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The Red Herring and the Power of Logic

This book is an introduction to informal logic.

Topics covered are-

  • Fallacies and Validity.
  • Deductive and Inductive reasoning.
  • Premises and Truth.
  • Emotive Language.
  • The Threats to Logical Thinking

There is a tendency amongst books on critical reasoning to provide readers with the means to win arguments. This book however takes a different tack, the objective of logic is not to defeat one’s opponent and score a point but to use logic to try and discover the truth of the matter. Indeed, once one has learnt the basic principles of logical reasoning one can easily detect the ploys and tricks of advertisers, politicians and those in control of the news media.
Some independent quotes –

Thought provoking and an antidote to modern spin.  Dr Debbie Reid

Colin Beckley writes well. His book The Red Herring and the Power of Logic is clear, concise and witty and is filled with insight and humanity. This pays off handsomely as Beckley offers sensible alternatives to the typically adversarial approach to logic and critical reasoning. While highlighting the natural human tendency (or even propensity) to succumb to fallacious logic he illuminates other paths of reasoning. The examples in this slender and easy to read volume are excellently chosen and well organised. I recommend this book to anyone who wishes to improve his or her clarity of thinking. As a former lecturer in Management, I believe it would also be a valuable resource in high schools and technical colleges as many of my (admittedly young) students were easily confused by the most elementary fallacies.     David Mason-Cox   Sydney, Australia

As a lecturer I firmly believe that logic is an essential base to all undergrad courses. I have been looking for a book on logic that engages undergrad students whilst informing them. Red Herring & the Power of Logic has filled that void. It is now a core text on my first year human science modules.
Lionel Cox.

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Paperback. Published by Anthony Rowe (2007). 141 pages.

Illustrations by Shirin Adl Saramad - see her website at: