You may be surprised that detailed discussion of argument assess- ment precedes the detailed discussion of argument-reconstruction in Chapter 5; surely you have to reconstruct an argument before you can assess it? A question might have occurred to you: Could both arguments be deductively sound? Probability We express the probability that a given proposition is true or that a given event has occurred or will occur on a numerical scale between 0 and 1, expressed either as a decimal or as a fraction. These are the sorts of relations displayed between premises and conclusion in valid arguments such as 1—5. To do this is to reconstruct the 5 argument, and the end product — the argument set out in standard 6 form — is called a reconstruction of the argument, or an argument- 7 reconstruction.

For example, we 3 have characterised critical thinking as aiming at truth. It does not 3 matter in what order, in the whole sentence, the two smaller sentences 4 occur; what matters is the logical relationship asserted by the sentence. We assume that you 3 already have that skill, though working through this book might help 4 you to hone it more finely. Neither P1 nor P2 would, by itself, be a reason to accept C. Along the way, we have streamlined and 5 clarified in sundry smaller ways. Suppose that 7 Fiona is asked to pick a card at random. We do not entirely accept the view that examples in a book on crit- ical thinking should be real, or even that they should be realistic.

C Abortion is murder. P1 could be true even if, say, three patients developed liver disease upon being treated with X, yet thou- sands were treated with X without developing liver disease.

The book will be of great value to students of philosophy, providing them with an analytical framework within which they can properly understand and assess the texts they study. M-Ali rated it really liked it Apr 06, The particular meanings might themselves be per- 1 fectly clear and precise.


Not everyone with a science degree earns a better-than-average 2 salary. If not, explain why not. Sep 20, Andreea Covaleov rated it really liked it.

C2 Probably The Prussians will be routed. These arguments both infer a conclusion from two premises, but there is an important difference. Determining whether a passage contains an attempt to persuade by argument and identifying the conclusion of that argument do not always occur independently however.

Critical Thinking: A Concise Guide

Here is a hybrid extended argument that illustrates the point: What evidence does thonking writer or speaker give to think that the conclusion is true? Thus our primary task in this chapter and the next is to explain the basic logical concepts in terms of which assessment is carried out — validity, soundness and inductive force.

critical thinking a concise guide by kemp gary & bowell tracy

Conservation of Plastics Yvonne Shashoua. Sometimes you will identify the conclusion in the process of working out that a passage does indeed contain an argument. P2 Almost everyone in Inverness owns at least one item of woollen clothing.

There are times when people take offence at a generalisation about a group and are simply irrational in doing so; no amount of explaining the difference between a soft gener- alisation and a hard one, or the difference between iemp generalisation about actual facts and one about alleged genetic qualities will change this. It has to consider whether there is good reason to accept the argument or whether some faults in it mean that there must be some doubt about its truth.

What is less clear is how to think critically about such attempts and how to distinguish those that are sound arguments.


Tracy Bowell & Gary Kemp, Critical Thinking. A Concise Guide – PhilPapers

Key features of the book include: And wool is plentiful: It is not part of the 9 propositional content that it expresses; rather, it is the emotive or other- wise suggestive window-dressing surrounding the proposition, which may 1 be used to persuade us. For a conditional is not itself an argument. C Sweden exports cars. When you receive the pay increase you discover that 40 the rise is only 10p an hour. But they do not.

critical thinking a concise guide by kemp gary & bowell tracy

Chapter summary than every Zormon. A statement implicates a given proposi- tion only if a listener who is fully aware of the relevant context would reasonably take that proposition to have been intended.

critical thinking a concise guide by kemp gary & bowell tracy

It means, simply, that that is the way things are. A Critical Realist Critique. The sentences are implicitly relative. There seem to be cases for which neither proportion nor 3 frequency will serve as a direct indicator of probability. Then you must hope that the argument is deductively unsound, in which case you must hope that either the argument is invalid, or it has a false premise. T P2 All sopranos are English.

That is, there are counterexamples to the claim that all generalisations are false.