Critical Reasoning: A Practical Introduction (1996) by Anne Thomson

By Anne Thomson

Reasoning is the typical method that all of us use for you to draw conclusions from evidence or facts. To imagine seriously approximately what you learn and listen to is an important ability for everybody, even if you're a scholar or now not. once we are confronted with texts, information goods or speeches, what's being stated is frequently obscured by way of the phrases used and we should be not sure no matter if our reasoning, or that of others, is in truth sound. via the top of this topical and exercise-based advent to severe pondering, it is possible for you to to: * establish flaws in arguments * examine the reasoning in newspaper articles, books or speeches * strategy any subject being able to cause essentially and to imagine severely This stimulating new advent to reasoning will attract all those that want to increase their reasoning talents, no matter if at paintings, in school or within the seminar.

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So there is yet another assumption—that no other method would be as effective in reducing the number of accidents—and this assumption is more controversial than the others, since it may be possible to get employers to take appropriate action by offering them incentives. Assumptions as unstated reasons or conclusions The second type of assumption is one which is needed to fill a gap within the argument, either as an additional reason, without which the reasons which are offered do not fully support the conclusion, or as a missing link between the reasons and the conclusion.

But we know that it does. So it cannot be true that television violence does not affect behaviour. One way of summarizing this piece of reasoning is: 1 Television advertising affects viewers’ behaviour. Critical reasoning 38 2 So, what is shown on television affects viewers’ behaviour. 3 So, violence shown on television must affect viewers’ behaviour. Statement 1 is a basic reason from which statement 2 is meant to follow. If we take statement 2 as meaning that some of what is shown on television affects behaviour, then it does follow from statement 1, because television advertising is some of what is shown on television.

9 Too many new motorways are being built. 10 It was a good idea to set up the National Lottery. You can continue this exercise choosing your own topics. Choose something which is of general interest, but about which you know people tend to disagree. Exercise 7: Identifying assumptions in arguments For each of the following passages, identify any unstated assumptions, and say whether they are: • assumptions which underlie a basic reason, or • assumptions which function as an additional reason, or • assumptions which function as an intermediate conclusion.

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