Logic 101: How to Spot an Argument

Richard Goode's picture
Submitted by Richard Goode on Sun, 2012-01-22 09:11

What is an argument?

The subject matter of logic is the argument. Arguments come in all shapes and sizes, some big, some small, some good, some bad... as we shall see.

What is an argument? Here is the definition of argument which we'll be working with:

An argument is a sequence of statements, including one which is supposed to be supported by the other(s).

Of course, this is a definition of argument in the philosophical sense of the word.

In the usual sense of the word, an argument is a verbal dispute.

Here are two examples of arguments:

  • This bug has eight legs, but insects have only six legs, so this is not an insect.
  • If Fred were guilty he would be reluctant to answer questions. He is reluctant, so he must be guilty.

Exercise

Use some of the sentences below to construct an argument

  • If God had meant for us to fly, we would have wings.
  • Aircraft have wings.
  • We have wings.
  • We don't have wings.
  • God meant for us to fly.
  • God didn't mean for us to fly.
  • God exists.
  • If God didn't exist, he wouldn't care if we flew or not.

Argument-spotting

An argument is a sequence of statements, including one which is supposed to be supported by the other(s).

The statement which is supposed to be the supported by the other(s) is called the conclusion.

The statement(s) which are supposed to support the conclusion are called the premise(s). (There may only be one premise, although usually there is more than one.)

Now that you know what an argument is—a sequence of statements, including one which is supposed to be supported by the other(s)—you should, at least in principle, be able reliably to spot one.

But, often, it's not that easy. Fortunately, the English language includes words and phrases that provide clues both to the presence and to the structure of an argument. These words and phrases are called indicators.

Take a look at the arguments below. Some contain indicators, some don't.

  • What do you mean, how do I know that the power went off last night? The power must have gone off last night, since the clock on my radio is blinking.
  • Every kangaroo we have observed eats grass, therefore kangaroos are herbivores.
  • Kangaroos are herbivores. As this animal is eating a hamburger it can't be a kangaroo.
  • The use of logic is necessary if one wishes true knowledge rather than false belief. Knowing the truth generally helps a person to live well and be happy. Thus, a primary reason for studying logic is that it is in one's own best interests to do so.
  • If you do the exercises you will pass. But you have not done the exercises. So you will fail.
  • Luther did not like the Catholic church. He wanted to change it utterly, and people that want change don't like the things they are changing.

Premise Indicators
as, as shown by, as indicated by, given that, for, for the reason that, assuming that, on the assumption that, can be inferred from, is implied by, since, because

Conclusion Indicators
therefore, so, hence, consequently, it follows that, in conclusion, accordingly, entails that, implies that, thus, leads one to believe that, demonstrates that, shows that

Exercise

Read the following dialogue. Answer the questions which follow it.

Mel: This is a great can-opener! It opens cans like a dream. It's a piece of precision engineering.

Kim: No, it's not. It's a bad can-opener. It doesn't have a special part for opening bottles, like any decent can-opener should. I'm going to have to open this beer bottle by some other means.

Questions

  1. How many arguments are contained in the dialogue?
  2. What are they?
  3. Who do you think is right, and why?

Self test: can you

  1. construct an argument?
  2. recognise when an argument is being put forward?
  3. identify correctly the premises and conclusion of an argument?

( categories: )

Fraud

darren's picture

This vindicates you.

Congratulations. You're a Master of the Obvious.

Given how Joseph defines “logical subject” he can’t be consistent and say the above.

Sure he can. He defines it as "that which is thought about." What is thought about in the example is "some garrison towns", not just "garrison towns"; or "some places civilly important," not just "places civilly important."  What is thought about includes the quantifier. So there's no inconsistency here. 

On p. 176 he tells us that the quantifier is “prefixed to the subject.”

Ah, well, that may be an equivocation on "subject." Perhaps Joseph meant to specify "grammatical subject," which would make it consistent with the summary by Goold Brown: the logical subject being the grammatical subject plus all of its adjuncts (including "all", "every", "some" or "no").

On the square, we look at change in the quantity and quality of the A, E, I, O propositions while keeping their subject and predicate unchanged. This is impossible if subject is taken to include the quantifier.

Not quite. McCall, for example, defines opposition of judgments simply as affirming or denying the same predicate of the same subject. That's done by changing the copula, NOT the particle of quantification, or simply be adding "Not" to the beginning of the proposition and denying the whole proposition (which is the same as simply denying the copula). Example:

Every swan is white (A)

[now change the copula to a negative]:

Every swan is not white (which is the equivalent to saying, "Not every swan is white", which is the same as saying "Some swan is not white"). (O)

It's the same logical subject — "Every swan" — in these contradictories. But because the copula is negated, the extent of the referents change: in the first case, "every swan" is taken universally, because the copula permits it; in the second case, "every swan" is not taken universally, but only particularly, because the copula requires it. McCall explains this quite well earlier in his book: "All" and "every" are not always signs of universality; it depends on the copula. 

So in the square of opposition, what are really being opposed, diagonally, are two propositions whose subjects and predicates are the same, but which differ according to the signs of their copulas:

"Every swan IS white" / "NOT Every swan IS white."

A more suitable way of expressing "NOT Every swan IS white" is "Some swan IS NOT white", which is the more common (but not necessarily more precise) form of an (O) proposition.
Here's the way a square of opposition really looks:

What's really occurring is a simple change from affirmation to denial of the original proposition. The change in quantity occurs as a result of the change from affirmation to denial, or from denial to affirmation. See McCall page 83; "Judgment and Proposition, Section 4, The Opposition of Categorical Propositions.

darren

seddon's picture

“[' some places civilly important are garrison towns '. The fact, of which Winchester, York, and Canterbury are instances, is the same, whichever way it is put : whether the logical subject be ' some garrison towns ', or ' some places civilly important '.
. . . Joseph here admits that the entire phrase "some garrison towns" and "some places civilly important" constitute what he calls the logical subject. ERGO, the logical subject includes the particle of quantification.”

This vindicates you. You didn’t commit the error; you just fell for it. Why? Two points. (1) Given how Joseph defines “logical subject” he can’t be consistent and say the above. On p. 166-7 he defines “logical subject” as “that which is thought about” and he nowhere mentions quantification. He talks about that in a separate section. Which takes me to the next point. (2) Given what he says about quantification, he can’t be consistent and say the above. On p. 176 he tells us that the quantifier is “prefixed to the subject.” Notice two things here; quantifier + subject. So, subject cannot include the quantifier. He talks about “all, no or some” can calls them “signs or marks of quantity,” not marks of the subject.

But what is worse, the notion itself makes nonsense of both the square of opposition and immediate inferences.
On the square, we look at change in the quantity and quality of the A, E, I, O propositions while keeping their subject and predicate unchanged. This is impossible if subject is taken to include the quantifier.
Or consider contraposition. In contraposition you swap the subject and the predicate and compliment both while keeping both quantity and quality unchanged. Can’t do that on the definition of “logical subject” you endorse.

Glad I could be of assistance, young man.

Fred

Fraud

darren's picture

I have the book and my pagination is about 16 pages ahead of yours.

Fool. That's because you have the 2nd Edition from 1916. The one I linked to previously is the 1st Edition from 1906. I've located an online version of the 2nd Edition so the references to page numbers should now be in synch.

Your quote proves nothing about the inclusion of the particle of quantification in the logical subject. On page 243 of your edition, Joseph writes the following:

x] OF IMMEDIATE INFERENCES 243

[' some places civilly important are garrison towns '. The fact, of which Winchester, York, and Canterbury are instances, is the same, whichever way it is put : whether the logical subject be ' some garrison towns ', or ' some places civilly important '.

It's rather embarrassingly obvious to all but those in denial (such as you) that Joseph here admits that the entire phrase "some garrison towns" and "some places civilly important" constitute what he calls the logical subject. ERGO, the logical subject includes the particle of quantification.

I proved my case long ago, though I don't expect someone such as yourself — both incompetent AND in denial — to recognize it. I'll repeat a quote from grammarian Goold Brown regarding the resolution of sentences into a subject and a predicate:

Sentences may be partially analyzed by a resolution into their SUBJECTS and their PREDICATES, a method which some late grammarians have borrowed from the logicians; the grammatical subject with its adjuncts, being taken for the logical subject; and the finite verb, which some call the grammatical predicate,* being, with its subsequent case and the adjuncts of both, denominated the predicate, or the logical predicate.

"Adjuncts" means those words that are part of the context of the grammatical subject's meaning. In "All men are mortal," the grammatical subject is "men" and the adjunct is "all"; so the logical subject is "All men." In "All men of good will who respect the law shall tolerate those with whom they disagree," the grammatical subject is "men", and the adjuncts are "all"+"of good will"+"who respect the law"; making the logical subject "All men of good will who respect the law."

This is what McCall means by "subject" in the example I cited previously from his manual, and is explicitly what Joseph means by "logical subject" in the reference given above.

It's time you retired, Fraud Seddon.

The Argument Clinic

reed's picture

darren

seddon's picture

Nice quotation from Joseph. I have the book and my pagination is about 16 pages ahead of yours. Now to the content of the quotation. Notice that the meaning Joseph attaches to “logical subject” is NOT yours. He defines it as “what one is thinking about” whereas you defines it as the “quantifier + the subject term. So the whole thing is a gross equivocation and provides no evidence for your position. To make matters worse, Joseph actually DENIES your meaning. On p. 175 he writes, “. . .it is important to realize that what are called differences of QUANTITY in judgements or propositions, are NOT primarily differences in respect of HOW MUCH of the denotation of the subject term is the subject of our thought. (First two emphasis mine)

On “logical subject” one more time. Don’t be confused. I never denied one can use the term “logical subject,” I merely denied you definition of it and now that you admit it not even in MCCall, I don’t know what is left of your “case.” Even Kelley distinguishes between the logical and grammatical subject. Again. Not the issue. And notice, none of your quotations back you up. We call that “irrevelance.”

So, one more time. Can you address the question?

Fred

Logical subject vs grammatical subject

darren's picture

http://books.google.com/books/...

An Introduction to Logic
Horace William Brindley Joseph
1906

downloadable PDF version

or,

http://books.google.com/books?...

Google eBook version.

Page 150:

"This view that reality is the ultimate subject of every judgement must not, however, be understood to mean that it is the logical subject, or be taken as destroying the force of the logical distinction between subject and predicate. We may distinguish in fact three subjects, the logical, the grammatical, and the ultimate or metaphysical. That the logical subject is not the same as the grammatical subject of the sentence is readily apprehended. [NB: except, of course, by morons like Fred Seddon]. The proposition 'Belladonna dilates the pupil' may be an answer either to the question 'What dilates the pupil?' or 'What do you know of belladonna?' In either case the grammatical subject is belladonna; but the logical subject is in the former case 'dilating the pupil'; that is what we are thinking about, and about that the judgement informs us that belladonna will effect it; in the latter case, the logical subject is belladonna, and about that the judgement informs us that it produces this effect. This distinction of logical subject and predicate is always present in thought when we judge, though sometimes the logical subject may be very vague, as when we say 'it rains' or 'it is hot'."

Many more examples in Joseph's treatise of the expression "logical subject".

Fraud Seddon

darren's picture

Yes, needless to say.

And, no, I never claimed that the concept of "logical subject" came from McCall; just that he (and other writers on logic) make use of it, either explicitly or implicitly. Reread this entire thread.

We all know you're a lazy, tenured, academic fraud, Fraud, but must you lie in your attempts to win an argument? Aside from being unsuccessful, it's unbecoming (not to mention unprofessional).

Note well: I'm not your damned private army. Going forward, you'll do your own research.

Below is an extended excerpt from the 1,200 page Grammar of English Grammars (1857) by grammarian Goold Brown. His treatise derives its name from the fact that Brown, in laying out his own system of English grammar, critically compares it to over 400 other grammars extant in his day, point by point. One of his points of contention is that the fields of grammar and logic began to be commingled, or conflated, by writers in the 19th century; and, by way of discussion of these issues, he has occasion to use the expressions "logical subject" and "logical predicate" and to distinguish them from "grammatical subject" and "grammatical predicate" (though Brown spends most of his time in discussing the notion of a logical predicate and the copula). He also provides extensive references, which appear after the asterisked footnote. Brown's own "summing up" then appears in the paragraph after the asterisked list of references.

Following the Goold Brown excerpt, I've provided many links to works by logicians or linguists who make use of those same expressions. When you navigate to the linked reference, hit "control+F" (or "command+F" on Mac) which puts your cursor in the search field. Type in "logical subject" (without the quotes) and you'll get the full context of the author's use.

One thing you'll discover perusing these references is that the older logicians' phrase "logical subject" gradually changed in the 20th century to that of "psychological subject."

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
The Grammar of English Grammars, page 470, Part III, Chap.1, Syntax — Sentences — Methods of Analysis

[begin excerpt]

THIRD METHOD OF ANALYSIS

Sentences may be partially analyzed by a resolution into their SUBJECTS and their PREDICATES, a method which some late grammarians have borrowed from the logicians; the grammatical subject with its adjuncts, being taken for the logical subject; and the finite verb, which some call the grammatical predicate,* being, with its subsequent case and the adjuncts of both, denominated the predicate, or the logical predicate. Thus:—

EXAMPLE ANALYZED

"Such is the emptiness of human enjoyment, that we are always impatient of the present. Attainment is followed by neglect, and possession, by disgust. Few moments are more pleasing than those in which the mind is concerting measures for a new undertaking. From the first hint that wakens the fancy, to the hour of actual execution, all is improvement and progress, triumph and felicity." — DR. JOHNSON, Rambler.

ANALYSIS — Here the first period is a compound sentence, containing two clauses, which are connected by that. In the first clause, emptiness is the grammatical subject, and "the emptiness of human enjoyment," is the logical. Is some would call the grammatical predicate, and "Such is," or is such, the logical; but the latter consists, as the majority teach, of "the copula" is, and "the attribute," or "predicate," such. In the second clause, (which explains the import of "Such") the subject is we; which is unmodified, and in which therefore the logical form and the grammatical coincide and are the same. Are may here be called the grammatical predicate; and "are always impatient of the present," the logical. The second period, too, is a compound sentence, having two clauses, which are connected by and. Attainment is the subject of the former; and, "is followed by neglect," is the predicate. In the latter, possession is the subject; and, "[is followed] by disgust," is the predicate; the verb is followed being understood at the comma. The third period, likewise, is a compound, having three parts, with the two connectives than and which. Here we have moments for the first grammatical subject , and Few moments for the logical; then are for the grammatical predicate, and are more pleasing for the logical; or, if we choose to say so, for " the copula and the attribute." "Than those," is an elliptical member, meaning, "than are those moments," or, "than those moments are pleasing;" both subject and predicate are wholly suppressed, except that those is reckoned a part of the logical subject. In which is an adjunct of is concerting, and serves well to connect the members, because which represents those, i.e., those moments. Mind, or the mind, is the next subject of affirmation; and is concerting, or "is concerting measures for a new undertaking," is the predicate or matter affirmed. Lastly, the fourth period, like the rest, is compound. The phrases commencing with From and to, describe a period of time, and are adjuncts of the verb is. The former contains a subordinate relative clause, of which that (representing hint) is the subject, and wakens, or wakens the fancy, the predicate. Of the principal clause, the word all, taken as a noun, is the subject, whether grammatical or logical; and "the copula," or "grammatical predicate," is, becomes, with its adjuncts and the nominatives following, the logical predicate.

* "The grammatical predicate is a verb."— Butler's Practical Grammar, 1845, p. 135. "The grammatical predicate is a finite verb."— Wells's School Grammar, 1850, p. 185. "The grammatical predicate is either a verb alone, or the copula sum [some part of the verb be] with a noun or adjective."— Andrews and Stoddard's Latin Grammar, p. 164. "The predicate consists of two parts, — the verb, or copula, and that which is asserted by it, called the attribute; as, 'Snow is white.'"— Greene's Analysis, p. 15. "The grammatical predicate consists of the attribute and copula, not modified by other words."—Bullions Analytic and Practical Grammar, p. 129. "The logical predicate is the grammatical, with all the words or phrases that modify it."—Ib. p. 130. "The Grammatical predicate is the word or words containing the simple affirmation, made respecting the subject."—Bullions, Latin Grammar, p. 269. "Every proposition necessarily consists of these three parts; [the subject, the predicate, and the copula;] but then it is not alike needful, that they be all severally expressed in words; because the copula is often included in the term of the predicate; as when we say, he sits which imports the same as, he is sitting."—William Duncan, Elements of Logic, 1848, p. 105.

