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PRESUMPTIONS, PRESUMPTIVE INFERENCES AND BURDEN OF PROOF

26-28 April 2016
University of Granada, Spain
 

FIRST CALL FOR PAPERS


The nature of presumptions is a topic of special interest within the field of law, not only because legal systems abound with so called presumptions of law, but also because some of these presumptions, such as the presumption of innocence and the different presumptions of validity are supposed to determine the very legitimacy of judicial procedures. Philosophers and argumentation theorists have also paid attention to presumptions and presumptive inferences as devices for reaching conclusions under uncertainty playing a widespread cognitive role in both everyday and scientific reasoning. Authors like Nicholas Rescher (2006), Douglas Walton (2008) and James Freeman (2005) even contend that presumptions are unavoidable points of departure for any inquiry, and consequently, conditions of possibility for achieving justification for our claims and beliefs. For, on the one hand, presumptions would articulate the exemption of providing further reasons for our reasons, which is something necessary if chains of reasoning are to stop at some point. And regarding argumentative exchanges, presumptions would serve to allocate the burden of proof among discussants, determining the path for a correct argumentative discussion to take place. This conference aims at bringing together argumentation theorists, philosophers, logicians and philosophers of law working on the role of presumptions, presumptive inferences in the field of law, in science and in everyday reasoning.

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