Informations and abstract
Keywords: emotions, argumentation schemes, definition, redefinition, values, value judgment, manipulation, decision-making.
Emotive language is one of the most powerful strategies used to elicit a value judgment and a specific disposition to act. In the tradition, emotive language was the basis of several rhetorical and sophistic strategies, aimed at altering the interlocutors' decision-making process by exploiting the strict relation between words, representations and emotions. Building on these ancient theories, this paper advances an approach to emotive language based on the analysis of the reasoning patterns underlying the passage from the predication of a word to the triggering of emotions and the decision to act in a specific fashion. On this perspective, the classificatory reasoning grounded on definition is strictly bound to reasoning from values, which leads from shared reasons for action to a value judgment. This argumentative approach to emotive words can shed light on the rational and defeasible nature of the conclusions they can support or suggest, outlining their reasonableness conditions and their manipulative and deceptive uses.