In respect to this Third Method of Analysis, it is questionable, whether a noun or an adjective which follows the verb and forms part of the assertion, is to be included in "the grammatical predicate" or not. Wells says, No: "It would destroy at once all distinction between the grammatical and the logical predicate."—Well's School Grammar, p. 185. Another question is, whether the copula (is, was, or the like) which the logicians discriminate, should be included as part of the logical predicate, when it occurs as a distinct word. The prevalent practice of the grammatical analyzers is, so to include it,— a practice which in itself is not very "logical." The distinction of subjects and predicates as "grammatical and logical," is but a recent one. In some grammars, the partition used in logic is copied without change, except perhaps of words; as, "There are, in sentences, a subject, a predicate, and a copula."—Joseph R. Chandler: A Grammar of the English Language, 1821, p. 103. The logicians, however, and those who copy them, may have been hitherto at fault in recognizing and specifying their "copula" Mulligan forcibly argues that the verb of being is no more entitled to this name than is every other verb. (See his Exposition of the Grammatical Structure of the English Language, 1852, § 46) If he is right in this, the "copula" of the logicians (and, in my opinion, his own, also) is a mere figment of the brain, there being nothing that answers to the definition of the thing or to the true use of the word.

[end excerpt]

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

Links to logic references and linguistics references using the expressions "Logical subject", "Logical predicate," "Grammatical subject", and "Grammatical predicate":

____________________________

http://books.google.com/books?...

The historiography of grammatical concepts: 19th and 20th- century changes in the subject-predicate conception and the problem of their historical reconstruction

Els Elffers-van Ketel
Rodopi, 1991 — 357 pages)

page 232:
"We find non-correspondence phenomena mentioned in 19th-century and early 20th-century logic and psychology indeed, in the work of Steinthal, Erdmann, Lipps, Stout and Mauthner. They observe a distinction between "grammatical" and "logical" subject and predicate . . . "

__________________________

http://books.google.com/books?...

"2. Logical subject and logical predicate are distinguished from grammatical subject and grammatical predicate in chapter 7. The terms "subject" and "predicate" may be taken in either case in this chapter if not specified. We assume that the grammatical meaning is already known."
Aristotelian Logic
William T. Parry
and
Edward A. Hacker
1991 State University of New York
page 498

__________________________

http://www.experiencefestival....
Bertrand Russell
A selection of articles related to Bertrand Russell: 

A paradigm example of a direct reference theory is that of philosopher Bertrand Russell. In his direct reference theory, Russell first distinguished between a logical subject and a grammatical subject. The former is the thing in the real world - the referent; while the latter is a description or concept

__________________________
http://independent.academia.ed...

"In this paper when I speak of a singular predication, I will be referring to a kind of sentence, rather than to the proposition expressed by the sentence. Similarly, I will always use 'logical subject,' 'subject,' 'logical predicate,' 'predicate' and 'singular term' to refer to linguistic expressions. A singular predication is a sentence in which an individual is characterized in some way, or in which several individuals are specified to be in some relation to rather other. For example, 'Aquinas thinks' is a singular predication in which Aquinas is characterized as thinking. 'Aquinas' is a singular term and is the logical subject of the sentence, and 'thinks' is the monadic predicate. 'Plato is older than Aristotle' is a singular predication in which 'Plato' and 'Aristotle' are singular terms and logical subjects, and the expression 'older than' is the relational predicate . . . In contrast, a general predication has an expression for generality in place of the logical subject, as in 'Everyone thinks' or 'Someone is older than Aristotle.'

P. F. Strawson on Predication by Danny Frederick | Papers by Danny
Polish Journal of Philosophy 5.1 (2011): 39-57.

__________________________

http://books.google.com/books?...

Western linguistics: an historical introduction
 By Pieter A. M. Seuren
Blackwell Publishers Ltd, 1998

http://mind.oxfordjournals.org...

__________________________

http://books.google.com/books?...

The philosophy of grammar
 By Otto Jespersen, 1924
__________________________

http://books.google.com/books?...

Logic: Inductive and Deductive an Introduction to Scientific Method
 By Adam Leroy Jones
1909
Pages 69-70:

"The subject of a proposition stands for that about which something is said.(1)
Footnote (1): A distinction may be made between the grammatical and the logical subjects. The grammatical subject is the subject of the proposition; it is, as we have seen, a term. The logical subject has been variously defined. The definition of the logical subject as the subject of the thought seem, on the whole, to be the best. (See for discussion, Joseph, Introduction to Logic.) The logical subject is that about which the judgment is made. For example, in the proposition, "Acid turns blue litmus paper red," the grammatical subject is, of course, the word "acid." The grammatical predicate is that which stands for what is asserted about the subject; in this case, the words "turns blue litmus paper red." Changing the proposition into the form of subject-copula-predicate, it would read "acid is that which turns blue litmus paper red," and the complete predicate would be the words following the copula. Now the form of the proposition may not indicate the real logical subject. If the statement just given were the answer to the question, "What can you say about acid, the grammatical and logical subjects would correspond; but if the question were, "What is the effect of acid on litmus paper?" the logical subject (i.e., the thing about which the judgment is made) would be that which is expressed by the grammatical predicate of the proposition. The form of the sentence could be so changed as to make the grammatical or verbal subject correspond to the logical subject; in a great many cases they do not so correspond. Ordinarily, the logical subject can be determined only by the context, though sometimes it can be indicated by emphasis on certain words. For example, "Acid turns blue litmus paper red" would imply, as the subject, what is expressed by the words, "the color to which blue litmus is turned by acid." Unless otherwise specified the term subject will be understood to mean grammatical subject; and predicate will mean the term that is joined to the subject by the copula. In the treatment of isolated propositions there is no occasion for the distinction. It is sometimes said that reality as a whole is the logical subject of every judgment. It might better be called the ultimate or metaphysical subject."
__________________________

http://people.uvawise.edu/phil...
Categorical Statements
"In addition to a logical subject, a logical predicate, and a copula, every categorical statement has a quantifier."

__________________________
http://books.google.com/books?...

"…it may be said that there must always be a logical subject, namely, the existence denoted by the relation asserted in the proposition. This subject, however, need not be either the psychological or the grammatical subject, and need not even appear in the proposition as a linguistic form. "
The Middle Works of John Dewey, Volume 7, 1899 - 1924
Contributions to Cyclopedia of Education

__________________________

dareen

seddon's picture

"Needless to say, when McCall uses the words "subject" and "predicate", he means "logical subject" and "logical predicate" within a structure called the "judgment.""

"Needless to say"! That is exactly the concept you introduced as coming from McCall and now you cannot produce the page where he does it. And once again, it is not in the index. Where is it?

Fred

Fred — you're a whiner.

darren's picture

The two concepts which the judgment unites or separates are called the subject and the predicate. In the judgment, "Every rational being is capable of free decision," the subject is "Every rational being," the predicate is "capable of free decision." The subject is that to which the mind applies or denies a determination; the predicate is the determination which the mind applies or denies to the subject. The subject is that about which I am affirming or denying something; the predicate is what I affirm or deny about it.


Basic Logic — The Fundamental Principles of Formal Deductive Reasoning (page 42, Chapter 2: Judgment and Proposition) Raymond J. McCall The Barnes & Noble Outline Series 2nd Edition (1952)


Needless to say, when McCall uses the words "subject" and "predicate", he means "logical subject" and "logical predicate" within a structure called the "judgment." And notice, please, that the logical subject includes the quantifier "every."


You might also try thinking on your own for a change, and perhaps doing a little bit of that "integration" on which your idol so often insisted.  If the topic under discussion is logic (not grammar), then the term "subject" implies "logical" (and not "grammatical). Conversely, if the topic under discussion is grammar (not logic) then the term "subject" implies "grammatical" (and not "logical").

dareen

seddon's picture

I got the McCall book in the mail and naturally I opened it immediately to the Index to find "Logical subject." Alas, imagined my disappointment when I couldn't find it. Help!! Where does McCall discuss "logical subject." (Not "subject" but "logical subject.")

Fred

Fred

darren's picture

My dear boy; I already own it. At least, that is what my accountant tells me.

You're a real skinflint, Fred. All right, then . . .

The Queens-Midtown Tunnel. My final offer.

Fred

darren's picture

No it's not and I have pointed out the differences in previous post. Please check.

You didn't point out anything.

WIKI: Inference is the act or process of deriving logical conclusions from premises known or assumed to be true

Aristotle: [inference is] a form of words in which , when certain assumptions are made, something other than what has been assumed necessarily follows from the assumptions.

McCall: [inference is] a mediate judgment, i.e., a judgment made through, or by means of, other judgments.

These are all the same definition. Different words; same definition.

dareen

seddon's picture

"OK, in that case, what about the Tappen Zee bridge?"

My dear boy; I already own it. At least, that is what my accountant tells me.

Fred

dareen

seddon's picture

"McCall's definition of inference is the same as Aristotle's."

No it's not and I have pointed out the differences in previous post. Please check.

Fred

Fred

darren's picture

I of course bought the cheapest one.

OK, in that case, what about the Tappen Zee bridge?

Fred

darren's picture

Then why did you claim McCall had THE definition of inference?

McCall's definition of inference is the same as Aristotle's.

darrren

seddon's picture

As for the $10K price on a copy of McCall's book, all I can say is, if that is the copy you purchased, I have a bridge in Brooklyn I'd like to show you. It's for sale, and it's just a few dollars more than McCall's book."

I of course bought the cheapest one.

On pro hen equivocity.

Then why did you claim McCall had THE definition of inference? Are yougiving up that claim now?

Fred

I certainly know when I’m

darren's picture

I certainly know when I’m bragging.

See what I mean? That was a brag in itself and you were obviously unaware of it.

I didn’t know you were a univocalist.

I'm not. It's obvious, too, that you don't understand the meaning of technical terms in logic like univocal and equivocal.

Since Aristotle, it has been obvious to most that words can be used in many ways,

And since Aristotle, it has been obvious that most of the ways that most words can be used are analogously, and not equivocally. And in any case, Fred, logic has no problem with the linguistic fact that certain words have equivocal meanings, so long as those meanings are presented unambiguously. What logic has a problem with is the equivocal use of words.

as you can see in the case of all the logicians who do not use McCall’s definition

To have different definitions of something doesn't necessarily imply equivocation of a term. If McCall defines man as "the rational animal" and some other logician defines man as "the risible animal", the latter definition, while weaker than McCall's, is still referring to the same entity as the former; ergo, there's no equivocation. On the other hand, if McCall defines man as "the rational animal" and some other logician defines man as "a three-lettered word", while both are true, the latter use of the term "man" — its logical supposition — is utterly different from the former use. In that example — man as a rational animal vs. man as a three-lettered word — the term man is used equivocally. 

And as I stated above, logic has no problem with the linguistic fact that "man" is both a rational animal and a three-lettered word, so long as these meanings are unambiguous in discourse.

As for the $10K price on a copy of McCall's book, all I can say is, if that is the copy you purchased, I have a bridge in Brooklyn I'd like to show you. It's for sale, and it's just a few dollars more than McCall's book.

darren

seddon's picture

“Those who brag NEVER do, since they are unaware they are doing it.”

This is false. What makes you say this. I certainly know when I’m bragging.

“He accepted the definition of "inference" as a "mediate judgment" because that's what an inference is.”

I didn’t know you were a univocalist. Since Aristotle, it has been obvious to most that words can be used in many ways, as you can see in the case of all the logicians who do not use McCall’s definition.

“You should pay it, by all means.”

NO, you missed the point. I was wondering if you knew why that particular edition was priced so high. Do you?

Thanks for the bio. I await my copy of his text.

Fred

I never used the word

darren's picture

I never used the word “brags.”

Those who brag never do, since they are unaware they are doing it. Their bragging has to be pointed out to them by others.

Since he accepted the definition, that makes it his by use.

He accepted the definition of "inference" as a "mediate judgment" because that's what an inference is. He rejected the definition of conversion, obversion, and contraposition as "immediate inference" not so much because it was incorrect, but because it was clumsy: since an "inference" is a "mediate judgment", if conversion were an "immediate inference", then it would also have to be an "immediate mediate judgment." Even if technically "correct", it is clumsy and awkward; something he called a "monstrosity of the first water." What do you not get?

But I did want your opinion about the $10,000 price

You should pay it, by all means.

Do you own a copy of McCall's Phenomenological Psychology

No.

BTW, you have no clue about the ad hominem

You confuse an ad hominem argument with a simple insult.

Anyway, below is a brief bio of McCall provided by Marquette:

Biographical Note:
http://www.marquette.edu/library/archives/SuperC/UNIV-C-1-15-series2-RJM.shtml 

Raymond Joseph McCall was born in Bronx, New York on October 16, 1913. He received his A.B. in philosophy from Fordham in 1934, an M.A. from Catholic University in 1936, and a Ph.D. in 1941 from Fordham. He then received his masters and doctoral degrees in psychology from Columbia in 1949 and 1951, respectively. His teaching career began in 1936 as an instructor in the Department of Philosophy and Psychology at St. John’s University. After a brief leave from 1943 to 1946, when McCall served as a communications officer in the United States Naval Reserve, he returned to St. John’s University as a professor and chairman of the Department of Philosophy and Psychology. After serving as the Director of Psychological Testing and professor and chairman of the psychology department at DePaul and taking a year’s leave of absence as a Ford Foundation Fellow at Harvard, McCall joined the Marquette University faculty in 1956. Initially hired as professor and chairman of the Psychology department as well as the head of the University Counseling Service, McCall remained chairman until 1961 when he took a position as Director of the Psychological Services Center at Marquette. In 1966 McCall became a Clinical Professor in the Department of Psychiatry at the Marquette University School of Medicine and the Medical College of Wisconsin. He was a leader in the establishment, in 1978, of the Wisconsin School of Professional Psychology and served as dean from 1979 to 1981. McCall retired in 1984 after 28 years on the faculty at Marquette and 45 years of teaching overall.

McCall’s clinical experience in Psychology began as a Rorschach examiner at the New York Psychiatric Institute from 1949 to 1951. He later served as a consulting psychologist at Grace Medical Clinic in Brooklyn, New York, at the Psychiatric Institute of the Municipal Court in Chicago, Illinois and at St. Mary’s Hospital School of Nursing in Milwaukee. He also served as a psychological consultant for the Wisconsin Division of Corrections and the Jackson Psychiatric Center.

McCall’s publications include four books: Basic Logic, a college textbook, A Preface to Scientific Psychology, The Varieties of Abnormality: A Phenomenological Analysis, A Primer of Phenomenological Psychology, and Phenomenological Psychology: An Introduction. He was also the author of numerous journal articles.

McCall was committed to a humanistic and phenomenological approach to psychology. His research interests focused on the quantitative evaluation of clinical tests and their development, the psychological factors of obesity, and the normal personality. He also collaborated with Medard Boss on the development of an appropriate English terminology for conveying of the fundamentals of Daseinanalysis.

Raymond McCall died of pneumonia January 31, 1990.

darren

seddon's picture

“Any school which brags”

I never used the word “brags.” Stop putting words in my mouth; it’s unsanitary.

Since he accepted the definition, that makes it his by use. Unless he rejects the definition, as do I.

“Try "Bookfinder.com" instead of Amazon.”

But I’ve already bought the book. But I did want your opinion about the $10,000 price.
Just in case you missed it, let me repeat, Do you own a copy of McCall's Phenomenological Psychology: An Introduction : With a Glossary of Some Key Heideggerian Terms?

Fred

BTW, you have no clue about the ad hominem.

Fred

darren's picture

Ah, the ad hominem returns.

Mere reiteration of the obvious, not ad hominem. Any school which brags that they accept all students except the bottom 10% would not also have the reverse practice of hiring only the top 10% of teachers.

And just in case you missed it, the bit about penises and twats teaching philosophy in Altoona wasn't ad hominem either.

Again you missed the point. It is only a pit on his definition.

Must be your old reading comprehension problem again: it wasn't his definition.

 

 

Fred

darren's picture

Try "Bookfinder.com" instead of Amazon.

http://tinyurl.com/7xq49ka
Raymond J. McCall
Basic Logic

darren

seddon's picture

I was looking up McCall's Logic book on Amazon and they have a used (1969 ed.) copy for, get this, $10,000. Then two items down, the 1961 ed. is available for .99. Hm. BTW. Do you own a copy of McCall's Phenomenological Psychology: An Introduction : With a Glossary of Some Key Heideggerian Terms? I've ordered the Logic book.

