Showing posts from September, 2023

Arguments in Philosophy

One thing that is supposed to be distinctive of analytic philosophy is the dedication to providing rigorous argumentation in favour of clearly stated theses. Arguments here being understood as articulated premises whose joint plausibility, and demonstrated logical relationship to the conclusion, significantly raises the plausibility of that conclusion -- ideally deductively entailing it. Let's set aside how distinctive this ideal really is (surely some scholastic and Nyāya philosophers would protest!) and just think about the ideals themselves. I have commented on these standards before, by and large positively. On the whole I think it is a genuine intellectual good to try very hard to make people understand what you are saying and why it might be worth believing. And yet. I have always been a little bit uncomfortable with the role of argumentation in analytic philosophy, and today I think I will spell out why, and in the end maybe even reconcile my discomfort with my admiratio