1Introduction and Challenges

Argumentation is a language activity that occurs in an interactive context. It is based on an underlying set of schemes of thoughts, processes and strategies. This chapter introduces the notions of argument and argumentation, and the basic organization of an argumentative discourse. These notions will then be developed in more depth in the chapters that follow. This introduction to argumentation is oriented toward argument mining, which is the main topic of this book, therefore it is not a standard introduction to argumentation. References will allow readers to deepen their knowledge of the theoretical aspects of argumentation.

1.1. What is argumentation?

According to Aristotle, argumentation is the ability to consider, for a given question, the elements that are useful to persuade someone. Argumentation was, at that period, closely connected to rhetoric, which is defined as the art to persuade an audience. The ancient Greek argumentation and rhetoric were mainly designed for political decision making. This is why they are essentially oriented toward debates and judiciary purposes. After a long period during which rhetoric and argumentation were disregarded because they were considered as the art of trickery, in 1958 C. Perelman and L. Obrechts Tyteca [PER 58] contributed to a renewal of rhetoric and argumentation. These disciplines got a more scientific analysis. They were viewed as the development of discursive techniques that aimed at increasing ...

Get Argument Mining now with the O’Reilly learning platform.

O’Reilly members experience books, live events, courses curated by job role, and more from O’Reilly and nearly 200 top publishers.