- Sun Jun 24, 2018 11:05 pm
Not quite, Jessica, but close! When we are presented with a conditional premise, as we are here, we accept that the author of that argument believes it to be absolutely true, but that doesn't mean that it actually is true. We can still call his claim a hypothesis, and treat it as being unproven if that's what the stem calls for us to do. On most questions we won't question the truth of the premises, as we might in a "real world" argument, but instead we focus on the link between those premises and the conclusion, if there is one, or we accept them as true and then determine what else must be true, what cannot be true, or what is most strongly supported by them if those are the questions we are being asked.
So, while it is a conditional claim, it is nonetheless still just this author's hypothesis, and we could have described it as such in an answer to this Method of Reasoning question. Maybe "showing that a hypothesis must be rejected for being internally inconsistent"?
I hope that helps clarify the distinction for you!
Adam M. Tyson
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