- Slides: 14
Expanding the definition of argument ● Argument: a statement that someone thinks is true, or should be true ● Counterargument: expresses the opposite point of view. ● Argument is NOT: ○ A fight or debate ○ An emotional conflict between people ○ An attempt to defeat an opposing point of view ● Argument IS: ○ An exploration ○ Creative ○ Productive ○ Often educational
An argument seeks. . . ● ● ● To open a subject, not close it To broaden a subject, not narrow it To add depth and understanding To gain respect for a position To seek the best solution to a problem/conflict To discover truth and resolve unnecessary messes
Common myths about argument • MYTH: An argument is just people yelling at each other. • REALITY: Arguments can be very calm. An argument in writing is silent!
Common myths about argument • MYTH: You have to completely believe in what you are arguing. • REALITY: Making an argument has nothing to do with how you feel about the subject.
Common myths about argument • MYTH: Every argument has a right and a wrong side. • REALITY: Most of the time the different sides of an argument are simply different points of view. Neither side is really right or really wrong.
Common myths about argument • MYTH: You can’t be good at arguing unless you can think “fast on your feet. ” • REALITY: A lot of great arguing takes place on paper, where you can take as much time as necessary to think everything through.
We argue about three basic categories. . . ● Facts ● Values ● Policy Stop and write: at least one example of each of these three categories.
We argue for four major purposes. . . ● ● To assert (state) To prevail (win) To inquire (question) To negotiate differences (agree)
We use three basic appeals. . . ● Ethos: credibility of the rhetor and his/her use of sources ● Pathos: emotion ● Logos: logic
The premises (bases) of argument 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. Political Legal Historical Values (ethical/moral/religious/philosophical) Scientific Psychological Economic Pragmatic Sociological Stop and discuss: In which of these areas do you have the most expertise? The least?
Capital punishment (death penalty) example Stop and write: Collaborate with your neighbor to make arguments for or against the death penalty, based on the following premises: 1. Political 6. Psychological 2. Legal 7. Economic 3. Historical 8. Pragmatic 4. Values 9. Sociological 5. Scientific
Capital punishment (death penalty) example 1. Political 2. Legal 3. Historical 4. Values 5. Scientific 6. Psychological 7. Economic 8. Pragmatic 9. Sociological
Capital punishment (death penalty) example 1. Political The American public voted against it. 2. Legal It contradicts the constitution. 3. Historical It has not worked in the past. 4. Values It is immoral--two wrongs don’t make a right. 5. Scientific The drugs used for lethal injection are difficult to obtain and often don’t work. 6. Psychological Most prisoners on death row were abused as children. 7. Economic It’s more expensive than life without parole. 8. Pragmatic It is not an effective deterrent. 9. Sociological A disproportionate number of the people on death row are poor and people of color.