Questions tagged [rhetoric]

the practice of effective persuasive speech/argumentation

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Providing a logical rebuttal to "What's the harm?"-type questions

I have a manager at work who often comes up with shortsighted ideas and then expects his staff to adopt them. On occasions, my colleagues (his staff) will suggest improvements to his ideas that offer ...
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Searching for name of this logical fallacy: presuming a consensus

I recently encountered multiple instances of this kind of fallacy, but could not nail down its name or which group of fallacy that it belongs to. It bothers me enough to create a new account to ask ...
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Is there a logical fallacy for falsely dismissing criticism as snobbery?

From Richard Nixon to Spiro Agnew to todays Marvel fans, there seems to be a particular penchant for framing light criticism, scepticism or even simple disagreement by others as snobbery/elitism. '...
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Is it a fallacy when the opponent comes up with obviously nonsense arguments on my side to make me look stupid?

For example, I'm having a political debate and I am bringing up facts, like under this government the energy prices rose this amount, the unemployment rate is higher then ever and the government had ...
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What kind of fallacy is this?

Suppose there are 3 persons i.e Person1, Person2, and Person3. And there are 2 topics i.e Topic1 and Topic2. There is a debate between Person1 and Person2. Person1 quotes some view/saying of Person3 ...
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Contradictions in comparisons of expedience in the Art of Rhetoric

In "The Art of Rhetoric" Chapter 1.7, Aristotle presents a list of conditions determining which good out of two goods is the more expedient. If, of two things, one is an end and the other ...
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Is there a name for this combination of generalization and the No True Scotsman fallacy?

The pattern: When specific members of the Other Group display reprehensible behavior, they are cited as evidence that the Other Group as a whole is reprehensible. When specific members of My Group ...
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Pre-theoretic beliefs about non-existence [closed]

In ordinary thought and language there are obviously particulars and it is assumed they usually consist of parts. Ordinary language also supports "generalized, reified properties" (I'd say ...
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What type of logical fallacy happens here?

This has been going on a lot lately in my country. Usually, in a discussion where some antisocial behavior of an organization is being criticized, a supporter of the organization, usually a member of ...
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8 votes
4 answers
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What is the philosophical term for using half-truths to intentionally mislead?

Our local school district has been distributing propaganda to support keeping schools open during an uncontrolled pandemic. There has been a common pattern among these statements, where a half-truth ...
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Difference between non-sequitur fallacy and post hoc fallacy?

What is the difference between post hoc fallacy and non sequitur fallacy?
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Your argument is invalid if you didn't experience it!

Consider the following scenario: Person A never ate a cake. Person B has eaten cake before. Now A has the opinion that A dislikes cake (and brings up several arguments), but B argues "You've ...
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Is there a name for this Freudian-inspired fallacy?

Yet another of these fallacy questions... There is a certain kind of rhetorical move which famously might occur in classical psychoanalysis, but also in other situations. The therapist says the ...
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Fallacy and guilt by discussion?

I recently encountered a discussion that went along the lines of: A: Pedophiles are not just old men touching little kids. They're also 23 year olds going out with 16 year olds. B: Pedophilia ...
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Is feigned listening bullshit? (And if so, or even if not, is there a name for it?)

In his essay On Bullshit Frankfurt writes: The fact about himself that the bullshitter hides, on the other hand, is that the truth-values of his statements are of no ...
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Is it difficult to know "general opinion"?

Is it difficult to know "general opinion"? Or can it be measured well somehow? I have had this problem of thinking that, when I get another person agree with me that I "possibly" hit a general ...
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I'm trying to identify a rhetorical device

I already asked this question on the writing forum, but I suppose the subject matter is better suited here. Once again, I am writing a commentary on the book of Galatians, while employing a socio-...
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What type of rhetorical device is the offering of a source which is really long and not specifying what part of the source is relevant?

I'm encountering a frequent recurrence of a rhetorical device that seems to me fallacious but I can't figure out what it's called. When making an argument, the person does the following: Makes a ...
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Rhetoric: How to frame redundancy in an argument as deficiency?

How can we categorize redundancy in an argument as deficiency? That is, weaken the argument because of its redundancy? Suppose X is an argument that boasts coherence and clarity, but it has various ...
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logical fallacy (or pseudo-logical, or rhetoric) corresponding to unduly extending my argument to make it false

This is probably similar to my preceding question: What's the name of the logical fallacy where a debater extends a statement far beyond the original statement to make it true? but I'm not sure ...
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Is this ad hominem or in general acceptable behavior during an argument?

Person A: What is considered socially acceptable should be common sense regardless of outside influences. Person B: What is considered common sense or obvious can be very different depending on the ...
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3 votes
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Is there a word for the type of rhetorical strategy where you distract from the point in order to seem authoritative?

Is there a word for distracting someone from the topic of the argument, and using the authority they have established in the mean time to (fallaciously) prove their original point? An example I ...
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2 votes
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Intention and Means-End Reasoning in Epistemology

In his paper, The logical foundations of means-end reasoning, John Pollock describes a notion of "means-end" reasoning, which is planning with a certain end goal in mind. Human plan-construction ...
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What is the proper response in a debate when your opponent ignores your counterarguments?

I keep running into a situation in debates and arguments. My opponent makes an argument (or counterargument), and I carefully disprove all of my opponent's points. However, instead of addressing my ...
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Is rhetoric philosophy?

In rhetoric, students are primarily concerned with making arguments that are convincing. Rhetoricians who deviated from the truth were rightly skewered in Socrates' time for their problematic "...
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What is the meaning of the term 'eúnoia'?

