SlideShare a Scribd company logo
1 of 20
Download to read offline
Argumentum Ad Hominem
       A Fallacy?
CONTENTS                                                                                        i


Contents
1 Introduction                                                                                  1

2 Fallacies – A Historical Overview                                                             2

3 The Argumentum Ad Hominem                                                                     5

4 Under certain circumstances fallacious                                                        7
  4.1   Walton’s approach . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .       7
  4.2   Govier’s approach    . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .    8

5 Non-fallacious                                                                                9
  5.1   Johnstone’s approach . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .      9
  5.2   Perelman’s approach . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10
  5.3   Hitchcock’s approach . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10

6 Always fallacious                                                                            11
  6.1   Locke’s approach . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 11
  6.2   Van Eemeren’s & Grootendorst’s approach          . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 11

7 Conclusion                                                                                   13
  7.1   Recapitulation . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 13
  7.2   Further research . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 14

R´f´rences
 ee                                                                                            15
1 INTRODUCTION                                                                             1


1    Introduction
This paper is aimed at giving two overviews, an historical overview about fallacy theories
and a systematical overview about approaches to the argumentum ad hominem.

The historical overview about different approaches to fallacies constitutes the first part of
the paper. The history of fallacy research is far too broad to be presented fully here. This
paper can provide only an overview of the main approaches in the history of the research.
At the center of this historical overview are the approaches to fallacies of Aristotle, John
Locke, Richard Whately, Charles Hamblin, John Woods, Douglas N. Walton, Else Barth
& Erik Krabbe, Christopher Tindale and Frans van Eemeren & Rob Grootendorst.

The second part of the paper concerns one of the pragma-dialectical fallacies in detail:
The ad hominem fallacy, which is one of the most widely and controversially discussed
fallacies. The ultimate goal of this paper is to provide a systematic description of different
approaches to the argumentum ad hominem. In order to do so, it is the task to clarify what
sort of approaches regard the argumentum ad hominem (1) as fallacious in certain contexts
and under certain circumstances, (2) as non-fallacious or (3) as always (per definitionem)
fallacious and how these approaches cohere with each other. Within this systematization
the three widely accepted variants of the argumentum ad hominem (direct, indirect and
tu quoque variant) are discussed and linked up to the three main views (under certain
circumstances fallacious, non-fallacious and always fallacious).

Finally there is a brief comparison of the approaches with regard to the problems arising
within the three different trends. The question here is also, if there is a variant of the
argumentum ad hominem where all the approaches conform with each other in their view
on the fallaciousness. At last a short overview is given, on what further research could
concentrate on.
2 FALLACIES – A HISTORICAL OVERVIEW                                                                       2


2       Fallacies – A Historical Overview
The study of fallacies began with Aristotle (384–322 BCE). In De sophisticis elenchis
Aristotle put the study of fallacies in a dialectical context and listed 13 different types
of fallacies, categorized into fallacies dependend on language (in dictione) and fallacies
independent on language (extra dictionem). Fallacies of the first type “are connected with
ambiguities and shifts of meaning”, while fallacies of the latter type “can also occur in an
artificial ’perfect’ language” (van Eemeren, 2004, p. 159). In general he defined a fallacy
as an argument wich seems to be valid but is not (De sophisticis elenchis, 164a). This def-
inition dominated the study of fallacies and remained authoritative up to the last decades.
And although Francis Bacon (1561–1626), a British philosopher, was of the opinion that
there are more important fallacies than those Aristotle mentioned, he favoured the Aris-
totelian approach.1

John Locke (1632–1704), also a philosopher, later made the most important additions to
the Aristotelian list of fallacies: The ad Fallacies. In An Essay Concerning Human Un-
derstanding (1690/1995) he introduced and discussed four ad arguments, among them the
argumentum ad hominem, which will be dicussed later in detail. But it must be kept in
mind, that Locke did not yet “explicitly states that he considers the ad arguments to be
fallacious” (van Eemeren, 2001, p. 142).

Richard Whately (1778–1863), a logician and rhetorician, replaced the Aristotelian defini-
tion of a fallacy with a wider one: “Any argument, or apparent argument, which professes
to be decisive of the matter at hand, while in reality it is not” (1826/1995, p. 142). Also
he suggested that “rules should be given for a division of Fallacies into logical and non-
logical”2 (1826/1995, p. 71). In the group of logical fallacies, the conclusion does not
follow from the premisses, whereas in non-logical fallacies the ’fault’ has nothing to do
with invalidity. Whatelys approach of syllogistic and inductive fallacies therefore provides
a logical point of view. Whatelys influence on the textbook tradition was noteworthy.3

The Standard Treatment of fallacies in logic textbooks was problematized by Charles
Hamblin (1922–1985). He portrayed the Standard Treatment in his book Fallacies (1970).
Hamblin came across this idea because he found a remarkable degree of uniformity in the
various approaches to fallacies: Fallacy theory deals with errors in reasoning and instead
of Aristotles’ division of fallacies into those dependend on language and those independent
on language in textbooks a distinction between fallacies of clearness (they correspondend
more or less with Aristotles in dictione) and fallacies of relevance (this category also in-


    1
      The Aristotelian list was the starting point for a group of French scholars working on fallacies, too.
In Logic or the Art of Thinking (Arnauld, 1996) the Port-Royal Logic included these fallacies in this first
modern approach to fallacies.
   2
      He developed a tree of classification which shows the fallacies in detail (1826/1995, p. 75).
   3
      Another British philosopher, John Stuart Mill (1806–1873) in A System of Logic, Ratiocinative and
Inductive (1865/2002) advanced the idea of a category of inductive fallacies (whereas Whately advanced the
idea that reasoning should conform to the syllogism) but this led to no significant theoretical innovations.
2 FALLACIES – A HISTORICAL OVERVIEW                                                                      3


cludes the ad fallacies) can be found.
Hamblins criticism was devastating. Not only he criticized the definition of a fallacy, but
also he stated that there is “no theory of fallacies at all, in the sense in which we have
theory of correct reasoning or inference” (1970, p. 11). After a closer examination of this
part of his general critique it becomes clear that Hamblin is right: Most of the fallacies
discussed in the Standard Treatment do not fit with the definition, and only a few fallacies
(e.g. affirming the consequent and denying the antecedent) as formal fallacies fall under
the definition.

The reactions to Hamblins critique were noticeable: Some authors were of the opinion that
the theory of fallacies should be dropped out of logic textbooks at all (e.g. Lambert and
Ulrich), others paid attention to the conditions under which a specific argumentative move
should count as a fallacy (e.g. Hitchcock (2007), Govier (1981) and Brinton (1985/1995)),
and only a minority (among them Copi) adhered to the Standard Treatment and refer
to fallacies and it was done before. John Biro and and Harvey Siegel (1997) came up
with an epistemic approach representing a different view on fallacies as failed attempts to
expand our knowledge.4 Quite another thing did Jaakko Hintikka (1987) who viewed the
Aristotelian fallacies as interrogative mistakes in question dialogues.

But amongst the post-Hamblin approaches to fallacies, the contribution of the logicians
John Woods and Douglas N. Walton was one of the most ambitious. They aimed for
a better and much more coherent treatment of fallacies with the help of the theoretical
framework of logic which goes behind the pure syllogistic, predicate and propositional
logic.
In classifying fallacies, they make a distinction between grades of formality. In their text-
book Argument: The Logic of the Fallacies (1982) these grades of formality are specified:
The first grade summarizies those fallacies which are in a very strict sense formal (e.g.
the classical fallacy of four terms). Fallacies of this type can be technically described and
analyzed with the vocabulary of formal logic. Fallacies of the second grade are not formal
in a strict sense, but their commission can be made explicit by reference to logical forms
(e.g. the fallacy of ambiguity). Fallacies which are formally analyzable in an even weaker
sense (e.g. petitio principii ) are fallacies of the third grade of formality.

In the 70s, a formal-dialectical approach by Else Barth and Erik Krabbe attracted interest.


   4
      The article Epistemic, Normativity, Argumentation, and Fallacies (1997) develops their theory fur-
ther. For them, a theory of argumentation must fully engage the normativity of judgements about argu-
ments, which means some sort of evaluation whether the argument is a good one or not. They contrast
their normative approach to descriptive ones, which fail to explain why good arguments ar good and bad
ones bad. They regard fallacies as epistemic failures, as arguments which fail to produce knowledge of, or
to justify belief in, their conclusions. As a consequence, Biro and Siegel suggest epistemic seriousness as
a necessary condition of non-fallaciousness. So, fallacies – and failed arguments more generally – must,
in their opinion, be seen as failures of rationality. Their epistemic approach often was often criticised,
especially by Jonathan E. Adler and Gy¨z¨ Sz´ll (1993 and 1995), who defended the argumentation theory
                                          o o e
developed by Frans H. van Eemeren and Rob Grootendorst (2002, 2004, 2009), whereas e.g. Blair and
Johnson (1993), Feldman (1994) and Lumer (1990, 1991) also defend an epistemic account of argumenta-
tion.
2 FALLACIES – A HISTORICAL OVERVIEW                                                                          4


They envisaged in From Axiom to Dialogue (1982) a theory of rational argumentation as a
finite set of production rules for rational arguments. Arguments which cannot be produced
with these rules are per definitionem fallacious. Within this framework, there is therefore
no list of specific fallacies, but with an analysis they can be ’unmasked’ as fallacies.

Christopher Tindale also supports Hamblins criticism of the Standard Treatment, and
listed some other problems of dealing with fallacies, (e.g. the problem of relativity (in
his opinion arguments are in some contexts fallacious but in others not), which was also
discussed by Charles Willard.5 After discussing different definitions of fallacies6 he makes
clear that he sees fallacies as ’bad process’, which “concerns the breakdown of the com-
munication process between arguer/argument and audience in rhetorical communication.”
(Tindale, 1999, p. 180)

Besides his work with Woods, Walton published a large number of book on fallacies on
his own. His pragmatic approach, which deals with informal fallacies and which marked
a new stage in his development, is well known. He combined the study of individual falla-
cies with examining real-life cases. He developed a theory of fallacies as shifts in dialogue
types: “During the course of a conversation between two or more parties there can be a
change in the context of argumentation or dialectical shift from one type of dialogue to
another.” (1992, p. 137)

Finally, the pragma-dialectical approach, developed by Frans H. van Eemeren and Rob
Grootendorst, links up with formal dialectics. They adopted the idea of developing a set
of rules which makes it possible to analyze fallacies in a systematic way.
In pragma-dialectics, fallacies are viewed as wrong discussion moves in the communication
process. Within the ideal of a critical discussion, which aimes at resolving a difference
of opinion between at least two parties, there are ten rules for critical discussion7 , which
ensure that the difference of opinion is not being hindered. In principle each of these ten
discussion rules constitutes a separate and different standard for critical discussion. In
this approach, fallacies are seen as violations of rules for a critical discussion that prevent
or hinder the resolution of a difference of opinion.


   5
      In Failures of Relevance: A rhetorical View (1995) Charles Willard provides a rhetorical and
relativity-characteristically view on fallacies: “Fallaciousness never did reside solely on logical form. (...)
The most credible fallacies theories always did focus on the fits between messages, situations and intentions
(1995, p. 157).
   6
      One very remarkable definition was done by Johnson, who gave a very general and wide definition:
“A fallacy is an argument which violates one of the criteria/standards of good argument and which occurs
with sufficient frequency in discourse to warrant being baptized” (1987/1995, p. 116). An example for such
a criterion is ’relevance’.
   7
      In the book Argumentation (2002) van Eemeren provides ten rules, whereas in A Systematic Theory
of Argumentation (2004) 15, more technical rules are presented
3 THE ARGUMENTUM AD HOMINEM                                                                5


3    The Argumentum Ad Hominem
With this historical background knowledge we can turn now to the systematic part. As
in the introduction already decribed, within this systematic part not fallacy theories in
general, but approaches to a certain fallacy – the argumentum ad hominem – are examined.

A closer view on the different approaches to fallacies of the historical overview reveals that
there are nearly as many different approaches to fallacies as people who were engaged in
this particular research topic. Nevertheless, some basic trends can be identified:
First, there is a group of scholars who focus on the circumstances of fallacies and the
context in which they occur. Most of them belong to the group of informal logicians,
among them Walton and Govier.
The second big group of researchers dealing with fallacies, among them Johnstone, and
Hitchcock, have a more rhetorical view and regard fallacies not as ’fallacious’ moves, but
as legitimite arguments.
The third group is the one around van Eemeren, in which fallacies are per definitionem,
and therefore always, fallacious.

