This combination rhetoric/reader helps readers develop strategies for critical reading, critical thinking, research, and writing that will help them argue clearly and convincingly in all types of argument. It shows how to identify and develop arguments, read and form reactions and opinions, analyze an audience, seek common ground, and use a wide, realistic range of techniques to write argument papers that express their individual views and original perspectives on modern issues. The Rhetoric portion includes clear explanations and examples of argument theory and reading and writing processes, research and documentation skills, and offers a variety of writing activities for developing the exploratory paper, position paper, researched position paper, and the Rogerian argument paper. Unique chapters discuss argument styles (including cross-gender and cross-cultural communication styles), Rogerian argument, and argument and literature. The Reader portion includes 75 reading selections covering seven broad issue areas and 18 sub-issues concerning families, education, crime and the treatment of criminals, computers, race and culture in America, genetic engineering, and social responsibility. Includes 3-7 essays for each sub-issue to provide different perspectives on the questions. The readings in each sub-issue group "talk" to each other, and questions invite readers to join the conversation. For anyone wanting to further develop their argumentative skills, especially in writing.
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The most important purpose of Argument is to teach students strategies for critical reading, critical thinking, research, and writing that will help them participate in all types of argument both inside and outside of the classroom. A basic assumption is that argument exists everywhere and that students need to learn to participate productively in all forms of argument, including those they encounter in school, at home, on the job, and in the national and international spheres. Such participation is critical not only in a democratic society but also in a global society, in which issues become more and more complex each year. Students who use this book will learn to identify controversial topics that are "at issue," to read and form reactions and opinions of their own, and to write argument papers that express their individual views and perspectives.
A central idea of this text is that modern argument is not always polarized as right or wrong, but that instead it often invites a variety of perspectives on an issue. Another idea, equally important, is that not all argument results in the declaration of winners. The development of common ground and either consensus or compromise are sometimes as acceptable as declaring winners in argument. Students will learn to take a variety of approaches to argument, including taking a position and defending it, seeking common ground at times, withholding opinion at other times, negotiating when necessary, and even changing their original beliefs when they can no longer make a case for them. The perspectives and abilities taught here are those that an educated populace in a world community needs to coexist cooperatively and without constant destructive conflict.SPECIAL FEATURES
Both instructors and students who pick up Argument have the right to ask how it differs from some of the other argument texts that are presently available. They deserve to know why they might want to use this book instead of another. This text, which is targeted for first-year and second-year students enrolled in argument or argument and literature classes in two-year and four-year colleges, is both a reader and a rhetoric. Within this reader and rhetoric format are a number of special features that, when taken together, make the book unique.
The book is organized into five parts and, as much as possible, chapters have been written so that they stand alone. Instructors may thus assign them either in sequence or in a more preferred order to supplement their own course organization.
Part One: Engaging with Argument for Reading and Writing. This part introduces students to issues and the characteristics of argument in Chapter 1, helps them begin to develop a personal style of argument in Chapter 2, and provides them with processes for reading and writing argument in Chapters 3 and 4. Writing assignments include the issue proposal, the argument style paper, the analysis of the rhetorical situation paper, the summary-response paper, and the exploratory paper.
Part Two: Understanding the Nature of Argument for Reading and Writing. This part identifies and explains the parts of an argument according to Stephen Toulmin's model of argument in Chapter 5, explains the types of claims and purposes for argument in Chapter 6, and presents the types of proofs along with clear examples and tests for validity in Chapter 7. Writing assignments include the Toulmin analysis and the position paper based on "'The Reader."
Part Three: Writing a Research Paper That Presents an Argument. This part teaches students to write a claim, clarify purpose, and analyze the audience in Chapter 8, to use various creative strategies for inventing ideas and gathering research materials in Chapter 9, and to organize, write, revise, and prepare the final manuscript for a researched position paper in Chapter 10. Methods for locating and using resource materials in the library and online are presented in Chapters 9 and 10. An Appendix to Chapter 10 provides full instruction for documenting sources using both MLA and APA styles.
Part Four: Further Applications: Rogerian Argument/Argument and Literature. This part explains Rogerian argument in Chapter 11 as an alternative to traditional argument and as an effective method for building common ground and resolving differences. Chapter 12 suggests ways to apply argument theory to reading and writing about literature. Writing assignments include Rogerian argument papers and papers about argument and literature. A summary exercise in the Appendix to Chapter 11 invites students to review and synthesize argument theory as they analyze and respond to a well-known classic argument.
Part Five: The Reader. This part is organized around the broad issues concerning families, education, crime and the treatment of criminals, computers, race and culture in America, genetic engineering, and social responsibility. Strategies and questions to help students explore issues and move from reading and discussion to writing are also included.THE INSTRUCTOR'S MANUAL AND COMPANION WEBSITE
In preparing the Instructor's Manual, my co-contributors and I have included chapter-by-chapter suggestions for using the book in both the traditional and the computer classroom. We have also included sample syllabi. Three instructors have written day-by-day teaching journals, in which they detail how they worked with this book in class and how the students responded. Also included in the manual are strategies for teaching students to use electronic databases, the Internet, and other resources for conducting online and library research. Another chapter suggests how student argument papers can be developed with the help of tutors in a writing center and by online MOOs and chat groups. A set of class handouts ready for photocopying is also provided. Copies of this manual may be obtained from your Prentice Hall representative.
A Companion Website for Perspectives on Argument can be accessed at (http://www.prenhall.com/wood). Beth Break is the author of this site.ACKNOWLEDGMENTS
My greatest debt is to my husband, James A. Wood, who has also taught and written about argument. He helped me work out my approach to argument by listening to me, by discussing my ideas, and by contributing ideas of his own. The process renewed my faith in peer groups and writing conferences. Most writers, I am convinced, profit from talking through their ideas with someone else. I was lucky to find someone so knowledgeable and generous with his time and insights.
I also owe a debt to the first-year English program at The University of Texas at Arlington. When I joined the department a few years ago, I found myself caught up in the ideas and controversies of this program. It provided me with much of the interest and motivation to write this book.
For the past several years, I have trained the graduate teaching assistants in our department who teach argument. An exceptionally alert group of these students volunteered to meet with me and recommend revisions for this third edition. They include Nicole Siek, Christine Flynn Cavanaugh, Vera Csorvasi, Martha Villagomez, Barbara Saurer, Sara Latham, Vannetta Causey, Donna Brown, Kody Lightfoot, Beth Brunk, and Chris Murray Graduate students, many of whom are now faculty members elsewhere, who have contributed recommendations for revisions in earlier editions and that remain a part of the third edition include Leslie Snow, Samantha Masterton, Lynn Atkinson, J. T. Martin, Kimberly Ellison, Corri Wells, Steve Harding, Barbara Chiarello, Collin G. Brooke, Tracy Bessire, Cheryl Brown, Matthew Levy, Alan Taylor, and Deborah Reese. I hope they will be pleased when they see that I have followed many of their suggestions for improvement. Many other graduate teaching assistants in our program have also taught with this book and have made useful recommendations and suggestions. I am grateful to them for their insight and enthusiasm.
I am also indebted to other colleagues and friends who have helped me with this book. The late James
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