Lecture 11: Sophistic Reasoning

 

Readings

Supplementary Text

 

I. Introduction. 

        A. Dialectic tools of fair combat.
        B. Comparison to boxing: sophistic unfair combat.


II. Two meanings of "Logic."
        A. What order my lectures have taken.
                1. Two reasons: tradition and two meanings of logic.
        B. Definition of logic in strict sense.
        C. Second meaning of logic.


III. Sophistic Reasoning.
        A. Definition of the Sophist.
                1. General notion: Deceptive likeness.
                        a. St. Thomas defines sophist by desire.
                        b. Aristotle: desire for money, historical setting.
                2. Examples of superficial likeness.
                        a. Wise man refutes and is not refuted.
                        b. Sophist appears to refute and not be refuted.
                        c. Contrast to dialectic, which is like wisdom.
                                (1) Two ways of appearing wise or dialectical: seem to argue from probable, argue from seems probable.
        B. Tools of the sophist.
                1. Tools are called fallacies.
                        a. Reasons we are using obvious examples.
                2. Fallacy dependent upon language.
                        a. Comparison to accounting.
                                (1) Application of comparison to accounting.
                        b. Called fallacy of equivocation.
                                (1) Example of equivocation. 
                                (2) Analysis of fallacy.
                3. Fallacy not dependent upon language.
                        a. Definition of fallacy of accident.
                                (1) Example: Indian, white, man.
                                (2) Not equivocation.
                                (3) How it happens in a disputation.
                                        (a) Closer to essential, more deceptive.
                4. These are the principles of the other fallacies.


IV. Conclusion.
        A. Tools of rhetoric and poetics useful for philosopher and theologian. 

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