By Gordon Rugg & Sue Gerrard
False dichotomies involve presenting something as if only two choices were possible, when in fact there are other possible choices.
Some false dichotomies are easy to spot; those don’t usually get very far. Others, though, are much subtler, and have become part of our everyday world; for instance, the dichotomy between work and play, or the dichotomy between feminine and masculine, or the dichotomy between healthy and unhealthy.
When you unpack what’s going on in a false dichotomy, you usually end up with a much clearer and more useful understanding of what’s really happening. That’s the topic of this article.