Giving Reasons pp 117-137 | Cite as

The Dialectical Dimension of Argumentation

  • Lilian Bermejo-Luque
Part of the Argumentation Library book series (ARGA, volume 20)


As explained in Chapter 4 regarding the logical normativity of argumentation, in dealing with the dialectical dimension of argumentation, I will also have to fulfill two tasks: on the one hand, showing that any type of argumentation, whether dialogical or monological, involves such a dialectical dimension; but on the other hand, showing that dialectical normativity cannot be reduced to argumentative normativity tout court.

In this chapter, I deal with the dialectical dimension of argumentation in terms of the recursive nature of acts of arguing and the second order intersubjectivity that they enable. I follow the characterization of argumentation as a second order speech act complex provided in Chapter 3. According to it, argumentation, apart from having some perlocutionary powers, can be characterized as the illocution of trying to show a target-claim to be correct. Thus, I show that the dialectical normative conditions of argumentation are constitutive respecting its justificatory dimension – or, in other words, that for a piece of communication to be considered argumentation, it has to fulfill certain dialectical conditions. In turn, such dialectical conditions happen to be regulative respecting the persuasive power of argumentation – or, in other words, that for a piece of argumentation to be a legitimate means of persuasion, it must also fulfill certain dialectical conditions. My aim is to show that acts of arguing represent the explicit part of a dynamic activity, “a mechanism of rational validation,” as Rescher suggested in Dialectics. A Controversy Oriented Approach to the Theory of Knowledge (1977), which presupposes the possibility of attaining objectivity. This is how I seek to solve a common difficulty found in current dialectical approaches to argumentative normativity, namely, the tendency to miss the grip of objectivity as the raison d’être of the activity of giving and asking for reasons.


Argumentation Theory Argumentative Discourse Theoretical Correctness Argumentative Exchange Dialectical Nature 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Centro de Ciencias Humanas y, Sociales CCHS-CSIC, Instituto de FilosofíaMadridSpain

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