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Chapter 16: Venn Diagrams

Chapter 16: Venn Diagrams

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Chapter 16: Venn Diagrams

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  1. Chapter 16:Venn Diagrams

  2. Venn Diagrams (pp. 159-160) • Venn diagrams represent the relationships between classes of objects by way of the relationships among circles. • Venn diagrams assume the Boolean interpretation of categorical syllogisms. • Shading an area of a circle shows that it is empty. • Placing an X in an area of a circle shows that there is at least one thing that is contained in the class represented by that area.

  3. Venn Diagrams (pp. 159-160) • For universal propositions, shade (draw lines through) the areas that are empty. - All S are P. - All P are S. - No S are P. - No P are S.

  4. Venn Diagrams (pp. 159-160) • For particular propositions, place an X in the area that is inhabited. - Some S are P. - Some P are S. - Some S are not P. - Some P are not S.

  5. Venn Diagrams for Syllogisms (pp. 162-166) • To test a syllogism by Venn diagrams, you diagram the premises to see whether the conclusion is also diagrammed. • This requires three interlocking circles, one for each term:

  6. Venn Diagrams for Syllogisms (pp. 162-166) • This divides the diagram into eight distinct regions (a line over a term means “not”):

  7. Venn Diagrams for Syllogisms (pp. 162-166) • Diagram the premises to see whether you have diagrammed the conclusion. • You should always set up the diagram in the same way: upper left circle for the minor term; upper right circle for the major term; bottom circle for the middle term. • If by diagramming the premises you have diagrammed the conclusion, the argument is valid. • If by diagramming the premises you have not diagrammed the conclusion, the argument is invalid.

  8. Venn Diagrams for Syllogisms (pp. 162-166) • If you have both a universal premise and a particular premise, you should diagram the universal premise first: this will sometimes “force” the X into a determinate region. • If you have a particular premise and the X is not forced into a determinate section of the diagram, it goes “on the line.” The line in question is always the line of the circle not mentioned in the premise. • It might be helpful to draw a separate, two-circle diagram of the conclusion; but never add anything to the three-circle diagram other than the diagrams of the premises.

  9. Venn Diagrams: Examples(pp. 162-166) • Consider the following syllogism: All logicians are critical thinkers. All philosophers are logicians. All philosophers are critical thinkers. • Where L represents the middle term and C represents the major term, and P represents the minor term, the diagram for the major premise looks like this:

  10. Venn Diagrams: Examples(pp. 162-166) Now you diagram the minor premise on the same diagram:

  11. Venn Diagrams: Examples(pp. 162-166) • If you’re so inclined, compare the diagram for the conclusion alone. • Since the premises require that all of P that is outside of C is shaded, we have diagrammed the conclusion in diagramming the premises. The argument is valid.

  12. Venn Diagrams: Examples(pp. 162-166) • If you find the process a bit odd, consider an argument of the following form: All P are M. No M are S. No S are P. Draw a two circle diagram for each of the premises:

  13. Venn Diagrams: Examples(pp. 162-166) • Roll them together to form a three-circle diagram: • You have diagrammed the conclusion by diagramming the premises. The argument form is valid.

  14. Venn Diagrams: Examples(pp. 162-166) • Consider the following syllogism: No arachnids are cows. All spiders are arachnids. No spiders are cows. • Let S represent the minor term (spiders), C represent the major term (cows), and A represent the middle term (arachnids). Since both premises are universals, let us begin by diagramming the major premise. We shade the area were S and C overlap:

  15. Venn Diagrams: Examples(pp. 162-166) Now diagram the minor premise on the same diagram: Compare the diagram for the conclusion alone, if you wish: By diagramming the premises we have diagrammed the conclusion. The argument is valid.

  16. Venn Diagrams: Examples(pp. 162-166) • Consider the following syllogism: Some lizards are reptiles.All reptiles are beautiful beasts. Some beautiful beasts are lizards. • Here we have a particular premise and a universal premise. When you have both, you diagram the universal premise first. “Why?” you ask. The X for representing the particular should always go into a determinate area if possible. If you diagram the universal first, the X is forced into a determinate area of the diagram:

  17. Venn Diagrams: Examples(pp. 162-166) Then add the X. The argument is valid. The diagram shows that there is at least one thing (X) that is a beautiful lizard, so the argument is valid.

  18. Venn Diagrams: Examples(pp. 162-166) • If you’d diagrammed the particular premise first the X would have gone on the line, since the X goes on the line except when the area on one side of the line is shaded. So, if you’d diagrammed the particular premise first, the diagrams would look like this: • It is bad form to have an X on the line if the area on one side of the line is shaded. You would have to erase and place it in the unshaded area.

  19. Venn Diagrams: Examples(pp. 162-166) • Most syllogistic forms are invalid. Consider the following: All P are M. All M are S. All S are P. • Diagram the major premise, then diagram the minor premise on the same diagram: We have diagrammed “All P are M,” which is not the conclusion. So the argument form is invalid.

  20. Venn Diagrams: Examples(pp. 162-166) • Consider an argument of the following form: All M are P. No M are S. No S are P. • An area has been shaded twice. So, we haven’t diagrammed the conclusion. The argument form is invalid

  21. Venn Diagrams: Examples(pp. 162-166) • Consider the following syllogism: Some aardvarks are not sheep, and no sheep are trumpets, so all aardvarks are trumpets. After making sure there are exactly three terms, you could represent the form as follows: No S are T. Some A are not S. All A are T.

  22. Venn Diagrams: Examples(pp. 162-166) • You diagram the major premise, since it’s universal: • Now you diagram the particular. The X has to be in A and outside of S. Since it could be in either of two areas, neither of which is shaded, you place the X on the T circle that divides A into two parts. It looks like this:

  23. Venn Diagrams: Examples(pp. 162-166) The X is on the line. That is sufficient to show that the argument form is invalid. If you prefer, you could compare the top two circles to the two-circle diagram for the conclusion. You’d notice that you have not diagrammed the conclusion. (The diagram for a universal is always a strictly shady affair.)

  24. Venn Diagrams: Examples(pp. 162-166) • Consider the following: All mice are rodents, so some mice are bothersome beasts, since some rodents are bothersome beasts. • There are three terms, so we may set out the form as follows: Some R are B. All M are R Some M are B.

  25. Venn Diagrams: Examples(pp. 162-166) • This time the major premise is a particular, and the minor premise is a universal. So, we diagram the minor premise first: • Now we diagram the major, placing an X in the area where B and R overlap. The X goes on the line:

  26. Venn Diagrams: Examples(pp. 162-166) The argument is invalid.

  27. Venn Diagrams: Examples(pp. 162-166) • In summary: • Make sure you have exactly three terms. • If there is a universal premise and a particular premise, diagram the universal premise first. • If neither of the areas where the X could go is shaded, the X goes on the line. • No syllogism whose diagram places an X on the line or results in double-shading is valid. • It is valid if and only if shading the premises results in shading the conclusion.