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dialectic

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noun di·a·lec·tic \ˌdī-ə-ˈlek-tik\

Simple Definition of dialectic

  • philosophy : a method of examining and discussing opposing ideas in order to find the truth

Source: Merriam-Webster's Learner's Dictionary

Full Definition of dialectic

  1. 1 :  logic 1a(1)

  2. 2 a :  discussion and reasoning by dialogue as a method of intellectual investigation; specifically :  the Socratic techniques of exposing false beliefs and eliciting truth b :  the Platonic investigation of the eternal ideas

  3. 3 :  the logic of fallacy

  4. 4 a :  the Hegelian process of change in which a concept or its realization passes over into and is preserved and fulfilled by its opposite; also :  the critical investigation of this process b (1) usually plural but singular or plural in construction :  development through the stages of thesis, antithesis, and synthesis in accordance with the laws of dialectical materialism (2) :  the investigation of this process (3) :  the theoretical application of this process especially in the social sciences

  5. 5 usually plural but singular or plural in construction a :  any systematic reasoning, exposition, or argument that juxtaposes opposed or contradictory ideas and usually seeks to resolve their conflict b :  an intellectual exchange of ideas

  6. 6 :  the dialectical tension or opposition between two interacting forces or elements

Origin and Etymology of dialectic

Middle English dialetik, from Anglo-French dialetiqe, from Latin dialectica, from Greek dialektikē, from feminine of dialektikos of conversation, from dialektos


First Known Use: 14th century


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