By Douglas N. Walton
Attract pity has usually been exploited with remarkable good fortune as a misleading tactic of argumentation, loads in order that it has usually been handled as a fallacy. utilizing a case examine process, the writer examines examples of appeals to pity and compassion in actual arguments as a way to classify, examine, and review the categories of arguments utilized in those appeals. one of the instances studied are the arguable use of "poster young ones" within the Jerry Lewis Telethon for Muscular Dystrophy and the "baby incubators tale" deployed through a public relatives company to steer the choice to ship U.S. forces into Kuwait in the course of the Gulf warfare. as well as the analyses of those and different case experiences, this publication presents, for the 1st time, designated directions and worthy standards with which to spot, learn, and overview circumstances of the advert misericordiam argument.
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Extra resources for Appeal to Pity: Argumentum Ad Misericordiam
550; 1916, p. 590). 6), the ad hominem, ad verecundiam, and ad ignorantiam fallacies are treated, but no explicit mention is made of the ad misericordiam. 2, below, Whately did use an example that could perhaps be classified as an appeal to pity of a sort, but he classified it as an ignoratio elenchi fallacy. This suggests that although the ad misericordiam fallacy was known in popular usage during the nineteenth century, and certainly the ad misericordiam argument was known to lawyers, it did not get into the logic textbooks (at least explicitly, by this name) until the later nineteenth or early twentieth century.
However, < previous page page_22 If you like this book, buy it! next page > < previous page page_23 next page > Page 23 he concedes that some charitable appeals might be appeals to human sympathy and decency that are not necessarily fallacious. To accommodate this possibility, Fearnside takes a more subtle approach of describing the fallacy in this as certain cases where the appeal to sympathy is abused (p. 20:The fallacy lies in taking advantage of pathetic circumstances. The beggar wears rags and the brochure of a charitable foundation exhibits the picture of an emaciated child.
The reference in The Life of Sir Edward Marshall Hall (Marjoribanks 1929, p. 359) suggests that appeal to pity was acceptable as a legal argument, but one that required evidence to back it up. During a trial, Hall apparently used an argument explicitly called ad misericordiam, to defend a client against the prosecuting attorney, Mr. Milward: Later, in his final speech, he was making an appeal ad misericordiam for his client, and was saying that he had been mined by the scandal of this case, having been compelled to sell his business.
Appeal to Pity: Argumentum Ad Misericordiam by Douglas N. Walton