Thursday, February 9, 2012


Question: How does one define “argument”?

Answer: An article on the many definitions of “argument” in textbooks, from opposition to trying to understand an issue without “winning.”

Comment: I would suggest that my readers find this article on argument as defined in a variety of textbooks and read it. The opening paragraph sets the stage for the “limitations” of argument. RayS.

Quote: “…Jennifer Bay’s 2002 response essay, ‘The Limits of Argument.’ Using the attacks o the World Trade Center as one striking and horrifying example, Bay laments: ‘While we teach students argument and vehemently defend its importance, argument fails. In the place of argument, wars are fought, violence committed, vengeance inflicted. For all our conviction about arguments and the ability of arguments to accomplish understanding and mediation, they often fail to enact
change….’ "

Title: “A Textbook Argument: Definitions of Argument in Leading Composition Textbooks.” AA Knoblauch. College Composition and Communication (December 2011), 244-268.

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