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Philosophy | Fallacies and Judgments of Reasonableness - Empirical Research Concerning the Pragma-Dialectical

Fallacies and Judgments of Reasonableness

Empirical Research Concerning the Pragma-Dialectical Discussion Rules

Series: Argumentation Library, Vol. 16

van Eemeren, Frans H., Garssen, Bart, Meuffels, Bert

2009, X, 231 p.

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  • First systematic experimental research of reasonableness conceptions of ordinary arguers
  • Starts from a clearly defined theoretical basis
  • Reports about a continued series of experimental tests
  • Up to standard with modern methodology
  • Covers a wide range of well known informal fallacies

In Fallacies and Judgments of Reasonableness, Frans H. van Eemeren, Bart Garssen and Bert Meuffels report on their systematic empirical research of the conventional validity of the pragma-dialectical discussion rules. The experimental studies they carried out during more than ten years start from the pragma-dialectical theory of argumentation developed at the University of Amsterdam, their home university. In these studies they test methodically the intersubjective acceptability of the rules for critical discussion proposed in this theory by confronting ordinary arguers who have not received any special education in argumentation and fallacies with discussion fragments containing both fallacious and non-fallacious argumentative moves. The research covers a wide range of informal fallacies. In this way, the authors create a basis for comparing the theoretical reasonableness conception of pragma-dialectics with the norms for judging argumentative moves prevailing in argumentative practice. Fallacies and Judgments of Reasonableness provides a unique insight into the relationship between theoretical and practical conceptions of reasonableness, supported by extensive empirical material gained by means of sophisticated experimental research.

Content Level » Research

Keywords » argue - argumentation - argumentation theory - dialectical profiles - fallacy - freedom - informal logic - linguistic indicators - pragma-dialectics - reasonableness - rules for critical discussion

Related subjects » Linguistics - Logic & Philosophy of Language - Philosophy

Table of contents 

1. Theoretical backgrounds and organization of the study. 2. Considerations for the study design. 3. Ad hominem fallacies; an exemplary study. 4. The confrontation stage; the freedom rule. 5. The opening stage; the burden of proof rule I (shifting the burden of proof). 6. The opening stage; the burden of proof rule II (evading the burden of proof). 7. The argumentation stage; the argument scheme rule. 8. The concluding stage; the closure rule. 9. The conventional validity of the pragma-dialectical discussion rules.

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