Analogy

In CSLI Informal Notes Series. Stanford, CA, USA: Center for the Study of Language and Information, No. IN-CSLI-85-4, (1985)
  Copy   BIBTEX

Abstract

This essay (a revised version of my undergraduate honors thesis at Stanford) constructs a theory of analogy as it applies to argumentation and reasoning, especially as used in fields such as philosophy and law. The word analogy has been used in different senses, which the essay defines. The theory developed herein applies to analogia rationis, or analogical reasoning. Building on the framework of situation theory, a type of logical relation called determination is defined. This determination relation solves a puzzle about analogy in the context of logical argument, namely, whether an analogous situation contributes anything logically over and above what could be inferred from the application of prior knowledge to a present situation. Scholars of reasoning have often claimed that analogical arguments are never logically valid, and that they therefore lack cogency. However, when the right type of determination structure exists, it is possible to prove that projecting a conclusion inferred by analogy onto the situation about which one is reasoning is both valid and non-redundant. Various other properties and consequences of the determination relation are also proven. Some analogical arguments are based on principles such as similarity, which are not logically valid. The theory therefore provides us with a way to distinguish between legitimate and illegitimate arguments. It also provides an alternative to procedures based on the assessment of similarity for constructing analogies in artificial intelligence systems.

Links

PhilArchive

External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server

Through your library

Similar books and articles

Analogical Reasoning in Ethics.Georg Spielthenner - 2014 - Ethical Theory and Moral Practice 17 (5):861-874.
Argument by Analogy.André Juthe - 2005 - Argumentation 19 (1):1-27.
Situation Semantics and Models of Analogy.David H. Helman - 1986 - Philosophical Studies 49 (2):231 - 244.
A Formal Model for Reasoning by Analogy.Derek Long - 1987 - Dissertation, University of Oxford (United Kingdom)
The Force of Dissimilar Analogies in Bioethics.Heidi Mertes & Guido Pennings - 2011 - Theoretical Medicine and Bioethics 32 (2):117-128.
In Defense of Analogical Reasoning.Steven Gamboa - 2008 - Informal Logic 28 (3):229-241.
Similarity, Precedent and Argument From Analogy.Douglas Walton - 2010 - Artificial Intelligence and Law 18 (3):217-246.
The Paradox of Analogy.David Botting - 2012 - Informal Logic 32 (1):98-115.

Analytics

Added to PP
2015-07-29

Downloads
145 (#85,134)

6 months
8 (#96,308)

Historical graph of downloads
How can I increase my downloads?

Author's Profile

Todd Davies
Stanford University

Citations of this work

Reasoning by Grounded Analogy.John Grey & David Godden - 2021 - Synthese 199 (3-4):5419-5453.

Add more citations

References found in this work

Features of Similarity.Amos Tversky - 1977 - Psychological Review 84 (4):327-352.
Prior Analytics. Aristotle & Robin Smith - 1989 - Kessinger Publishing.
Deterministic Theories.Richard Montague - 1974 - In Richmond H. Thomason (ed.), Formal Philosophy. Yale University Press.
Analogy and Confirmation Theory.Mary Hesse - 1964 - Philosophy of Science 31 (4):319-327.

View all 16 references / Add more references