PHIL 121 SUNY at Binghamton Methods of Reasoning On Bullshit Essay

Question Description

Short Writing Assignment on “On Bullshit”

Task: Write a short (2-3 page) essay addressing one of the following prompts.

Some details: All essays should present and evaluate Frankfurt’s account of bullshit. Essays should include a thesis statement, which presents the central claim to be defended. You will be assessed on the accuracy of your presentation of Frankfurt’s view, your organization and thesis statement, the clarity of the writing, your positive proposal/critique, and such things as creativity.


  1. “Bullshit is a greater enemy of the truth than lies are”. Discuss this remark of Frankfurt’s and evaluate it.
  2. Frankfurt raises “The problem of understanding why our attitude toward bullshit is generally more benign than our attitude toward lying”, but leaves its solution as an exercise to the reader. After explaining the difference between lying and bullshit, according to Frankfurt, pose a solution to this problem.
  3. What, according to Frankfurt, is the difference between the liar and the bullshitter. Is he correct?

*Note: you will not be able to adequately respond to any of these prompts without including an overview of Frankfurt’s theory. To do this in a short space you will need to understand the theory well and write concisely. *

Prof. Angela


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