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Centre for Research in Reasoning

Argumentative theory of reasoning subject of Friday symposium

The argumentative theory of reasoning challenges the traditional view that the function of reasoning is to help us get better beliefs and improve our decision-making, says philosophy professor Christopher Tindale.

“Instead, the theory presents reasoning as a purely social phenomenon that has developed in order to help us convince others and monitor the ways other people try to convince us,” he says. “One interesting consequence is that apparent flawed reasoning is itself a useful adaptation that aids in persuasion.”

Graduate student fellowships to promote analysis of political rhetoric

The Centre for Research in Reasoning, Argumentation and Rhetoric (CRRAR) will offer fellowships to two UWindsor graduate students to assist professors Douglas Walton and Hans V. Hansen with a research project analyzing the argumentation in the recent Alberta provincial election.

The work involves reading, extracting and classifying arguments found in newspaper reports made during the election period, and filing the information on a Web site as well as discussion of the findings.

Lecture to consider philosopher of pragmatism

The Centre for Research in Reasoning, Argumentation and Rhetoric presents Nathan Houser delivering his free public lecture “Peirce on Practical Reasoning” at 3 p.m. on Thursday, May 3, in the seminar room, Parker House.

Dr. Houser will consider the work of American philosopher Charles S. Peirce, discussing practical reasoning in the context of Peirce’s general conception of reasoning as a species of controlled conduct and his broad view of normative logic.

Lecture to discuss arguments as abstract objects

An interesting recent development in argumentation theory has been the revived investigation of the metaphysics of argument, says Steven Patterson, a visiting research fellow at the Centre for Research in Reasoning, Argumentation and Rhetoric.

In his free public lecture “Are Arguments Abstract Objects?” he will explore important objections, Thursday, April 19, at 2 p.m. in the seminar room of Parker House, 105 Sunset Avenue.

Symposium to explore psychology, emotion and the human sciences

What can contemporary scientific psychology, barely 150 years old, teach us about the emotions that literary and philosophical inquiry cannot? A symposium on the UWindsor campus April 20 and 21 will bring scholars from around the world to explore that question.

Psychology, Emotion, and the Human Sciences is sponsored by the Centre for Research in Reasoning, Argumentation, and Rhetoric and English professor Stephen Pender, research leadership chair in the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences.

Lecture to explore Johannes Kepler’s philosophy of science

In 1588, Tycho Brahe and Nicolaus Raimarus Ursus each published works which advanced alternatives to both the geostatic and geocentric world systems of Aristotle and Ptolemy and to the geokinetic and heliocentric system of Copernicus. A controversy ensued over the authenticity of their systems, since they were remarkably similar.

A young mathematician-astronomer, Johannes Kepler, tried to resolve the conflict with his 1601 Apologia pro Tycho contra Ursum.

Lecture to explore relationship between physiology and eloquence

In 1575, the Spanish physician Juan Huarte recorded an encounter with a “rude countrie fellow who made very eloquent discourse” after becoming frantic. According to Huarte, this oratory sprang directly from the man’s fevered state.

In a free public lecture Wednesday, English professor Stephen Pender takes seriously Huarte’s assertion — eloquence is a matter of heat rather than cognition, imagination or memory — and explores an ensemble of neglected ideas in early modern medicine and rhetoric.

Lecture to explore model of scientific reasoning

The Centre for Research in Reasoning, Argumentation and Rhetoric presents distinguished research fellow Douglas Walton delivering his free public lecture “An Argumentation Model of Defeasible Scientific Knowledge” at 2 p.m. on Wednesday, February 8, in the seminar room, Parker House.

In his discussion, Dr. Walton presents a model of the procedure whereby argumentation is used to justify the claim that a given proposition should have the status of scientific knowledge.