A Theory of Philosophical Fallacies by Leonard Nelson, Fernando Leal, D. G. Carus

By Leonard Nelson, Fernando Leal, D. G. Carus

Presented as a Vorlesung within the German philosophical culture, this e-book offers the main certain account of Nelson’s approach to argument research, celebrated via many luminaries similar to Karl Popper. It was once written in 1921 towards the relativistic, subjectivistic and nihilistic traits of Nelson’s time. The ebook includes an exposition of a mode that could be a additional improvement of Kant’s transcendental dialectics, through an program to the severe research of arguments by means of many well-known thinkers, together with Bentham, Mill, Poincaré, Leibniz, Hegel, Einstein, Bergson, Rickert, Simmel, Brentano, Stammler, Jellinek, Dingler, and Meinong. The e-book provides a basic idea of philosophical argumentation as obvious from the point of view of the common fallacies devoted by means of anyone arguing philosophically, no matter if specialist philosophers or philosophical laypeople. even though the character of philosophy and philosophical argumentation is without doubt one of the such a lot recurrent gadgets of mirrored image for philosophers, this e-book represents the 1st test at a basic idea of philosophical fallacy. in keeping with Nelson, it truly is within the form of fake dilemmas that mistakes in reasoning constantly emerge, and fake dilemmas are constantly the results of an identical mechanism--the unwitting substitute of 1 idea for another.

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Sample text

Only in this way will we learn to recognise and see through all those mistakes in reasoning which lead us into error in philosophical matters. That is why logical practice for the sake of becoming acquainted with the relevant errors must come first, before it makes sense to begin with the positive construction of a philosophical system. Lecture II 33 Practice in the art of avoiding the errors which lurk in philosophy is, I think, the purpose of a philosophical propedeutic, when conducted correctly.

2 See Pascal (ca. 1657).

However, it always fails as soon as we ask for the general reasons for such a judgment. As soon as this question arises things become opaque and we are faced with that struggle between contrary propositions which is so characteristic of the philosophical enterprise. For as long as we do not commit to philosophy, and that means, for as long as we remain concerned with particulars that life presents to us, and do not pose any general questions, our feeling for the truth guides us reliably and assuredly.

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