Seven Sophisms People Use to Defend the Indefensible
A note on the casuistry of evil
If you’ve been around ideas for much time, and paid attention, you may have been struck that there are a finite number of argument types that repeat. Over and over. The subjects change, the times change. But the same argumentative strategies are reproduced.
These repeated patterns are what the ancient Greek and Roman rhetoricians called “staseis” or “topoi”: argumentative topics. The rhetoricians’ extraordinary texts, sadly neglected in education today, produced systematic lists of…