2 What Is Argument?A persuasive discourse, a coherent and considered movement from a claim to a conclusionA means of better understanding other people’s ideas as well as your own
3 Why We Argue? Arguments to Convince Arguments to Persuade Establish significance/concernArguments to PersuadeMove to actionArguments to InformProvide informationArguments to ExploreAnalyzes varying views of the same data/ideaArguments to Make DecisionsEncourage wise decisions
4 Occasions For Argument PASTFUTUREPRESENTWhat is it called?ForensicDeliberativeEpideicticWhat are its concerns?What happened in the past?What should be done in the future?Who or what deserves praise or blame?What does it look like?Court decisions, legal breifs, legislative hearings, investigative reports, academic studiesProposals, bills, regulations, mandatesEulogies, graduation speeches, inaugural addresses, roastsWhite papers = gov documentEpideictic = designed to display a skill- specifically speaking and rhetoric skills
5 Staking a Claim Claim = an assertion or proposition Must be arguable (can’t be a statement of fact)Answers What’s your point? Where do you stand on that?Statement supported by evidence3 Types: claims of fact, claims of value, and claims of policyEvidence & ReasonsSo Claim
6 Which of these are claims? 1.) SUV owners should be required to pay an energy surcharge. 2.) Charter schools are an alternative to public schools. 3.) Requiring students to wear uniforms improves school spirit. 4.) The terms global warming and climate change describe different perspectives of a complex issue. 5.) Students graduating from college today can expect to have more debt that any previous generation. 6.) Print newspapers will not survive another decade. 7.) People who read novels are more likely to attend sports events and movies than those who don’t.Extra challenge- can ask them to modify the non-claimsNon-claims = 2, 4, 5, 7.
7 Claims of Fact Assert that something is true or not true Ex: Zimbabwe has an unstable governmentFacts are arguable when they are questioned, when they raise controversy, or when they challenge people’s beliefsRead Amy Domini’s “Why Investing in Fast Food May Be a Good Thing”Find her claimsWhich ones are claims of fact?For the example- defining “unstable” can be debatableDomini’s piece- claims of fact are in paragraphs 3 & 4.
8 Claims of Policy Change proposal Argument of policy: Definition of the problem (claim of fact), explanation of why it’s a problem (claim of value), and then an explanation of the change that needs to occur (claim of policy)Read Anna Quindlen’s The C Word in the Hallways excerpt
9 Claims of ValueArgues that something is good or bad, right or wrong, desirable or undesirablePersonal judgments based on preference or objective evaluations based on external criteriaEx: Leonardo DiCaprio is the best leading man in HollywoodNeed to establish specific standards or criteriaRead Roger Ebert’s “Star Wars”For example, defining “best” and “leading man” is debatable
10 ActivityIn small groups, read “Felons and the Right to Vote” and annotate the claims. Identify each claim as fact, value, or policy.
11 Revision TimeThink about what claim(s) you want to make in your revised essay.If you are choosing 1 claim, then you need to establish your criteria.Think about potential evidence- examples, facts, quotes (you don’t need to be specific yet)Are you going to address a counterargument?Hand out outline
12 From Claim to Thesis More specific about what you are arguing Sets purpose and point of viewLook at “The C Word in the Hallways”- find the thesis statementTraditionally, a single sentence in the introduction (typically the final sentence)Should preview the essay with clear, unambiguous language while establishing main pointsTypes: Closed Thesis (Restricted), Open Thesis, Counterargument Thesis“C Word” Thesis- last 2 sentences of the 2nd paragraph
13 Closed ThesisMain idea of the argument that also previews the major pointsLimits the number of pointsEx: “The three-dimensional characters, exciting plot, and complex themes of the Harry Potter series make them not only legendary children’s books but enduring literary classics” (Shea 95).Reliable for a short essayOrganizational helpArgument: literary classics defined by characters, plot, and theme
14 Open Thesis Doesn’t list all of the author’s points Ex: “The popularity of the Harry Potter series demonstrates that simplicity trumps complexity when it comes to the taste of readers, both young and old” (Shea 96).More effective for longer essays
15 Counterargument Thesis Both open and closed thesisSummary of a counterarguments, typically qualified by although or but, precedes the writer’s opinionEx: “Although the Harry Potter series may have some literary merit, its popularity has less to do with storytelling than with merchandising” (Shea 96).Immediately addresses counterargumentsArgument seems both stronger and more reliable
16 RevisionLook at your essay- do you have a thesis statement? Where is it located?Revise your thesis statement- needs to fall into one of the three categories.
17 First-Hand Evidence Personal Experience Adds a human element, appeals to pathosEffective for intro and conclusionAnecdotes (stories about other people)Appeals to pathosCurrent Events (locally, nationally, globally)Connects with readerBeware of bias and confusion of multiple perspectives
18 Second-Hand Evidence Historical Information (verifiable facts) Background to current events/debatesKeep account briefExpert OpinionMake sure the “expert” is credibleQuantitative Evidence (stats, surveys, polls)Appeal to logos
19 *Relevant, Accurate, and Sufficient Sources* Always Have*Relevant, Accurate, and Sufficient Sources*
20 Activity Read Dana Thomas’ “Terror’s Purse Strings” Annotate the essay below by identifying the different types of first- and second-hand evidenceAs a group discuss which type of evidence was most effective for Thomas’ argument?
21 *Remember that the research method varies by assignment* Finding EvidenceConsider your audience- which type of evidence will appeal to them?Consider your purpose*Remember that the research method varies by assignment*Discuss different assignments that require research (policy essays, critiques, literary analysis)Discuss options for this essay
22 Evaluating SourcesRelevance: How closely related to your topic is the source?Author Credentials: Is the author an expert on your topic?Author Stance: What is the author’s position on the issue? Does it affect the information provided?Publisher/Sponsor Credentials: Is the publisher/sponsor well-known or widely-read?Publisher/Sponsor Stance: Any biases?Currency: Date of publication?Accuracy: Other information cited?Specialization Level: Is general or specific sources preferred?For some assignments, specialized articles may be difficult to read- the information may be too specific for your audience.
23 Special Considerations for Electronic Sources Who can post on the website?What type of site?.com (commercial), .org (nonprofit organization), .edu (educational institute), .gov (government agency), .net (network)Location: .ca (Canada) or .uk (United Kingdom)Can you determine credibility?Are other sources credited and well-documented?How current is the website?What perspectives are represented?
26 Work CitedLunsford, Andrea A., John J. Ruszkiewicz, and Keith Walters. Everything's an Argument with Readings. Boston: Bedford, Print. Shea, Renée Hausmann, Lawrence Scanlon, and Robin Dissin Aufses. The Language of Composition: Reading, Writing, Rhetoric. 2nd ed. Boston, MA: Bedford, Print.