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Writing Arguments: A Rhetoric with Readings, Brief Edition / Edition 9

Writing Arguments: A Rhetoric with Readings, Brief Edition / Edition 9

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by John D. Ramage, John C. Bean, June Johnson

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ISBN-10: 0205171567

ISBN-13: 9780205171569

Pub. Date: 10/21/2011

Publisher: Longman

The market-leading guide to arguments, Writing Arguments, Brief edition, 9/e, has proven highly successful in teaching readers to read arguments critically and to produce effective arguments of their own. The text teaches how to write better arguments, and how to research for arguments.


The market-leading guide to arguments, Writing Arguments, Brief edition, 9/e, has proven highly successful in teaching readers to read arguments critically and to produce effective arguments of their own. The text teaches how to write better arguments, and how to research for arguments.

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Older Edition
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7.30(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.80(d)

Table of Contents



Part One Overview of Argument

1 Argument: An Introduction

What Do We Mean by Argument?

Argument Is Not a Fight or a Quarrel

Argument Is Not Pro-Con Debate

Arguments Can Be Explicit or Implicit

Louis W. Sullivan, M.D., “Let the Facts Decide, Not Fear: Ban AB 1108”

The Defining Features of Argument

Argument Requires Justification of Its Claims

Argument Is Both a Process and a Product

Argument Combines Truth Seeking and Persuasion

Argument and the Problem of Truth

A Successful Process of Argumentation: The Well-Functioning Committee

Gordon Adams (student), “Petition to Waive the University Mathematics Requirement”


2 Argument as Inquiry: Reading and Exploring

Finding Issues to Explore

Do Some Initial Brainstorming

Be Open to the Issues All around You

Explore Ideas by Freewriting

Explore Ideas by Idea Mapping

Explore Ideas by Playing the Believing and Doubting Game

Placing Texts in a Rhetorical Context

Genres of Argument

Cultural Contexts: Who Writes Arguments and Why?

Analyzing Rhetorical Context and Genre

Reading to Believe an Argument’s Claims

John Kavanaugh, “Amnesty?”

Summary Writing as a Way of Reading to Believe

Practicing Believing: Willing Your Own Belief in the Writer’s Views

Reading to Doubt

Thinking Dialectically

Questions to Stimulate Dialectic Thinking

Fred Reed, “Why Blame Mexico?”

Three Ways to Foster Dialectic Thinking


Writing Assignment: An Argument Summary or a Formal Exploratory Essay

Michael Banks (student), “Should the United States Grant Legal Status to Undocumented Immigrant Workers?”

Part Two Writing an Argument

3 The Core of an Argument: A Claim with Reasons

The Classical Structure of Argument

Classical Appeals and the Rhetorical Triangle

Issue Questions as the Origins of Argument

Difference between an Issue Question and an Information Question

How to Identify an Issue Question

Difference between a Genuine Argument and a Pseudo-Argument

Pseudo-Arguments: Fanatical Believers and Fanatical Skeptics

Another Source of Pseudo-Arguments: Lack of Shared Assumptions

Frame of an Argument: A Claim Supported by Reasons

What Is a Reason?

Expressing Reasons in Because Clauses


Writing Assignment: An Issue Question and Working Thesis Statements

4 The Logical Structure of Arguments

An Overview of Logos: What Do We Mean by the “Logical Structure” of an Argument?

