 20 The Lost Kingdom and the Pesky-Fly Problem IIIp. 26
Problem 21 New Diktatiap. 27
Problem 22 New Diktatia IIp. 28
Problem 23 New Diktatia IIIp. 29
Half a Half Dozen of Your Numbers Problemsp. 31
Problem 24 The Bent Coin Problemp. 32
Problem 25 Life on Siriusp. 33
Problem 26 The Infinite Hotelp. 35
Zeno's Paradoxesp. 37
Problem 27 Achilles and the Tortoisep. 38
Problem 28 Lost in Spacep. 39
Problem 29 Dancing in the Stadiump. 40
Problem 30 That's Enough Paradoxes (ed.)p. 41
Some Value Judgementsp. 43
Problem 31 Fakes and Forgeriesp. 44
Problem 32 The Value of Stamps and Potatoesp. 45
Problem 33 The Value of Stamps and Potatoes IIp. 46
Problem 34 The Value of Stamps and Potatoes IIIp. 47
Problem 35 Gyges' Ringp. 48
Paradoxical Picture Puzzlesp. 51
Problem 36 The Cube and the Trianglep. 52
Problem 37 Figure/Ground Reversalp. 53
Problem 38 The False Legp. 54
Problem 39 The Chairp. 55
Problem 40 Band with a Twist in Itp. 56
Problem 41 The Blobsp. 57
Problem 42 The Colour Disk Illusionp. 58
Problems with Timep. 59
Problem 43 The Time Machinep. 60
Problem 44 The Time-Stopperp. 61
Problem 45 The Microworld Time Forgotp. 63
Problem 46 The Unreliable Watchesp. 64
Personal Problemsp. 65
Problem 47 The Bookp. 66
Problem 48 The Book IIp. 67
Problem 49 Sleeping Problemsp. 68
Problem 50 Indispositional Problemsp. 69
Problem 51 Still Indisposedp. 70
Problem 52 The Sleeping Manp. 71
Problem 53 A Problem Arranging Ship Battlesp. 72
Problem 54 Deep Thought Speaks for Itselfp. 74
Problem 55 Deeper Thoughtp. 75
Paradoxical Picturesp. 77
Problem 56 Daytime-or Night-Time?p. 78
Problem 57 But Will the Waterfall?p. 79
Problem 58 The Architect's Secretp. 80
Problem 59 The Three Hares Illusionp. 81
Twelve Traditional Philosophy Problems No One Really Cares About Anywayp. 83
Some Nasty Medical Problemsp. 87
Problem 72 The Three Embryos Problemp. 88
Problem 73 Kidnapped by Doctors!p. 89
Problem 74 Kidnapped by Doctors! Episode IIp. 91
Problem 75 Potentially a Problemp. 92
Problem 76 Whose Baby?p. 93
Problem 77 A Sinister Transplant Problemp. 95
Problem 78 More Sinister Transplant Problemsp. 96
Two Chinese Problemsp. 97
Problem 79 The Turtlep. 98
Problem 80 The Nightingale's Songp. 99
Ten Religious Problemsp. 101
(raised by an Annoying Parishioner on a Wet Sunday Afternoon, with the Vicar.)p. 102
Problem 90 The Evangelistp. 104
Elementary Problems of Natural Philosophyp. 105
Problem 91 Problems with the Speed of Lightp. 106
Problem 92 Further Problems of Natural Philosophyp. 107
Problem 93 Advanced Further Problems of Natural Philosophyp. 109
Problem 94 Schrödinger's Cat's Problemp. 110
Problem 95 The Space Yacht's Black Holep. 111
Pretty Final Problemsp. 113
Problem 96 Schopenhauer's Problemp. 114
Problem 97 Schopenhauer's Problem Toop. 115
Problem 98 A Fairly Terminal Problem for Dull Philosophersp. 116
Problem 99 Descartes' Big Problemp. 117
Problem 100 The Problem of How to Get to 101 (unsolved)p. 118
Problem 101 The Problem of Existencep. 119
Discussionsp. 121
Problem 3 Protagoras' Problemp. 123
Problem 4 The Hairdresser of Hindu Kushp. 124
Problem 6 The Tuck-Shop Dilemmap. 125
Problem 13 A Relative Problemp. 128
Problems 16-17 Problems in the Lost Kingdom of Marjon I and IIp. 130
Problems 18-20 The Lost Kingdom and the Pesky-Fly Problem I, II and IIIp. 131
Problem 26 The Infinite Hotelp. 136
Problems 27-30 Zeno's Paradoxesp. 137
Problem 29 Dancing in the Stadiump. 140
Problem 35 Gyges' Ringp. 143
Problems 36-42 Paradoxical Picture Puzzlesp. 144
Problem 39 The Chairp. 146
Problems 50-51 Still Indisposedp. 153
Problems 54 and 55 Deep Thought Speaks for Itself and Deeper Thoughtp. 155
Problems 69-70 Kant's Problem and More Kantp. 166
Problem 71 The Tablep. 167
Problems 92-93 Further Problems of Natural Philosophy and Advanced Further Problems of Natural Philosophyp. 176
Problem 98 A Fairly Terminal Problem for Dull Philosophersp. 180
Glossaryp. 189
Reading Guidep. 217
Philosophers as 'not Philosophy' at All! None the Less, Both Areas Are Historically of Great Concern to Philosophers, for the Reasons Explained Particularly Clearly in Nigel Warburton's Philosophy: the Basics (routledge, London, 1996, Second Edition). Bertrand Russell and J.M. Keynes Corresponded at Length Over Their Shared Interests in the Issues of Probability and Induction, and the Reader, as Always, Could Do Worse Than Start with the Account of Economic Development and Aesthetics in Plato's Republic. Finally, the Experiments with Popular Elements for Pictures, Mentioned in the Discussion of Problem 31, Can Be Found in Komar and Melamid's Scientific Guide to Art, Published in the Usa by Farrar, Strauss and Giroux, 1998p. 220
Acknowledgementsp. 221
Indexp. 223