Savchuk T.N. Argumentative Potential of Analogy in the Discourse of the Humanities


Tatiana N. Savchuk

Doctor of Sciences (Philology), Professor, Department of Applied Linguistics, Belarusian State University

Prosp. Nezavisimosti, 4, 220030 Minsk, Belarus

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Abstract. The article reveals the functions of various types of analogy in argumentative discourse, substantiates the criteria for the effectiveness of reasoning by analogy in scientific argumentation. The study is carried out on the basis of scientific and humanitarian texts extracted from peer-reviewed journals. It is established that a wide functional range of analogous reasoning is formed by two meanings: proper argumentative and paraargumentative. The proper argumentative role of analogy provides its use as a special type of argumentation schemes. The analogous scheme is associated with a rational impact on the addressee and is implemented through a literal analogy. It performs the following functions: cognitive, evidential, heuristic, interpretive, normative and axiological. The paraargument value of the analogy lies in the fact that it, being outside the argumentative construction, supports the argument, enhancing the persuasive effect. This pragmatic intention is achieved through an indirect analogy, which affects the addressee through a figurative-emotional channel. Figurative analogy is used for visual explanation, popularization of presentation, emotional rapprochement with the addressee, psychological intensification of argumentative influence. If the normative criteria for evaluating analogous argumentation are violated, fallacies arise that are qualified as incorrect use of argumentative schemes or as tactical errors. Understanding the pragmatic specifics of different types of analogy, the ability to apply them in scientific communication is considered as an essential component of the argumentative competence of the subjects of humanitarian discourse.

Key words: argumentation, analogy, literal analogy, figurative analogy, discourse, humanities.

Citation. Savchuk T.N. Argumentative Potential of Analogy in the Discourse of the Humanities. Vestnik Volgogradskogo gosudarstvennogo universiteta. Seriya 2. Yazykoznanie [Science Journal of Volgograd State University. Linguistics], 2022, vol. 21, no. 2, pp. 46-57. (in Russian). DOI:

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