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ad hominem

September 24th, 2009

Taxonomy – Where am I?

ad hominem

classification : informal – red herring – genetic fallacy

ad hominem argument (often called an ad hominem attack) comes from the Latin “at the person”. It also sometimes applies to any argument that centers on emotive (specifically irrelevant emotions) rather than rational or logical appeal.

It occurs when people who are unable to attack the argument itself resort to attacking the person making it. As such, arguments have nothing to do with the topic, they have no weight or validity against the argument. This is the case even if the attack is true; two plus two still equals four even if the first person to point this out was the most morally reprehensible person to have ever lived.

Sub Fallacies – Level 1

Appeal to Motive
Poisoning the well
Tu Quoque

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Categories: Logic