Magnani’s Manipulative Abduction

  • Woosuk Park
Part of the Springer Handbooks book series (SHB)


Despite the extensive research in logic, cognitive science, artificial intelligence, semiotics, and philosophy of science, there is no sure proof that we have better or deeper understanding of abduction than its modern founder, Charles S. Peirce. In this sense, one of the most important developments in recent studies on abduction is Lorenzo Magnani’s discovery of manipulative abduction . In this paper, I shall examine in what ways Magnani goes with and beyond Peirce in his views on manipulative abduction. After briefly introducing his distinction between theoretical and manipulative abduction (Sect. 9.1 ), I shall discuss how and why Magnani counts diagrammatic reasoning in geometry as the prime example of manipulative abduction (Sect. 9.2 ). Though we can witness an increasing interest in the role of abduction and manipulation in what Peirce calls theorematic reasoning, Magnani is unique in equating theorematic reasoning itself as abduction. Then, I shall discuss what he counts as some common characteristics of manipulative abductions (Sect. 9.3 ), and how and why Magnani views manipulative abduction as a form of practical reasoning (Sect. 9.4 ). Ultimately, I shall argue that it is manipulative abduction that enables Magnani to extend abduction to all directions to develop the eco-cognitive model of abduction. For this purpose, fallacies and animal abduction will be used as examples (Sect. 9.5).


Niche Construction Nonhuman Animal External Representation Theorematic Deduction Abductive Reasoning 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


