Fallacy of composition

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The '''Fallacy of composition''' is the fallacy of concluding that something that is true of the parts is also true of the whole, or that something that is true of the whole is also true of the parts.
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The '''Fallacy of composition''' is the fallacy of concluding that something that is true of the parts is also true of the whole, or that something that is true of the whole is also true of the parts.  
  
 
== Examples ==
 
== Examples ==
 
* If a man's genes are selfish, the man is also selfish.[http://www.uncommondescent.com/darwinism/dover-a-half-decade-later-and-what-difference-did-it-really-make/]
 
* If a man's genes are selfish, the man is also selfish.[http://www.uncommondescent.com/darwinism/dover-a-half-decade-later-and-what-difference-did-it-really-make/]
 
* Every atom in my body is invisible to the naked eye. Therefore, I am invisible to the naked eye.
 
* Every atom in my body is invisible to the naked eye. Therefore, I am invisible to the naked eye.
* Germany committed war crimes. Therefore, every German committed war crimes.
 
  
 
== Counter-arguments ==
 
== Counter-arguments ==
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* Everything in the universe is moved. Therefore, the universe is moved.
 
* Everything in the universe is moved. Therefore, the universe is moved.
 
* Everything in the universe is caused. Therefore, the universe is caused.
 
* Everything in the universe is caused. Therefore, the universe is caused.
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The opposite of this fallacy is the [[fallacy of division]], in which a property of something is said to be a property of a part of that something.
  
 
[[Category:Logical fallacies]]
 
[[Category:Logical fallacies]]

Revision as of 20:45, 16 July 2010

The Fallacy of composition is the fallacy of concluding that something that is true of the parts is also true of the whole, or that something that is true of the whole is also true of the parts.

Examples

  • If a man's genes are selfish, the man is also selfish.[1]
  • Every atom in my body is invisible to the naked eye. Therefore, I am invisible to the naked eye.

Counter-arguments

A few obviously fallacious arguments should suffice to show that composition is not a valid inference.

  • Everything in the universe is moved. Therefore, the universe is moved.
  • Everything in the universe is caused. Therefore, the universe is caused.

The opposite of this fallacy is the fallacy of division, in which a property of something is said to be a property of a part of that something.

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