Can A Robot Be Human?

33 Perplexing Puzzles

Peter Cave

How unique are you?  What does it really mean to be in love?  Can you believe anyone who says ‘I’m telling the truth’?  Can a murder be innocent?  And what is the difference between a saint, a sinner, and a suicide bomber?

In this fun and entertaining book of puzzles and paradoxes, Peter Cave introduces a smorgasbord of life’s important questions with tales and tall stories, jokes and arguments, common sense and bizarre conclusions. From how to get to heaven, to speedy tortoises, paradoxes and puzzles give rise to some of the most exciting problems in philosophy – from logic to ethics and from art to politics.

Illustrated with quirky cartoons throughout, Can a Robot be Human? takes the reader on a taster tour of the most interesting and delightful parts of philosophy.

First published by Oneworld Publications (UK) in 2007.


“With its wonderful varied selection of topics, plus Cave’s admirable lightness of touch, this is one of the most entertaining and thought provoking books I’ve come across in years.  So stop messing around with trivia like Sudoku and give your brain a real treat by buying this book.”
Robert Mathews, BBC Focus Magazine

“Peter Cave’s lively new book is full of arresting ideas, brow-creasing conundrums, persistent puzzles, and pleasing paradoxes. It is ideal reading for open and inquiring minds from 12 to 112 – in fact for everybody who is just dipping a toe into philosophy for the first time.  If it doesn’t make you think, you are probably dead already.”
Timothy Chappell, Professor of Philosophy, The Open University

“Entertaining, witty, and highly readable.  A most enjoyable and illuminating read.”
Michael Clark, Editor of Analysis and Emeritus Professor of Philosophy, University of Nottingham

“With skill and good humour, Peter Cave guides the reader through a maze of intriguing philosophical puzzles.”
Lawrence Goldstein, Professor of Philosophy, University of Kent

“Unputdownable…a must-read book for anyone who is interested in philosophical problems and ideas.”
Imre Leader, Professor of Mathematics, University of Cambridge

“Great fun. It will make brains whirr with activity.”
Simon Fanshawe, BBC Radio and TV Presenter

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