Fred

darren

seddon's picture

we admit practically anyone. Only the bottom ten percent is excluded.
I see that applies to the hiring of teachers as well. Schnapps all around . . .

Ah, the ad hominem returns. Your more recent post were too good to be true. Anyway, So at least you admit your gross math error. When I say “top 90%” I mean top 90%.

“And McCall has pointed out to his readers the existence of the pit into which others have fallen.”

Again you missed the point. It is only a pit on his definition.

Fred

Fred

darren's picture

Already did and I can find a number of sources that do NOT define inference as "a mediate judgment."

But now you admit that you can also find a number of other sources that DO define inference as "mediate judgment," which contradicts your last post in which you asserted that you could not find any, and that, therefore, McCall's use of that term was "idiosyncratic." Would it be too much of an imposition on you to ask for consistency? Or do you believe that consistency is merely the hobgoblin of a little mind?

When you fall into a coal pit, it doesn’t take much wit to realize that you have made a false move.

And McCall has pointed out to his readers the existence of the pit into which others have fallen.

If you define a human as a penis bearing animal,

I only go so far as to define certain individual humans as penises. It matters little in practice if these individuals turn out, upon closer examination, to be twats.

My definition has the benefit of avoiding the “monstrosity of the first water.” You must admit that McCall doesn’t.

I admit McCall's use of the traditional definition of inference as "mediate judgment" is fine. I also admit the problem occurs only when others try to categorize conversion, obversion, and contraposition as "immediate inferences." Happily, McCall avoids that coal pit, even if the penises and twats who teach philosophy in Altoona claim otherwise.

Just as it only took me a one second to find “conversion by limitation.” So we have a standoff. I really don’t care which expression you use, since they have the same referent.

I never claimed there was a problem with the phrase "conversion by limitation." You were the one who claimed there was something suspect in the phrase "conversion per accidens" because you failed to find references to it in your Google searches, and that, therefore, its use in McCall's book must be merely "idiosyncratic" with McCall. However, I see now that you were trying to find a politic way of admitting your error. Noted and accepted.

we admit practically anyone. Only the bottom ten percent is excluded.

I see that applies to the hiring of teachers as well. Schnapps all around . . .

darren

seddon's picture

“Do a Google search.”

Already did and I can find a number of sources that do NOT define inference as "a mediate judgment."
Now I’m ready to let a thinker define his own terms. So if McCall chooses to define inference as "a mediate judgment." Then he will be stuck with his “monstrosity of the first water,” when he considers “immediate inferences.” When you fall into a coal pit, it doesn’t take much wit to realize that you have made a false move. If you define a human as a penis bearing animal, then you will have a “monstrosity of the first water,” when you also define a woman as a human being, i.e., as a penis bearing animal. I suggest you simply revise your definition. If you follow Aristotle, you don’t have “monstrosity of the first water.” And you missed my point on Aristotle. The Greek word is συλλογισμός, is broader than our term syllogism and can mean any inference. Something being given something else follows of necessity. If, and please notice the “If”, you define inference this way, then no “monstrosity of the first water.” If I’m willing to let McCall define his terms, then he should allow the same courtesy. My definition has the benefit of avoiding the “monstrosity of the first water.” You must admit that McCall doesn’t.

“It took 1 second to find several references.”

Just as it only took me a one second to find “conversion by limitation.” So we have a standoff. I really don’t care which expression you use, since they have the same referent.

In addition to logic, you need to review your math. If you admit students from the top 90% of their graduating class, it means you'll admit just about anyone: 90 students out of a class of 100, in fact. I think you mean, you admit students who are in the top 10% of their graduating class; in other words, you admit the top 10 students out of a class of 100.

I do not mean what you say. I mean exactly what I said, we admit practically anyone. Only the bottom ten percent is excluded. You need to brush up on you math skills. You don't exactly inspire confidence when you make statements like that. Maybe it's that crow of yours getting overloaded.

Fred

Fred

darren's picture

Neither the Wiki quote nor the excerpt of Aristotle uses the term "mediate" or "immediate" which is the subject under discussion. Kant, Bosanquet, and many others, call inference "a mediate judgment", and still others call conversion, obversion, and contraposition "immediate inferences" — making the latter into "immediate mediate judgments." Do a Google search.

It is not a “monstrosity of the first water” on Aristotle’s definition.

Because in your excerpt of Aristotle, he doesn't use the words "mediate", "immediate", or "judgment." Ergo, your excerpt is irrelevant to what we are discussing, which are the terms "mediate", "immediate", and "judgment".

very brief search indicated no result for “conversion by accident, so I conclude that McCall usage may be idiosyncratic.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Converse_(logic)
For A propositions, the subject is distributed while the predicate is not, and so the inference from an A statement to its converse is not valid. As an example, for the A proposition "All cats are mammals," the converse "All mammals are cats" is obviously false. However, the weaker statement "Some mammals are cats" is true. Logicians define conversion per accidens to be the process of producing this weaker statement. Inference from a statement to its converse per accidens is generally valid.

http://www.merriam-webster.com...
Definition of CONVERSION PER ACCIDENS
logic
the transposing of the subject and predicate of a proposition involving the limitation of quantity from universal to particular, valid of universal affirmatives <“some P is S” is the conversion per accidens of “all S is P”

It took 1 second to find several references. I suppose next you'll claim that Merriam-Webster's use of "per accidens" is idiosyncratic.

We admit students from the top 90% of their graduating class!

In addition to logic, you need to review your math. If you admit students from the top 90% of their graduating class, it means you'll admit just about anyone: 90 students out of a class of 100, in fact. I think you mean, you admit students who are in the top 10% of their graduating class; in other words, you admit the top 10 students out of a class of 100.

You don't exactly inspire confidence when you make statements like that. Maybe it's that crow of yours getting overloaded.

darren

seddon's picture

Since you admit that the traditional definition of inference is "a mediate judgment,"

No I don’t. Let me repeat what I wrote:

I don’t know how classical it is but Wiki has “Inference is the act or process of deriving logical conclusions from premises known or assumed to be true” which sounds like Aristotle when he writes “a form of words in which , when certain assumptions are made, something other than what has been assumed necessarily follows from the assumptions.” Prior Analytics, 24b18. Now that’s what I call Classic.

But given McCall’s definition, then immediate inference is a monstrosity of the first water. But the fault lies in McCall’s definition. It is not a “monstrosity of the first water” on Aristotle’s definition. So let me be clear what this means. If one accepts McCall’s definition then immediate inference is a monstrosity. But this can be handle by noting that immediate inference is in a special class of inferences. But I don’t need to make that move since I DON’T accept McCall’s definition of inference.

“Implicit in Kelley's definition is that both propositions — the original and its converse — express the same truth.”

NO. Recall what I said in a previous post. For Kelley, conversion only means the swapping of subject and predicate terms. The issue (for him and not for McCall) whether the conversion is licit or illicit is a separate issue, and he then discusses which categorical propositions are licit when converted and which are not. Notice however, that both Kelley and McCall agree that you can licitly convert E and I simply, and A by limitation. Both get to the same conclusion. For me, as a teacher, the problem is simply whose presentation I prefer and which book do I find easier to use. For example, in 1996 I came to a new school and they were using Hurley. I used it for one semester and then switched back to Kelley whose text I had used since 1988 at my previous institution. But neither text deviated much from each other. You get the same number of valid syllogisms, immediate inferences etc.

“I've already explained that there are two types of conversions: simple and accidental.”

Sure. But here is an interesting point. Kelley included a discussion of what you call “accidental” conversion (he called it conversion by limitation as does the website http://www.philosophypages.com... very brief search indicated no result for “conversion by accident, so I conclude that McCall usage may be idiosyncratic. But since I know what he means by it there is no real problem) in earlier editions of his textbook, but excluded it in the third edition. Don’t ask me why.

THE RESULT IS NOT AN "ILLICIT CONVERSION"

Both Kelley and the web use this expression in the way I indicated in a previous post. Again, McCall’s usage is idiosyncratic. And again, nothing of substance follows from either usage once one knows how the logicians are defining their terms.

Given that, one can convert ALL categorical propositions. But, they are not all licit.
Completely wrong.

