Day 55 — Aristotle And Argumentative Appeals

Early on in the year, argument structure and logic was touched upon, and Aristotle is an early contributor to the field. He lived in Ancient Greece, around 380BCE and was a student in Plato’s Academy, and even tutored Alexander the Great, another very influential figure.

Aristotle founded a school, the Lyceum in Athens, and died in his sixties, but not before writing and influencing many thinkers to come.

Aristotle divided the means of persuasion, appeals, into three categories — Ethos, Pathos, Logos.

A strong argument, according to Aristotle, should have a balance of all of three, although logical (logos) is essential for a strong, valid argument. Appeals can be misused, creating arguments that are not credible. He worked out the rules for syllogistic reasoning and while his views on the movement of the earth and planets being fixed have been since corrected, his efforts in ethics, logic, criticism and so on continue to be studied.

Further Resources:

A General Summary of Aristotle’s Appeals —

Chapter 5: Aristotle in the 21st Century — Daniel Kies.

The Three Appeals of Argument — University Writing Centre

The three appeals: emotional, ethical, and logical — Quizlet quiz cards.