Cookies Policy

This site uses cookies. By continuing to browse the site you are agreeing to our use of cookies.

I accept this policy

Find out more here

Reasoning and Culture in a Historical Perspective

No metrics data to plot.
The attempt to load metrics for this article has failed.
The attempt to plot a graph for these metrics has failed.
The full text of this article is not currently available.

Brill’s MyBook program is exclusively available on BrillOnline Books and Journals. Students and scholars affiliated with an institution that has purchased a Brill E-Book on the BrillOnline platform automatically have access to the MyBook option for the title(s) acquired by the Library. Brill MyBook is a print-on-demand paperback copy which is sold at a favorably uniform low price.

Access this article

+ Tax (if applicable)
Add to Favorites
You must be logged in to use this functionality

image of Journal of Cognition and Culture

Summary After a preliminary discussion of some of the problems of the nature of reason and argument and the difficulties of investigating them, this paper uses the rich evidence from ancient civilisations, Greece and China especially, to explore the relationship between reasoning and culture. While argument and persuasion are evidently widespread in all human populations, the modalities they take may differ depending on the differing pragmatic circumstances in which they are conducted – the audiences and interlocutors in question and the aims of persuasion. Those circumstances may give rise to different modes of argument and styles of reasoning. While Chinese persuaders typically target rulers or those in authority, some Greek ones had to try to persuade a general public who, in some situations, decided the issue by taking a vote. That, it is argued, may help to explain the main way in which Greek arguments were distinctive when compared with those we find in other ancient civilisations. The suggestion is that the axiomatic-deductive mode of argument that was developed by some Greek philosophers and mathematicians was a reaction against what were perceived as the merely persuasive modes cultivated by orators, sophists and politicians in the context of public debate.

Affiliations: 1: Needham Research Institute 8 Sylvester Road, Cambridge CB3 9AF UK


Full text loading...


Data & Media loading...

Article metrics loading...



Can't access your account?
  • Tools

  • Add to Favorites
  • Printable version
  • Email this page
  • Subscribe to ToC alert
  • Get permissions
  • Recommend to your library

    You must fill out fields marked with: *

    Librarian details
    Your details
    Why are you recommending this title?
    Select reason:
    Journal of Cognition and Culture — Recommend this title to your library
  • Export citations
  • Key

  • Full access
  • Open Access
  • Partial/No accessInformation