Formal Logic versus Real-World Logic

The Role of Assumptions

The Core of an Argument: The Enthymeme

Adopting a Language for Describing Arguments: The Toulmin System

Using Toulmin’s Schema to Determine a Strategy of Support

The Power of Audience-Based Reasons

Difference between Writer-Based and Audience-Based Reasons


Writing Assignment: Plan of an Argument’s Details

5 Using Evidence Effectively

The Persuasive Use of Evidence

Apply the STAR Criteria to Evidence

Use Sources That Your Reader Trusts

Rhetorical Understanding of Evidence

Kinds of Evidence

Angle of Vision and the Selection and Framing of Evidence

Examining Visual Arguments: Angle of Vision

Rhetorical Strategies for Framing Evidence

Special Strategies for Framing Statistical Evidence

Gathering Evidence

Creating a Plan for Gathering Evidence

Gathering Data from Interviews

Gathering Data from Surveys or Questionnaires


Writing Assignment: A Microtheme or a Supporting-Reasons Argument

Carmen Tieu (student), “Why Violent Video Games Are Good for Girls”

6 Moving Your Audience: Ethos, Pathos, and Kairos

Ethos and Pathos as Persuasive Appeals: An Overview

How to Create an Effective Ethos: The Appeal to Credibility

How to Create Pathos: The Appeal to Beliefs and Emotions

Use Concrete Language

Use Specific Examples and Illustrations

Use Narratives

Use Words, Metaphors, and Analogies with Appropriate Connotations

Use Images for Emotional Appeal

Kairos: The Timeliness and Fitness of Arguments

Examining Visual Arguments: Logos, Ethos, Pathos, and Kairos

How Audience-Based Reasons Enhance Logos, Ethos, and Pathos


Writing Assignment: Revising a Draft for Ethos, Pathos, and Audience-Based Reasons

7 Responding to Objections and Alternative Views

One-Sided, Multisided, and Dialogic Arguments

Determining Your Audience’s Resistance to Your Views

Appealing to a Supportive Audience: One-Sided Argument

Appealing to a Neutral or Undecided Audience: Classical Argument

Summarizing Opposing Views

Refuting Opposing Views

Strategies for Rebutting Evidence

Conceding to Opposing Views

Example of a Student Essay Using Refutation Strategy

Marybeth Hamilton (student), From “First Place: A Healing School for Homeless Children”

Appealing to a Resistant Audience: Dialogic Argument

Delayed-Thesis Argument as Both Exploration and Persuasion

*Ross Douthat, “Islam in Two Americas”

Writing a Delayed Thesis Argument

A More Open Ended Approach: Rogerian Argument

Rogerian Argument as Growth for the Writer

Rogerian Argument as Collaborative Negotiation

Writing a Rogerian Argument

*Colleen Fontana, “An Open Letter to Robert Levy in Response to His Article ‘They Never Learn’”


Writing Assignment: A Classical Argument or a Rogerian Letter

David Langley (student), “‘Half-Criminals’ or Urban Athletes? A Plea for Fair Treatment of Skateboarders” (A Classical Argument)

Rebekah Taylor (student), “A Letter to Jim” (A Rogerian Argument)

Part Three Analyzing Arguments

8 Analyzing Arguments Rhetorically

Thinking Rhetorically about a Text

Questions for Rhetorical Analysis

An Illustration of Rhetorical Analysis

Kathryn Jean Lopez, “Egg Heads”

A Rhetorical Analysis of “Egg Heads”


Writing Assignment: A Rhetorical Analysis

Generating Ideas for Your Rhetorical Analysis

Organizing Your Rhetorical Analysis

Ellen Goodman, “Womb for Rent—For a Price”

Zachary Stumps (student), “A Rhetorical Analysis of Ellen Goodman’s ‘Womb For Rent—For a Price’”

9 Analyzing Visual Arguments

Understanding Design Elements in Visual Argument

Use of Type

Use of Space or Layout

An Analysis of a Visual Argument Using Type and Spatial Elements

Use of Color

Use of Images and Graphics

An Analysis of a Visual Argument Using All the Design Components

The Compositional Features of Photographs and Drawings

An Analysis of a Visual Argument Using Images

The Genres of Visual Argument

Posters and Fliers

Public Affairs Advocacy Advertisements


Web Pages

Constructing Your Own Visual Argument

Using Information Graphics in Arguments

How Tables Contain a Variety of Stories

Using a Graph to Tell a Story

Incorporating Graphics into Your Argument


Writing Assignment: A Visual Argument Rhetorical Analysis, a Visual Argument, or a Microtheme Using Quantitative Data

