Logic: A Very Short Introduction by Graham Priest is an accessible and concise introduction to the subject of logic. The book explores the philosophical roots of logic and how modern formal logic deals with a range of issues, including the existence of God, the reality of time, and paradoxes of probability and decision theory.
The book focuses on modern symbolic logic, which may be valuable for technical specialists but not for the intelligent layman. The author uses interesting examples to explain the fallacy in St. Anselm’s “proof” of God’s existence and the flaws in certain arguments made by politicians and pundits.
However, the book is also misleading in certain particulars. For example, the author misses the point entirely in his attack on the cosmological argument for God’s existence. Moreover, the author seems unaware of the inherent indeterminacy in modern quantum mechanics, which describes technically possible events that violate the strict determinism of Newtonian mechanics.
What I Liked
Ohhh I wish I had had this book for my Introduction to Logic class at the University of Georgia. Like every Very Short Introduction, it’s concise, snappy, and very well-done.
What I Did Not Like
Nothing – very useful read.