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An antanagoge (Greek ἀνταναγωγή, a leading or bringing up), is a figure in rhetoric, in which, not being able to answer the accusation of an adversary, a person instead makes a counter-allegation or counteracting an opponent’s proposal with an opposing proposition in one's own speech or writing.[1]

It may also refer to placing a positive outlook on a situation that has a negative connotation, such as in the following examples:

Literary Examples

"When life gives you lemons, make lemonade."
"I got in a car accident, but I was planning on getting a new car anyway."
"Many are the pains and perils to be passed,
But great is the gain and glory at the last."

Modern Rhetoric Examples Person 1: "How come your terrible anti-global warming initiative will cost us 3 billion dollars?" Person 2: "Won’t the pain of money loss be worth saving billions of human lives?"

Relation to Tu Quoque Fallacy The tu quoque fallacy is explained as discrediting the opponent's position by asserting the opponent's failure to act consistently in accordance with that position. Antanagoge is similar in that it is a counterargument, yet differs as the counterargument attacks the rhetor’s argument, not his/her argumentative style itself.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Antanagoge Dictionary Definition". Retrieved 2014-10-28.