Part Four Arguments in Depth: Types of Claims

10 An Introduction to the Types of Claims

An Overview of the Types of Claims

Using Claim Types to Focus an Argument and Generate Ideas: An Example

Making the LASIK Argument to Parents

Making the LASIK Argument to Insurance Companies

Hybrid Arguments: How Claim Types Work Together in Arguments

Some Examples of Hybrid Arguments

An Extended Example of a Hybrid Argument

Aaron Friedman, “All That Noise for Nothing”

11 Definitional and Resemblance Arguments

An Overview of Definition or Resemblance Arguments

Consequences of Categorical Claims

The Rule of Justice: Things in the Same Category Should Be Treated the Same Way

Types of Definitional Arguments

Simple Categorical Arguments

Definitional Arguments

Examining Visual Arguments: A Definitional Claim

The Criteria—Match Structure of Definitional Arguments

Developing the Criteria-Match Structure for a Definitional Argument

Toulmin Framework for a Definitional Argument

Kinds of Definitions

Aristotelian Definitions

Operational Definitions

Conducting the Criteria Part of a Definitional Argument

Approach 1: Research How Others Have Defined the Term

Approach 2: Create Your Own Extended Definition

Conducting the Match Part of a Definitional Argument

Types of Resemblance Arguments

Toulmin Framework for a Resemblance Argument

Arguments by Analogy

Arguments by Precedent

Writing Assignment: A Definitional Argument

Exploring Ideas

Identifying Your Audience and Determining What’s at Stake

Organizing a Definitional Argument

Questioning and Critiquing a Definitional Argument

*Arthur Knopf (Student), “Is Milk a Health Food?”

Kathy Sullivan (student), “Oncore, Obscenity, and the Liquor Control Board”

Clay Bennett, “Just Emancipated” (editorial cartoon)

Beth Reis, “Toon Offensive”

12 Causal Arguments

An Overview of Causal Arguments

Kinds of Causal Arguments

Toulmin Framework for a Causal Argument

Two Methods for Arguing That One Event Causes Another

First Method: Explain the Causal Mechanism Directly

Examining Visual Arguments: A Causal Claim

Second Method: Infer Causal Links Using Inductive Reasoning

Glossary of Terms Encountered in Causal Arguments

Writing Assignment: A Causal Argument

Exploring Ideas

Identifying Your Audience and Determining What’s at Stake

Organizing a Causal Argument

Questioning and Critiquing a Causal Argument

Julee Christianson (student), “Why Lawrence Summers Was Wrong: Culture Rather Than Biology Explains the Underrepresentation of Women in Science and Mathematics” (APA-format research paper)

Olivia Judson, “Different but (Probably) Equal”

Carlos Macias (Student), “‘The Credit Card Company Made Me Do It!’—The Credit Card Industry’s Role in Causing Student Debt”

13 Evaluation and Ethical Arguments

An Overview of Evaluation Arguments

Criteria-Match Structure of Categorical Evaluations

Toulmin Framework for an Evaluation Argument

Constructing a Categorical Evaluation Argument

Developing Your Criteria

Making Your Match Argument

Examining Visual Arguments: An Evaluation Claim

An Overview of Ethical Arguments

Major Ethical Systems

Consequences as the Base of Ethics

Principles as the Base of Ethics

Constructing an Ethical Argument

Constructing a Principles-Based Argument

Constructing a Consequences-Based Argument

Common Problems in Making Evaluation Arguments

Writing Assignment: An Evaluation or Ethical Argument

Exploring Ideas

Identifying Your Audience and Determining What’s at Stake

Organizing an Evaluation Argument

Questioning and Critiquing a Categorical Evaluation Argument

Critiquing an Ethical Argument

Sam Isaacson (student), “Would Legalization of Gay Marriage Be Good for the Gay Community?”

