Arguments

Arguments - I. Introduction to Arguments What an argument...

Info iconThis preview shows pages 1–3. Sign up to view the full content.

View Full Document Right Arrow Icon
I. Introduction to Arguments What an argument is An argument consists of a set of premises that gives us reason to believe that a conclusion is true. 1. Socrates is a man. Premises (1, 2) 2. All men are mortal. give us reason to believe that 3. Socrates is mortal. the Conclusion (3) is true. What is above the line (1 and 2) are the premise(s). What is below the line (3) is the conclusion. The premises are the reasons for believing the conclusion is true. What an argument is not The word ‘argument’ it is often used in English to include: a. A firmly stated opinion His argument is that Smith should be in the Hall of Fame. His argument is that Bush is a great president. b. A firmly stated fact My argument is that we’re in Florida. Her argument is that the moon orbits the Earth. c. A firmly stated falsehood His argument is that Elvis lives. d. A shouting match They had a huge argument last night! These are perfectly legitimate uses of the term ‘argument. But none of these are ARGUMENTS as philosophers use the term. A threat: Believe this or I’ll fire you! A bribe: Believe this and I’ll give you lots of money! A bad argument about arguments : “Threats and bribes are arguments because they give you reason to believe something. And that’s what arguments do. The “Socrates” argument gives you reason to believe that Socrates is mortal.” The difference between arguments and threats / bribes: Arguments give you reason to believe something is true . Threats and bribes give you a reason – in the sense of a motive – to believe something.
Background image of page 1

Info iconThis preview has intentionally blurred sections. Sign up to view the full version.

View Full DocumentRight Arrow Icon
1. Socrates is a man. Premises (1, 2) 2. All men are mortal. give us reason to believe that 3. Socrates is mortal. the Conclusion (3) is true. 1. If you don’t believe I’m great, I’ll flunk you. The reasons (1, 2) 2. You don’t want me to flunk you. don’t give us any reason to believe 3. I’m great. that (3) is true . They do give us a MOTIVE to believe (3). How to identify arguments
Background image of page 2
Image of page 3
This is the end of the preview. Sign up to access the rest of the document.

This note was uploaded on 02/27/2011 for the course PHI 2630 taught by Professor Staff during the Fall '08 term at FSU.

Page1 / 4

Arguments - I. Introduction to Arguments What an argument...

This preview shows document pages 1 - 3. Sign up to view the full document.

View Full Document Right Arrow Icon
Ask a homework question - tutors are online