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ENG 101: Types of Argument, Strategies for Writing

Traditional and Rogerian Argument

Michael Roberts

on 6 July 2014

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Transcript of ENG 101: Types of Argument, Strategies for Writing

Traditional Argument, Rogerian Argument,
Traditional Argument
Lead-in "hook" sentences, concise overview of issue, explicit claim of fact, value, or policy.
Concise overview of opposing viewpoint, acknowledgment of the validity of opposing viewpoint, refutation/ counterargument
addressing the weaknesses of opposing viewpoint.
Supporting Argument
Specific evidence to support claim (usually three or more key points), and discussion of why each piece of evidence supports claim.
Restatement of claim; resolution, compromise, or "call to action."
Rogerian Argument

Lead-in sentences, hook strategies, synopsis of discussion surrounding issue, issue is stated as an "issue question" to set
a tone of investigation.
Two or three paragraphs examining key points that support one viewpoint on the issue, two or three paragraphs examining key points supporting alternative viewpoints.
Paragraph that provides a balanced and
concise summary of strong evidence from all sides of the issue
, paragraph arguing for the writer's middle-ground position.
Finding Your Thesis
Writing Your Thesis Statement
Synthesize your information and ideas down into one succinct statement or essential idea
Residents of lower income neighborhoods are targeted by the fast-food industry and, as a result, are more prone to health problems related to high-fat and processed food.
Thesis of Fact:
Thesis of Value:
Banning fast-food restaurant construction in low-income neighborhoods unfairly stereotypes and discriminates against residents of those neighborhoods.
Thesis of Policy:
The city should not implement a moratorium on construction of fast-food restaurants in lower income neighborhoods.
Summarizing, Paraphrasing, & Quoting
Summarizing, Paraphrasing, & Quoting
Research 101
Q&D- Chap. 7
TS/IS- Chap. 2
Requires balance between original author's thoughts and writer's own focus
Summary = state main idea of a text in a shortened form
Be objective- suspend your thoughts until summary is complete
"David Zinczenko's article, "Don't Blame the Eater," is nothing more than an angry rant in which he accuses the fast-food companies of an evil conspiracy to make people fat. I disagree because these companies have to make money..."
2. Is the above a fair summary? Why or why not?

3. Read an excerpt from Zinczenko's article below and write a more effective summary of his points:
"If ever there were a newspaper headline custom-made for Jay Leno's monologue, this was it. Kids taking on McDonald's this week, suing the company for making them fat. Isn't that like middle-aged men suing Porsche for making them get speeding tickets? Whatever happened to personal responsibility?
I tend to sympathize with these portly fast-food patrons, though. Maybe that's because I used to be one of them."
-David Zincenko, "Don't Blame the Eater"
*Tell your readers enough so they can assess an argument's merits on their own, independent of you.
*Study what others say closely, and don't confuse an author's thoughts with something you already believe.
4. After you fairly represent what another argument entails, you must also fit your summary with your own agenda as a writer. For instance, if you are writing a comparison paper on film and video games and how the two are alike, how could you quote from the excerpt below to help prove your assertion?
1. Where would you go to research if the above Youtube clip is real? Use page 101 of Q&D for ideas on where to look. Now answer the question: is this video a hoax? Write out which websites you checked and provide justification for your findings. Remember to think critically about where your information is coming from (.com? .edu? How many ads are on the site?). See chapter 8 of Q&D for more advice on this process of sorting.
"Games are often compared to films, which would seem to make sense, given their many apparent similarities (both are scored, both have actors, both are cinematographical, and so on). Upon close inspection comparison falls leprously apart. In terms of storytelling, they could not be more different. Films favor a compressed type of storytelling and are able to do this because they have someone deciding where to point the camera. Games, on the other hand, contain more than most gamers can ever hope to see, and the person deciding where to point the camera is, in many cases, you--and you might never even see the "best part."
-Tom Bissell _Extra Lives_
"I say this in full disclosure: The games that interest me the most are the games that choose to tell stories. Yes, video games have always told some form of story. PLUMBER'S GIRLFRIEND CAPTURED BY APE! is a story, but it is a rudimentary fairy tale story without any of the proper fairytale's evocative nuances and dreads.
-Tom Bissell _Extra Lives_
6. Paraphrasing is when you put someone else's ideas into your own words. Whereas a summary is a great deal shorter, a paraphrase should be roughly the same length as the original text. Paraphrase Tom Bissell's statement below about video games:
5. Now suppose you are writing an essay on film and video games and how the two are dissimilar, what part of the above excerpt could you quote to help prove your claim?
7. Visual media also contains argument. What is an argument made by this _Calvin and Hobbes_ comic strip by Bill Watterson? In other words, summarize this comic's main point.
8. Video clips can be valuable resources for your research this semester. First, Watch the following clip on filter bubbles that aired last year on the website TEDTalks: http://www.ted.com/talks/eli_pariser_beware_online_filter_bubbles.html
Once you have viewed the film, quote 2-3 sentences from the video that you believe to be the speaker's thesis, or primary claim. Then incorporate these quotes into a paragraph. Be sure to use appropriate formatting and "sandwich" quotes from the video.

