Angelic Devil’s Advocates and the Forms of Adversariality

Topoi 40 (5):899-912 (2021)


Is argumentation essentially adversarial? The concept of a devil's advocate—a cooperative arguer who assumes the role of an opponent for the sake of the argument—serves as a lens to bring into clearer focus the ways that adversarial arguers can be virtuous and adversariality itself can contribute to argumentation's goals. It also shows the different ways arguments can be adversarial and the different ways that argumentation can be said to be "essentially" adversarial.

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Author Profiles

Katharina Stevens
University of Lethbridge
Daniel Cohen
Colby College

References found in this work

The Enigma of Reason.Dan Sperber & Hugo Mercier (eds.) - 2017 - Cambridge, MA, USA: Harvard University Press.
The New Rhetoric: A Treatise on Argumentation.Chaïm Perelman & Lucie Olbrechts-Tyteca - 1969 - Notre Dame, IN, USA: Notre Dame University Press.
Why Do Humans Reason? Arguments for an Argumentative Theory.Dan Sperber - 2011 - Behavioral and Brain Sciences 34 (2):57.

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