Reductio ad absurdum  

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Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel
Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel

Reductio ad absurdum (Latin: "reduction to the absurd") is a form of argument in which a proposition is disproven by following its implications to a logical but absurd consequence. A particular kind of reductio ad absurdum, in its strictest sense, is proof by contradiction (also called indirect proof) where an assumption is proven false because it leads to a contradiction (for example a proposition of the form ‘p and not-p’).

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