Checking date: 25/04/2023

Course: 2023/2024

Logic and Argumentation
Bachelor in Philosophy, Politics and Economics (2013 Study Plan) (Plan: 306 - Estudio: 283)

Coordinating teacher: RIVERO OBRA, MERCEDES

Department assigned to the subject: Humanities: Philosophy, Language, Literature Theory Department

Type: Basic Core
ECTS Credits: 6.0 ECTS


Branch of knowledge: Arts and Humanities

Requirements (Subjects that are assumed to be known)
No special requirement in this regard
Acquire the knowledge imparted in the course. Acquire the concepts studied and put them into practice in the course. Be able to put into practice the knowledge acquired in relation to other subjects (cultural works). Recognize an argumentation and differentiate its elements. Know how to make a good argument. Relate philosophical content to other areas of research in an interdisciplinary way.
Skills and learning outcomes
Description of contents: programme
Arguments are an essential part of our social, political, and private life. Considered to be essential in our human communication and interaction, arguments have received plenty of attention since Ancient Greece and in particular, since Aristotle. His Rhetoric has determined the way we study argumentation for centuries. We have theories, methods, and means to analyze, construct, and evaluate the perfect argument. And yet, we continue to argue about essential questions such as what is justice or the good. The discussion is not restricted to humanities: in the past years, the pandemic has provided an example of how arguments are constructed and used in the public sphere. This raises a good number of questions, such as: if we have mastered the science of argumentation, why do we continue to argue? If evidence and facts is at the basis of a good argument, why do we continue to argue? If we are rational animals and thus, we can be persuaded and convinced by rational argument, why do we continue to argue? In this course, we will get familiar with the inception of argumentation and its ties to logic, epistemology, politics, and ethics. From there, we will turn our attention to the epistemological and ethical limits and problems or argumentation. *Assigned readings might change throughout the semester, as well as the order of the program. 1: History of argumentation and theory of argumentation. 1st week 02.01 Lecture. Course presentation and introduction: Argumentation in the history of philosophy. Sophistry vs Argumentation. 02.02 Seminar. Seminar organization, examples, and brief introductory debate. Reading: Apology, Plato. 2nd week 02.08 Lecture. Aristotle¿s Rhetoric: logic, ethics, and modern argumentation 02.10 Seminar. Discussion Aristotle¿s Rhetoric. 3rd week 02.15 Lecture. Argumentation I: What is an argument? How to identify and construct one. 02.17 Seminar. Q&A. Debate: research and organization. 4th Week 02.22 Lecture. Argumentation II: basis for argumentation. Reasoning and cognition. 02.24 Seminar. Q&A. 1st Debate 5th Week 03.1 Lecture: Argumentation II: Inductive and Deductive arguments. 03. 3 Seminar: Q&A. 2nd debate 6th Week 03.8: Lecture. Argumentation III: Bad argumentation. Biases and fallacies. 03.10. Seminar: Q&A. 3rd debate 2: The ethics of (god and bad) argumentation 7th Week 03.15. Lecture: why do we argue? Problems and limits of rational argumentation. 03. 17 Seminar. Presentation: fragment, Why we argue? by Scott of Aikin and Robert B Talisse. 8th week 03.22 Lecture. What is knowledge? 03.24 Seminar. Presentation ¿Knowledge and the state of nature¿, E. Craig. ¿ 9th week 03.29 Lecture. Trust, belief, and truth. 03.31 Seminar. Presentation debate: The Ethics of Belief, K. Clifford and Will to Believe, William James 10th Week 04.12 Lecture. Justification of knowledge. 04.14. Seminar: Presentation, reading TBC. 3. The politics of argumentation 11th week 04.19 Lecture. Epistemology and modernity. 04.21 Seminar. Presentation: Sapere Aude, I. Kant. Fragments: Conocimiento Expropiado, Fernando Breoncano 12th week 04.26 Lecture. Social epistemology: dependency and public participation. 04.28 Seminar. Presentation reading. TBC. 13th Week 05.3 Epistemic Injustice: knowledge and power. 05.5 Seminar. Presentation: Epistemic Injustice (fragments), by Miranda Fricker. 14th week 05. 10 Final conclusions: why knowing how to argue matters. 05.12 Final debate: what responsibility do we have when constructing arguments?
Learning activities and methodology
This course is designed around a set of lectures and seminars. Lectures will be delivered once a week and in them the key concepts of the course will be introduced. Students are required to participate in a weekly seminar where (i) relevant materials related to the course will be discussed and (ii) key concepts and distinction will be applied through cases studies and exercises. An ability to work autonomously and to keep up with reading and written assignments is required in this course. Regular attendance and participation is mandatory and both aspects will be taken into account for the global evaluation.
Assessment System
  • % end-of-term-examination 60
  • % of continuous assessment (assigments, laboratory, practicals...) 40

Basic Bibliography
  • Audi, R. . Belief, Justification, and Knowledge. Wadsworth. 1988
  • Bonjour, L. The Structure of Empirical Knowledge. Harvard University Press. 1985
  • Dancy, J.. Introducción a la epistemología. Tecnos. 2010
  • Dancy, J. . A Companion to Epistemology. Blackwell. 2012
  • Goldman, A.. Knowledge in a Social World. Oxford. 1999
  • Lackey, J. Essays in Collective Epistemology. Oxford. 2013
  • Nagel, J. Knowledge. Oxford University Press. 2014
  • Schick, T. How to Think about Weird Things. McGraw-Hill. 2012
  • Sunstein, C.. Going to Extremes. Oxford University Press. 2008
  • Weston, A. Las claves de la argumentación. Ariel. 2010
Additional Bibliography
  • Sandel, M. . Justice. Harvard University Press. 2007
  • Sunstein, C. R. . Going to Extremes. Oxford University Press. 2008
  • Tallise, R. How We Argue (and How We Should). Routledge. 2014
Detailed subject contents or complementary information about assessment system of B.T.

The course syllabus may change due academic events or other reasons.