Introduction to Argument and Explanation

Part of the Law, Governance and Technology Series book series (LGTS, volume 23)


This chapter defines the key notions of evidence and argument to prepare the way for the subsequent chapters. It uses a simple and intuitive example to motivate the reader and to explain how the modeling of the notions of evidence and argument in the subsequent chapters will progress. This chapter is built around the Sherlock Holmes case of the Study in Scarlet written by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle to illustrate Holmes’ method of using evidence to arrive at a conclusion by a series of steps by which the evidence accumulates. It uses this example (1) to explain and show how both arguments and explanations contain reasoning, (2) to show how arguments and explanations are woven together in evidential reasoning, (3) to introduce the form of argument called inference to the best explanation, (4) and to show the importance of this form of reasoning for the study of evidential reasoning and argumentation.


Argumentation Scheme Argumentation Theory Evidential Reasoning Argumentation Framework Ultimate Conclusion 
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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Centre for Research in Reasoning, Argumentation and Rhetoric (CRRAR)University of WindsorWindsorCanada

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