Two Accounts of Begging the Question

Abstract

This essay discusses epistemic analysis of the fallacy of begging the question. In the literature, there are two prominent epistemic explanations of the fallacy, the objective and the subjective. The objective account bases the analysis of the fallacy on the epistemic relations of the propositions used in the argument. The subjective account bases the analysis on the way the arguers acquire their beliefs in the propositions used in the argument. Arguments that aim to show that a propositional analysis is not flexible enough for fallacy analysis have been taken to be a decisive argument for the subjective approach. Yet, the propositional sense seems to address a central intuition about this fallacy. In this essay, it is argued that both analyses need to be retained.

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Juho Ritola
University of Turku

References found in this work

Problems in Argument Analysis and Evaluation.Trudy Govier - 2018 - Windsor: University of Windsor.
The Complete Works: The Rev. Oxford Translation.Jonathan Barnes (ed.) - 1984 - Princeton, N.J.: Princeton University Press.
Proof of an external world.George Edward Moore - 1939 - Proceedings of the British Academy 25 (5):273--300.
Begging the question.Walter Sinnott-Armstrong - 1999 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 77 (2):174 – 191.

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