You’re again using McCall’s definition even when you’re trying to talk about Kelley. Given (please note the word “given’) that for Kelley conversion only means swapping subject and predicate, then OBVIOUSLY one can convert any A proposition. I.e., One can swap the subject and predicate term of any A proposition. However, it is never licit to do so, i.e., one does not wind up with an equivalent proposition. McCall agrees, one cannot licitly (an simply) convert an A.

“Students in the Middle Ages had no difficulty with it, and they were probably younger than your students.”

Don’t let your ignorance of my students stop you from making such comments. We admit students from the top 90% of their graduating class! Of course, since I’ve only been teaching since 1962, you may know more about the subject than I.

Fred

Fred

darren's picture

the classical definition of the term the word "inference" means "a mediate judgment

And the traditional definition of conversion, obversion, and contraposition is, "an IMMEDIATE inference."

Since you admit that the traditional definition of inference is "a mediate judgment," then it follows that "an IMMEDIATE inference" must be "a MEDIATE IMMEDIATE inference"; a phrase that McCall rightly finds to be a monstrosity of the first water. I agree with him.

Fred

darren's picture

“the converse of a proposition is the result of switching the subject and predicate terms.”

Implicit in Kelley's definition is that both propositions — the original and its converse — express the same truth. If they don't express the same truth, then they are different propositions, and not "illicit conversions" of each other. For example,

"All carpenters are men", and
"All men are carpenters",

are NOT "illicit conversions" of each other, even if we assume for the sake of argument that both are true. They express two different truths, NOT the same truth differently expressed. There is no "fallacy of illicit conversion"; the above two propositions are NOT CONVERSIONS OF EACH OTHER AT ALL, BUT TWO COMPLETELY DIFFERENT PROPOSITIONS.

I've already explained that there are two types of conversions: simple and accidental.

Simple = simple swapping of subject and predicate. This can be done in (E) propositions and (I) propositions; viz.,
"No men are fish" converts simply to "No fish are men". THE SAME TRUTH IS EXPRESSED.
"Some men are [some] carpenters" converts simply to "Some carpenters are [some] men." THE SAME TRUTH IS EXPRESSED.

Accidental = swapping of subject and predicate, taking due account of the extension of terms. This can only be done in (A) propositions; viz.,
"All men are [some] animals" converts accidentally to "Some animals are [some] men." THE SAME TRUTH IS EXPRESSED.

Once more (lest your crow become overloaded): IF WE SIMPLY CONVERT AN (A) PROPOSITION, THE RESULT IS NOT AN "ILLICIT CONVERSION" BUT TWO UTTERLY DIFFERENT PROPOSITIONS; viz.,
"All swans are white animals" and "All white animals are swans" are not conversions of each other, even if we live in a world where they both happen to be true.

And once more, for good measure, and to keep your crow happy: (A) PROPOSITIONS CANNOT BE SIMPLY CONVERTED. PERIOD. (Though they can be accidentally converted by changing quantification.)

(O) PROPOSITIONS CANNOT BE CONVERTED AT ALL. E.g.,
"Some swans are not white animals" and "Some white animals are not swans" are not "illicit conversions" of each other; they are NOT CONVERSIONS AT ALL. They are merely two different propositions expressing two different truths.

Given that, one can convert ALL categorical propositions. But, they are not all licit.

Completely wrong. Because if they are not "licit" then they are NOT conversions of each other, but two propositions expressing two different truths.

So the very concepts of illicit conversion and licit conversions are illicit: either a conversion expresses the same truth as its original proposition, or it simply is not a conversion at all . . . in which case, we don't need terms like "illicit" and "licit".

I’m always trying to avoid overloading their “crow.

Students in the Middle Ages had no difficulty with it, and they were probably younger than your students. I'm more worried about overloading the teacher's crow than that of the students'.

darren

seddon's picture

“All S is P becomes All P is S.
I hope Kelley doesn't say that because it's incorrect.”

Not if you know how he defines conversion, which is, “the converse of a proposition is the result of switching the subject and predicate terms.” Given that, one can convert ALL categorical propositions. But, they are not all licit. It is illicit to convert both the A and the O propositions. (One can of course do a “conversion by limitation” on an A.) Notice also that given Kelley’s definition of conversion, one does not change the quality or the quantity. Quantity is changed only when one does a conversion by limitation of an A. (As you noted)

On conversion: You use the term to mean what I would mean by “licit” of “valid” conversion. All of your conversion are licit, but, excluding conversion by limitation, only two of mine are licit, E and I. But I think we wind up in the same place. It would be a major difference if you thought you could licitly convert and A and I didn’t. But we don’t.

Here is an example of us using the same concept but with two different meanings. You define conversion as
“swapping the subject and the predicate and expressing the same truth as previously, which requires changing the quantity (but not the quality) of (A) propositions.”
Kelley defines conversion as “swapping the subject and the predicate.” You build licitness into the definition, Kelley doesn’t. But then you cannot talk about the fallacy of illicit conversion, since converting, say, an A is NOT a conversion on your definition. There are no illicit conversions with your definition.

Kelley has the same list of valid syllogisms that McCall and Maritain have (although the list is not original with the but goes WAY back to the middle ages.) which leads me to believe this is not a debate that impacts the logic of the syllogism. Kelley doesn’t give the medieval names and I just tell the students about BARBARA since it is so frequently used. I’m always trying to avoid overloading their “crow.”

the classical definition of the term the word "inference" means "a mediate judgment

I don’t know how classical it is but Wiki has “Inference is the act or process of deriving logical conclusions from premises known or assumed to be true” which sounds like Aristotle when he writes “a form of words in which , when certain assumptions are made, something other than what has been assumed necessarily follows from the assumptions.” Prior Analytics, 24b18. Now that’s what I call Classic.

Fred

Most textbooks of logic treat

darren's picture

Most textbooks of logic treat of conversion, obversion, and contraposition as types of immediate inference. Since in the classical definition of the term the word "inference" means "a mediate judgment," i.e., "a judgment arrived at by means of other judgments," the expression "immediate inference" would mean "immediate mediate judgment," a terminological monstrosity of the first water. We shall . . . treat the operations of conversion, obversion, and contraposition not as "immediate inferences," but simply as:

different ways of rendering the same fundamental truth that an original proposition expressed.

As a result of these operations, the fundamental truth of the original proposition is given a different (and sometimes diminished) emphasis, but they do not assert any new truth, or truth not inherent in the original proposition itself.

Raymond J. McCall
Basic Logic 

@ seddon

darren's picture

All S is P becomes All P is S.

I hope Kelley doesn't say that because it's incorrect.

"All men are mortal beings" converts to "Some mortal beings are men."

"All S is P" converts to "Some P is S."

Conversion swaps subject and predicate, taking due account of the distribution of the terms in each

There are two kinds of conversion: "simple" and "accidental."

"Simple" conversion occurs when subject and predicate exchange places and the quantity of the original proposition is unchanged; viz.,

(E) propositions:
No man is fish.
No fish is man.

(I) propositions:
Some swans are white.
Some white things are swans. 

"Accidental" conversion occurs when the quantity of the converted proposition must be changed from that of the original in order to express the same truth; viz.,

"All fish are vertebrate."
"Some vertebrates are fish."

Note that the conversion of an A proposition is slightly diminished in emphasis from the original, though it expresses the same truth. The converted A proposition is actually the equivalent of the simple converse of the subaltern of the original A proposition.

An (O) proposition cannot be converted.

"Some swans are not white" cannot convert to "Some white things are not swans." Even though both propositions might be true, the second proposition does not express the same truth as the first one. The reason for this is simple: in any negative proposition, of whatever quantity, the predicate is always distributed — always taken universally. In an (O) proposition, the subject, which is taken particularly, would convert to the predicate, and then have to be taken universally. This obviously changes the truth that is being expressed by the proposition.

I don't know where you (or Kelley) got the idea that conversion involves leaving the quantity and quality unchanged. Conversion involves swapping the subject and the predicate and expressing the same truth as previously, which requires changing the quantity (but not the quality) of (A) propositions.

In "All men are mortal beings", the logical subject is "All men" and the logical predicate is "[some] mortal beings." In conversion, the new subject is "[Some] mortal beings" and the new logical predicate is "[some] men." Different propositions; same truth.

