University of Washington’s Center for Philosophy for Children
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Title and Author: Why? By Lindsay Camp and Tony Ross

Field of Philosophy: Epistemology

Plot Summary: Lily, in response to virtually anything that happens, asks the question, "Why?" Her dad tries to respond to her questioning, but sometimes, "when he was a bit tired or too busy," he'd say only, "It just does, Lily. It just does." One day a giant spaceship lands and the aliens that emerge from the ship announce that their mission is to destroy the planet. Terrified, no one responds, except Lily, who asks, of course, "Why?" After a series of "why" questions, the aliens realize that they don't know why, and they leave.

Some discussion questions:

Why ask why?
What is the purpose of a question?
Why do we ask questions? What makes a question a good one?
Is curiosity a good thing?
Why do you think Lily's father sometimes became annoyed with Lily when she asked “Why?”
Could a question really save the world? Could it destroy it?
Can asking “why?” be dangerous? Can not asking it be dangerous?