The argumentum ad hominem as one of the arguments often discussed in the variety
of fallacy theories seems to have a special position in research: Often, it was simply
said that the argumentum ad hominem is obviously fallacious (e.g. Copi) without giving
explicit reasons, and in nearly the same frequency it was discussed if it is a fallacy at
all. Within the huge amount of articles that has been published on this issue, these
three gerenal trends can be found: Arguments like the ad hominem can be (1) fallacious
under certain circumstances, (2) non-fallacious or (3) always fallacious. Due to the large
amount of research that has been done on this particular instance of argumentation, not
all approaches can be discussed. Therefore, each of these three general trends will be
represented by first discussing the most influential or representative approach to then
address at least one other theory briefly as well in order to do justice to the extensive
amount of research that has been carried out.

In order to do so, it will first be examined about which elements of the definition of
the argumentum ad hominem the covered authors agree upon. First of all, ad hominem
(Greek pros ton anthrˆpon) can simply be translated with ’toward the person’. They all
                     o
regard an argumentum ad hominem, as a piece of argumentative discourse, which has as
its propositional content one or more proposition about a person, which plays a role in
this discourse.
As a minimal consens of most of the apporaches to the ad hominem it can also be stated
that the ad hominem is some sort of attacking another person instead of responding to the
actual arguments in question. This means that in most of the approaches the ad hominem
3 THE ARGUMENTUM AD HOMINEM                                                                                  6


is classified as a fallacy of relevance8 , for example by Copi9 , Walton and Govier.
As in the introduction already mentioned, there are three widely accepted variants of the
ad hominem. These variants were already included in the Standard Treatment of fallacies.
The ways how a person can be attacked in argumentative discourse are as follows:

(1) Direct Variant The first type is the direct personal attack on the other party.
This variant is also called ’abusive variant’. In Argumentation van Eemeren describes this
fallacy as the “fallacy of depicting the other party as stupid, bad, unreliable, etcetera”
(2002, p. 183). By cutting down one’s opponent by casting doubt on his intelligence,
expertise, character or good faith the attacking person tries to make the opponent losing
his credibility.
An example for the abusive variant of the ad hominem (B) is:

       A: Everyone buying a new car should buy one with a hybrid drive to protect
       the environment.
       B: How would you know? You don’t know the first thing about cars and hybrid
       drive.

(1) Indirect Variant          The second type is the indirect variant, also called ’circumstantial
ad hominem’, which consists of casting doubt on the opponents motives. By trying to make
him to appear suspicious, the attacking person tries to show that the opponent is biased
because of his personal interest in the matter.
An example for the circumstantial variant of the ad hominem (B) is:

       A: Everyone buying a new car should buy one with a hybrid drive to protect
       the environment.
       B: Do you really think we should believe you? Surely, maybe it is better for
       our environment to buy cars with a hybrid drive, but isn’t it the case that your
       father is the only person in town selling those type of cars?

(1) Tu Quoque Variant               The last of the three variants is the so-called ’tu quoque’-
variant. Here, an attempt is made to “undermine the other party’s credibility by pointing
out a contradiction in that party’s words or deeds” (2002, p. 112). This could be an
inconsistency between the current and past standpoint someone is attacking or defending,
or an inconsistency between a standpoint and the corresponding behaviour. People use
this variant, because they think that someone who is not consistent cannot be right. But
not being consistent does not automatically mean that the standpoint is wrong.
An example for the tu quoque variant of the ad hominem (B) is:


   8
      van Eemeren and Grootendorst in the pragma-dialectical approach do not see the ad hominem fallacy
as a fallacy of relevance, but as a fallacy concerning the freedom of action of the participants of a discourse
   9
      According to Copi fallacies of relevance have the characteristic that there is a psychological link
between the premisses and the conclusion, but the used premisses are not logically connected to the
conclusion (1953/1972, p. 72). An argument which seems to be a fallacious ad hominem, but is in fact not
because the issue at hand is about the ’attacked’ person, he calls pseudo-fallacy
4 UNDER CERTAIN CIRCUMSTANCES FALLACIOUS                                                                7


         A: Everyone buying a new car should buy one with a hybrid drive to protect
         the environment.
         B: You’re not being serious! You are driving a Jeep on your own.


4        Under certain circumstances fallacious
The first variant to approach the argumentum ad hominem is to regard it as an argument
which is sometimes fallacious and sometimes not. To decide whether it is fallacious or not
the context and the cirumstances under which the argumentum ad hominem has been put
forward, must be taken into account.
Walton’s approach to the ad hominem, regarding it as an informal fallacy, meets with
this view on the argument. Govier, also belonging to the group of informal logicians, also
regards at least the tu quoque variant as non-fallacious. Both approaches will be discussed
in the following.

4.1      Walton’s approach
For Walton, an argumentum ad hominem “criticizes another argument by questioning
the personal circumstances or personal trustworthiness of the arguer who advanced it”10
(1987, p. 317).
While referring to the so-called dialectical shifts, Walton gives an overview about the
correct and incorrect use of the ad hominem. Like pointed out before, a dialectical shift
according to Walton is a change from one type of dialogue to another. In Walton’s opinion
the ad hominem, and argumentation in general, could be fallacious in one type of dialogue
but correct in another, and a specific argumentation technique causing an illicit dialectical
shift of dialogue constitutes a fallacy. As the types of dialogue in which the ad hominem
is fallacious, he mentions the scientific inquiry and the critical discussion11 . As examples
for types of dialogue in which the ad hominem is not fallacious, he mentions legal cross-
examinations and quarrels. Therefore, a ad hominem becomes a fallacy if it causes a shift
from a critical discussion to a quarrel “because the argument was originally supposed to
be a critical discussion” (1992, p. 140). Further, Walton says that textual and contextual
evidence must be given when criticising argumentation as fallacious ad hominem – this
puts a serious burden of proof on the person who is criticising.
In The Argumentum Ad Hominem as an Informal Fallacy (1987) Walton explains in detail
under what conditions the three variants of the argumentum ad hominem are fallacious
or not.
In general in circumstantial ad hominem arguments not a logical but a pragmatic incon-


    10
      This seems to be a description of two variants of the ad hominem, namely the circumstantial and the
tu quoque variants. Walton is very unclear in his texts concerning the three variants of the ad hominem
In some texts he provides three subvariants of the tu quoque variant, or speaks about a first and a second
type of the ad hominem without mentioning to what type of ad hominem they belong.
  11
      Walton explicitly states that there a situations in which an ad hominem in a critical discussion can
be non-fallacious, but he fails to give examples or further information.
4 UNDER CERTAIN CIRCUMSTANCES FALLACIOUS                                                                  8


sistency is alleged. According to Walton in the circumstantial ad hominem attack the
critique put forward by an arguer claims that the statements or arguments advocated by
the other arguer are inconsistent with that arguer’s personal circumstances.12 According
to Walton this sort of ad hominem can be reasonable or – in some other cases – fallacious.
The most important error, he calls it basic ad hominem, is “to conclude that because the
arguer has advocated a proposition A, yet is committed by his personal circumstances to
the opposite of A, therefore the arguer’s contention must be false (per se)” (1987, p. 318).
This is a sort of invalid argument and thus fallacious. A second type of a circumstantial ad
hominem fallacy is one, in which a drawed parallel fails, so there is a logical gab existent.
To sum up, it can be said that the circumstantial ad hominem becomes fallacious if the
arguer’s statement is rejected too strong or if the issue is evaded, and it can be reasonable
because inconsistency of the position of an arguer should be open to criticism.
The tu quoque variant seems to be – according to Walton – a basically legitimate type
of questioning or criticism, because if someone is not consistent in what he preaches and
what he is doing, this person loses credibility.
The abusive variant is much more difficult to handle. Walton asks: “Can an abusive ad
hominem argument ever by reasonable, or is this type of argument always fallacious?”
(1987, p. 327) The answer is, that an abusive ad hominem can be reasonable, too. But
this must be decided in each case individually. Each abusive ad hominem must be evalu-
ated on its own merits and demerits, because the personal circumstances of every arguer
are arguably different from the personal circumstances of any other arguer.

4.2    Govier’s approach
Trudy Govier published in 1981 the article Worries about Tu Quoque as a Fallacy. The
name is programmatic: Govier points out why she feels doubt on the traditional view of
tu quoque as a variant of the fallacious ad hominem. She does not deny that a piece of
discourse, which can be reconstructed as the following:

      1. Person A advocates that Proposition P be followed
      2. A does not himself follow P
      3. P is false

P is here of the form “A person, A, holds a principle, P, which is of the form ’People in
circumstances of type (c) should do actions of type (a)’.” (1980, p. 2) In the reconstruction
above A affirms P, but do not follow the principle for his or her own. The conclusion is
fallacious because it does not arise from the premisses. P is not automatically false, if
someone who affirms P does not follow P.

But according to Govier, in argumentative contexts the scheme from above has to be
reconstructed in another way, namely in a more subtle and plausible way. This is, because


  12
     The term ’circumstances’ here refers to the personal situation in which the arguer stands, his actions,
personal practices, convictions and commitments.
5 NON-FALLACIOUS                                                                                        9


argumentative discourse occurs in reality solely in in contexts. Therefore, she claims, the
reconstruction must be constructed in a more natural way:

         1. A advocates that P be followed
         2. A does not himself follow P
         3. A does not take P seriously
         4. Others need not take A’s advocacy of P seriously
         5. Whatever reason people may have for following P, it does not presently
         come from A

Seen from this point of view “there is either no fallacy at all, or a very unobvious one“
(1981, p. 3). So at least the tu quoque variant of the argumentum ad hominem is, according
to Govier, not compulsory fallacious.

About the fallaciousness or non-fallaciousness regarding to the other two variants of the
argumentum ad hominem the text says nothing, but supposably Govier regards them as
fallacious discussion moves, otherwise she would not have had written a article with worries
solely about the tu quoque variant.


5        Non-fallacious
The second approach the ad hominem argument is to regard it as not fallacious. That
means that every ad hominem argument, in whatever context and under whatever cir-
cumstances it is put forward, is a legal and permitted argument.
The approach of the American philosopher Henry Johnstone explains why in his opinion
there is no fallacious argumentum ad hominem. Perelman’s and Hitchcocks approaches,
also rather rhetorical approaches13 , are introduced in the following, too.

5.1      Johnstone’s approach
Johnstone, influenced by Whately’s approach to ad hominem, goes a step further and
claims that there is no fallacious ad hominem at all, whatever variant is regarded. He
contends that all philosophical argumentation is inevitably ad hominem and argues that
any objections that the ad hominem could be not fallacious are anchorless because for him
the ad hominem argument is a legitimate and reasonable way of arguing.
In Locke and Whately on the Argumentum ad Hominem (1996), Johnstone gives a brief
explanation for his view on the ad hominem. He starts with his proposition that all
philosophical arguments are ad hominem, and distinguishes between positive and negative
philosophical arguments. The latter class “consists of attacks on the views of opponents”
(1996, p. 93). Because only the ad hominem is suitable for philosophical polemic and


    13
      Hitchcock would not label himself as a rhetorician and his approach as rhetorical. But in my opinion
his approach to the argumentum ad hominem is rhetorical, because his argumentation why the argumentum
ad hominem is a legitimate way of arguing deals with the ethos of the orator (also he do not name it like
that).
5 NON-FALLACIOUS                                                                                     10


because he does not see any reason to pause over arguments not mentionend by Locke and
Whately, he states that his proposition is verified. Positive philosophical arguments, that is
arguments in establishing principles instead of attacking them, have to be ad hominem, as
well. This is, because if one wants someone to achieve positive and the same conclusions
as oneself the dialogue must be carried “one step beyond the simple ad hominem (...)
exposure of contradiction” (1996, p. 94).

5.2    Perelman’s approach
As before in Johnstone’s work the Belgian philosopher Chaim Perelman sees no connec-
tion between fallacies and any variant of the ad hominem argument. He regards the ad
hominem as a necessary condition for successful argumentation, and a good and legitimate
tool to win others for one’s own standpoint.

In La nouvelle rh´torique (1958) he and Lucie Olbrechts-Tyteca go into detail: They
                 e
make unambiguously clear that they see nothing reprehensible in every variant of the ad
hominem argument. For them, the ad hominem argument is a general characteristic of
successful argumentation because in their opinion argumentation must be connected to
the opinions the audience already have to be successful. Perelman claims that argumen-
tation should place stress on the specific persons taking part in the discourse. According
to him the argumentum ad hominem also could not be a fallacy of relevance because
the “relationship between speaker and what is spoken is always relevant and important
(Leff, 2009, p. 301). Perelman and Olbrechts-Tyteca further make a distinction between
argumentation which is aimed at persuading a certain audience and argumentation for a
universal audience.14

5.3    Hitchcock’s approach
Hitchcock takes Govier’s definition of a fallacy as a starting point: “By definition, a fallacy
is a mistake in reasoning, a mistake which occurs with some frequency in real arguments
and which is characteristically deceptive” (Govier, 1981/1995, p. 172). According to him,
there is, assuming that this definition is valid, no ad hominem fallacy.
The tu quoque variant shows an inconsistency between words and deeds, and thus is a
legitimate way to critique because there is an appeal to commitments implicit in one’s
behaviour. The abusive ad hominem is either “a relevant attack on the opponent’s ethos
in a rhetorical context or a diversionary tactic that does not involve reasoning” (Hitchcock,
2007, p. 620) and is thus not a fallacy. The circumstantial variant finally raises legitimate
suspicion about the truthworthiness of a person because it attributes bias to the opponent.


  14
      Perelman and Olbrechts-Tyteca consider the argument ad hominem as argumentum ad humanitatem
in case that someone imagines that he is able to convince the universal audience, because he then claims
to the approval of all reasonable beings.
6 ALWAYS FALLACIOUS                                                                                       11


6        Always fallacious
The third variant to approach the ad hominem argument is to regard it as fallacious per
definitionem. That means that every ad hominem argument, which meets with the defi-
nition of the ad hominem fallacy is in fact fallacious.
One approach, which gives such a clear and systematic definition for a fallacious ad
hominem, is the pragma-dialectical approach by van Eemeren and Grootendorst. But
first another approach, the one developed by Locke, is explained in the following.

6.1      Locke’s approach
It is not quite clear what Locke had in mind when he published on four sorts of arguments.
It cannot be stated for certain that he regarded the ad hominem as a fallacy or as always
fallacious. Why Locke’s approach norwithstanding can be found here, in the section
’always fallacious’, will be explained below.
Locke considers the ad hominem to be one of the arguments that men uses to prevail
their assend. The ad hominem is the third of his four introduced sorts of argument, and
presses according to him “a man with consequences drawn from his own principles or
concessions” (1690/1995, p. 56). He admits that the ad hominem is “legitimate when the
question in dispute is not the truth of a proposition but the self-consistency of the person
who proposes it” (1690/1995, p. 56). This seems to be a description of a legitimite variant
of tu quoque. But therefore in a context in which the truth of a proposition is in question
the ad hominem must be – vice versa – fallacious. Because the aforementioned exception
is a special case (like as in the pragma-dialectical approach) Locke belongs best into this
section.

6.2      Van Eemeren’s & Grootendorst’s approach
Within this pragma-dialectical approach15 a fallacy is seen as a violation of one or more of
the rules for critical discussion. The rule, which is violated by the ad hominem is the first
rule, also known as the ’freedom rule’: “Parties must not prevent each other from putting
forward standpoints or casting doubt on standpoints.” (2009a, p. 108) The freedom rule
make sure that the participants of a critical discussion are not prevented from putting
forward standpoints or calling into question the standpoints of their opponent. In order
to resolve a difference of opinion it is a necessary condition to be able to fully externalize
it. If parties prevent each other from doing so, the process of resolution is hindered in a
special way.


    15
      Frans H. van Eemeren, Bart Garssen and Bert Meuffels did empirical research to the ad hominem
fallacy. This is very noticeable, because first no other approach did, and second the results of this research
absolutely support the pragma-dialectical approach: They found out that there is a somehow predictable
structure and system in judging reasonableness of discussion contributions. Normal judges make a clear
distinction between fallacious and non-fallacious discussion contributions. Also normal judges can distinct
the three variants of the ad hominem fallacy and take the direct variant for the most unreasonable and
the tu quoque variant as the most reasonable but anyhow fallacious discussion contribution.
6 ALWAYS FALLACIOUS                                                                       12


If one of the parties is attacked with the abusive variant, this party seems to have lost the
right to take part in the further discussion, because of for example his apparent stupidity.
This is clearly a violation of the freedom rule, because of the attempt of disfranchising
him as a serious discussion partner by discrediting his expertise, intelligence, character or
faith.

If someone’s motives are called into question with an indirect ad hominem attack, the
attacking party depicts the other party as someone who has not the right to take part
in the discussion because he is apparently biased. Again, this is obviously a violation of
the freedom rule because one party tries to disenfranchise the other party as a serious
discussion partner by discrediting his impartiality.

An attack with the tu quoque variant restricts one’s party freedom of action, too. If
someone is portrayed as a person whose words and deeds are inconsistent, the other party
tried do ’dismiss’ him of the discussion with the reason of lost credibility. In fact this
inconsistency has nothing to do with the standpoint. Again it is obviously a violation of
the freedom rule, because one party tries to disenfranchise the other party as a serious
discussion partner by discrediting his credibility.
7 CONCLUSION                                                                              13


7      Conclusion
First there is a brief recapitulation of the approaches to the argumentum ad hominem, in
which the approaches are in a few words compared and criticized. Finally there are some
thoughts on possible and suitable further research.

7.1    Recapitulation
The ad hominem, which means simply ’toward the person’, is some sort of attacking
another person instead of responding to the actual arguments in question. There are
three widely accepted variants: attacking the other’s party (1) intelligence, expertise,
character or good faith (direct / abusive variant), (2) impartiality and motives (indirect
/ circumstantial variant) and (3) credibility and consistency in words and deeds.
A closer view on the different approaches to fallacies in general (historical overview) and
the argumentum ad hominem revealed that there are three basic trends.
First, there is a group of scholars who focus on the circumstances of fallacies and the
context in which they occur. Most of them belong to the group of informal logicians.
Walton and Govier both regard the ad hominem as fallacious under certain circumstances.
Walton’s approach provides a critical examination of every situation with any variant of
the ad hominem to determine if it’s fallacious or not. Govier’s approach regards the tu
quoque variant in most situations as non-fallacious. The problem with such approaches
is that they require an evaluation in every situation and for every variant. This is time-
consuming, and there is a problem of unambiguous terminology. Everytime someone uses
a term like ad hominem it must be differentiated and specifically said if it’s a fallacious
or a non-fallacious ad hominem.

The second big group of researchers dealing with fallacies have a more rhetorical view
and regard fallacies not as ’fallacious’ moves, but as legitimite arguments. Johnstone’s,
Perelman’s and Hitchcock’s appproaches provide that there are no fallacies. Johnstone
and Perelman argue that especially the ad hominem is a necessary condition for succesful
argumentation; Hitchcock explains for every variant why this is no fallacious discussion
move. Such approaches have no problem of decision or terminology like approaches from
the type above, but they can just be used in limited contexts like the rhetorical, persuasive
one.

The third group is the one around van Eemeren, in which ad hominem arguments are
per definitionem, and therefore always, fallacious. Locke defined the ad hominem first
as fallacious discussion move, whereas van Eemeren regards them as violations of specific
rules for critical discussion. Such a point of view avoids problems of ambiguos terminology
and the necessity of an evaluation. But like in the rhetorical approaches there is also the
problem of a limited context (critical discussion). Nevertheless the pragma-dialectical is
the most systematic and clearest approach to fallacies in general and the argumentum ad
hominem in detail.
7 CONCLUSION                                                                                      14


7.2    Further research
In antiquity (informal) logic, dialectic and rhetoric were disciplines with different topics.
Today there is still a distinction between them, but they are no more seen as disciplines
with a different object, but as three perspectives to argumentation. We’ve seen that these
three perpectives do put forward different approaches to fallacies (and the argumentum
ad hominem) respectively. But the most influential approaches can be subsumed to one
of the three mentioned perspectives. What is missing in today’s research to fallacies and
especially to the argumentum ad hominem is the serious attempt to determine how the
three perspectives cohere and what research results are overlapping. Especially the relation
between (pragma-)dialectics and rhetoric is very interesting and unfortunately just a little
research was done up to now. This paper aimed at giving an overview and a very short
comparison of different approaches to the argumentum ad hominem. The next step would
be to restudy these approaches in order to combine them.

Especially the following research questions seem to be very fruitful, just to name a few: In
what specific rhetorical situations the fallacy-theory of pragma-dialectics plays a role?16
Are there fallacies in rhetoric, or just blunders? Does rhetoric need a fallacy-theory (e.g.
for the above mentionend specific rhetorical situations)? There is still some work to be
done in fallacy research, which can be well done with the pragma-dialectical approach as
a starting point.




  16
      A good example for such a specific rhetorical situation would be corporate communications in the
case of redundancies, product defects etc.
R´f´rences
 ee                                                                                      15


R´f´rences
 ee
Adler, J. (1993). Critique of an epistemic account of fallacies. In F. Eemeren, R. Grooten-
     dorst, J. Blair, & C. Willard (Eds.), Argumentation 7 (3) (pp. 263–272). Springer.
Aristotle. (1995). On sophistical refutations. In H. Hansen & R. Pinto (Eds.), Fallacies:
     Classical background and contemporary developments (pp. 19–38). University Park
     : The Pennsylvania State University Press.
Arnauld, A., & Nicole, P. (1996). Logic or the art of thinking. Cambridge : Cambridge
     Press.
Barth, E., & Krabbe, E. (1982). From Axiom to Dialogue: A philosophical study of logics
     and argumentation. Berlin, New York : Walter De Gruyter Inc.
Biro, J., & Siegel, H. (1997). Epistemic normativity, argumentation and fallacies. In
     F. Eemeren, R. Grootendorst, J. Blair, & C. Willard (Eds.), Argumentation 11(3)
     (pp. 277–292). Kluwer Academic Publishers.
Blair, J., & Johnson, R. (1993). Dissent in Fallacyland, Part 1: Problems with van
     Eemeren and Grootendorst. In R. McKerrow (Ed.), Argument and the postmodern
     challenge: Proceedings of the eighth scaiafa conference on argumentation (pp. 188–
     190).
Brinton, A. (1995). The ad hominem. In H. Hansen & R. Pinto (Eds.), Fallacies: Classical
     background and contemporary developments (pp. 213–222). University Park : The
     Pennsylvania State University Press.
Copi, I. (1972). Introduction to logic. New York : Macmillan.
Crosswhite, J. (1993). Being unreasonable: Perelman and the problem of fallacies. In
     F. Eemeren, R. Grootendorst, J. Blair, & C. Willard (Eds.), Argumentation 7(4)
     (pp. 385–402). D. Reidel Publishing Company.
Eemeren, F. (2001). Fallacies. In F. Eemeren (Ed.), Crucial concepts in argumentation
     theory (pp. 135–163). Amsterdam University Press.
Eemeren, F., Garssen, B., & Meuffels, B. (2007). Convergent operations in empirical ad
     hominem research. In F. van Eemeren, J. Blair, C. Willard, & B. Garssen (Eds.),
     Proceedings of the sixth conference of the international society for the study of argu-
     mentation (pp. 367–373). Amsterdam : Sic Sat.
Eemeren, F., Garssen, B., & Meuffels, B. (2009b). Fallacies and judgements of reason-
     ableness. Dordrecht : Springer, Argumentation Library.
Eemeren, F., & Grootendorst, R. (2004). A systematic theory of argumentation: The
     pragma-dialectical approach. Cambridge : Cambridge University Press.
Eemeren, F., & Grootendorst, R. (2009a). Argumentation, communication, and fallacies
     - a pragma-dialectical perspective. London and New York : Routledge. (University
     of Amsterdam)
Eemeren, F., Grootendorst, R., & Snoeck Henkemans, A. (2002). Argumentation. London
     and New Jersey : Lawrence Erlbaum Associates.
Feldman, R. (1994). Good arguments. Socializing epistemology: The social dimensions of
     knowledge, 159–199.
R´f´rences
 ee                                                                                     16


Govier, T. (1981). Worries about Tu Quoque as a Fallacy. Informal Logic Newsletter , 3 ,
     2–4.
Govier, T. (1995). Reply to massey. In H. Hansen & R. Pinto (Eds.), Fallacies: Classical
     background and contemporary developments (pp. 172–180). University Park : The
     Pennsylvania State University Press.
Hamblin, C. (1970). Fallacies. London : Methuen. (Reprint 1998, Newport News: Vale
     Press)
Hintikka, J. (1987). The fallacy of fallacies. In F. Eemeren, R. Grootendorst, J. Blair, &
     C. Willard (Eds.), Argumentation 1(3) (pp. 211–238). D. Reidel Publishing Com-
     pany.
Hitchcock, D. (2007). Why there is no argumentum ad hominem fallacy. In F. van
     Eemeren, J. Blair, C. Willard, & B. Garssen (Eds.), Proceedings of the sixth con-
     ference of the international society for the study of argumentation (pp. 615–620).
     Amsterdam : Sic Sat.
Johnson, R. (1995). The blaze of her splendors: Suggestions about revitalizing fallacy
     theory. In H. Hansen & R. Pinto (Eds.), Fallacies: Classical background and con-
     temporary developments (pp. 107–119). University Park : The Pennsylvania State
     University Press.
Johnstone, H.    (1996).   Locke and whately and the argumentum ad hominem.             In
     F. Eemeren, R. Grootendorst, J. Blair, & C. Willard (Eds.), Argumentation 10(1)
     (pp. 89–97). Kluwer Academic Publishers.
Lagerspetz, E. (1995). Ad hominem arguments in practical argumentation. In F. Eemeren,
     R. Grootendorst, J. Blair, & C. Willard (Eds.), Argumentation 9(2) (pp. 363–370).
     Kluwer Academic Publishers.
Leff, M. (2009). Perelman, ad hominem argument and rhetorical ethos. In F. Eemeren,
     R. Grootendorst, J. Blair, & C. Willard (Eds.), Argumentation 23(3) (pp. 301–311).
     Springer.
Locke, J. (1995). Four sorts of argument. In H. Hansen & R. Pinto (Eds.), Fallacies:
     Classical background and contemporary developments (pp. 55–56). University Park
     : The Pennsylvania State University Press.
Lumer, C. (2007). Structure and function of argumentations - an epistemological ap-
     proach to determining criteria for the validity and adequacy of argumentations. In
     F. van Eemeren, J. Blair, C. Willard, & B. Garssen (Eds.), Proceedings of the second
     conference on argumentation (pp. 98–107). Amsterdam : Sic Sat.
Massey, G. (1995). The fallacy behind fallacies. In H. Hansen & R. Pinto (Eds.), Fallacies:
     Classical background and contemporary developments (pp. 159–171). University Park
     : The Pennsylvania State University Press.
Mill, J. (2002). A system of logic, ratiocinative and inductive. Honolulu, Hawaii : Uni-
     versity Press of the Pacific.
Perelman, C., & Olbrechts-Tyteca, L. (1958). Trait´ de l’argumentation: la nouvelle
                                                  e
     rh´torique. Presses universitaires de France.
       e
Sz´ll, G. (1995). Levels of argumentative reality. In F. van Eemeren, J. Blair, C. Willard,
  e
R´f´rences
 ee                                                                                    17


     & B. Garssen (Eds.), Proceedings of the third conference of the international society
     for the study of argumentation (pp. 300–307). Amsterdam : Sic Sat.
Tindale, C. (1999). Acts of arguing: A rhetorical model of argument. Albany, New York
     : Suny Press.
Walton, D. (1987). The ad hominem as an informal fallacy. In F. Eemeren, R. Grooten-
     dorst, J. Blair, & C. Willard (Eds.), Argumentation 1(3) (pp. 317–331). D. Reidel
     Publishing Company.
Walton, D. (1992). Types of dialogue, dialectical shifts and fallacies. In F. van Eemeren,
     R. Grootendorst, J. Blair, & C. Willard (Eds.), Argumentation illuminated (pp.
     133–147). Amsterdam : Sic Sat.
Walton, D. (2004). Argumentation schemes and historical origins of the circumstantial ad
     hominem argument. In F. Eemeren, R. Grootendorst, J. Blair, & C. Willard (Eds.),
     Argumentation 18(3) (pp. 359–368). Kluwer Academic Publishers.
Whately, R. (1995). Of fallacies. In H. Hansen & R. Pinto (Eds.), Fallacies: Classical
     background and contemporary developments (pp. 67–94). University Park : The
     Pennsylvania State University Press.
Willard, C. (1995). Failures of relevance: A rhetorical view. In H. Hansen & R. Pinto
     (Eds.), Fallacies: Classical background and contemporary developments (pp. 145–
     158). University Park : The Pennsylvania State University Press.
Woods, J., & Walton, D. (1982). Argument: The logic of the fallacies. Toronto, New York
     : McGraw-Hill Ryerson Ltd.
Woods, J., & Walton, D. (1989). Ad hominem. In Fallacies: Selected papers (pp. 55–73).
     Dordrecht / Providence : Foris Publications.

More Related Content

Similar to Fallacies

Kahneman 2003 psychological perspective on economics
Kahneman 2003 psychological perspective on economicsKahneman 2003 psychological perspective on economics
Kahneman 2003 psychological perspective on economicsNelsio Abreu
 
1. TEN MYTHS OF SCIENCE REEXAMINING WHAT WE THINK WE KNOW...W. .docx
1. TEN MYTHS OF SCIENCE REEXAMINING WHAT WE THINK WE KNOW...W. .docx1. TEN MYTHS OF SCIENCE REEXAMINING WHAT WE THINK WE KNOW...W. .docx
1. TEN MYTHS OF SCIENCE REEXAMINING WHAT WE THINK WE KNOW...W. .docxambersalomon88660
 
DISCUSSIONS FORWK TWO BRITISH MODERN LITERATURE1a.Frustration .docx
DISCUSSIONS FORWK TWO BRITISH MODERN LITERATURE1a.Frustration .docxDISCUSSIONS FORWK TWO BRITISH MODERN LITERATURE1a.Frustration .docx
DISCUSSIONS FORWK TWO BRITISH MODERN LITERATURE1a.Frustration .docxelinoraudley582231
 
What is science? Science, pseudoscience, non-science
What is science? Science, pseudoscience, non-scienceWhat is science? Science, pseudoscience, non-science
What is science? Science, pseudoscience, non-scienceDennis Miller
 
Handbook of the sociology of morality
Handbook of the sociology of moralityHandbook of the sociology of morality
Handbook of the sociology of moralitySpringer
 
Humorous Metaphors. Humorous Metaphors. Humorous Metaphors
Humorous Metaphors. Humorous Metaphors. Humorous MetaphorsHumorous Metaphors. Humorous Metaphors. Humorous Metaphors
Humorous Metaphors. Humorous Metaphors. Humorous MetaphorsAngela Williams
 
2012 10 phi ipfw science and metaphysics
2012 10 phi ipfw science and metaphysics2012 10 phi ipfw science and metaphysics
2012 10 phi ipfw science and metaphysicsIoan Muntean
 
Manipulation and cognitive pragmatics. Preliminary hypotheses
Manipulation and cognitive pragmatics. Preliminary hypothesesManipulation and cognitive pragmatics. Preliminary hypotheses
Manipulation and cognitive pragmatics. Preliminary hypothesesLouis de Saussure
 
Dissertation Final 15012951
Dissertation Final 15012951Dissertation Final 15012951
Dissertation Final 15012951Brandon Toh
 
Metaphors of Containment and Causality
Metaphors of Containment and CausalityMetaphors of Containment and Causality
Metaphors of Containment and CausalityDominik Lukes
 
Current epistemological theory
Current epistemological theoryCurrent epistemological theory
Current epistemological theoryFarah Ishaq
 
Who are the actors of controversies? appreciating the heterogeneity of collec...
Who are the actors of controversies? appreciating the heterogeneity of collec...Who are the actors of controversies? appreciating the heterogeneity of collec...
Who are the actors of controversies? appreciating the heterogeneity of collec...INRIA - ENS Lyon
 
Bias Essay. The rule against bias - a problem-based essay - GRIN
Bias Essay. The rule against bias - a problem-based essay - GRINBias Essay. The rule against bias - a problem-based essay - GRIN
Bias Essay. The rule against bias - a problem-based essay - GRINDiana Carroll
 
How To Write An Argument Essay.pdf
How To Write An Argument Essay.pdfHow To Write An Argument Essay.pdf
How To Write An Argument Essay.pdfLynn Bennett
 

Similar to Fallacies (20)

The Scientific Method
The Scientific MethodThe Scientific Method
The Scientific Method
 
Kahneman 2003 psychological perspective on economics
Kahneman 2003 psychological perspective on economicsKahneman 2003 psychological perspective on economics
Kahneman 2003 psychological perspective on economics
 
1. TEN MYTHS OF SCIENCE REEXAMINING WHAT WE THINK WE KNOW...W. .docx
1. TEN MYTHS OF SCIENCE REEXAMINING WHAT WE THINK WE KNOW...W. .docx1. TEN MYTHS OF SCIENCE REEXAMINING WHAT WE THINK WE KNOW...W. .docx
1. TEN MYTHS OF SCIENCE REEXAMINING WHAT WE THINK WE KNOW...W. .docx
 
DISCUSSIONS FORWK TWO BRITISH MODERN LITERATURE1a.Frustration .docx
DISCUSSIONS FORWK TWO BRITISH MODERN LITERATURE1a.Frustration .docxDISCUSSIONS FORWK TWO BRITISH MODERN LITERATURE1a.Frustration .docx
DISCUSSIONS FORWK TWO BRITISH MODERN LITERATURE1a.Frustration .docx
 
Consciousness - color - content
Consciousness - color - contentConsciousness - color - content
Consciousness - color - content
 
What is science? Science, pseudoscience, non-science
What is science? Science, pseudoscience, non-scienceWhat is science? Science, pseudoscience, non-science
What is science? Science, pseudoscience, non-science
 
Falsiability.pdf
Falsiability.pdfFalsiability.pdf
Falsiability.pdf
 
Handbook of the sociology of morality
Handbook of the sociology of moralityHandbook of the sociology of morality
Handbook of the sociology of morality
 
Humorous Metaphors. Humorous Metaphors. Humorous Metaphors
Humorous Metaphors. Humorous Metaphors. Humorous MetaphorsHumorous Metaphors. Humorous Metaphors. Humorous Metaphors
Humorous Metaphors. Humorous Metaphors. Humorous Metaphors
 
Demarcation problem
Demarcation problemDemarcation problem
Demarcation problem
 
2012 10 phi ipfw science and metaphysics
2012 10 phi ipfw science and metaphysics2012 10 phi ipfw science and metaphysics
2012 10 phi ipfw science and metaphysics
 
Manipulation and cognitive pragmatics. Preliminary hypotheses
Manipulation and cognitive pragmatics. Preliminary hypothesesManipulation and cognitive pragmatics. Preliminary hypotheses
Manipulation and cognitive pragmatics. Preliminary hypotheses
 
Meaning science
Meaning scienceMeaning science
Meaning science
 
Dissertation Final 15012951
Dissertation Final 15012951Dissertation Final 15012951
Dissertation Final 15012951
 
Metaphors of Containment and Causality
Metaphors of Containment and CausalityMetaphors of Containment and Causality
Metaphors of Containment and Causality
 
Current epistemological theory
Current epistemological theoryCurrent epistemological theory
Current epistemological theory
 
Who are the actors of controversies? appreciating the heterogeneity of collec...
Who are the actors of controversies? appreciating the heterogeneity of collec...Who are the actors of controversies? appreciating the heterogeneity of collec...
Who are the actors of controversies? appreciating the heterogeneity of collec...
 
Bias Essay. The rule against bias - a problem-based essay - GRIN
Bias Essay. The rule against bias - a problem-based essay - GRINBias Essay. The rule against bias - a problem-based essay - GRIN
Bias Essay. The rule against bias - a problem-based essay - GRIN
 
Congnitive
CongnitiveCongnitive
Congnitive
 
How To Write An Argument Essay.pdf
How To Write An Argument Essay.pdfHow To Write An Argument Essay.pdf
How To Write An Argument Essay.pdf
 

Recently uploaded

Saint Vincent de Paul and Saint Louise de Marillac Played a Central Part in t...
Saint Vincent de Paul and Saint Louise de Marillac Played a Central Part in t...Saint Vincent de Paul and Saint Louise de Marillac Played a Central Part in t...
Saint Vincent de Paul and Saint Louise de Marillac Played a Central Part in t...Famvin: the Worldwide Vincentian Family
 
Breaking the Curse: Techniques for Successful Black Magic Removal
Breaking the Curse: Techniques for Successful Black Magic RemovalBreaking the Curse: Techniques for Successful Black Magic Removal
Breaking the Curse: Techniques for Successful Black Magic RemovalReiki Healing Distance
 
Homosexuality and Ordination of Woman
Homosexuality and Ordination of WomanHomosexuality and Ordination of Woman
Homosexuality and Ordination of WomanBassem Matta
 
Codex Singularity: Search for the Prisca Sapientia
Codex Singularity: Search for the Prisca SapientiaCodex Singularity: Search for the Prisca Sapientia
Codex Singularity: Search for the Prisca Sapientiajfrenchau
 
308 David Displeased the Lord 309 What Will it Take for God to Get Your Atten...
308 David Displeased the Lord 309 What Will it Take for God to Get Your Atten...308 David Displeased the Lord 309 What Will it Take for God to Get Your Atten...
308 David Displeased the Lord 309 What Will it Take for God to Get Your Atten...Rick Peterson
 
Expert kala ilam, Black magic specialist in Russia and Kala jadu expert in It...
Expert kala ilam, Black magic specialist in Russia and Kala jadu expert in It...Expert kala ilam, Black magic specialist in Russia and Kala jadu expert in It...
Expert kala ilam, Black magic specialist in Russia and Kala jadu expert in It...baharayali
 
The Story of 'Chin Kiam Siap' ~ An AI Generated Story ~ English & Chinese.pptx
The Story of 'Chin Kiam Siap' ~ An AI Generated Story ~ English & Chinese.pptxThe Story of 'Chin Kiam Siap' ~ An AI Generated Story ~ English & Chinese.pptx
The Story of 'Chin Kiam Siap' ~ An AI Generated Story ~ English & Chinese.pptxOH TEIK BIN
 
Life Lessons to Learn ~ A Free Full-Color eBook (English).pdf
Life Lessons to Learn ~ A Free Full-Color eBook (English).pdfLife Lessons to Learn ~ A Free Full-Color eBook (English).pdf
Life Lessons to Learn ~ A Free Full-Color eBook (English).pdfOH TEIK BIN
 
A373 true knowledge Not according to true knowledge, knowledge/true knowledg...
A373 true knowledge  Not according to true knowledge, knowledge/true knowledg...A373 true knowledge  Not according to true knowledge, knowledge/true knowledg...
A373 true knowledge Not according to true knowledge, knowledge/true knowledg...franktsao4
 
Expert kala ilam, Kala jadu specialist in Spain and Black magic specialist in...
Expert kala ilam, Kala jadu specialist in Spain and Black magic specialist in...Expert kala ilam, Kala jadu specialist in Spain and Black magic specialist in...
Expert kala ilam, Kala jadu specialist in Spain and Black magic specialist in...baharayali
 
The Prophecy of Enoch in Jude 14-16_.pptx
The Prophecy of Enoch in Jude 14-16_.pptxThe Prophecy of Enoch in Jude 14-16_.pptx
The Prophecy of Enoch in Jude 14-16_.pptxStephen Palm
 
Expert kala ilam, Black magic specialist in Indonesia and Kala ilam expert in...
Expert kala ilam, Black magic specialist in Indonesia and Kala ilam expert in...Expert kala ilam, Black magic specialist in Indonesia and Kala ilam expert in...
Expert kala ilam, Black magic specialist in Indonesia and Kala ilam expert in...baharayali
 
A Chronology of the Resurrection Appearances
A Chronology of the Resurrection AppearancesA Chronology of the Resurrection Appearances
A Chronology of the Resurrection AppearancesBassem Matta
 
Catechism_05_Blessed Trinity based on Compendium CCC.pptx
Catechism_05_Blessed Trinity based on Compendium CCC.pptxCatechism_05_Blessed Trinity based on Compendium CCC.pptx
Catechism_05_Blessed Trinity based on Compendium CCC.pptxAlizaRacelis1
 
Homily: The Solemnity of the Most Holy Trinity Sunday 2024.docx
Homily: The Solemnity of the Most Holy Trinity Sunday 2024.docxHomily: The Solemnity of the Most Holy Trinity Sunday 2024.docx
Homily: The Solemnity of the Most Holy Trinity Sunday 2024.docxJames Knipper
 
Deerfoot Church of Christ Bulletin 5 26 24
Deerfoot Church of Christ Bulletin 5 26 24Deerfoot Church of Christ Bulletin 5 26 24
Deerfoot Church of Christ Bulletin 5 26 24deerfootcoc
 
Spirituality: Beyond Dogmatic Texts - Audio Book
Spirituality: Beyond Dogmatic Texts - Audio BookSpirituality: Beyond Dogmatic Texts - Audio Book
Spirituality: Beyond Dogmatic Texts - Audio BookPhoenix O
 
Expert kala ilam, Kala ilam specialist in Spain and Kala jadu expert in Germa...
Expert kala ilam, Kala ilam specialist in Spain and Kala jadu expert in Germa...Expert kala ilam, Kala ilam specialist in Spain and Kala jadu expert in Germa...
Expert kala ilam, Kala ilam specialist in Spain and Kala jadu expert in Germa...baharayali
 

Recently uploaded (19)

Saint Vincent de Paul and Saint Louise de Marillac Played a Central Part in t...
Saint Vincent de Paul and Saint Louise de Marillac Played a Central Part in t...Saint Vincent de Paul and Saint Louise de Marillac Played a Central Part in t...
Saint Vincent de Paul and Saint Louise de Marillac Played a Central Part in t...
 
Breaking the Curse: Techniques for Successful Black Magic Removal
Breaking the Curse: Techniques for Successful Black Magic RemovalBreaking the Curse: Techniques for Successful Black Magic Removal
Breaking the Curse: Techniques for Successful Black Magic Removal
 
Homosexuality and Ordination of Woman
Homosexuality and Ordination of WomanHomosexuality and Ordination of Woman
Homosexuality and Ordination of Woman
 
Codex Singularity: Search for the Prisca Sapientia
Codex Singularity: Search for the Prisca SapientiaCodex Singularity: Search for the Prisca Sapientia
Codex Singularity: Search for the Prisca Sapientia
 
308 David Displeased the Lord 309 What Will it Take for God to Get Your Atten...
308 David Displeased the Lord 309 What Will it Take for God to Get Your Atten...308 David Displeased the Lord 309 What Will it Take for God to Get Your Atten...
308 David Displeased the Lord 309 What Will it Take for God to Get Your Atten...
 
Expert kala ilam, Black magic specialist in Russia and Kala jadu expert in It...
Expert kala ilam, Black magic specialist in Russia and Kala jadu expert in It...Expert kala ilam, Black magic specialist in Russia and Kala jadu expert in It...
Expert kala ilam, Black magic specialist in Russia and Kala jadu expert in It...
 
The Story of 'Chin Kiam Siap' ~ An AI Generated Story ~ English & Chinese.pptx
The Story of 'Chin Kiam Siap' ~ An AI Generated Story ~ English & Chinese.pptxThe Story of 'Chin Kiam Siap' ~ An AI Generated Story ~ English & Chinese.pptx
The Story of 'Chin Kiam Siap' ~ An AI Generated Story ~ English & Chinese.pptx
 
Life Lessons to Learn ~ A Free Full-Color eBook (English).pdf
Life Lessons to Learn ~ A Free Full-Color eBook (English).pdfLife Lessons to Learn ~ A Free Full-Color eBook (English).pdf
Life Lessons to Learn ~ A Free Full-Color eBook (English).pdf
 
A373 true knowledge Not according to true knowledge, knowledge/true knowledg...
A373 true knowledge  Not according to true knowledge, knowledge/true knowledg...A373 true knowledge  Not according to true knowledge, knowledge/true knowledg...
A373 true knowledge Not according to true knowledge, knowledge/true knowledg...
 
Expert kala ilam, Kala jadu specialist in Spain and Black magic specialist in...
Expert kala ilam, Kala jadu specialist in Spain and Black magic specialist in...Expert kala ilam, Kala jadu specialist in Spain and Black magic specialist in...
Expert kala ilam, Kala jadu specialist in Spain and Black magic specialist in...
 
The Prophecy of Enoch in Jude 14-16_.pptx
The Prophecy of Enoch in Jude 14-16_.pptxThe Prophecy of Enoch in Jude 14-16_.pptx
The Prophecy of Enoch in Jude 14-16_.pptx
 
Expert kala ilam, Black magic specialist in Indonesia and Kala ilam expert in...
Expert kala ilam, Black magic specialist in Indonesia and Kala ilam expert in...Expert kala ilam, Black magic specialist in Indonesia and Kala ilam expert in...
Expert kala ilam, Black magic specialist in Indonesia and Kala ilam expert in...
 
A Chronology of the Resurrection Appearances
A Chronology of the Resurrection AppearancesA Chronology of the Resurrection Appearances
A Chronology of the Resurrection Appearances
 
Catechism_05_Blessed Trinity based on Compendium CCC.pptx
Catechism_05_Blessed Trinity based on Compendium CCC.pptxCatechism_05_Blessed Trinity based on Compendium CCC.pptx
Catechism_05_Blessed Trinity based on Compendium CCC.pptx
 
Homily: The Solemnity of the Most Holy Trinity Sunday 2024.docx
Homily: The Solemnity of the Most Holy Trinity Sunday 2024.docxHomily: The Solemnity of the Most Holy Trinity Sunday 2024.docx
Homily: The Solemnity of the Most Holy Trinity Sunday 2024.docx
 
2024 Wisdom Touch Tour Houston Slide Deck
2024 Wisdom Touch Tour Houston Slide Deck2024 Wisdom Touch Tour Houston Slide Deck
2024 Wisdom Touch Tour Houston Slide Deck
 
Deerfoot Church of Christ Bulletin 5 26 24
Deerfoot Church of Christ Bulletin 5 26 24Deerfoot Church of Christ Bulletin 5 26 24
Deerfoot Church of Christ Bulletin 5 26 24
 
Spirituality: Beyond Dogmatic Texts - Audio Book
Spirituality: Beyond Dogmatic Texts - Audio BookSpirituality: Beyond Dogmatic Texts - Audio Book
Spirituality: Beyond Dogmatic Texts - Audio Book
 
Expert kala ilam, Kala ilam specialist in Spain and Kala jadu expert in Germa...
Expert kala ilam, Kala ilam specialist in Spain and Kala jadu expert in Germa...Expert kala ilam, Kala ilam specialist in Spain and Kala jadu expert in Germa...
Expert kala ilam, Kala ilam specialist in Spain and Kala jadu expert in Germa...
 

