Logic for Introduction to Philosophy

# Logic for Introduction to Philosophy - Introduction to...

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Introduction to Philosophy Dr. Berry Logic and Argument for Writing: A Supplementary Handout and Very Brief Field Guide to Recognizing and Constructing GOOD Philosophical Arguments Some Important Definitions I. Arguments and their parts: proposition A proposition is a statement or assertion expressed in a declarative sentence. It is a (complete) sentence that is either true or false. Note that ‘sentences’ and ‘propositions’ are not the same thing! ‘Propositions’ are expressed in sentences; and a sentence can express more than one proposition. argument An argument is a sequence of two or more propositions of which one is designated as the conclusion and all the others of which are premises . conclusion The conclusion of an argument is the proposition that is to be demonstrated. (When you write an essay, the thesis of your paper should be the conclusion of an argument. The body of the paper then presents the argument or evidence that supports your thesis/conclusion.) premise(s) In an argument, a premise is a proposition that bears a special (evidentiary or justificatory) relation to the conclusion; that is, premises should support the conclusion by providing evidence or justification for it. II. Features of arguments : validity An argument is valid if and only if it is necessary that if all the premises are true, then the conclusion is true ; we might also say, “a valid argument is one in which the truth of the premises guarantees the truth of the conclusion.” soundness A sound argument offers more than just validity—it is an argument that is valid and that contains only true premises. (Thus, it guarantees us of the truth of the conclusion as well.) III. Features of other sets of propositions: consistency A consistent set of propositions is one in which all the propositions are capable of being true at the same time. (In an inconsistent set of propositions, at least one

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Logic for Introduction to Philosophy - Introduction to...

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