Slippery Slopes and Other Consequences

Martin David Hinton



The aim of this paper is to illustrate where previous attempts at the characterisation of Slippery Slope Arguments (SSAs) have gone wrong, and to provide an analysis which better captures their true nature. The first part describes Walton’s [10] arguments in support of his views on SSAs and also considers the characterisations put forward by other researchers. All of these are found wanting due to their failure to capture the essence of the slippery slope and their inability to distinguish SSAs from other consequentialist forms of argument. The second part puts forward a clearer analysis of what is special about SSAs and proposes an argumentation scheme which allows them to be easily distinguished from other arguments from consequences.


argument schemes; Douglas Walton; slippery slope arguments; arguments from consequences

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