Fallacies

  • 2.
  • 3. CONTENTS i Contents 1 Introduction 1 2 Fallacies – A Historical Overview 2 3 The Argumentum Ad Hominem 5 4 Under certain circumstances fallacious 7 4.1 Walton’s approach . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 7 4.2 Govier’s approach . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 8 5 Non-fallacious 9 5.1 Johnstone’s approach . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 9 5.2 Perelman’s approach . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10 5.3 Hitchcock’s approach . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10 6 Always fallacious 11 6.1 Locke’s approach . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 11 6.2 Van Eemeren’s & Grootendorst’s approach . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 11 7 Conclusion 13 7.1 Recapitulation . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 13 7.2 Further research . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 14 R´f´rences ee 15
  • 4. 1 INTRODUCTION 1 1 Introduction This paper is aimed at giving two overviews, an historical overview about fallacy theories and a systematical overview about approaches to the argumentum ad hominem. The historical overview about different approaches to fallacies constitutes the first part of the paper. The history of fallacy research is far too broad to be presented fully here. This paper can provide only an overview of the main approaches in the history of the research. At the center of this historical overview are the approaches to fallacies of Aristotle, John Locke, Richard Whately, Charles Hamblin, John Woods, Douglas N. Walton, Else Barth & Erik Krabbe, Christopher Tindale and Frans van Eemeren & Rob Grootendorst. The second part of the paper concerns one of the pragma-dialectical fallacies in detail: The ad hominem fallacy, which is one of the most widely and controversially discussed fallacies. The ultimate goal of this paper is to provide a systematic description of different approaches to the argumentum ad hominem. In order to do so, it is the task to clarify what sort of approaches regard the argumentum ad hominem (1) as fallacious in certain contexts and under certain circumstances, (2) as non-fallacious or (3) as always (per definitionem) fallacious and how these approaches cohere with each other. Within this systematization the three widely accepted variants of the argumentum ad hominem (direct, indirect and tu quoque variant) are discussed and linked up to the three main views (under certain circumstances fallacious, non-fallacious and always fallacious). Finally there is a brief comparison of the approaches with regard to the problems arising within the three different trends. The question here is also, if there is a variant of the argumentum ad hominem where all the approaches conform with each other in their view on the fallaciousness. At last a short overview is given, on what further research could concentrate on.
  • 5. 2 FALLACIES – A HISTORICAL OVERVIEW 2 2 Fallacies – A Historical Overview The study of fallacies began with Aristotle (384–322 BCE). In De sophisticis elenchis Aristotle put the study of fallacies in a dialectical context and listed 13 different types of fallacies, categorized into fallacies dependend on language (in dictione) and fallacies independent on language (extra dictionem). Fallacies of the first type “are connected with ambiguities and shifts of meaning”, while fallacies of the latter type “can also occur in an artificial ’perfect’ language” (van Eemeren, 2004, p. 159). In general he defined a fallacy as an argument wich seems to be valid but is not (De sophisticis elenchis, 164a). This def- inition dominated the study of fallacies and remained authoritative up to the last decades. And although Francis Bacon (1561–1626), a British philosopher, was of the opinion that there are more important fallacies than those Aristotle mentioned, he favoured the Aris- totelian approach.1 John Locke (1632–1704), also a philosopher, later made the most important additions to the Aristotelian list of fallacies: The ad Fallacies. In An Essay Concerning Human Un- derstanding (1690/1995) he introduced and discussed four ad arguments, among them the argumentum ad hominem, which will be dicussed later in detail. But it must be kept in mind, that Locke did not yet “explicitly states that he considers the ad arguments to be fallacious” (van Eemeren, 2001, p. 142). Richard Whately (1778–1863), a logician and rhetorician, replaced the Aristotelian defini- tion of a fallacy with a wider one: “Any argument, or apparent argument, which professes to be decisive of the matter at hand, while in reality it is not” (1826/1995, p. 142). Also he suggested that “rules should be given for a division of Fallacies into logical and non- logical”2 (1826/1995, p. 71). In the group of logical fallacies, the conclusion does not follow from the premisses, whereas in non-logical fallacies the ’fault’ has nothing to do with invalidity. Whatelys approach of syllogistic and inductive fallacies therefore provides a logical point of view. Whatelys influence on the textbook tradition was noteworthy.3 The Standard Treatment of fallacies in logic textbooks was problematized by Charles Hamblin (1922–1985). He portrayed the Standard Treatment in his book Fallacies (1970). Hamblin came across this idea because he found a remarkable degree of uniformity in the various approaches to fallacies: Fallacy theory deals with errors in reasoning and instead of Aristotles’ division of fallacies into those dependend on language and those independent on language in textbooks a distinction between fallacies of clearness (they correspondend more or less with Aristotles in dictione) and fallacies of relevance (this category also in- 1 The Aristotelian list was the starting point for a group of French scholars working on fallacies, too. In Logic or the Art of Thinking (Arnauld, 1996) the Port-Royal Logic included these fallacies in this first modern approach to fallacies. 2 He developed a tree of classification which shows the fallacies in detail (1826/1995, p. 75). 3 Another British philosopher, John Stuart Mill (1806–1873) in A System of Logic, Ratiocinative and Inductive (1865/2002) advanced the idea of a category of inductive fallacies (whereas Whately advanced the idea that reasoning should conform to the syllogism) but this led to no significant theoretical innovations.
  • 6. 2 FALLACIES – A HISTORICAL OVERVIEW 3 cludes the ad fallacies) can be found. Hamblins criticism was devastating. Not only he criticized the definition of a fallacy, but also he stated that there is “no theory of fallacies at all, in the sense in which we have theory of correct reasoning or inference” (1970, p. 11). After a closer examination of this part of his general critique it becomes clear that Hamblin is right: Most of the fallacies discussed in the Standard Treatment do not fit with the definition, and only a few fallacies (e.g. affirming the consequent and denying the antecedent) as formal fallacies fall under the definition. The reactions to Hamblins critique were noticeable: Some authors were of the opinion that the theory of fallacies should be dropped out of logic textbooks at all (e.g. Lambert and Ulrich), others paid attention to the conditions under which a specific argumentative move should count as a fallacy (e.g. Hitchcock (2007), Govier (1981) and Brinton (1985/1995)), and only a minority (among them Copi) adhered to the Standard Treatment and refer to fallacies and it was done before. John Biro and and Harvey Siegel (1997) came up with an epistemic approach representing a different view on fallacies as failed attempts to expand our knowledge.4 Quite another thing did Jaakko Hintikka (1987) who viewed the Aristotelian fallacies as interrogative mistakes in question dialogues. But amongst the post-Hamblin approaches to fallacies, the contribution of the logicians John Woods and Douglas N. Walton was one of the most ambitious. They aimed for a better and much more coherent treatment of fallacies with the help of the theoretical framework of logic which goes behind the pure syllogistic, predicate and propositional logic. In classifying fallacies, they make a distinction between grades of formality. In their text- book Argument: The Logic of the Fallacies (1982) these grades of formality are specified: The first grade summarizies those fallacies which are in a very strict sense formal (e.g. the classical fallacy of four terms). Fallacies of this type can be technically described and analyzed with the vocabulary of formal logic. Fallacies of the second grade are not formal in a strict sense, but their commission can be made explicit by reference to logical forms (e.g. the fallacy of ambiguity). Fallacies which are formally analyzable in an even weaker sense (e.g. petitio principii ) are fallacies of the third grade of formality. In the 70s, a formal-dialectical approach by Else Barth and Erik Krabbe attracted interest. 4 The article Epistemic, Normativity, Argumentation, and Fallacies (1997) develops their theory fur- ther. For them, a theory of argumentation must fully engage the normativity of judgements about argu- ments, which means some sort of evaluation whether the argument is a good one or not. They contrast their normative approach to descriptive ones, which fail to explain why good arguments ar good and bad ones bad. They regard fallacies as epistemic failures, as arguments which fail to produce knowledge of, or to justify belief in, their conclusions. As a consequence, Biro and Siegel suggest epistemic seriousness as a necessary condition of non-fallaciousness. So, fallacies – and failed arguments more generally – must, in their opinion, be seen as failures of rationality. Their epistemic approach often was often criticised, especially by Jonathan E. Adler and Gy¨z¨ Sz´ll (1993 and 1995), who defended the argumentation theory o o e developed by Frans H. van Eemeren and Rob Grootendorst (2002, 2004, 2009), whereas e.g. Blair and Johnson (1993), Feldman (1994) and Lumer (1990, 1991) also defend an epistemic account of argumenta- tion.
  • 7. 2 FALLACIES – A HISTORICAL OVERVIEW 4 They envisaged in From Axiom to Dialogue (1982) a theory of rational argumentation as a finite set of production rules for rational arguments. Arguments which cannot be produced with these rules are per definitionem fallacious. Within this framework, there is therefore no list of specific fallacies, but with an analysis they can be ’unmasked’ as fallacies. Christopher Tindale also supports Hamblins criticism of the Standard Treatment, and listed some other problems of dealing with fallacies, (e.g. the problem of relativity (in his opinion arguments are in some contexts fallacious but in others not), which was also discussed by Charles Willard.5 After discussing different definitions of fallacies6 he makes clear that he sees fallacies as ’bad process’, which “concerns the breakdown of the com- munication process between arguer/argument and audience in rhetorical communication.” (Tindale, 1999, p. 180) Besides his work with Woods, Walton published a large number of book on fallacies on his own. His pragmatic approach, which deals with informal fallacies and which marked a new stage in his development, is well known. He combined the study of individual falla- cies with examining real-life cases. He developed a theory of fallacies as shifts in dialogue types: “During the course of a conversation between two or more parties there can be a change in the context of argumentation or dialectical shift from one type of dialogue to another.” (1992, p. 137) Finally, the pragma-dialectical approach, developed by Frans H. van Eemeren and Rob Grootendorst, links up with formal dialectics. They adopted the idea of developing a set of rules which makes it possible to analyze fallacies in a systematic way. In pragma-dialectics, fallacies are viewed as wrong discussion moves in the communication process. Within the ideal of a critical discussion, which aimes at resolving a difference of opinion between at least two parties, there are ten rules for critical discussion7 , which ensure that the difference of opinion is not being hindered. In principle each of these ten discussion rules constitutes a separate and different standard for critical discussion. In this approach, fallacies are seen as violations of rules for a critical discussion that prevent or hinder the resolution of a difference of opinion. 5 In Failures of Relevance: A rhetorical View (1995) Charles Willard provides a rhetorical and relativity-characteristically view on fallacies: “Fallaciousness never did reside solely on logical form. (...) The most credible fallacies theories always did focus on the fits between messages, situations and intentions (1995, p. 157). 6 One very remarkable definition was done by Johnson, who gave a very general and wide definition: “A fallacy is an argument which violates one of the criteria/standards of good argument and which occurs with sufficient frequency in discourse to warrant being baptized” (1987/1995, p. 116). An example for such a criterion is ’relevance’. 7 In the book Argumentation (2002) van Eemeren provides ten rules, whereas in A Systematic Theory of Argumentation (2004) 15, more technical rules are presented
  • 8. 3 THE ARGUMENTUM AD HOMINEM 5 3 The Argumentum Ad Hominem With this historical background knowledge we can turn now to the systematic part. As in the introduction already decribed, within this systematic part not fallacy theories in general, but approaches to a certain fallacy – the argumentum ad hominem – are examined. A closer view on the different approaches to fallacies of the historical overview reveals that there are nearly as many different approaches to fallacies as people who were engaged in this particular research topic. Nevertheless, some basic trends can be identified: First, there is a group of scholars who focus on the circumstances of fallacies and the context in which they occur. Most of them belong to the group of informal logicians, among them Walton and Govier. The second big group of researchers dealing with fallacies, among them Johnstone, and Hitchcock, have a more rhetorical view and regard fallacies not as ’fallacious’ moves, but as legitimite arguments. The third group is the one around van Eemeren, in which fallacies are per definitionem, and therefore always, fallacious. The argumentum ad hominem as one of the arguments often discussed in the variety of fallacy theories seems to have a special position in research: Often, it was simply said that the argumentum ad hominem is obviously fallacious (e.g. Copi) without giving explicit reasons, and in nearly the same frequency it was discussed if it is a fallacy at all. Within the huge amount of articles that has been published on this issue, these three gerenal trends can be found: Arguments like the ad hominem can be (1) fallacious under certain circumstances, (2) non-fallacious or (3) always fallacious. Due to the large amount of research that has been done on this particular instance of argumentation, not all approaches can be discussed. Therefore, each of these three general trends will be represented by first discussing the most influential or representative approach to then address at least one other theory briefly as well in order to do justice to the extensive amount of research that has been carried out. In order to do so, it will first be examined about which elements of the definition of the argumentum ad hominem the covered authors agree upon. First of all, ad hominem (Greek pros ton anthrˆpon) can simply be translated with ’toward the person’. They all o regard an argumentum ad hominem, as a piece of argumentative discourse, which has as its propositional content one or more proposition about a person, which plays a role in this discourse. As a minimal consens of most of the apporaches to the ad hominem it can also be stated that the ad hominem is some sort of attacking another person instead of responding to the actual arguments in question. This means that in most of the approaches the ad hominem
