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English Hand Outs

English Hand Outs

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Published by api-3713843
all subtle english things........worth reading..many topics not covered(especially..apositives,adjectives or adverbs).if time permits.."DIGG" the site fully ..http://owl.english.purdue.edu/handouts/print/index.html#pwrg....
all subtle english things........worth reading..many topics not covered(especially..apositives,adjectives or adverbs).if time permits.."DIGG" the site fully ..http://owl.english.purdue.edu/handouts/print/index.html#pwrg....

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Published by: api-3713843 on Oct 17, 2008
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Logical Vocabulary
T or F in an argument, but not alone. Can be a premise or conclusion. Is not equal to a
Proposition used as evidence in an argument.
Proposition used as a thesis in an argument.
A group of propositions of which one is claimed to follow from the others.
A process through which the premises provide some basis for the conclusion.
A process through which the premises provide conclusive proof for the conclusion.
Argument Indicators: Premise Indicators: Conclusion Indicators:


in as much as
for the reason that



it follows that
one may infer
one may conclude

When dealing with
persuasive writing, it will be helpful for you to outline the argument by premises and conclusions. By
looking at the structure of the argument, it is easy to spot logical error.

Example 1
"Universities are full of knowledge. The freshmen bring a little in, and the seniors take none away,
and knowledge accumulates."
--Harvard President A. L. Lowell

Premise 1
Premise 2
Premise 3

Freshmen bring a little (knowledge) in
Seniors take none away
Knowledge accumulates
Universities are full of knowledge

Example 2
(Here, the conclusion of one argument is used as a premise in another. This is very common.)

"Even though there may be a deceiver of some sort, very powerful and very tricky, who bends all his
efforts to keep me perpetually deceived, there can be no slightest doubt that I exist, since he deceives
me; and let him deceive me as much as he will, he can never make me be nothing as long as I think I
am something. Thus, after having thought well on this matter, and after examining all things with
care, I must finally conclude and maintain that this proposition: I am, I exist, is necessarily true every
time that I pronounce it or conceive it in my mind."

-- Ren\u00e9 Descartes,Medi tations
Argument 1 Premise 1:
Conclusion of Argument 1
Argument 2 Premise 1:
To be deceived ... I must exist
When I think that I exist I cannot be
deceived about that
I am, I exist, is necessarily true ... .
Reaching Logical Conclusions
This article is reprinted from pages 78-79 of Pearson-Allen: Modern Algebra, Book One. In the book
it is one of several between-chapter articles that add interest and provoke thought on subjects related

to the topics discussed in the text.
Consider the two statements:
1. Any member of a varsity squad is excused from physical education.
2. Henry is a member of the varsity football squad.

Our common sense tells us that if we accept these two statement as true, then we must accept the

following third statement as true:
3. Henry is excused from physical education.
We say that the third statement followslogi call y from the other two.
In drawing logical conclusions it does not matter whether the statements we accept as true are

reasonable or sensible. This is because we depend entirely upon the form of the statements and not

upon what we are talking about. Thus, if we accept the following statements as true:
1. All whales are mammals;
2. All mammals are warm-blooded animals;
3. All warm-blooded animals are subject to colds;
then we must conclude that
4. All whales are subject to colds.
Do you see that statements 1, 2, and 3 are arranged in logical order ?

In the diagram at the right the set of whales is represented by W, the set of
mammals by M, the set of warm-blooded animals by B, the set of animals
subject to colds by C, and the set of all animals by A. The diagram shows that
W is a subset of M as required by statement 1, that M is a subset of B as
required by statement 2, and that B is a subset of C as required by statement 3.
The only conclusion that uses all of our given statements is that W is a subset
of C, as asserted by statement 4.

Had our third statement been "no warm-blooded animals are subject to colds," our
diagram would have been the one shown at the right and our conclusion would have
been "no whales are subject to colds."

If you have read Alice's Adventures in Wonderland or Through the Looking-Glass, you know that
author Lewis Carroll delights in giving sets of nonsense statements which lead to logical

conclusions. One such set is the following:
Babies are illogical;
Nobody is despised who can manage a crocodile;
Illogical persons are despised.

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