In and philosophy, an argument is an attempt to persuade someone of something, by giving reasons or evidence for accepting a particular conclusion. The general structure of an argument in a natural language is that of premises (typically in the form of propositions, statements or sentences) in support of a claim: the conclusion. Many arguments can also be formulated in a formal language. An argument in a formal language shows the logical form of the natural language arguments obtained by its interpretations.*

In a typical deductive argument, the premises are meant to provide a guarantee of the truth of the conclusion, while in an inductive argument, they are thought to provide reasons supporting the conclusion's probable truth. The standards for evaluating other kinds of arguments may rest on different or additional criteria than truth, however, such as the persuasiveness of so-called "indispensability claims" in transcendental arguments or even the disclosure of new possibilities for thinking and acting.

The criteria used in evaluating arguments and their forms of reasoning are studied in logic. Ways of formulating arguments effectively are studied in rhetoric (see also: Argumentation theory).

Read more about Argument:  Formal and Informal Arguments, Standard Argument Types, Deductive Arguments, Inductive Arguments, Defeasible Arguments, Argument By Analogy, Transitional Arguments, Other Kinds of Arguments, Explanations and Arguments, Fallacies and Nonarguments

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Argument - Fallacies and Nonarguments
... A fallacy is an invalid argument that appears valid, or a valid argument with disguised assumptions ... therefore, so, because and hence typically separate the premises from the conclusion of an argument, but this is not necessarily so ... Socrates is mortal is clearly an argument (a valid one at that), because it is clear it is asserted that Socrates is mortal follows from the preceding statements ...
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... Climbing is an adventure sport that is inherently risky ... A climber should understand and accept this risk ...

Famous quotes containing the word argument:

    Argument is conclusive ... but ... it does not remove doubt, so that the mind may rest in the sure knowledge of the truth, unless it finds it by the method of experiment.... For if any man who never saw fire proved by satisfactory arguments that fire burns ... his hearer’s mind would never be satisfied, nor would he avoid the fire until he put his hand in it ... that he might learn by experiment what argument taught.
    Roger Bacon (c. 1214–1294)

    “English! they are barbarians; they don’t believe in the great God.” I told him, “Excuse me, Sir. We do believe in God, and in Jesus Christ too.” “Um,” says he, “and in the Pope?” “No.” “And why?” This was a puzzling question in these circumstances.... I thought I would try a method of my own, and very gravely replied, “Because we are too far off.” A very new argument against the universal infallibility of the Pope.
    James Boswell (1740–1795)

    The argument is over.
    St. Augustine (354–430)