The Concept of Fallacy is Empty

  • John Woods
Part of the Studies in Computational Intelligence book series (SCI, volume 64)

Summary. Do model-based approaches to reasoning have a stake in accounting for errors of reasoning? If mainstream logic is anything to go on, a theory of bad reasoning is wholly subsumed by a theory of good reasoning, with the former construed as the complement of the latter. In an older tradition (e.g., Mill’s System of Logic), errors are best considered as a stand-alone component of any psychologically real approach to logic. Such is the assumption of this essay. Historically, logic’s almost exclusive preoccupation with error is to be found in what it may chance to say about fallacies. In the tradition that has come down to us since Aristotle, fallacies are errors of reasoning that are attractive, widely-distributed enough to be called “universal”, and difficult to correct, that is, possessed of signi.cant levels of incorrigibility.


Abductive Reasoning Institutional Agent Informal Logic Fallacious Reasoning Inductive Strength 
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.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2007

Authors and Affiliations

  • John Woods
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Computer ScienceKing's CollegeLondonUK

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