Logical form


Logical form

The "form" or logical form of an argument is the representation of its sentences using the formal grammar and symbolism of a logical system to display its similarity with all other arguments of the same type.

It consists of stripping out all spurious grammatical features from the sentence (such as gender, and passive forms), and replacing all the expressions specific to "the subject matter" of the argument by schematic variables. Thus, for example, the expression 'all A's are B's' shows the logical form which is common to the sentences 'all men are mortals', 'all cats are carnivores', 'all Greeks are philosophers' and so on.

History

That the concept of form is fundamental to logic was already recognized in ancient times. Aristotle was probably the first to employ variable letters to represent valid inferences (in the Prior analytics). (For which reason Łukasiewicz says that the introduction of variables was 'one of Aristotle's greatest inventions').

According to the followers of Aristotle (such as Ammonius), only the logical principles stated in schematic terms belong to logic, and not those given in concrete terms. The concrete terms "man", "mortal" &c are analogous to the substitution values of the schematic placeholders 'A', 'B', 'C', which were called the 'matter' (Greek "hyle", Latin "materia") of the argument.

ee also

*Argument map
*Fallacy:*Logical fallacy:*Informal fallacy


Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • logical form — The logical form of a sentence is the structure, shareable with other sentences, responsible for its powers in inferences. That is, its logical form determines the way in which it can be validly deduced from other sentences, and the way other… …   Philosophy dictionary

  • logical form — …   Useful english dictionary

  • Logical form (linguistics) — In the field of linguistics, specifically in syntax, logical form (abbreviated LF ), refers to a certain level of mental representation of a linguistic expression, derived from surface structure. LF is the semantic equivalent of phonetic form… …   Wikipedia

  • The Logical Form of Action Sentences — Die logische Form der Handlungssätze (engl. Originaltitel The Logical Form of Action Sentences) ist ein Aufsatz des US amerikanischen Analytischen Philosophen Donald Davidson aus dem Bereich der Handlungstheorie (vgl. Ereignissemantik). Er wurde… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Logical positivism — (also known as logical empiricism, scientific philosophy, and neo positivism) is a philosophy that combines empiricism the idea that observational evidence is indispensable for knowledge with a version of rationalism incorporating mathematical… …   Wikipedia

  • Logical truth — is one of the most fundamental concepts in logic, and there are different theories on its nature. A logical truth is a statement which is true and remains true under all reinterpretations of its components other than its logical constants. It is… …   Wikipedia

  • Logical consequence — Therefore redirects here. For the symbol, see therefore sign. Logical consequence is a fundamental concept in logic. It is the relation that holds between a set of sentences (or propositions) and a sentence (proposition) when the former entails… …   Wikipedia

  • Logical connective — This article is about connectives in classical logic. For connectors in natural languages, see discourse connective. For connectives and operators in other logics, see logical constant. For other logical symbols, see table of logic symbols. In… …   Wikipedia

  • logical constants — The expressions selected to indicate the logical form of a sentence. A sentence will play a proper role in inference in virtue of a structure that can be exhibited by means of these expressions. The basic logical constants include expressions for …   Philosophy dictionary

  • Form der Handlungssätze — Die logische Form der Handlungssätze (engl. Originaltitel The Logical Form of Action Sentences) ist ein Aufsatz des US amerikanischen Analytischen Philosophen Donald Davidson aus dem Bereich der Handlungstheorie (vgl. Ereignissemantik). Er wurde… …   Deutsch Wikipedia


Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”

We are using cookies for the best presentation of our site. Continuing to use this site, you agree with this.