Article

Argument Mapping

Michael Hoffmann

in Philosophy

ISBN: 9780195396577
Published online February 2018 | | DOI: https://dx.doi.org/10.1093/obo/9780195396577-0364
Argument Mapping

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The term “argument mapping” needs to be clarified with regard to both of its components because “argument” as well as “mapping” are used in a variety of ways. This is mainly due to the fact that argument mapping is an interdisciplinary field with roots in philosophy, law, planning theory, and computer science. In the early 21st century, a lot of work is additionally been done in education. The term “argument” is used either (a) in the sense of justification—defined, for example, as a set of propositions composed of reasons and a conclusion; (b) in the sense of a controversy between a pro and con position; or (c) in the sense of a debate among multiple parties. The term “mapping,” on the other hand, refers usually to the graphical representation of propositions in boxes on a canvas which are connected by arrows. However, it is also used for the representation of arguments in the form of matrices and of “threads” (lists of statements in which some are indented to visualize subordination; often icons are used to specify functions such as “pro” and “con” with regard to the main statement). Along with “argument mapping,” the terms “argument diagramming” and “argument visualization” are also used. It has to be noted that diagrammatic notations to represent logically valid inferences such as those developed by Leonhard Euler, John Venn, Charles Peirce, and others are usually not discussed as part of the history of argument mapping. Outside of introductory textbooks on logic, critical thinking, and argument, the term argument mapping is mostly used in the early 21st century to refer to software tools that allow the visualization of arguments. With regard to these tools, it is important to distinguish between single-user applications and web-based platforms that allow the collaboration of multiple users on the same argument map, either synchronously or asynchronously.

Article.  3461 words. 

Subjects: Philosophy ; Aesthetics and Philosophy of Art ; Epistemology ; Feminist Philosophy ; History of Western Philosophy ; Metaphysics ; Moral Philosophy ; Non-Western Philosophy ; Philosophy of Language ; Philosophy of Law ; Philosophy of Mathematics and Logic ; Philosophy of Mind ; Philosophy of Religion ; Philosophy of Science ; Social and Political Philosophy

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