NeEd a philosophy paper done. No PLAGERISM!
Specific Instructions for the Paper:
• at least three pages, double-space, 12 font size, Times New Roman, 1-inch margin on each side, a title page, and bibliography / work cited page
• You need to address a philosophical issue and present an argument for your position on that issue.
• First half of the first page: It is supposed to be for your introduction. In the introduction, you need to do two things: identify the issue and your position on that issue.
• From the second half of the first page to the end of the second page: You need to present your premises. You need to have two to three premises (1 paragraph per premise).
• First part of the third page: You need to consider an objection that directly challenges one of your premises. You also need to respond to the objection.
• Second half of the third page: That’s the section for your concluding remarks.
What is an argument?
An argument is a structured or formulated set of propositions, where the conclusion is claimed to follow from the premises. So, an argument has two parts: premises and conclusion. While the premises are propositions that support the conclusion, the conclusion is a proposition that is supported by the premises.
There are two kinds of an argument: deductive and inductive. In a deductive argument, it is claimed that the conclusion follows from the premises with certainty or absolute necessity. For example,
There are two apples and three bananas in the basket. (Premise)
Therefore, it MUST be the case that there are five pieces of fruits in the basket. (Conclusion)
Here’s another example:
All humans are mortal. (Premise)
Socrates is human. (Premise)
Therefore, Socrates is mortal. (Conclusion)
A deductive argument is either valid or invalid. In a valid deductive argument, the truth of the premises guarantees the truth of the conclusion. In other words, if one assumes that the premises are true, it is impossible for the conclusion to be false. The examples above are valid deductive arguments.
On the other hand, in an invalid deductive argument, the truth of the premises fails to guarantee the truth of the conclusion. In other words, if one assumes that the premises are true, it is still possible for the conclusion to be false. For example,
All humans are mortal. (Premise)
Socrates is mortal. (Premise)
Therefore, Socrates is human. (Conclusion)
Even if we assume that the two premises are true, it is still possible for the conclusion to be false. It is NOT necessarily the case that Socrates is human, since it is NOT necessarily the case that all mortals are humans. Socrates can be a dog. So, it is NOT necessarily the case that Socrates is human.
Although an invalid deductive argument is automatically unsound, a valid deductive argument is either sound or unsound. A sound argument is one that is valid and one that has true premises. So, a valid argument can also be unsound, since one can have a valid argument with false premises. For example,
All four-legged creatures have wings. (Premise)
All spiders have four legs. (Premise)
Therefore, all spiders have wings. (Conclusion)
If you will assume that the two premises are true, the conclusion above has to be true. So, it must be a valid argument. However, the two premises (and even the conclusion) are false. So, it must be unsound, since, in order to be sound, the argument must have true premises.
Let me briefly explain inductive arguments. In an inductive argument, it is claimed that the conclusion follows from the premises with probability. For example,
There are ten bananas in the basket. (Premise)
I checked three of them and they are all ripe. (Premise)
Therefore, it is MORE LIKELY the case that all the bananas in the basket are ripe. (Conclusion)
An inductive argument is either strong or weak. When one gets more evidences that increase the likelihood of the truth of the conclusion, then the inductive argument becomes strong. However, insufficient (or the lack of) evidences that can establish the likelihood of its truth make it weak.
In your paper, if you will present a deductive argument, then I will expect it to be sound, i.e. it must be valid and it must have true premises (or at least plausibly true premises). If you will present an inductive argument, then I will expect it to be strong.