  • 9. 3 THE ARGUMENTUM AD HOMINEM 6 is classified as a fallacy of relevance8 , for example by Copi9 , Walton and Govier. As in the introduction already mentioned, there are three widely accepted variants of the ad hominem. These variants were already included in the Standard Treatment of fallacies. The ways how a person can be attacked in argumentative discourse are as follows: (1) Direct Variant The first type is the direct personal attack on the other party. This variant is also called ’abusive variant’. In Argumentation van Eemeren describes this fallacy as the “fallacy of depicting the other party as stupid, bad, unreliable, etcetera” (2002, p. 183). By cutting down one’s opponent by casting doubt on his intelligence, expertise, character or good faith the attacking person tries to make the opponent losing his credibility. An example for the abusive variant of the ad hominem (B) is: A: Everyone buying a new car should buy one with a hybrid drive to protect the environment. B: How would you know? You don’t know the first thing about cars and hybrid drive. (1) Indirect Variant The second type is the indirect variant, also called ’circumstantial ad hominem’, which consists of casting doubt on the opponents motives. By trying to make him to appear suspicious, the attacking person tries to show that the opponent is biased because of his personal interest in the matter. An example for the circumstantial variant of the ad hominem (B) is: A: Everyone buying a new car should buy one with a hybrid drive to protect the environment. B: Do you really think we should believe you? Surely, maybe it is better for our environment to buy cars with a hybrid drive, but isn’t it the case that your father is the only person in town selling those type of cars? (1) Tu Quoque Variant The last of the three variants is the so-called ’tu quoque’- variant. Here, an attempt is made to “undermine the other party’s credibility by pointing out a contradiction in that party’s words or deeds” (2002, p. 112). This could be an inconsistency between the current and past standpoint someone is attacking or defending, or an inconsistency between a standpoint and the corresponding behaviour. People use this variant, because they think that someone who is not consistent cannot be right. But not being consistent does not automatically mean that the standpoint is wrong. An example for the tu quoque variant of the ad hominem (B) is: 8 van Eemeren and Grootendorst in the pragma-dialectical approach do not see the ad hominem fallacy as a fallacy of relevance, but as a fallacy concerning the freedom of action of the participants of a discourse 9 According to Copi fallacies of relevance have the characteristic that there is a psychological link between the premisses and the conclusion, but the used premisses are not logically connected to the conclusion (1953/1972, p. 72). An argument which seems to be a fallacious ad hominem, but is in fact not because the issue at hand is about the ’attacked’ person, he calls pseudo-fallacy
  • 10. 4 UNDER CERTAIN CIRCUMSTANCES FALLACIOUS 7 A: Everyone buying a new car should buy one with a hybrid drive to protect the environment. B: You’re not being serious! You are driving a Jeep on your own. 4 Under certain circumstances fallacious The first variant to approach the argumentum ad hominem is to regard it as an argument which is sometimes fallacious and sometimes not. To decide whether it is fallacious or not the context and the cirumstances under which the argumentum ad hominem has been put forward, must be taken into account. Walton’s approach to the ad hominem, regarding it as an informal fallacy, meets with this view on the argument. Govier, also belonging to the group of informal logicians, also regards at least the tu quoque variant as non-fallacious. Both approaches will be discussed in the following. 4.1 Walton’s approach For Walton, an argumentum ad hominem “criticizes another argument by questioning the personal circumstances or personal trustworthiness of the arguer who advanced it”10 (1987, p. 317). While referring to the so-called dialectical shifts, Walton gives an overview about the correct and incorrect use of the ad hominem. Like pointed out before, a dialectical shift according to Walton is a change from one type of dialogue to another. In Walton’s opinion the ad hominem, and argumentation in general, could be fallacious in one type of dialogue but correct in another, and a specific argumentation technique causing an illicit dialectical shift of dialogue constitutes a fallacy. As the types of dialogue in which the ad hominem is fallacious, he mentions the scientific inquiry and the critical discussion11 . As examples for types of dialogue in which the ad hominem is not fallacious, he mentions legal cross- examinations and quarrels. Therefore, a ad hominem becomes a fallacy if it causes a shift from a critical discussion to a quarrel “because the argument was originally supposed to be a critical discussion” (1992, p. 140). Further, Walton says that textual and contextual evidence must be given when criticising argumentation as fallacious ad hominem – this puts a serious burden of proof on the person who is criticising. In The Argumentum Ad Hominem as an Informal Fallacy (1987) Walton explains in detail under what conditions the three variants of the argumentum ad hominem are fallacious or not. In general in circumstantial ad hominem arguments not a logical but a pragmatic incon- 10 This seems to be a description of two variants of the ad hominem, namely the circumstantial and the tu quoque variants. Walton is very unclear in his texts concerning the three variants of the ad hominem In some texts he provides three subvariants of the tu quoque variant, or speaks about a first and a second type of the ad hominem without mentioning to what type of ad hominem they belong. 11 Walton explicitly states that there a situations in which an ad hominem in a critical discussion can be non-fallacious, but he fails to give examples or further information.
  • 11. 4 UNDER CERTAIN CIRCUMSTANCES FALLACIOUS 8 sistency is alleged. According to Walton in the circumstantial ad hominem attack the critique put forward by an arguer claims that the statements or arguments advocated by the other arguer are inconsistent with that arguer’s personal circumstances.12 According to Walton this sort of ad hominem can be reasonable or – in some other cases – fallacious. The most important error, he calls it basic ad hominem, is “to conclude that because the arguer has advocated a proposition A, yet is committed by his personal circumstances to the opposite of A, therefore the arguer’s contention must be false (per se)” (1987, p. 318). This is a sort of invalid argument and thus fallacious. A second type of a circumstantial ad hominem fallacy is one, in which a drawed parallel fails, so there is a logical gab existent. To sum up, it can be said that the circumstantial ad hominem becomes fallacious if the arguer’s statement is rejected too strong or if the issue is evaded, and it can be reasonable because inconsistency of the position of an arguer should be open to criticism. The tu quoque variant seems to be – according to Walton – a basically legitimate type of questioning or criticism, because if someone is not consistent in what he preaches and what he is doing, this person loses credibility. The abusive variant is much more difficult to handle. Walton asks: “Can an abusive ad hominem argument ever by reasonable, or is this type of argument always fallacious?” (1987, p. 327) The answer is, that an abusive ad hominem can be reasonable, too. But this must be decided in each case individually. Each abusive ad hominem must be evalu- ated on its own merits and demerits, because the personal circumstances of every arguer are arguably different from the personal circumstances of any other arguer. 4.2 Govier’s approach Trudy Govier published in 1981 the article Worries about Tu Quoque as a Fallacy. The name is programmatic: Govier points out why she feels doubt on the traditional view of tu quoque as a variant of the fallacious ad hominem. She does not deny that a piece of discourse, which can be reconstructed as the following: 1. Person A advocates that Proposition P be followed 2. A does not himself follow P 3. P is false P is here of the form “A person, A, holds a principle, P, which is of the form ’People in circumstances of type (c) should do actions of type (a)’.” (1980, p. 2) In the reconstruction above A affirms P, but do not follow the principle for his or her own. The conclusion is fallacious because it does not arise from the premisses. P is not automatically false, if someone who affirms P does not follow P. But according to Govier, in argumentative contexts the scheme from above has to be reconstructed in another way, namely in a more subtle and plausible way. This is, because 12 The term ’circumstances’ here refers to the personal situation in which the arguer stands, his actions, personal practices, convictions and commitments.
  • 12. 5 NON-FALLACIOUS 9 argumentative discourse occurs in reality solely in in contexts. Therefore, she claims, the reconstruction must be constructed in a more natural way: 1. A advocates that P be followed 2. A does not himself follow P 3. A does not take P seriously 4. Others need not take A’s advocacy of P seriously 5. Whatever reason people may have for following P, it does not presently come from A Seen from this point of view “there is either no fallacy at all, or a very unobvious one“ (1981, p. 3). So at least the tu quoque variant of the argumentum ad hominem is, according to Govier, not compulsory fallacious. About the fallaciousness or non-fallaciousness regarding to the other two variants of the argumentum ad hominem the text says nothing, but supposably Govier regards them as fallacious discussion moves, otherwise she would not have had written a article with worries solely about the tu quoque variant. 5 Non-fallacious The second approach the ad hominem argument is to regard it as not fallacious. That means that every ad hominem argument, in whatever context and under whatever cir- cumstances it is put forward, is a legal and permitted argument. The approach of the American philosopher Henry Johnstone explains why in his opinion there is no fallacious argumentum ad hominem. Perelman’s and Hitchcocks approaches, also rather rhetorical approaches13 , are introduced in the following, too. 5.1 Johnstone’s approach Johnstone, influenced by Whately’s approach to ad hominem, goes a step further and claims that there is no fallacious ad hominem at all, whatever variant is regarded. He contends that all philosophical argumentation is inevitably ad hominem and argues that any objections that the ad hominem could be not fallacious are anchorless because for him the ad hominem argument is a legitimate and reasonable way of arguing. In Locke and Whately on the Argumentum ad Hominem (1996), Johnstone gives a brief explanation for his view on the ad hominem. He starts with his proposition that all philosophical arguments are ad hominem, and distinguishes between positive and negative philosophical arguments. The latter class “consists of attacks on the views of opponents” (1996, p. 93). Because only the ad hominem is suitable for philosophical polemic and 13 Hitchcock would not label himself as a rhetorician and his approach as rhetorical. But in my opinion his approach to the argumentum ad hominem is rhetorical, because his argumentation why the argumentum ad hominem is a legitimate way of arguing deals with the ethos of the orator (also he do not name it like that).
  • 13. 5 NON-FALLACIOUS 10 because he does not see any reason to pause over arguments not mentionend by Locke and Whately, he states that his proposition is verified. Positive philosophical arguments, that is arguments in establishing principles instead of attacking them, have to be ad hominem, as well. This is, because if one wants someone to achieve positive and the same conclusions as oneself the dialogue must be carried “one step beyond the simple ad hominem (...) exposure of contradiction” (1996, p. 94). 5.2 Perelman’s approach As before in Johnstone’s work the Belgian philosopher Chaim Perelman sees no connec- tion between fallacies and any variant of the ad hominem argument. He regards the ad hominem as a necessary condition for successful argumentation, and a good and legitimate tool to win others for one’s own standpoint. In La nouvelle rh´torique (1958) he and Lucie Olbrechts-Tyteca go into detail: They e make unambiguously clear that they see nothing reprehensible in every variant of the ad hominem argument. For them, the ad hominem argument is a general characteristic of successful argumentation because in their opinion argumentation must be connected to the opinions the audience already have to be successful. Perelman claims that argumen- tation should place stress on the specific persons taking part in the discourse. According to him the argumentum ad hominem also could not be a fallacy of relevance because the “relationship between speaker and what is spoken is always relevant and important (Leff, 2009, p. 301). Perelman and Olbrechts-Tyteca further make a distinction between argumentation which is aimed at persuading a certain audience and argumentation for a universal audience.14 5.3 Hitchcock’s approach Hitchcock takes Govier’s definition of a fallacy as a starting point: “By definition, a fallacy is a mistake in reasoning, a mistake which occurs with some frequency in real arguments and which is characteristically deceptive” (Govier, 1981/1995, p. 172). According to him, there is, assuming that this definition is valid, no ad hominem fallacy. The tu quoque variant shows an inconsistency between words and deeds, and thus is a legitimate way to critique because there is an appeal to commitments implicit in one’s behaviour. The abusive ad hominem is either “a relevant attack on the opponent’s ethos in a rhetorical context or a diversionary tactic that does not involve reasoning” (Hitchcock, 2007, p. 620) and is thus not a fallacy. The circumstantial variant finally raises legitimate suspicion about the truthworthiness of a person because it attributes bias to the opponent. 14 Perelman and Olbrechts-Tyteca consider the argument ad hominem as argumentum ad humanitatem in case that someone imagines that he is able to convince the universal audience, because he then claims to the approval of all reasonable beings.
