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What is arguing?

Henrik Juel

on 27 November 2015

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Transcript of Arguments

Analyzing Arguments -

Henrik Juel
Roman Jakobson:
6 communicative functions:
The basic Toulmin Model:

Data Claim


The Toulmin Model:

Data Claim


Wilkinson is guilty
Two officers saw him
driving too fast
When you are driving too fast, then you are guilty
The Toulmin Model
old and new
Danish terms:
Data Claim
Belæg Påstand



The Toulmin Model
with new arrows (Henrik Juel version)

Data Claim
Specific observation, The point I
premis or "relevant want to make

General rule, norm, accepted idea

It is your turn to do the dishes!

Saddam Hussein has weapons
of mass destruction!

"Nous sommes en guerre"
(We are at war)

Not all said
Backward reasoning
Not explicit what place
Reasons given//motives
No logical frame inside
Arguments within arguments
Ambiguity, irony, change focus

New book in Danish,
Henrik Juel (ed.):
Hvor er Pointen?
vinkler på argumentation.
Handelshøjskolens Forlag, 2011.
Impute (misrepresent your opponent
Red herring (introduce stinking case)
Bad company (bad guys also claim that)
Smoke screen (talk a lot to hide truth)
Boost detail (in your favour, forget the rest)
Open door (argue for what we all agree on)
Gallery (cater for the lowest taste)
Old saying (seems to add credibility)
Bogey (knock down a scare crow)
Change subject (to where you are stronger)
Dirty tricks

Areté (virtue)
Pathos (emotions)
Logos (subject matter, reason)
3 main types of appealing (being convincing):
We can do many things with language (and other means of communication). Our statements can be - among many other things - "referential" i.e. they try to describe, reveal or create a case, the world, a subject matter. But not all language use is about stating facts or arguments.
An argument can be defined as two or more statements (premisses) that together supports a third
(a conclusion).

We use arguments in an attempt to show that our claim or point of view is not just an isolated or random, crazy statement, but that is part of a nicely ordered whole and in agreement with the true state of affairs and proper opinions and values

All (3 or more) parts of an argument are rarely explicitly stated - but might be (re-)constructed in the analysis
We use arguments in both scientific discourse, public debate, private discussions, and heated quarrels (word-fights). We cannot help using some sort of logic - even when we are furious or mistaken about facts or have strange values and priorities. Logic is basic - but it does not help us in finding good reasons.
Very often we orient ourselves in the world and in discussions by applying some general rule or norm to a specific case or observation and from there try to conclude (or reinforce/justify our claim or original point).
Fronesis (knowledge)
Eunoia (benevolence)
Toulmin's first illustration
Les Données
La Conclusion
La Garantie
Critical analysis is difficult but important because:
(that might however be effective)
Full transcript