Presentation on theme: "Taming the Warrant notes from article by James E. Warren from English Journal 99.6 (2010): 41-46."— Presentation transcript:
Taming the Warrant notes from article by James E. Warren from English Journal 99.6 (2010): 41-46
Claim = teachers should make higher salaries Data = teachers are as well- trained and hard-working as other, higher-paid professionals
Warrant (general, unstated proposition) = Professionals who are similarly trained and hard-working should receive similar salaries.
Qualifiers “Nearly all teachers should make higher salaries.”
Exceptions to the claim (conditions of rebuttal): Teachers who are incompetent do not deserve higher salaries.
Warrants usually remain implicit in an argument They bind together claims and data They can be brought to the surface through logical inference
Why identify your warrants? Once you are aware of your warrant, you can decide whether your audience will accept it automatically or will demand additional support.
Toulmin and the Syllogism All humans are mortal Socrates is a human Therefore, Socrates is mortal. Warrant Data Claim
Misidentified warrants Claim = don’t eat that mushroom Data = it’s poisonous Warrant = if something is poisonous, it’s dangerous to eat Source: Everything’s an Argument
This warrant does not logically compel you to refuse the mushroom!
Remember that warrants guarantee the step from data to claim is valid.
Accurate warrant = Don’t eat poisonous things! Assuming you believe the mushroom is poisonous and assuming you believe you must not eat poisonous things, you must agree not to eat that mushroom.
Another misidentified warrant: Claim = Cocaine and heroin should be legalized. Data = legalization would eliminate the black market in drugs Warrant =
Eliminating the black market in drugs is good. Is it possible to agree with the warrant and still reject the claim that drugs should be legalized? Yes! Most Americans do! By this same logic, we should legalize child pornography because that would eliminate the black market in child porn.
Formula for Identifying Warrants If D [data], then C [claim]. Data such as D entitle one to draw conclusions, or make claims, such as C Given data D, one may take it that C.
If that mushroom is poisonous (data), then don’t eat it (claim). Warrant = don’t eat poisonous things.
If legalization would eliminate the black market in cocaine and heroin (data) then we should legalize these drugs (claim) Warrant = legalizing cocaine and heroin would eliminate the black market in them.
Convert your claim, data, and warrant into a syllogism to check for accuracy Claim in Toulmin’s model = conclusion Ex. Socrates is mortal. Data in Toulmin’s model = minor or middle premise Ex. Socrates is human. Warrant in Toulmin’s model = major or initial premise Ex. All humans are mortal
Socrates is mortal because he is a human and all humans are mortal (the warrant functions as a license to make the step from data to claim)
Claim We should do a better job of teaching students how to identify warrants.
Data The ability to identify warrants accurately is an essential critical reasoning skill.
Warrant We should do a better job of teaching critical reasoning skills.