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th Thursday May 16 , 2013 Lecture 2- Part 1: critical thinking Underlying Questions of How We Know What is there? - Ontology (the metaphysical study of the nature of being and existence). Ex, realism vs. idealism How do we know? –Epistemology (theory of knowledge/knowing). Ex, positivism vs. social constructionism (the idea that groups construct one another). How do we explain what we find? –Theory (organized system of accepted knowledge that applies to a variety of circumstances to explain a specific set of phenomena). Ex, gravity, evolution, racism. What should we do? –Ethics/morals, values, beliefs. Critical thinking helps us differentiate between facts and opinion. Critical thinking is NOT  Making everyone think the same way about an issue  Looking at „both sides‟ of an issues and „splitting the difference‟  Thinking negatively and obsessively looking for flaws  A retreat to subjectivity or cynicism. How to think critically 1. Attitude- being open, skeptical and humble 2. Pitfalls- limits, language, faulty logic 3. Identify arguments- looking for indicators, deductive vs. inductive 4. Evaluate Sources- credible, biased, accurate 5. Evaluate argument- assumption, reasoning (relevant & sufficient?) and omissions. Argument = claim + evidence Claims from the Story of Food video Food has changed over the last 50 years. It‟s less healthy; there is sick soil and polluted water. The loss of crop diversity, stuffed and starved, and travels long distances. Solutions? Buy local, organic and fair trade, support small-scale farmers, join the movement. There needs to be broader choices for everyone. Buying local and organic is expensive, leaving those without as much money eating processed crap. The Geographical Approach “The essence of geography is an integration of spatial variation over the Earth surface with the distinctiveness of places and interactions between peopl
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