Mercier and Sperber’s Argumentative Theory of Reasoning: From Psychology of Reasoning to Argumentation Studies

Cristián Santibáñez Yáñez


Mercier and Sperber (2011a, 2011b; Mercier, 2011a, 2011b, 2011c, and 2011d) have presented a stimulating and provocative new theory of reasoning: the argumentative theory of reasoning. They maintain that argumentation is a meta-representational module. In their evolutionary view of argumentation, the function of this module would be to regulate the flow of information between interlocutors through persuasiveness on the side of the communicator and epistemic vigilance on the side of the audience. The aim of this paper is to discuss the perspective of the authors in which they conceive this competence as the natural scenario of reflective reasoning.


argumentation, cognition, confirmation bias, evolution, psychology of reasoning, relevance.

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ISSN: 0824-2577