While reading on the subject of rhetoric, I learned a technique entitled 'captatio benevolentiae'. Further research revealed to me its root being 'eúnoia' (Greek for a well mind; beautiful thinking). ...
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What argumentative tactic is in play when someone says "The media isn't covering this"?

I see memes about once a week which state, "The media isn't covering this really important thing. Shouldn't they be ashamed! Like and Share and FWD to grandma if you agree!". Similar posts include "...
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How to build up clear ideas

I was reading Descartes' Rules for the direction of mind and noticed how clear are his ideas. I would love to speak in that way, where every sentence is a necessary step to climb up the final idea. ...
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5 answers
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Did Plato say "In order to argue, you must express your opponents argument better than they could?"

One friend said: If I can't see what is substantial and noble in a viewpoint I oppose - whether ethical, political, or religious - there's a good chance I haven't understood it, and/or that my own ...
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What logical fallacy is the statement that "A good person would do X" as an argument against not doing X?

I am lecturing a class in which a student has asked for my slides in advance. (My main reason for not doing this is to avoid students passively reading the answers to questions that I put to them in ...
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2 votes
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What fallacy dismisses problems by making it specific to the critic?

Occasionally, I write criticisms about some products online and people respond with statements like, "That's just your problem," or questions like, "If you don't like it then why do you use it?" I ...
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Identifying logical fallacy in argument

A friend challenged me with a statement A1: If there is no Jesus, why are there churches? Which rules of reasoning does it break? Is there a name for statements like that? The presented statement ...
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Are mythological stories scientific explanations?

Are mythological stories scientific explanations? {It would seem so because Zeus, for example, was as early explanation of lightening.} Or are they stories/rhetoric? Or is story-telling or rhetoric ...
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How, if at all, has the concept of rhetoric mutated during post-modernity?

How, if at all, has the concept of rhetoric mutated during post-modernity? I gather than it ('rhetoric') began its life, in classical Greece, as a form of public discourse inclusive of 'poetry', '...
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1 vote
1 answer
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Identifying deployed rhetoric instruments [closed]

There is a quote from a TV series, which seems to contain (at least) two rhetoric instruments. Michael Scott: Toby is in HR, which technically means he works for corporate. So he's really not a ...
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What fallacy dismisses criticism of a bad law with "just don't break it"?

Let's say someone is criticizing the government for instituting some draconian policy, and/or for persecuting people for doing something minor. And the response is:"Just don't do it and you'll be fine"...
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15 votes
5 answers
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Name for reverse Ad Hominem, (i.e. praising the defense)?

Is there a standard name for a fallacy of the same form as an ad hominem, except that instead of denouncing the opposition, it praises the defense? Typically an ad hominem ("against the man") fallacy ...
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What happened to rhetoric as a branch of philosophy?

Long long ago, rhetoric was a branch of philosophy. As far as I can tell, nowadays there is no philosophical work in the domain of persuasion and argumentation; this is now done in the public-...
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Can a question be bullshit?

In his essay On Bullshit Frankfurt writes: The fact about himself that the bullshitter hides, on the other hand, is that the truth-values of his statements are of no ...
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1 vote
1 answer
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How does rhetoric and substance interact in a successful debate?

I have been interested in debates for a while. Doc. William Lane Craig has for a long time been a spiritual hero of mine, and hearing him talk about debate is always interesting. So in the previous ...
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Is there a term for this 'disclaimer' technique used in statements?

This is a pretty common type of statement that's seen frequently on internet posts and discussions, but I was curious if there was a term for it. The statement starts off with a disclaimer which is ...
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3 votes
1 answer
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Claiming misrepresentation as a rhetorical device

Most of us are familiar with the Straw Man fallacy, and its sister the Principle of Charity. There's a rhetorical device which runs the opposite way, though, where (e.g.) Alice may claim that ...
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Aristotle and irony for gentlemen?

I have a very vague recollection of reading a quote---I think by Aristotle in one of his works on rhetoric. The general idea of the quote was that, when making an argument, you ought to counter your ...
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6 votes
5 answers
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What fallacy dismisses a conclusion because supporters give invalid arguments for it?

A person dismisses an otherwise valid argument, because some of its proponents support it for the wrong reason. How is this fallacy called? EDIT: Here is an example. A person defends the idea that ...
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2 votes
2 answers
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Reverse tautologies in rhetorics

Recently I came across the following line of reasoning. The reason is because it is COMMON SENSE, which many do not have. Obviously something goes wrong here as per definition of common sense many ...
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How do I counter this argument? [closed]

Essentially I was in an argument with a pro black/#BlackLivesMatter proponent, and they asserted that the USA is out to get black people, and that white's are constantly killing blacks. I countered ...
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12 votes
10 answers
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Why do people who subscribe to self-refuting skeptical philosophies still argue with others?

The belief that everything is relative is obviously self-refuting, because it holds to an absolute. However, in my experience, people who believe this (or some form of it) such as some Buddhists and ...
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"That religion is not a race doesn't stop people who attack it from being racist!" Is this a logical fallacy?

Does this argument represent a logical fallacy? If so, which one? Jack: People who argue against [religion] are racist. Jill: But, [religion] is not a race! Jack: Well, that religion is ...
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14 votes
4 answers
869 views

What fallacy excludes "outsiders" from discussing "insider" issue?

I see this a lot on the internet, especially as of late with what's trending in the news: You're a man, so you're not allowed to comment on women's issues. You're a woman, so you're not allowed to ...
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7 votes
7 answers
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How would you explain the is-ought dichotomy to an "Objectivist"?

I've recently met someone who identifies as an "Objectivist." I'm a moral nihilist, so naturally, I asked about the is-ought problem. His response was frustrating. He claims that Rand avoids ...
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