There are many aspects to a successful argument. Good writers know there are different ways to convince a reader, from emotional appeals to value judgments. At the end of the day, though, solid logic rules the roost. Your arguments will have to make sense and fall squarely into place in order to be effective.
Why is logic so important? As a formal system of analysis that helps demonstrate and conclude arguments, it’s the one exact instrument you can use to convince your readers.
To be able to effectively use logic in your writing, you’ll need to demonstrate the sequence by which you reach your conclusion.
Syllogism is the simplest and most popular of these sequences, consisting of a straightforward assertion. Its reasoning is now generally regarded as a limited special case of the forms of reasoning that can be represented within the propositional and predicate calculus.
Note the syllogistic example below:
Dogs are animals. German Shepherds are dogs. Therefore, all German Shepherds are animals. With an argument that sound and simplistic, there’s no way for the reader to deny your conclusion without having to effectively lie to themselves. Because of this, syllogistic arguments are the single most effective instrument to employ when you’re writing to persuade.
There are other ways to assert logic, of course, including enthymemes, induction and deduction.
Enthymeme in its modern expression, is an informally stated syllogism (a three-part deductive argument) with an unstated assumption that must be true for the premises to lead to the conclusion. Its part of the argument is missing because it is assumed. In a broader usage, the term “enthymeme” is sometimes used to describe an incomplete argument of forms other than the syllogism.
In deductive logic the conclusion cannot be false if the premises are true. The aim of logic is to make explicit the rules by which inferences may be drawn, rather than to study the actual reasoning processes that people use, which may or may not conform to those rules. In the case of deductive logic, if we ask why we need to obey the rules, the most general form of answer is that if we do not contradict ourselves There is no equally simple answer in the case of inductive logic, which is in general a less robust subject, but the aim will be to find reasoning such that anyone failing to conform to it will have improbable beliefs.
Inductive logic studies the way in which premises may support a conclusion without entailing it also known as inductive reasoning , is a type of reasoning that involves moving from a set of specific facts to a general conclusion. It can also be seen as a form of theory-building, in which specific facts are used to create a theory that explains relationships between the facts and allows prediction of future knowledge. The premises of an inductive logical argument indicate some degree of support (inductive probability) for the conclusion but do not entail it; i.e. they do not ensure its truth. Induction is used to ascribe properties or relations to types based on an observation instance (i.e., on a number of observations or experiences); or to formulate laws based on limited observations of recurring phenomenal patterns.
Everyone can raise a counter against every other argument you put forward, but an accurate expostulation using sound logic is difficult to trump.
Do note that this discussion of sound logic assumes that the readers will actually finish your text. If it’s poorly-written and riddled with errors, they are more likely to dismiss it before even getting to your arguments.
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