Response to "Love Is a Fallacy" by Max Shulman

Topics: Fallacy, Logic, Straw man Pages: 1 (338 words) Published: October 5, 2011
After reading this short tale of two men in college, and one not-so-bright college girl, I have learned many things about fallacies. In our powerpoint presentation, it says that each generation is to learn these fallacies. This tale of the college students and the teaching of fallacies was in a much different generation than we are in now. Some fallacies I learned of in this story that were different from the ones stated in my course text were, Dicto Simpliciter, Contradictory Premises, Ad Misericoriam, Hypothesis Contrary to Fact, and Poisoning the Well. The Dicto Simpliciter Fallacy is and argument based on an unqualified generalization. Contradictory Premises fallacy is when the premises of an argument contradict each other. Ad Misericoriam I thought was a little like Red Herring (aka Straw Man). In the story the author gave an example of how a man went for a job interview, and when asked for his qualifications, he gave him a sympathy speech. It was almost like he avoided the subject at hand. The next fallacy, Hypothesis Contrary to Fact, is when you have an untrue hypothesis and then supportable conclusions are drawn from this false hypothesis. The last fallacy learned in the story was Poisoning the Well. This was like making a generalization before anything has even happened for you to assume that. In this story, this young man tries to use his intelligence to outwit his roommate who he had assumed was not a very bright guy. When trying to steal his roomates girl, who his roommate was what he had called a "faddist" and/or a bandwagon follower. His cleverness then turns to bite him in the butt when teaching Polly, the not-so-bright girl, logic. She turns out to learn these fallacies very well, and when he decides she's smart enough to be his girl, she has already decided to go steady with his roommate. This boy committed his own fallacies throughout the story and in the end, what goes around comes around.
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