Location

Brock University

Document Type

Paper

Start Date

15-5-1997 9:00 AM

End Date

17-5-1997 5:00 PM

Abstract

The purpose of this study is to provide an account of the fallaciousness of begging the question without thereby indicting as fallacious all otherwise acceptable deductively valid reasoning. The solution that we suggest exploits the intuition that all good arguments are weakly circular. The fallaciousness of begging the question is not that the reasoning is circular simpliciter. Rather, begging the question is a fallacy because the conclusion relies on an undischarged assumption that the audience cannot accept without further argumentation. In the face of such an argument the arguer might just as well have merely asserted the conclusion.

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This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

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Lawrence H. Powers, Commentary on Edwards

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Lawrence H. Powers, Commentary on Edwards (May 1997)

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May 15th, 9:00 AM May 17th, 5:00 PM

Pathological Circularity: Deductive Validity and a Contextual Account of the Fallacy of Begging the Question

Brock University

The purpose of this study is to provide an account of the fallaciousness of begging the question without thereby indicting as fallacious all otherwise acceptable deductively valid reasoning. The solution that we suggest exploits the intuition that all good arguments are weakly circular. The fallaciousness of begging the question is not that the reasoning is circular simpliciter. Rather, begging the question is a fallacy because the conclusion relies on an undischarged assumption that the audience cannot accept without further argumentation. In the face of such an argument the arguer might just as well have merely asserted the conclusion.