Informal fallacies.

Read chapters 4 and 5
Chapter four is “Knowledge, Belief and Evidence” and Chapter five is “Looking for Truth in Personal
In Module 3 you developed an understanding of informal fallacies. There are many different ways a weaker
argument can appear stronger than it really is because of informal fallacies. An argument may appear to be
strong (or valid) if there is no close inspection of the details. Now that you’re more informed about informal
fallacies and how they can “trick” you into unsubstantiated beliefs or assumptions, we turn now to knowledge.
What is knowledge? How does it function? Is knowledge and justification the same? Is certainty required for
knowledge? These are pertinent questions for our examination in this module–Module 4.
Chapter three pushes the knowledge question a bit further by raising questions regarding experience and truth.
Both of these terms are extremely important for knowledge. Some forms of knowledge, like mathematical or
definitional knowledge–analytical knowledge, is objectively true. This means they are true independent of our
perceptions. For example, the fact that a circle is round or a square has three sides are independently true,
whether we accept of believe them to be true. This is knowledge by reason (or rationalism). One the other
hand, I may take somethings to be true based upon experience. For example, my senses tell me that the
woman I know to be my mother is my mother. But is she really? I believe she is, but do I know she is for a fact?
How do I know that my eldest sister, who is 17 years older than me, isn’t my biological mother? Or how could I
know that my mother didn’t have a secret “identical” twin sister who birthed me and presented me to my
mother to raise? This kind of knowledge is based upon experience (empiricism). This kind of truth is subjective,
meaning it is “true for me.”
Watch the following videos:
Short Version:
Long version:
We are regularly inundated with material, images, and events. Some things are quite obviously fiction and are
easy to defeat. Other things are not so clear. In this session of our critical thinking journey we will attempt to
correlate our readings (evidence, truth, informal fallacies, etc.) with large scale world events.
Write a 250 word defense on the truth or fiction of the readings and any one of two videos above

Sample Solution