Socratic irony

Socratic irony is when you pretend to be ignorant to expose the ignorance or inconsistency of someone else.

Socrates was a famous Greek philosopher known for his probing questions. Irony is when a statement means the opposite of its literal meaning. That should help you remember that Socratic irony is a technique where the questioner admits (falsely) to not knowing something as a way of tricking the other person into revealing his own lack of knowledge or a flaw in his logic. Socratic irony involves pretending to be ignorant to show someone else is ignorant: thus, the irony.

Definitions of Socratic irony
  1. noun
    admission of your own ignorance and willingness to learn while exposing someone's inconsistencies by close questioning
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    type of:
    incongruity between what might be expected and what actually occurs
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