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A correlative conjunction is a relationship between two statements where one must be false and the other true. In formal logic this is known as the exclusive or relationship; traditionally, terms between which this relationship exists have been called contradictories.
In the following example, statement b explicitly negates statement a:
- Fido is a dog.
- Fido is not a dog.
Statements can also be mutually exclusive, without explicitly negating each other as in the following example:
- Object one is larger than object two.
- Object one is smaller or the same size as object two.
Fallacies based on correlatives include:
- False dilemma or false correlative.
- Here something which is not a correlative is treated as a correlative, excluding some other possibility.
- Denying the correlative
- where an attempt is made to introduce another option into a true correlative.
- Suppressed correlative
- where the definitions of a correlative are changed so that one of the options includes the other, making one option impossible.