*Christopher Moore (student), “Information Plus Satire”

*Adey Bryant, “Well, It Bloody Wasn’t There Last Year!” (editorial cartoon)

*Christian Longo, “Giving Life after Death Row”

*Kenneth Prager, “A Death Row Donation of Organs?”

14 Proposal Arguments

An Overview of Proposal Arguments

The Structure of Proposal Arguments

Toulmin Framework for a Proposal Argument

Special Concerns for Proposal Arguments

Developing a Proposal Argument

Convincing Your Readers That a Problem Exists

Showing the Specifics of Your Proposal

The Justification: Convincing Your Readers That Your Proposal Should Be Enacted

Proposal Arguments as Advocacy Posters or Advertisements

Using the Claim-Types Strategy to Develop a Proposal Argument

Using the “Stock Issues” Strategy to Develop a Proposal Argument

Examining Visual Arguments: A Proposal Claim

Writing Assignment: A Proposal Argument

Exploring Ideas

Identifying Your Audience and Determining What’s at Stake

Organizing a Proposal Argument

Designing a One-Page Advocacy Advertisement

Designing PowerPoint Slides or Other Visual Aids for a Speech

Questioning and Critiquing a Proposal Argument

*Megan Johnson (student), “A Proposal to Eliminate Gender Bias in Meal Plans”

Juan Vazquez (student), “Why the United States Should Adopt Nuclear Power” (MLA-format research paper)

Center for Children’s Health and the Environment, “More Kids Are Getting Brain Cancer. Why?” (advocacy ad)

*Sandy Wainscott (student), “Why MacDonalds Should Sell Meat and Veggie Pies” (speech with PowerPoint slides)

*Marcel Dicke and Arnold Van Huis, “The Six-Legged Meat of the Future”

Part 5 The Researched Argument

15 Finding and Evaluating Sources

Formulating a Research Question instead of a “Topic”

Thinking Rhetorically about Kinds of Sources

Degree of Editorial Review

Degree of Stability

Degree of Advocacy

Degree of Authority

Searching Libraries, Databases, and Web Sites

Checking Your Library’s Home Page

Finding Articles in Magazines, News Sources, and Scholarly Journals: Searching a Licensed Database

Finding Cyberspace Sources: Searching the World Wide Web

Evaluating Your Sources by Reading Rhetorically

Reading with Your Own Goals in Mind

Reading with Rhetorical Awareness

Taking Purposeful Notes

Evaluating Sources


16 Incorporating Souces into Your Own Argument

Using Sources for Your Own Purposes

Writer 1: A Causal Argument Showing Alternative Approaches to Reducing Risk of Alcoholism

Writer 2: A Proposal Argument Advocating Vegetarianism

Writer 3: An Evaluation Argument Looking Skeptically at Vegetarianism

Using Summary, Paraphrase, and Quotation




Quoting a Complete Sentence

Quoting Words and Phrases

Modifying a Quotation

Omitting Something from a Quoted Passage

Quoting Something that Contains a Quotation

Using a Block Quotation for a Long Passage

Creating Rhetorically Effective Attributive Tags

Attributive Tags versus Parenthetical Citations

Creating Attributive Tags to Shape Reader Response

Avoiding Plagiarism

Why Some Kinds of Plagiarism May Occur Unwittingly

Strategies for Avoiding Plagiarism

17 Citing and Documenting Sources

The Connection between In-text Citations and the End-of-Paper List of Cited Works

MLA Style

In-text Citations in MLA Style

When to Use Page Numbers in In-text Citations

Works Cited List in MLA Style

MLA Citation Models

MLA-Style Research Paper

APA Style

In-Text Citations in APA Style

References List in APA Style

APA Citation Models

APA-Style Research Paper


Appendix: Informal Fallacies

The Problem of Conclusiveness in an Argument

An Overview of Informal Fallacies

Fallacies of Pathos

Fallacies of Ethos

Fallacies of Logos



*new readings

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