  1. 1.
    L. Magnani: Abductive Cognition. The Epistemological and Eco-Cognitive Dimensions of Hypothetical Reasoning (Springer, Berlin 2009)zbMATHGoogle Scholar
  2. 2.
    L. Magnani: Abduction, Reason, and Science: Processes of Discovery and Explanation (Kluwer, New York 2001)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. 3.
    C.S. Peirce: The New Elements of Mathematics, Vol. 4, ed. by C. Eisele (Humanities Press, New York 1976) Google Scholar
  4. 4.
    M.H.G. Hoffmann: Problems with Peirce’s concept of abduction, Found. Sci. 4(3), 271–305 (1999)MathSciNetCrossRefzbMATHGoogle Scholar
  5. 5.
    C.S. Peirce: Elements of Logic, Collected Papers of Charles Sanders Peirce, Vol. 2. (Harvard Univ. Press, Cambridge 1932), ed. by C. Hartshorne, P. Weiss Google Scholar
  6. 6.
    C.S. Peirce: Science and Philosophy, Collected Papers of Charles Sanders Peirce, Vol. 7 (Harvard Univ. Press, Cambridge 1958), ed. by A.W. Burks Google Scholar
  7. 7.
    S. Marietti: Semiotics and deduction: Perceptual representations of mathematical processes. In: Semiotics and Philosophy in Charles Sanders Peirce, ed. by R. Fabbrichesi, S. Marietti (Cambridge Scholars Press, Cambridge 2006) pp. 112–127Google Scholar
  8. 8.
    W. Park: On classifying abduction, J. Appl. Logic 13(3), 215–238 (2015)MathSciNetCrossRefzbMATHGoogle Scholar
  9. 9.
    C. Eisele: Mathematical methodology in the thought of C.S. Peirce, His. Math. 9, 333–341 (1982)MathSciNetCrossRefzbMATHGoogle Scholar
  10. 10.
    R.A. Tursman: Peirce’s Theory of Scientific Discovery. A System of Logic Conceived as Semiotic (Indiana Univ. Press, Bloomington 1987)Google Scholar
  11. 11.
    E.J. Crombie: What is deduction? In: Studies in the Logic of Charles Sanders Peirce, ed. by N. Houser, D.D. Roberts, J. Van Evra (Indiana Univ. Press, Bloomington and Indianapolis 1997) pp. 460–476Google Scholar
  12. 12.
    D.G. Campos: The Interpretation and hypothesis-making in mathematics: A Peircean account. In: New Essays on Peirce's Mathematical Philosophy, ed. by M.E. Moore (Open Court, Chicago and La Salle 2010) pp. 123–145Google Scholar
  13. 13.
    F. Stjernfelt: Natural Propositions: The Actuality of Peirce’s Doctrine of Dicisigns (Docent, Boston 2014)zbMATHGoogle Scholar
  14. 14.
    C.S. Peirce: The Simplest Mathematics, Collected Papers of Charles Sanders Peirce, Vol. 4 (Harvard Univ. Press, Cambridge 1933), ed. by C. Hartshorne, P. Weiss Google Scholar
  15. 15.
    C.S. Peirce: Exact Logic (Published Papers), Collected Papers of Charles Sanders Peirce, Vol. 3 (Harvard Univ. Press, Cambridge 1933), ed. by C. Hartshorne, P. Weiss Google Scholar
  16. 16.
    S. Marietti: Observing signs. In: New Essays on Peirce’s Mathematical Philosophy, ed. by M.E. Moore (Open Court, Chicago and La Salle 2010) pp. 147–167Google Scholar
  17. 17.
    S.-J. Shin: Peirce’s two ways of abstraction. In: New Essays on Peirce’s Mathematical Philosophy, ed. by M.E. Moore (Open Court, Chicago and La Salle 2010) pp. 41–58Google Scholar
  18. 18.
    S.-J. Shin: The forgotten individual: Diagrammatic reasoning in mathematics, Synthese 186, 149–168 (2012)MathSciNetCrossRefzbMATHGoogle Scholar
  19. 19.
    L. Magnani: Thinking through drawing: Diagram constructions as epistemic mediators in geometrical discovery, Knowl. Eng. Rev. 28(3), 303–326 (2013)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. 20.
    L. Magnani, R. Dossena: Perceiving the infinite and the infinitesimal world: Unveiling and optical diagrams in mathematics, Found. Sci. 10, 7–23 (2005)MathSciNetCrossRefzbMATHGoogle Scholar
  21. 21.
    D. Gooding: Experiment and the Making of Meaning: Human Agency in Scientific Observation and Experiment (Kluwer, Dordrecht 1990)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. 22.
    J. Woods: Recent developments in abductive logic, Stud. History Phil. Sci. 42(1), 240–244 (2011)MathSciNetCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. 23.
    E. Hutchins: Cognition in the Wild (MIT Press, Cambridge 1995)Google Scholar
  24. 24.
    Piaget: Adaption and Intelligence (Univ. Chicago Press, Chicago 1974)Google Scholar
  25. 25.
    L. Magnani: Animal abduction: From mindless organisms to artifactual mediators. In: Model-Based Reasoning in Science, Technology, and Medicine, ed. by L. Magnani, P. Li (Springer, Berlin 2007) pp. 3–37CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. 26.
