more from Jonathan Dancy

Single Idea 2757

[catalogued under 15. Nature of Minds / A. Nature of Mind / 4. Other Minds / d. Other minds by analogy]

Full Idea

As an inductive argument Mill's argument from analogy (other people have inputs and outputs like mine, so the intermediate explanation must be the same) is weak because it is based on a single instance.

Gist of Idea

The argument from analogy rests on one instance alone


Jonathan Dancy (Intro to Contemporary Epistemology [1985], 5.3)

Book Reference

Dancy,Jonathan: 'Introduction to Contemporary Epistemology' [Blackwell 1985], p.68

A Reaction

The argument may be 'weak' as a piece of pure logic, but when faced with a strange situation, one's own case seems like crucial evidence, like a single eye-witness to a crime.