The Basic Slippery Slope Argument

Douglas Walton


Although studies have yielded a detailed taxonomy of types of slippery slope arguments, they have failed to identify a basic argumentation scheme that applies to all. Therefore, there is no way of telling whether a given argument is a slippery slope argument or not. This paper solves the problem by providing a basic argumentation scheme. The scheme is shown to fit a clear and easily comprehensible example of a slippery slope argument that strongly appears to be reasonable, something that has also been lacking.


argumentation schemes, critical questions, argument from negative consequences

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ISSN: 0824-2577