Best False Dichotomy Examples


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False Dichotomy

False dichotomy is an example of a logical fallacy, which is a failure of reasoning. That’s just what false dichotomy is. It’s a failure of reasoning. More specifically, we can define false dichotomy as when the author creates an artificial sense that there are only two possible alternatives in a situation. By doing that, the author limits both the readers options and imagination.


This fallacy is common when the author has an agenda and wants to give the impression that their view is the only sensible one. Readers should always be suspicious of the false dichotomy. When an author limits alternatives, the reader must ask, “Is the author being valid?” An example of false dichotomy is: “You need to go to the party with me. Otherwise, you’ll just be bored at home.”


Here, the speaker suggests that the only other possibility besides being at the party is being bored at home. This is not true, as it is perfectly possible to be entertained at home or even to go somewhere other than the party. This is an example of false dichotomy, because the author is creating that artificial sense that there are only two possible alternatives. One is to go to the party and one is to be bored at home.


Remember that the author wants to give the impression that their view is the only sensible one. Here, the only sensible option looks like to go to the party, because who wants to be bored at home? Really, there are many sensible options in this situation. That’s why this is an example of false dichotomy.



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Last updated: 05/02/2018
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