Is logic a normative science and how could it be normative?




Formal deductive logic, truth values, informal logic, argumentation theory, reasoning


The paper deals with the problem of the nature of logic and its normativity in the context of the normativity of scientific knowledge in general. We proceed from a division between fundamental aspects of scientific knowledge which are related to the nature and subject matter of particular sciences, and its applied aspects which are related to the possible applications of sciences. This division fully applies to logic.  The authors note that if we view logic as a completely objective discipline, devoid of any "anthropological basis", then the only rational alternative to anti-realist approaches is an ontological (realistic) strategy to justify the logical ones that seek to justify a certain kind of being. To do this, it is necessary to abandon the normative interpretation of logical evaluations and logical systems. Logic can gain a true ontological foundation, based on the devoid of the normative color of understanding logical evaluations as a particular kind of object. Logic has both a deductive core, and various applied disciplines, modern informal logic among them. While formal deductive logic is concentrated on the systems of abstract logical entities (objects) such as truth values and logical functions, the main task of informal logic consist in studying a real argument, which people apply in  communicative processes, by elaborating certain standards, criteria and procedures for their interpretation and evaluation. No science can be normative in its basic (fundamental) aspects, and so is logic. Nevertheless, any science is in some degree normative with respect to its applied aspects, and informal logic perfectly illustrates this in view of a normative evolving of applied systems of the modern theories of argumentation. In addition to denying the normativity of formal deductive logic as a fundamental theoretical discipline, the authors of this article demonstrate the fundamental possibility of normative measurement of logical knowledge, in particular in the applied aspect of the development of modern informal logic.

Author Biographies

Iryna Khomenko

doctor of sciences in philosophy, professor, Head of the Department of logic, Taras Shevchenko National University of Kyiv.

Yaroslav Sramko

doctor of sciences in philosophy, professor, President of the State Pedagogical University of Kryvyi Rih.


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How to Cite

Khomenko, I., & Sramko, Y. (2020). Is logic a normative science and how could it be normative?. Filosofska Dumka, (5), 52–63.



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