beyond feelings启示录-chapter2-what is critical thinking

本章阐述了涉及到critital thinking的以下几个重要概念:大脑、心智,批判性思考者的特点,自觉,批判性思考者的行为模式,写作的价值,讨论的作用,拒绝剽窃他人的作品。
一、Mind, Brain, or Both?
It has documented that the left hemisphere of the brain deals mainly with detailed language processing and is associated with analysis and logical thinking, that the right hemisphere deals mainly with sensory images and is associated with intuition and creative thinking, and that the small bundle of nerves that lies between the hemispheres—the corpuscallosum—integrates the various functions.

有一个正常的大脑,并不代表你就拥有成熟的心智,心智是:active, a vehicle by which we take the initiative and exercise our free will,

二、Critical Thinking Defined

Feeling is useful in directing our attention to matters we should think about; it also can provide the enthusiasm and commitment necessary to complete arduous mental tasks. However, feeling is never a good substitute for thinking because it is notoriously unreliable. Some feelings are beneficial, honorable, even noble; others are not, as everyday experience demonstrates. We often feel like doing things that will harm us—for example, smoking, sunbathing without sunscreen, telling off our professor or employer, or spending the rent money on lottery tickets.

情感有助于引导我们注意我们应该思考的事情;它也可以提供完成艰苦的心理任务所需的热情和承诺。然而,情感从来不是一个好的替代思想,因为它是众所周知的不可靠。有些情感是有益的,光荣的,甚至高尚的; 其它则不然,因为日常经验表明。我们经常喜欢做那些会伤害我们的事情,例如吸烟,没有防晒霜的日光浴,骂我们的老师或老板,或者把房租钱花在彩票上。

The essence of critical thinking is evaluation. Critical thinking, therefore, may be defined as the process by which we test claims and arguments and determine which have merit and which do not. In other words, critical thinking is a search for answers, a quest. Not surprisingly, one of the most important techniques used in critical thinking is asking probing questions. Where the uncritical accept their first thoughts and other people’s statements at face value, critical thinkers challenge all ideas in this manner:

批判性思维的本质是评价。 因此,批判性思维可以被定义为我们主张、论证以及确定哪些值得去做,哪些不值得去做。换句话说,批判性思维是寻找答案,寻找问题。毫不奇怪,批判性思维中使用的最重要的技术之一是提探索性问题。当无批判性思维的人接受他们的第一想法和其他人表面陈述,批判性思维人以这种方式挑战所有的想法:

三、Characteristics of Critical Thinkers

critical thinking的四个误区

A number of misconceptions exist about critical thinking. One is that being able to support beliefs with reasons makes one a critical thinker. Virtually everyone has reasons, however weak they may be.The test of critical thinking is whether the reasons are good and sufficient.


Another misconception is that critical thinkers never imitate others in thought or action. If that were the case, then every eccentric would be a critical thinker. Critical thinking means making sound decisions, regardless of how common or uncommon those decisions are.

另一个误解是批判性思考者从不模仿他人的思想和行动。如果事实如此,那每个古怪的人都会是批判性思考者。批判性思考意味着作出合理的决定,无论这些决定是多么的普普通通。 eccentric adj. 古怪的,异常的; 偏离轨道的; 离心的;

It is also a misconception that critical thinking is synonymous with having a lot of right answers in one’s head. There’s nothing wrong with having right answers, of course. But critical thinking involves the process of finding answers when they are not so readily available.

第三个误解是,批判性思考等同于一个人头脑中拥有许多正确的答案。当然,有正确答案没有什么错。但是,当正确答案不易获得时,批判性思考还包括寻找答案的过程。 synonymous adj. 同义的,类义的; 同义词的;

And yet another misconception is that critical thinking cannot be learned, that one either has it or does not. On the contrary, critical thinking is a matter of habit. The most careless, sloppy thinker can become a critical thinker by developing the characteristics of a critical thinker. This is not to say that all people have equal thinking potential but rather that everyone can achieve dramatic improvement.

还有一个误解是批判性思考不能通过学习来获得,人们要么“有”、要么没有批判性思考。恰恰相反,批判性思考是一个习惯问题。通过培养批判性思考者的特性,最疏忽、草率的思考者也能成为一名批判的思考者。这不是说所有人都有同等的思考潜力,而是说每个人都可以实现引人注目的提高。 sloppy adj. 懒散的,草率的; 稀薄的; 多雨的,泥泞的; 过于伤感的;

We have already noted one characteristic of critical thinkers—skill in asking appropriate questions. Another is control of one’s mental activities.
critical thinking 的特征有2个,一是正确的提问,二是自律。
If a man’s actions are not guided by thoughtful conclusions, then they are guided by inconsiderate impulse, unbalanced appetite, caprice, or the circumstances of the moment.

四、The Role of Intuition

Intuition is commonly defined as immediate perception or comprehension of something—that is, sensing or understanding something without the use of reasoning.

自觉是否有可取之处,自觉是思维的结果还是独立于理性思考之外? Perhaps,for now, the most prudent answer is that sometimes they are independent and sometimes they are not; we can’t be sure when they are, and therefore it is imprudent to rely on them.

五、Basic Activities in Critical Thinking

The basic activities in critical thinking are investigation, interpretation, and judgment


六、Critical Thinking and Writing

Whenever you write to discover ideas, focus on the issue you are examining and record all your thoughts, questions, and assertions. Don’t worry about organization or correctness. If ideas come slowly, be patient. If they come suddenly, in a rush, don’t try to slow down the process and develop any one of them; simply jot them all down. (There will be time for elaboration and correction later.) Direct your mind’s effort, but be sensitive to ideas on the fringe of consciousness. Often they, too, will prove valuable.

每当你写作来开发思想,专注于你正在研究的问题并记录你的所有想法、问题和主张。 不要担心组织结构或正确性。如果思想来的慢,请耐心。如果它们来的突然,急速地,不要试图放慢过程去研究任何一个;简单地将它们全部记下来。(稍后会有时间进行补充和修正。)把努力放在你的思想上,但对意识边缘的想法保持敏感。通常它们也将证明是有价值的。

七、Critical Thinking and Discussion
At its best, discussion deepens understanding and promotes problem solving and decision making. At its worst,it frays nerves, creates animosity, and leaves important issues unresolved.Unfortunately, the most prominent models for discussion in contemporary culture—radio and TV talk shows—often produce the latter effects.


Here are some simple guidelines for ensuring that the discussions you engage in—in the classroom, on the job,or at home—are more civil, meaningful, and productive than what you see on TV.By following these guidelines, you will set a good example for the people around you.

1、Whenever possible, prepare inadvance.
2、Set reasonable expectations. -- Expect to have your ideas questioned, and be cheerful and graciousin responding.
3、 Leave egotism and personal agendasat the door.To be productive, discussion requires an atmosphere of mutual respect and civility
4、Contribute but don’t dominate.
5、Avoid distracting speech mannerisms.
6、Listen actively.
7、Judge ideas responsibly
8、Resist the urge to shout or interrupt.

八、Avoiding Plagiarism
Plagiarism is passing off other people’s ideas or words as one’s own. It is doubly offensive in that it both steals and deceives.
Fortunately, there is a way to honor both instructions and, in the process, to avoid plagiarism.
Step 1: When you are researching a topic, keep your sources’ ideas separate from your own.
Step 2: As you read each source, note the ideas you want to refer to in your writing.
Step 3: When you compose your paper, work borrowed ideas and words into your own writing by judicious use of quoting and paraphrasing.步骤3:当你撰写论文时,在自己的写作中正确的通过引用和引述的借用别人的思想和语言。

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