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AP English 11 2/21/12

Toulmin's Argument

Becky Brown

on 6 January 2013

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Transcript of AP English 11 2/21/12

Structural Patterns of Argument Toulmin's Argument Making Claims: Arguments begin with claims, which are debatable and controversial statements or assertions that you hope to prove using logic or evidence. Claims should be reasonable, stated clearly and qualified carefully. Example: You should buy a new car. Determining Warrants: According to Toulmin, a warrant is a logical and persuasive connection between a claim and the reasons and data supporting it. A warrant legitimizes the claim by showing that the data is relevant. A warrant answers the question, "How do I get from the claim to the data?" The warrant is the assumption that makes the claim seem plausible. It is usualy a value or principle that you share with your audience. Example: The monthly cost of maintaining your old car is more than the monthly payment on a new car. Offering Evidence: Offering evidence is necessary to support an argument. You need clear examples and concrete details to substantiate the author's claim, making certain that they are clearly linked (through the warrant) to the claim. Example: You have brought your car in for repairs four times in the last three months.
Your car is twenty years old.
Repairing your car now costs you an average of $650 every month.
You can buy a new car with 0% down and a low interest rate during this month's clearance sale.
Even with a higher insurance rate and higher registration fee, the monthly cost of a new car will be $500. New car costs Old car costs Other Toulmin factors to consider: Toulmin logic encourages you to limit your responsibility in an argument through the effective use of qualifiers. Qualifiers, such as "usually," "sometimes," "rarely," put limits on claims and make it easier to argue a claim convincingly and responsibly. For instance, "Sometimes buying a new car is less expensive than maintaining an old one."
Conditions of rebuttal are potential objections to an argument. Anticipating a reasonable objection and acknowledging it gives your argument credibility and authority. For instance, "Your car may be a classic model, and you may be in love with it, but it is unsafe and you cannot afford to maintain it." Find one object in your purse, pockets, or backpack that says something about who you are. Put it on your desk. Homework: Take notes on pp. 182-200 of Everything's an Argument.
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