Location

University of Windsor

Document Type

Paper

Start Date

6-6-2007 9:00 AM

End Date

9-6-2007 5:00 PM

Abstract

Why are enthymemes so frequent? Are we dumb arguers, smart rhetoricians, or parsimonious reasoners? This paper investigates systematic use of enthymemes, criticizing the application of the principle of charity to their interpretation. In contrast, I propose to analyze enthymematic argumentation in terms of parsimony, i.e. as a manifestation of the rational tendency to economize over scant resources. Consequences of this view on the current debate on enthymemes and on their rational reconstruction are discussed.

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

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John Woods, Commentary on Paglieri

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John Woods, Commentary on Paglieri (June 2007)

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Jun 6th, 9:00 AM Jun 9th, 5:00 PM

No More Charity, Please! Enthymematic Parsimony and the Pitfall of Benevolence

University of Windsor

Why are enthymemes so frequent? Are we dumb arguers, smart rhetoricians, or parsimonious reasoners? This paper investigates systematic use of enthymemes, criticizing the application of the principle of charity to their interpretation. In contrast, I propose to analyze enthymematic argumentation in terms of parsimony, i.e. as a manifestation of the rational tendency to economize over scant resources. Consequences of this view on the current debate on enthymemes and on their rational reconstruction are discussed.