In trying to use support effectively and to expand a paper, many students find it useful to
think of each quote (or example) as a sandwich
that looks like this:

Context (topic sentence)
Quote/Example (with intro phrase)
Explanation or Comment (but not usually opinion)
Connection (to your larger claim)

For Example:

One of Peter Cole’s most effective strategies is the use of strings of words that tell
a narrative. For example he describes the life cycle of a tree as “"...lumber timber
log 2by4 sawdust paper garbage..." (594). Here, Cole is reminding readers of the
ways in which nature is appropriated by humans, and is processed and reprocessed
for commercial purposes. The final word—“garbage”—hints not only at the end
of the lumber cycle, but also, perhaps, at the ideological ’waste’ that underlies our
consumption of natural resources. This is just one of many instances in which Cole’s
violation of typical language conventions allows him to convey his ideas more vividly.
-Excerpted from Susan Griffin, UCLA Writing Programs "The Quote Sandwich"

Apply the Sandwich Quote technique to the above TEDTalk (if it helps, you can divide your writing into four sections: C, Q, E/C, C)
9. Interviews, either via email, website, or in-person, are also valuable secondary sources for your research. Choose an interview from the following website to watch or listen to and summarize the main points:


10. Lastly, upload your document that contains your answers to the Discussion Forum on our class Moodle page. Please include your name and your partner(s) names in the subject heading.

In the time remaining, peruse the HCC Writing Center Website:

...and the HCC Library website: <http://hcc.edu/library> before our visit next class- your hour #4 assignment will be based on the latter of these two sites- check Moodle tomorrow for the details and due date (next Tuesday).

Watch the videos above, and then try the ONLINE QUIZ on Rogerian Argument:

(For additional information: http://utminers.utep.edu/kmooy/rogerian.htm)

to let readers know when you are quoting
(see Q&D pp. 105)
eg. The author states...
Martin Luther King claims...
King argues...
The writer maintains...
(see Q&D pp. 105)
eg. The author states...
Martin Luther King claims...
King argues...
The writer maintains...
(see Q&D pp. 105)
eg. The author states...
Martin Luther King claims...
King argues...
The writer maintains...
(see Q&D pp. 105)
eg. The author states...
Martin Luther King claims...
King argues...
The writer maintains...
(see Q&D pp. 105)
eg. The author states...
Martin Luther King claims...
King argues...
The writer maintains...
(see Q&D pp. 105)
eg. The author states...
Martin Luther King claims...
King argues...
The writer maintains...
“A growing number of young children are acting out violent scenes from adult computer games in the playground, teachers have warned. Pupils as young as four and five are simulating car crashes and graphic injuries as a result of playing games unsupervised in their bedrooms, the Association of Teachers and Lecturers (ATL) annual conference was told. A motion at the conference called on ministers to introduce "stringent legislation" to counter the "negative effects some computer games are having on the very young."’
–The Guardian Newspaper, 3 April 2012

Next, read the following excerpt from _The Guardian Newspaper_. Using the information from the videos, how would you structure a
Rogerian argument
either for or against the claim that additional legislation to control violence in video games needs to be passed? Use elements of rhetoric for support and post your response on the class discussion forum.
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