Improving Our Intellectual Health

Short Paper #1 Improving Our Intellectual Health Introduction to Philosophy


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Short Paper #1 Improving Our Intellectual Health

This assignment is due on Sunday (10/04). It must be submitted online via Blackboard.

In order to be healthy critical thinkers, we need to take charge of our intellectual lives, looking to solve the internal contradictions that appear in our system of beliefs. But we cannot do this without identifying and relying on trustworthy testimony. In our discussions for the past several weeks, we have looked at three different ways in which reliance on testimony can go awry. We can inflict Testimonial Injustices on certain sources, given our prejudicial credibility assessments. We can have informational structures that are tending towards Epistemic Bubbles, given certain amounts of selective exposure and external filtering. And we can have informational structures that are tending towards Echo Chambers, given certain amounts of trust manipulation and disagreement reinforcement. In this short paper, I want you to choose just one of these three phenomena as the one that has affected you the most, and I want you to do three things. (A) I want you to explain, in your own words, how this phenomenon impairs our intellectual health in general as critical thinkers. Here I am looking for a general explanation of the phenomena and its negative effects, something similar to what you have seen in the readings and in the lectures. (B) I want you to discuss how this phenomenon has affected you yourself in particular. This is an opportunity for you to reflect on your own life, and not to simply point to how these problems affect other people. I want to see you connect your particular example to the general account you provided in the beginning of the paper. (C) I want you to discuss what steps you can take to improve your intellectual health as a critical thinker, in light of this particular issue that you have identified. Some general instructions:

1. Work on this assignment individuallyno collaboration. 2. I will run these through Turnitin, so do not plagiarize. 3. Submit your completed assignment through Blackboard, in the Short Papers folder. 4. Late assignments will be penalized. Exceptions will be made only for extreme, and well-documented,

circumstances. 5. The assignment should be somewhere between 3 and 5 pages long, but it is typically okay if the

assignment is a bit shorter or a bit longer. You should use Times New Roman or Calibri font, size 11 or 12, and you should double space the text.

6. There are no other formatting requirements. Dont ask me about bibliography, citation style, etc. Please let me know if you have any questions or concerns. [email protected]

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