Argumentation Theory

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Argumentation theory investigates the practices and standards of using arguments. Argumentation is understood as a communicative activity of producing and exchanging reasons in the context of doubt or disagreement. It thus constitutes or contributes to a wide range of fundamental social processes, from political debates to legal disputes, scientific inquiry, and interpersonal conflicts. In contrast to much research within communication, argumentation theory combines descriptive study of how we argue with normative inquiry into the standards of good argumentation. In this sense, it has a long interdisciplinary tradition that starts with ancient rhetoric, dialectic, and logic and continues today to include recent research in areas such as online communication and artificial intelligence.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationThe International Encyclopedia of Communication Theory and Philosophy
EditorsKlaus Bruhn Jensen, Robert T. Craig, Jefferson D. Pooley, Eric W. Rothenbuhler
Place of PublicationNew Jersey
Number of pages16
ISBN (Electronic)9781118766804
ISBN (Print)9781118290736
Publication statusPublished - 2016


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