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This text introduces students to fundamental principles of argumentation and critical thinking and teaches them that argument is a part of everyday life. It draws on everyday experiences and examples to demonstrate principles of logic, forms of reasoning, propositions and stock issues, evidence, language, and refutation. It also addresses the use of the principles in contexts such as public communication, dyadic argumentation, and small group settings.
Part 1: INTRODUCTORY CONCEPTS.
2. Critical Thinking.
3. Ethics in Argumentation.
4. Introduction to Argumentative Fallacies.
Part 2: CREATING ARGUMENTS.
5. Formal Logic: The Classical Structure of Arguments.
6. The Toulmin Model of Argumentation.
7. Forms of Reasoning.
8. Propositions and Stock Issues.
10. Language and Argumentation.
Part 3: CONTEXTS AND APPLICATIONS.
12. Persuasive Public Speaking.
13: Critical Listening.
14. Dyadic Argumentation.
15. Argumentation and Small Groups.
16. The Scientific Method and Critical Thinking.
Appendix: Secretary of State Colin Powell's Speech to the United Nations Security Council, February 5, 2003.
Glossary of Common Informal Fallacies.
Glossary of Key Concepts.
"VerLinden invites students to explore a world of argumentation and persuasion in which they are already living--to identify potential fallacies, to enhance critical thinking skills and to ultimately defend a position with improved language, logic and evidence."
"I would describe this text to a colleague as a student-centered, engaging text offering scholars of argumentation a stimulating work for undergraduate course in argumentation and critical thinking. CRITICAL THINKING AND EVERYDAY ARGUMENT boasts the clarity and reasoned approach of its subject. The text is attentive to its audience without sacrificing the intellectual rigor of its subject matter."
"The book simplifies theories of argumentation and critical thinking so that students should find these ideas easy to use in the construction, interpretation, and evaluation of everyday arguments. The book does a particularly good job of illustrating how the principles apply to arguments in interpersonal conflicts and small group decisions."
"I think your author is to be praised for seeking to write a text that accommodates what are often competing strands--instructing students in the pursuit of sound, logical, and reasonable arguments, while simultaneously directing them to participate in a cooperative spirit and exercise rhetorical/contextual sensitivity. He seems to communicate very well that arguing isn’t about diagrams on a page, but is, rather, about human beings bringing their best ideas to the table in the hopes that we can act in ways that serve us well."
"I like the fact that the text moves away from formal debate and toward an inclusive view of argument. Students will be much more interested in a text that sees argument as a natural part of their lives. Very few of our students will ever engage in a formal debate."
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