Going beyond the absurd to philosophize with “The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy”

book-cover-philosophy-and-hitchhikers-guideThe new book Philosophy and The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, edited by Nicholas Joll (out now from Palgrave Macmillan), might be the most invaluable text I’ve ever read too late. That may seem a bit confusing. To clarify: were that this book had been released fifteen years ago, as several of the essays contained within would’ve allowed me to possibly pass philosophy in college, rather than failing it abjectly.

Quite specifically, Michèle Friend‘s essay, “‘God…Promptly Vanishes in a Puff of Logic’,” on the Babel fish, so perfectly outlines basic logic that anyone who’s read Douglas Adams‘ titular installment in the Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy will finally understand basic symbolic logic. It gets a little hinky in the middle, what with a lot of symbols, but Friend moves the reader through by explaining how it all works in a clear, concise, manner.
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