Explanations as conclusions

In the first chapter, we took care to distinguish arguments from explanations. An argument supplies reasons why we should believe a certain proposition whose truth-value is in question. By contrast, an explanation tells us why it is that a certain proposition is the case, when the truth-value of that proposition is not in question. It is especially important to observe this distinction when dealing with arguments whose conclusions are themselves explanations. The aim of this sort of argument is to persuade the audience that such-and-such is the actual cause of a fact or event. Such arguments are very common. For example:

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