Fallacies of Vagueness Notes

12 May

Logic and Reasoning 1200

Fallacies Lecture 1: Fallacies of Vagueness.

What is a Fallacy?

  • A Fallacy is simply an inference that is defective in some way.
  • It is important to study fallacies because many fallacious arguments seem persuasive and can fool us into thinking that they are good arguments.
  • Some types of defective arguments are repeated so often that they have been identified and given particular names.


  • A word is vague when there are borderline cases where it is unclear whether the term applies or not.
  • Specifically, issues of vagueness often occur when a term applies on a continuum of small changes.
  • Consider a term like ‘old’:
  • We can divide up age as finely as we desire from the broad categories of year and month all the way down to very fine categories of minutes and seconds.
  • A clear case of old is Sean Connery at 81.
  • A clear case of not old…

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Posted by on May 12, 2015 in General News


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