    L. Magnani: Morality in a Technological World: Knowledge as Duty (Cambridge Univ. Press, Cambridge 2007)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. 27.
    L. Magnani: Understanding Violence. The Intertwining of Morality, Religion and Violence: A Philosophical Stance (Springer, Berlin 2011)Google Scholar
  28. 28.
    D. Gabbay, J. Woods: The Reach of Abduction: Insight and Trial, A Practical Logic of Cognitive Systems, Vol. 2 (North-Holland, Amsterdam 2005)zbMATHGoogle Scholar
  29. 29.
    J. Woods: Errors of Reasoning: Naturalizing the Logic of Inference (College Publications, London 2013)Google Scholar
  30. 30.
    W. Park: How to learn abduction from animals? From Avicenna to Magnani. In: Model-Based Reasoning in Science and Technology Theoretical and Cognitive Issues, ed. by L. Magnani (Springer, Heidelberg/Berlin 2014) pp. 53–74Google Scholar
  31. 31.
    P. Thagard: Computational Philosophy of Science (MIT Press, Cambridge 1988)Google Scholar
  32. 32.
    G. Schurz: Patterns of abduction, Synthese 164, 201–234 (2008)MathSciNetCrossRefzbMATHGoogle Scholar
  33. 33.
    M.H.G. Hoffmann: Theoric transformations and a new classification of abductive inferences, Trans. C.S. Peirce Soc. 46(4), 570–590 (2011)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  34. 34.
    T. Kapitan: Peirce and the structure of abductive inference. In: Studies in the Logic of Charles Sanders Peirce, ed. by N. Houser, D.D. Roberts, J. Van Evra (Indiana Univ. Press, Bloomington Indianapolis 1997) pp. 477–496Google Scholar
  35. 35.
    L. Magnani: Naturalizing logic: Errors of reasoning vindicated: Logic reapproaches cognitive science, J. Appl. Logic 13, 13–36 (2015)MathSciNetCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  36. 36.
    J. Woods: Errors of Reasoning: Naturalizing the Logic of Inference (College Publications, London 2013)Google Scholar
  37. 37.
    R. Thom: Esquisse D’une s‘Emiophysique. In: Semio Physics: A Sketch (Addison Wesley, Redwood City 1990) Inter Editions, Paris (1988), Translated by V. Meyer Google Scholar
  38. 38.
    W. Park: Abduction and estimation in animals, Found. Sci. 17, 321–337 (2012)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  39. 39.
    W. Park: On animal cognition: Before and after the beast-machine controversy. In: Philosophy and Cognitive Science. Western and Eastern Studies, ed. by L. Magnani, P. Li (Springer, Heidelberg/Berlin 2012) pp. 53–74, Sapere 2CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  40. 40.
    S. Paavola: Peircean abduction: Instinct or inference?, Semiotica 153(1–4), 131–154 (2005)Google Scholar
  41. 41.
    K.T. Fann: Peirce’s Theory of Abduction (Martinus Nijhoff, Hague 1970)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  42. 42.
    D.R. Anderson: Creativity and the Philosophy of C.S. Peirce (Martinus Nijhoff Publishers, Dordrecht 1987)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  43. 43.
    R.J. Roth: Anderson on Peirce’s concept of abduction: Further reflections, Trans. C.S. Peirce Soc. 24(1), 131–139 (1988)Google Scholar
  44. 44.
    B. Brogaard: Peirce on abduction and rational control, Trans. C.S. Peirce Soc. 35(1), 129–155 (1999)Google Scholar
  45. 45.
    R.B. Burton: The problem of control in abduction, Trans. C.S. Peirce Soc. 36(1), 149–156 (2000)Google Scholar
  46. 46.
    H.G. Frankfurt: Peirce's account of inquiry, J. Philos. 55, 588–592 (1985)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  47. 47.
    C.S. Peirce: Carnegie application of 1902 (MS L75), (1902)
  48. 48.
    N. Rescher: Peirce’s Philosophy of Science (Univ. Notre Dame Press, Notre Dame 1978)Google Scholar
  49. 49.
    C.S. Peirce: Pragmatism and Pragmaticism, Collected Papers of Charles Sanders Peirce, Vol. 5 (Harvard Univ. Press, Cambridge 1934), ed. by C. Hartshorne, P. Weiss Google Scholar
  50. 50.
    C. Darwin: The Formation of Vegetable Mould, Through the Action of Worms With Observations on Their Habits (Univ. Chicago Press, Chicago 1985), originally published in 1881Google Scholar
  51. 51.
    D.A. Norman: The Psychology of Everyday Things (Basic Books, New York 1988)Google Scholar
  52. 52.
    S. Paavola: Abduction through grammar, critic and methodeutic, Trans. C.S. Peirce Soc. 40(2), 245–270 (2004)Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of Humanities and Social ScienceKorea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (KAIST)DaejeonKorea

Personalised recommendations