(A) converts to (I)
(I) converts to (I)
(E) converts to (E)
(O) cannot be converted because by swapping subject and predicate, a different truth is expressed.

I don't know what list Kelley comes up with for valid syllogisms. McCall's list (as well as Maritain's) is as follows:

BARBARA, CELARENT, DARII, FERIO [1st Figure = Sub-Prae];
CESARE, CAMESTRES, FESTINO, BAROCO [2nd Figure = Prae-Prae];
DARAPTI, DISAMIS, DATISI, FELAPTON, BOCARDO, FERISON [3rd Figure = Sub-Sub];
BRAMANTIP, CAMENES, DIMARIS, FESAPO, FRESISON [4th Figure = Prae-Sub ]

The vowels reveal the Mood.

In lines 2-4, the initial consonant indicates to which syllogism of the 1st Figure it can be reduced. Thus, CESARE, can reduce to CELARENT, BAROCO reduces to BARBARA, DISAMIS reduces to DARII, and FELAPTON reduces to FERIO.

The following consonants, placed in the body of a mnemonic, indicate the operations which are to be performed to reduce the syllogism in question to the corresponding mood of the 1st Figure:

S = simple conversion;
P = per accidens (i.e., accidental conversion);
M = mutatio (i.e., transposition of premises: swap the major and minor premises);
C = contradiction (i.e., an indirect method reduction through BARBARA, rather than to BARBARA; it applies only to those mnemonics with a non-initial "c" such as BAROCO and BOCARDO)

I'd be interested in knowing if Kelley has something significantly different.

darren

seddon's picture

“Not sure why you qualify your request with the condition that the textbook be prior to the rise of symbolic logic.”

That was in answer the Ding-an-sich’s remarks about logic prior to symbolic logic.

On the Maritain quotation: As I said before, the notion of “logical subject” seems to be an unnecessary complication and to present problems such as how he is going to handle an immediate inference like conversion.
Conversion involves swapping the subject term with the predicate term, while leaving the quantity and the quality of the proposition unchanged. E.g., All S is P becomes All P is S. So how does Maritain handle conversion?

“Socrates, which while it may take the predicate postion in an ordinary grammatical sentence, is the "logical subject" since in cannot be a predicate.”

This is a quotation from a site bearing the title “logical subject.” They claim it is from Aristotle and I have no reason to doubt that.

“Propositions deal with complete apprehensions, not just individual terms (which are only one aspect of an apprehension).”

I never denied that. But for me, following Kelley, the categorical proposition has four components, the quantifier, subject, copula and predicate. And this deals sufficiently with what you call the “apprehension.”

You've dropped context. "Simple Apprehension" is the grasping of the full context of an aspect of reality, and not just an atomized component of it like the "term."

I could say the same thing right back at you if you attempted to talk only about the logical subject—i.e., I could ask, ‘What about the logical predicate.’ To see that Kelley doesn’t drop the context and that he talks about the whole apprehension, let me give an example.
“All men who choose not to think is a member of hell in Atlas Shrugged.” He would say that the quantifier is universal as signified by the word ‘All,’ the subject is “men who choose not to think,” the copula is “is,” and the predicate is “a member of hell in Atlas Shrugged.”
As you can see, he has covered the entire apprehension and has dropped no context.

It seems that you (or Maritain) divide the proposition in two components (are these two atomized component? Oh my) while Kelley divides it into four. Here the question is, do you come up with a different list of valid syllogisms from Kelley’s. I think not. But, if I am right, you have a problem with conversion. I await your reply on how Maritain handles conversion.

On a historical note: Aristotle certainly separated the term and the quantifier. He defines terms in I, i of PRIOR ANALYTICS, while he doesn’t deal with quantification until ch. XXIV.

Professor Seddon

can you tell me of a textbook

darren's picture

can you tell me of a textbook prior to the rise of symbolic logic that uses the term "logical subject" as defined by darren, to wit, it includes both the quantifier and the term, e.g., "All men" is a logical subject according to darren? That's the question.

Not sure why you qualify your request with the condition that the textbook be prior to the rise of symbolic logic. Below is a quote from an excellent manual on the subject, by an author who was greatly influenced in his thinking by the Neo-Scholastic Thomist philosopher, Jacques Maritain:

The two concepts which the judgment unites or separates are called the subject and the predicate. In the judgment, "Every rational being is capable of free decision," the subject is "Every rational being," the predicate is "capable of free decision." The subject is that to which the mind applies or denies a determination; the predicate is the determination which the mind applies or denies to the subject. The subject is that about which I am affirming or denying something; the predicate is what I affirm or deny about it.

Basic Logic — The Fundamental Principles of Formal Deductive Reasoning (page 42, Chapter 2: Judgment and Proposition)
Raymond J. McCall
The Barnes & Noble Outline Series
2nd Edition (1952)

Needless to say, when McCall uses the words "subject" and "predicate", he means "logical subject" and "logical predicate" within a structure called the "proposition." And notice, please, that the logical subject includes the quantifier "every."

Socrates, which while it may

darren's picture

Socrates, which while it may take the predicate postion in an ordinary grammatical sentence, is the "logical subject" since in cannot be a predicate.

"I am Socrates."
"He is Socrates."

"Socrates" is the predicate. The individual "Socrates" is being predicated of "I" and "He", which are subjects.

"Each man who chooses not to think is a member of hell in Atlas Shrugged."

Propositions deal with complete apprehensions, not just individual terms (which are only one aspect of an apprehension). The apprehension — that which is grasped — that serves as the LOGICAL SUBJECT in that proposition is the entire phrase "Each man who chooses not to think." The apprehension serving as the LOGICAL PREDICATE in that proposition is the entire phrase "a member of hell in Atlas Shrugged." The two apprehensions are compared affirmatively by means of the copula "is."

What is being spoken of is "Each man who chooses not to think", and not merely "man."
What is being spoken of is called the logical subject. 

What is being predicated of each man who chooses not to think is that each is "a member of hell in Atlas Shrugged", and not merely "a member."
What is being predicated of a logical subject, or affirmed or denied of a logical subject, is called the logical predicate.

The apprehension on the subject side of the proposition, or on the predicate side, comprises ALL the words in the apprehension — quantifiers, modifers, relational words like relative pronouns, etc. — and not just the grammatical nominative and grammatical predicate.

You've dropped context. "Simple Apprehension" is the grasping of the full context of an aspect of reality, and not just an atomized component of it like the "term."

Ding an Sich

seddon's picture

""Logical subject", "term", and "logical predicate" are used in term logic,"

But not in the sense darren defines "logical subject." In term logic it is used about singular terms, like Socrates, which while it may take the predicate postion in an ordinary grammatical sentence, is the "logical subject" since in cannot be a predicate. A term, on the other hand, must be able to take both the subject and the predicate position in standard form proposition. So, can you tell me of a textbook prior to the rise of symbolic logic that uses the term "logical subject" as defined by darren, to wit, it includes both the quantifier and the term, e.g., "All men" is a logical subject according to darren? That's the question.

Fred

Seddon

ding_an_sich's picture

"Logical subject", "term", and "logical predicate" are used in term logic, which is a traditional, and hence Aristotelian, logic. The reason why you have never heard of these words stems from term logic's disrepute with the advent of symbolic logic in the late 19th and early 20th century (in addition to other factors of course, such as Port-Royal logic, modern secular education, etc.). Darren is employing such logic, which is perfectly fine of course. The book you used by Kelley (I think that was the author's name) never even mentions it. And this is understandable, since most logic books I have seen in academia never even focus on such logics. You would be able to find a book on this topic if your education was, well, trivium-esque.

You learn something new everyday. XD

darren

seddon's picture

“To have a problem understanding the difference between a TERM and a logical SUBJECT”

I didn’t say I had a problem understanding the difference etc. What I say was, “I can’t find any use for you notion of “logical subject.””

Now can you see the difference. Quit changing what I say in order to answer I question I didn’t ask.

Professor Seddon

reed I really do admire Freud

seymourblogger's picture

But I guess a part of me also thinks analysis can be fraudulent. I can still argue the case of Dora on that one.

reed Ah fingers will betray won't they?

seymourblogger's picture

and what else?

Which is it, then? In this

darren's picture

Which is it, then?

In this context, it's a distinction without much of a difference.

In a different context, we might usefully distinguish between Material Logic (also called "Major Logic") and Formal Logic (also called "Minor Logic"). Strictly speaking, the latter studies the formal aspects of reasoning.

