Answer & Explanation

Language serves many functions, but for good reasoning, it is particularly important to distinguish two of those functions from each other: (1) conveying information and (2) expressing or evoking feelings. Terminology that conveys information has cognitive meaning, and terminology that expresses or evokes feelings has emotive meaning. Logic is concerned mainly with cognitive meaning because an argument is made up of statements, which by definition have truth values. It is the cognitive meaning of a statement that determines a statement’s truth value. Vague expressions and ambiguous expressions present obstacles to an exclusive focus on cognitive meaning in logical reasoning. Value claims have primarily cognitive meaning, but this cognitive meaning can be obscured if value claims are expressed in overly emotive terminology.

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