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Argumentation

An introduction to the elements of argumentative writing.
by

Brooke Ipson

on 9 November 2015

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Transcript of Argumentation

ARGUMENTATION
Three Critical Elements:
1. The Claim
The claim is the
ANCHOR
of your essay.
AKA:
thesis
argument
premise
conclusion
proposition
hypothesis
assertion
There are 4 types of claims:
Fact
Judgment/Value
policy
Definition/Classification
Don't worry about that so much as what a claim does...which is:
With your group, create a definition of what you believe it means to
"anchor" an essay.
2. Evidence
AKA:
Grounds
Support
Proof
Data
Facts
Statistics
Expert Quotes
Eye Witness Account
Reasoning
Physical Evidence
Reports
Findings
"Evidence" refers to the proof or facts or expert (authoritative) opinions an arguer offers to support their claim.
Examples:
"I made dinner, so you can do the dishes."
What is the claim in this statement?
What is the evidence?
Write your answers in your notes.
"I'm a vegetarian. One reason is that I feel bad for the animals. Another is for my own health."
What is the claim?
What is the evidence?
Write your answers on your notes.
3. Reasoning
A CLAIM is a single sentence which states an opinion, idea, belief, or argument as fact.
See if you can recognize/verbalize the claims being made in the following commercials. Write those claims with your group.
1.
2.
3.
Your EVIDENCE is all about support!
You must ask yourself:
What is my proof?
How do I know?
Why do I know that?
So, if I write:
"It looks like rain; the barometer is falling."
What is my claim & what is my evidence?
(write this example
and your answers in your notes)
Clue words for indicating the presence of evidence:
Because
Since
Given that
etc.
for example:
"Airports should X-ray all luggage
BECAUSE
a bomb could be placed in a checked bag."
Reasoning connects the claim to the evidence.
AKA:
The "so what?"
The implicit (unstated) meaning of the argument
Explanation
Warrant
Assumptions
Commentary
The inferential leap
There are 2 kinds of warrants:
Warrants are based on the three rhetorical appeals.
Reasoning is intended to form a mental connection between the claim and the evidence.
And Some only HINT at the connection:
"That dog is probably nice. It's a golden retriever."
claim: the dog is nice
evidence: it is a golden retriever
Reasoning: ?
The reasoning isn't specifically stated, rather, it is an implicit generalization that most people assume or know:
Most golden retrievers are nice dogs.
“Muffin is running a temperature.
I bet she has an infection.”
Claim: Muffin's sick
Evidence: She's got a temperature
Reasoning: ?
This reasoning here is an example of sign reasoning; a fever is a reliable sign of an infection. It denotes sickness.
Some reasoning explicitly
states that connection:
"Fred is a bad man. He killed someone. Good people do not kill other people."
Claim: Fred is bad
Evidence: He killed someone
Reasoning: ?
If killing people is something good people DON'T do, then Fred must be bad.
"Fred is a good man. He killed someone. He risked his own life protecting his family from a bad man. That's just what good people do."
Claim: Fred is good
Evidence: He killed someone
Reasoning: ?
If good people risk their own lives to protect their families, then Fred must be good.
What do these examples
tell you about your reasoning?
Discuss with your table and write your answers
in your notes.
COMING UP:
Qualifiers & Rebuttals
Now, let's return to our commercials.
You've already identified the claims. Let's see if you can identify the
GROUNDS
and the
WARRANTS
Based on your rhetorical triangle
Ethos
Logos
Pathos
and your knowledge of the 3 primary elements of a good argument,
are these good arguments?
Yes or no? Why or why not?
Write your responses on your group sheet.
Examples:
The school lunch program at East High School needs to be changed.
Take note of the following examples. Each is an opinion. And each is stated as a fact with at least two sides.
Sex education policies in the State of Utah are neither effective nor comprehensive enough for Utah's students.
Summer reading is not a beneficial activity for East High students and should be eliminated from the curriculum.
The school lunch program at East High needs to be changed.
Notice each of these examples:
* Is a personal opinion
* Is stated as fact
* Could be argued against with an opposing opinion
Full transcript