A Study Guide
A re-titled, expanded version of the old Teach Yourself Logic study guide. This is a book length guide to the main topics and some suitable texts either for teaching yourself logic by individual self-study, or to supplement a university course. You only need to read just the first half-dozen pages to see if this is for you.
- Beginning Mathematical Logic: A Study Guide [18 Feb 2022]
The Guide is also available as a very inexpensive paperback, about the price of a couple of coffees, but only direct from Amazon (sorry!) as this minimizes the price for you: ISBN 1916906338.
In addition there is an Appendix to the Guide saying more about some Big Books on mathematical logic:
- Appendix to the Guide (a 60 page PDF, discussing 23 books).
- Book Notes (a page of links to separate webpages on some 63 books, including those covered in the Appendix)
A little more about the Study Guide and its Appendix
Most philosophy departments, and many maths departments too, teach little or no serious logic, despite the centrality of the subject. Many students will therefore need to teach themselves, either solo or by organizing study groups. But what to read? Students need annotated reading lists for self-study, giving advice about the available texts. In around 2012, I started the Teach Yourself Logic Study Guide, which aimed to provide the needed advice by suggesting some stand-out books on various areas of mathematical logic. NB: it covered mathematical logic — so we are working a step up from what’s rudely called “baby logic” (that philosophers may encounter in their first year courses).
The Guide has now been radically rewritten. After a couple of preliminary chapters, Chapters 3 to 9 introduce core topics from the mathematical logic curriculum, and suggest suitable entry-level reading. Chapters 10 and 11 broaden the scope just a bit. And then there is a final Chapter 12 pointing to more advanced texts on the core topics.
Mathematical logic is indeed a big subject, and different people have different backgrounds and/or requirements. So you’ll want detailed advice from which you can work out which books on which areas might be suitable for you. That’s why the Guide is so long. But there are a lot of pointers to help you find your way around.
The recommendations in the Guide are organised topic by topic. The Appendix then reviews some of the big multi-topic textbooks on mathematical logic book by book.
The Book Notes
The same reviews in the Appendix can also be found as separate webpages in linked to this page of Book Notes, which also links to comments/reviews about some forty(!) more books on logic and the philosophy of mathematics. These range from half-pages to (in one case) a 52 page essay. Most are a useful two or three pages!