  • 14. 6 ALWAYS FALLACIOUS 11 6 Always fallacious The third variant to approach the ad hominem argument is to regard it as fallacious per definitionem. That means that every ad hominem argument, which meets with the defi- nition of the ad hominem fallacy is in fact fallacious. One approach, which gives such a clear and systematic definition for a fallacious ad hominem, is the pragma-dialectical approach by van Eemeren and Grootendorst. But first another approach, the one developed by Locke, is explained in the following. 6.1 Locke’s approach It is not quite clear what Locke had in mind when he published on four sorts of arguments. It cannot be stated for certain that he regarded the ad hominem as a fallacy or as always fallacious. Why Locke’s approach norwithstanding can be found here, in the section ’always fallacious’, will be explained below. Locke considers the ad hominem to be one of the arguments that men uses to prevail their assend. The ad hominem is the third of his four introduced sorts of argument, and presses according to him “a man with consequences drawn from his own principles or concessions” (1690/1995, p. 56). He admits that the ad hominem is “legitimate when the question in dispute is not the truth of a proposition but the self-consistency of the person who proposes it” (1690/1995, p. 56). This seems to be a description of a legitimite variant of tu quoque. But therefore in a context in which the truth of a proposition is in question the ad hominem must be – vice versa – fallacious. Because the aforementioned exception is a special case (like as in the pragma-dialectical approach) Locke belongs best into this section. 6.2 Van Eemeren’s & Grootendorst’s approach Within this pragma-dialectical approach15 a fallacy is seen as a violation of one or more of the rules for critical discussion. The rule, which is violated by the ad hominem is the first rule, also known as the ’freedom rule’: “Parties must not prevent each other from putting forward standpoints or casting doubt on standpoints.” (2009a, p. 108) The freedom rule make sure that the participants of a critical discussion are not prevented from putting forward standpoints or calling into question the standpoints of their opponent. In order to resolve a difference of opinion it is a necessary condition to be able to fully externalize it. If parties prevent each other from doing so, the process of resolution is hindered in a special way. 15 Frans H. van Eemeren, Bart Garssen and Bert Meuffels did empirical research to the ad hominem fallacy. This is very noticeable, because first no other approach did, and second the results of this research absolutely support the pragma-dialectical approach: They found out that there is a somehow predictable structure and system in judging reasonableness of discussion contributions. Normal judges make a clear distinction between fallacious and non-fallacious discussion contributions. Also normal judges can distinct the three variants of the ad hominem fallacy and take the direct variant for the most unreasonable and the tu quoque variant as the most reasonable but anyhow fallacious discussion contribution.
  • 15. 6 ALWAYS FALLACIOUS 12 If one of the parties is attacked with the abusive variant, this party seems to have lost the right to take part in the further discussion, because of for example his apparent stupidity. This is clearly a violation of the freedom rule, because of the attempt of disfranchising him as a serious discussion partner by discrediting his expertise, intelligence, character or faith. If someone’s motives are called into question with an indirect ad hominem attack, the attacking party depicts the other party as someone who has not the right to take part in the discussion because he is apparently biased. Again, this is obviously a violation of the freedom rule because one party tries to disenfranchise the other party as a serious discussion partner by discrediting his impartiality. An attack with the tu quoque variant restricts one’s party freedom of action, too. If someone is portrayed as a person whose words and deeds are inconsistent, the other party tried do ’dismiss’ him of the discussion with the reason of lost credibility. In fact this inconsistency has nothing to do with the standpoint. Again it is obviously a violation of the freedom rule, because one party tries to disenfranchise the other party as a serious discussion partner by discrediting his credibility.
  • 16. 7 CONCLUSION 13 7 Conclusion First there is a brief recapitulation of the approaches to the argumentum ad hominem, in which the approaches are in a few words compared and criticized. Finally there are some thoughts on possible and suitable further research. 7.1 Recapitulation The ad hominem, which means simply ’toward the person’, is some sort of attacking another person instead of responding to the actual arguments in question. There are three widely accepted variants: attacking the other’s party (1) intelligence, expertise, character or good faith (direct / abusive variant), (2) impartiality and motives (indirect / circumstantial variant) and (3) credibility and consistency in words and deeds. A closer view on the different approaches to fallacies in general (historical overview) and the argumentum ad hominem revealed that there are three basic trends. First, there is a group of scholars who focus on the circumstances of fallacies and the context in which they occur. Most of them belong to the group of informal logicians. Walton and Govier both regard the ad hominem as fallacious under certain circumstances. Walton’s approach provides a critical examination of every situation with any variant of the ad hominem to determine if it’s fallacious or not. Govier’s approach regards the tu quoque variant in most situations as non-fallacious. The problem with such approaches is that they require an evaluation in every situation and for every variant. This is time- consuming, and there is a problem of unambiguous terminology. Everytime someone uses a term like ad hominem it must be differentiated and specifically said if it’s a fallacious or a non-fallacious ad hominem. The second big group of researchers dealing with fallacies have a more rhetorical view and regard fallacies not as ’fallacious’ moves, but as legitimite arguments. Johnstone’s, Perelman’s and Hitchcock’s appproaches provide that there are no fallacies. Johnstone and Perelman argue that especially the ad hominem is a necessary condition for succesful argumentation; Hitchcock explains for every variant why this is no fallacious discussion move. Such approaches have no problem of decision or terminology like approaches from the type above, but they can just be used in limited contexts like the rhetorical, persuasive one. The third group is the one around van Eemeren, in which ad hominem arguments are per definitionem, and therefore always, fallacious. Locke defined the ad hominem first as fallacious discussion move, whereas van Eemeren regards them as violations of specific rules for critical discussion. Such a point of view avoids problems of ambiguos terminology and the necessity of an evaluation. But like in the rhetorical approaches there is also the problem of a limited context (critical discussion). Nevertheless the pragma-dialectical is the most systematic and clearest approach to fallacies in general and the argumentum ad hominem in detail.
  • 17. 7 CONCLUSION 14 7.2 Further research In antiquity (informal) logic, dialectic and rhetoric were disciplines with different topics. Today there is still a distinction between them, but they are no more seen as disciplines with a different object, but as three perspectives to argumentation. We’ve seen that these three perpectives do put forward different approaches to fallacies (and the argumentum ad hominem) respectively. But the most influential approaches can be subsumed to one of the three mentioned perspectives. What is missing in today’s research to fallacies and especially to the argumentum ad hominem is the serious attempt to determine how the three perspectives cohere and what research results are overlapping. Especially the relation between (pragma-)dialectics and rhetoric is very interesting and unfortunately just a little research was done up to now. This paper aimed at giving an overview and a very short comparison of different approaches to the argumentum ad hominem. The next step would be to restudy these approaches in order to combine them. Especially the following research questions seem to be very fruitful, just to name a few: In what specific rhetorical situations the fallacy-theory of pragma-dialectics plays a role?16 Are there fallacies in rhetoric, or just blunders? Does rhetoric need a fallacy-theory (e.g. for the above mentionend specific rhetorical situations)? There is still some work to be done in fallacy research, which can be well done with the pragma-dialectical approach as a starting point. 16 A good example for such a specific rhetorical situation would be corporate communications in the case of redundancies, product defects etc.
  • 18. R´f´rences ee 15 R´f´rences ee Adler, J. (1993). Critique of an epistemic account of fallacies. In F. Eemeren, R. Grooten- dorst, J. Blair, & C. Willard (Eds.), Argumentation 7 (3) (pp. 263–272). Springer. Aristotle. (1995). On sophistical refutations. In H. Hansen & R. Pinto (Eds.), Fallacies: Classical background and contemporary developments (pp. 19–38). University Park : The Pennsylvania State University Press. Arnauld, A., & Nicole, P. (1996). Logic or the art of thinking. Cambridge : Cambridge Press. Barth, E., & Krabbe, E. (1982). From Axiom to Dialogue: A philosophical study of logics and argumentation. Berlin, New York : Walter De Gruyter Inc. Biro, J., & Siegel, H. (1997). Epistemic normativity, argumentation and fallacies. In F. Eemeren, R. Grootendorst, J. Blair, & C. Willard (Eds.), Argumentation 11(3) (pp. 277–292). Kluwer Academic Publishers. Blair, J., & Johnson, R. (1993). Dissent in Fallacyland, Part 1: Problems with van Eemeren and Grootendorst. In R. McKerrow (Ed.), Argument and the postmodern challenge: Proceedings of the eighth scaiafa conference on argumentation (pp. 188– 190). Brinton, A. (1995). The ad hominem. In H. Hansen & R. Pinto (Eds.), Fallacies: Classical background and contemporary developments (pp. 213–222). University Park : The Pennsylvania State University Press. Copi, I. (1972). Introduction to logic. New York : Macmillan. Crosswhite, J. (1993). Being unreasonable: Perelman and the problem of fallacies. In F. Eemeren, R. Grootendorst, J. Blair, & C. Willard (Eds.), Argumentation 7(4) (pp. 385–402). D. Reidel Publishing Company. Eemeren, F. (2001). Fallacies. In F. Eemeren (Ed.), Crucial concepts in argumentation theory (pp. 135–163). Amsterdam University Press. Eemeren, F., Garssen, B., & Meuffels, B. (2007). Convergent operations in empirical ad hominem research. In F. van Eemeren, J. Blair, C. Willard, & B. Garssen (Eds.), Proceedings of the sixth conference of the international society for the study of argu- mentation (pp. 367–373). Amsterdam : Sic Sat. Eemeren, F., Garssen, B., & Meuffels, B. (2009b). Fallacies and judgements of reason- ableness. Dordrecht : Springer, Argumentation Library. Eemeren, F., & Grootendorst, R. (2004). A systematic theory of argumentation: The pragma-dialectical approach. Cambridge : Cambridge University Press. Eemeren, F., & Grootendorst, R. (2009a). Argumentation, communication, and fallacies - a pragma-dialectical perspective. London and New York : Routledge. (University of Amsterdam) Eemeren, F., Grootendorst, R., & Snoeck Henkemans, A. (2002). Argumentation. London and New Jersey : Lawrence Erlbaum Associates. Feldman, R. (1994). Good arguments. Socializing epistemology: The social dimensions of knowledge, 159–199.
  • 19. R´f´rences ee 16 Govier, T. (1981). Worries about Tu Quoque as a Fallacy. Informal Logic Newsletter , 3 , 2–4. Govier, T. (1995). Reply to massey. In H. Hansen & R. Pinto (Eds.), Fallacies: Classical background and contemporary developments (pp. 172–180). University Park : The Pennsylvania State University Press. Hamblin, C. (1970). Fallacies. London : Methuen. (Reprint 1998, Newport News: Vale Press) Hintikka, J. (1987). The fallacy of fallacies. In F. Eemeren, R. Grootendorst, J. Blair, & C. Willard (Eds.), Argumentation 1(3) (pp. 211–238). D. Reidel Publishing Com- pany. Hitchcock, D. (2007). Why there is no argumentum ad hominem fallacy. In F. van Eemeren, J. Blair, C. Willard, & B. Garssen (Eds.), Proceedings of the sixth con- ference of the international society for the study of argumentation (pp. 615–620). Amsterdam : Sic Sat. Johnson, R. (1995). The blaze of her splendors: Suggestions about revitalizing fallacy theory. In H. Hansen & R. Pinto (Eds.), Fallacies: Classical background and con- temporary developments (pp. 107–119). University Park : The Pennsylvania State University Press. Johnstone, H. (1996). Locke and whately and the argumentum ad hominem. In F. Eemeren, R. Grootendorst, J. Blair, & C. Willard (Eds.), Argumentation 10(1) (pp. 89–97). Kluwer Academic Publishers. Lagerspetz, E. (1995). Ad hominem arguments in practical argumentation. In F. Eemeren, R. Grootendorst, J. Blair, & C. Willard (Eds.), Argumentation 9(2) (pp. 363–370). Kluwer Academic Publishers. Leff, M. (2009). Perelman, ad hominem argument and rhetorical ethos. In F. Eemeren, R. Grootendorst, J. Blair, & C. Willard (Eds.), Argumentation 23(3) (pp. 301–311). Springer. Locke, J. (1995). Four sorts of argument. In H. Hansen & R. Pinto (Eds.), Fallacies: Classical background and contemporary developments (pp. 55–56). University Park : The Pennsylvania State University Press. Lumer, C. (2007). Structure and function of argumentations - an epistemological ap- proach to determining criteria for the validity and adequacy of argumentations. In F. van Eemeren, J. Blair, C. Willard, & B. Garssen (Eds.), Proceedings of the second conference on argumentation (pp. 98–107). Amsterdam : Sic Sat. Massey, G. (1995). The fallacy behind fallacies. In H. Hansen & R. Pinto (Eds.), Fallacies: Classical background and contemporary developments (pp. 159–171). University Park : The Pennsylvania State University Press. Mill, J. (2002). A system of logic, ratiocinative and inductive. Honolulu, Hawaii : Uni- versity Press of the Pacific. Perelman, C., & Olbrechts-Tyteca, L. (1958). Trait´ de l’argumentation: la nouvelle e rh´torique. Presses universitaires de France. e Sz´ll, G. (1995). Levels of argumentative reality. In F. van Eemeren, J. Blair, C. Willard, e
  • 20. R´f´rences ee 17 & B. Garssen (Eds.), Proceedings of the third conference of the international society for the study of argumentation (pp. 300–307). Amsterdam : Sic Sat. Tindale, C. (1999). Acts of arguing: A rhetorical model of argument. Albany, New York : Suny Press. Walton, D. (1987). The ad hominem as an informal fallacy. In F. Eemeren, R. Grooten- dorst, J. Blair, & C. Willard (Eds.), Argumentation 1(3) (pp. 317–331). D. Reidel Publishing Company. Walton, D. (1992). Types of dialogue, dialectical shifts and fallacies. In F. van Eemeren, R. Grootendorst, J. Blair, & C. Willard (Eds.), Argumentation illuminated (pp. 133–147). Amsterdam : Sic Sat. Walton, D. (2004). Argumentation schemes and historical origins of the circumstantial ad hominem argument. In F. Eemeren, R. Grootendorst, J. Blair, & C. Willard (Eds.), Argumentation 18(3) (pp. 359–368). Kluwer Academic Publishers. Whately, R. (1995). Of fallacies. In H. Hansen & R. Pinto (Eds.), Fallacies: Classical background and contemporary developments (pp. 67–94). University Park : The Pennsylvania State University Press. Willard, C. (1995). Failures of relevance: A rhetorical view. In H. Hansen & R. Pinto (Eds.), Fallacies: Classical background and contemporary developments (pp. 145– 158). University Park : The Pennsylvania State University Press. Woods, J., & Walton, D. (1982). Argument: The logic of the fallacies. Toronto, New York : McGraw-Hill Ryerson Ltd. Woods, J., & Walton, D. (1989). Ad hominem. In Fallacies: Selected papers (pp. 55–73). Dordrecht / Providence : Foris Publications.