Synthese 152 (2):237-284 (2006)

Douglas Walton
University of Windsor
This paper addresses the problem posed by the current split between the two opposed hypotheses in the growing literature on the fallacy of begging the question the epistemic hypothesis, based on knowledge and belief, and the dialectical one, based on formal dialogue systems. In the first section, the nature of split is explained, and it is shown how each hypothesis has developed. To get the beginning reader up to speed in the literature, a number of key problematic examples are analyzed illustrating how both approaches can be applied. Useful tools are brought to bear on them, including the automated argument diagramming system Araucaria, and profiles of dialogue used to represent circular argumentation in a dialogue tableau format. These tools are used to both to model circular reasoning and to provide the contextual evidence needed to properly determine whether the circular reasoning in a given case is better judged fallacious or not. A number of technical problems that have impeded the development of both hypotheses are studied. One central problem is the distinction between argument and explanation. It is concluded that the best way to move forward and solve these problems is to reformulate the two hypotheses in such a way that they might be able to co-exist. On this basis, a unified methodology is proposed that allows each hypothesis to move forward as a legitimate avenue for research using the same tools.
Keywords Philosophy   Philosophy of Language   Metaphysics   Epistemology   Logic   Philosophy
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DOI 10.1007/s11229-005-3984-4
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References found in this work BETA

The Uses of Argument.Stephen E. Toulmin - 1958 - Cambridge University Press.
Fallacies.C. L. Hamblin - 1970 - Vale Press.

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Citations of this work BETA

Circularity in Ethotic Structures.Katarzyna Budzynska - 2013 - Synthese 190 (15):3185-3207.
Aristotle on Begging the Question.Luca Castagnoli - 2012 - History of Philosophy & Logical Analysis 15 (1):90-121.

View all 8 citations / Add more citations

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