Sagging pants and the logic of abductive inference

Saggy-PantsNot all that many academic studies have examined the possibilities of abductive inference with regard to sagging pants [sagging trousers (UK)]. There are exceptions though. Professor Marcia Morgado of the University of Hawai‘i at Manoa has a paper in the journal Critical Studies in Men’s Fashion (Volume 2 Issue 2-3, September 2015) which:

“[…] explores the usefulness of abductive inference as a conceptual scheme and as a model for thinking about thinking.”

It’s entitled: Uncovered butts and recovered rules: Sagging pants and the logic of abductive inference.

“Peirce’s thesis on abductive inference, which addresses the logic of inferential thinking, frames an interpretive study of a text of heated public arguments that surrounded sagging during its rise as a highly transgressive and controversial subculture appearance form. On the assumption that I could do so, I consciously reconstructed the logic of my inferences, framing these on Peirce’s premise that interpretation begins with an observation (the result) and proceeds to a conclusion regarding meaning (the case) by intuiting a relationship (a hypothesized rule) between the observation and what it appears to mean. The abductions reveal that my inferences were constructed on conventional rules derived from common clichés, principles drawn from scholarly works on the social-psychology of dress, and ordinary marketplace wisdom.”

Image: A partial view of Stop The Sag – Raise Your Pants, Raise Your Image’ as provided by The New York State Senate newsroom.