You are an inconsistent

darren's picture

You are an inconsistent counter.

And you are an incompetent grammarian as well as an ignorant logician; viz;

". . . which is true iff you assume each are used twice."

In the dependent clause, "each are used twice", the nominative is the pronominal adjective "each" (meaning "each one" or "each term"). Since the nominative is singular, the verb must be singular in order to agree with it in number; because in Standard English, a verb must agree with its nominative in person and number. The correct construction, therefore, is:

" . . . which is true iff each is used twice."

And you're a professor?? I find that hard to believe.

BTW. You don’t need the word ‘twice’ here. If you repeat a logical subject, then you already have it twice.

Pleonasm. (Look the word up in a dictionary if you don't know what it means.) 

I notice also that with terms I can state that all syllogisms must have 3 terms each used twice, but I cannot do the same with “logical subjects.”

So? In other words, the rules of logic must change in order to make the subject easier to teach to lazy undergraduates? Why?

To have a problem understanding the difference between a TERM and a logical SUBJECT would be the same as having a problem understanding the difference between a NOMINATIVE and a grammatical SUBJECT. E.g.:

"Tom, Dick, Harry, Bob, Mary, and Seddon are a great bunch of dudes!"

There are 7 nominatives in this sentence: Tom, Dick, Harry, Bob, Mary, Seddon, bunch

There is 1 grammatical subject: [Tom, Dick, Harry, Bob, Mary, and Seddon]

There is 1 verb agreeing in person and number with its compound grammatical subject: are

As for authorities, there are many logicians who distinguish between the term and the logical subject, just as they distinguish between the grammatical subject and the logical subject.

darren

seddon's picture

“You have 3 TERMS:
P (the major term) 

S (the minor term) 

M (the middle term)

You have 3 LOGICAL SUBJECTS:

All M 

All S 

All S”

You are an inconsistent counter. When you count terms you tell us there are three of them which is true iff you assume each are used twice. But if you do that for terms you should do that for “Logical subjects” [BTW, where did you get this term?] But you don’t. You tell us that there are 3 logical subjects where, if consistent, you should have said two logical subjects, one used twice. Fortunately you corrected this later in your post where you finally got it right—you wrote, “And you have 3 logical subjects (2 actually, but one is repeated twice):” [BTW. You don’t need the word ‘twice’ here. If you repeat a logical subject, then you already have it twice.]

I notice also that with terms I can state that all syllogisms must have 3 terms each used twice, but I cannot do the same with “logical subjects.” Some syllogisms, e.g., Barbara-1 will have 2 logical subjects, one used twice (in the minor premise and in the conclusion). Whereas any syllogism in the fourth figure will have 3 logical subjects, each used once. This seems more complicated than necessary. Why bother with this unnecessary complexity?

Let me close with this. I can’t find any use for you notion of “logical subject.” I can teach the syllogism and the validity or non-validity of all 256 are accounted for as in the tradition. What is it’s function? It seems superfluous at best. Does it change the validity of a single syllogism? Where did you get this idea? There are certainly difference in logic textbooks, so maybe you have one in mind one in which the concept of ‘logical subject’ is used.

Professor Seddon

Darren

Richard Goode's picture

"Logic" is the Art of Correct Reasoning.
...
Logic = the Art of Correct Form in Reasoning;

Which is it, then?

Fred

Richard Goode's picture

Nice post.

Thanks! Smiling

It's the first in an ongoing series. I'd appreciate your ongoing critical oversight.

Gentlemen

Richard Goode's picture

I think it's time we each filed a Butthurt Report.

The subject matter of logic

darren's picture

The subject matter of logic is the argument.

Good grief. Wrong from the get-go!

"Logic" is the Art of Correct Reasoning. One can employ the art of logic and reason correctly without arguing at all; conversely, one can argue without employing logic at all!

The Art of Argumentation is actually a branch of rhetoric, not logic. Rhetoric was the third and final discipline in the ancient liberal arts curriculum known as the Trivium: grammar, logic, rhetoric.

Grammar = the Art of Correct Form in Verbal and Written Expression;
Logic = the Art of Correct Form in Reasoning;
Rhetoric = the Art of Correct Form in Argumentation and Disputation

Probably what you meant to say between tokes was that one important subject covered in the study of logic — though by no means the only one — is the syllogism.

You can exhale now.

seedy

darren's picture

What's up with darren? What do you think he means when he says, “The quantifier plus the term = the logical subject.”??

I don't know.

The only operative, relevant statement by pot-head Goode in that reply is in boldface.

A brief lesson for seedy in between his recurring "senior moments":

#1) "All men are (some X)"
["Men" is a term; "All men" is the logical subject. "X" is a term; "Some X" is the logical predicate]


#2) "All Y are (some men)"
["Men is a term, and it is the SAME TERM as the one above, except now it's in the predicate, whereas before it was in the subject].

There are only 3 terms: X, Y, men

There are 2 logical subjects: All men, All Y.

If a term like "men" first appears distributed in the logical subject and later appears undistributed in the logical predicate, THAT DOESN'T MAKE IT TWO DIFFERENT TERMS. It's ONE AND THE SAME TERM, quantified differently, either as a logical subject or a logical predicate.

And as I posted earlier: in all affirmative propositions, the term in the logical predicate is always understood to be undistributed; viz.,

"All men are mortal beings" means "All men are [some] mortal beings"
"Some swans are white things" means "Some swans are [some] white things."

seedy

darren's picture

All M are some P

All S are some M

Therefore All S are some P

(Barbara 1) would have 4 terms, “All M”, “P,” “M,” and “All S

"All M" and "All S" are logical SUBJECTS, not separate TERMS; the TERMS are just "M" and "S". And "some P" and "some M" are not logical subjects but logical predicates. The three terms are simply P, S, M. That they are quantified differently in different places doesn't make them into different terms. 

You have 3 TERMS:

P (the major term)
S (the minor term)
M (the middle term)

You have 3 LOGICAL SUBJECTS:

All M
All S
All S

You're confusing the more general idea of "logical TERMS" with the more restricted idea of "logical SUBJECTS". 

#1) "All men are [some mortal beings]"
#2) "All philosophers are [some men]"
#3) "Ergo, All philosophers are [some mortal beings]"

"All men" in #1 and "some men" in #2 are not two separate terms. They are the same term — men — used once as a distributed subject and once as an undistributed predicate. What is your problem?

You have 3 terms:

Mortal beings (major term) [undistributed in two predicates]
Philosophers (minor term) [distributed in two subjects]
Men (middle term) [distributed as a subject; undistributed as a predicate]

And you have 3 logical subjects (2 actually, but one is repeated twice):

All men (quantifier + middle term)
All philosphers (quantifier + minor term)
All philosophers (quantifier + minor term)

You need to retire, seedy. You've gone ga-ga and now have the well-deserved reputation of being "that old fart from the philosophy department." 

I'm not surprised that counts for something in Altoona.

Fred

Richard Goode's picture

What's up with darren? What do you think he means when he says, “The quantifier plus the term = the logical subject.”??

I don't know. But I'll tell you what he means when he says (to me), "Try posting when you're sober." He means, "I've been drinking."

And I'll tell you what he means when he addresses you as "seedy". He means, "I've got a terrible hangover." Did you read my post on Capill syndrome?

Seymorurblogger

reed's picture

I enjoyed the Fraudian slip. Smiling

goode - arguments via logic must be held

seymourblogger's picture

in the Dominating Discourse of the Dialectic. Which was why Nietzsche skirted the issue by writing in the aphoristic form, which had fallen into some disfavor so readers were no longer adept at reading and contemplating the aphorism.

In that way NIetzsche places the responsibility on the reader, not the writer to explain everything ad infinitum. He said the best way to read him was to essentially snack on his aphorisms, rather than read them through linearly. This is exactly what Rand did. He told her to "snack" (my term) and she did as reported by Barbara Branden, "buying Zarathustra as her first English book and underlining all of her favorite passages."

This is one reason I say Rand is Nietzsche's daughter. As surely as Anna Freud was Fraud's daughter.

Richard Goode

seddon's picture

Nice post. What's up with darren? What do you think he means when he says, “The quantifier plus the term = the logical subject.”??

Fred

Comment viewing options

Select your preferred way to display the comments and click "Save settings" to activate your changes.