Download A Rulebook for Arguments (4th Edition) by Anthony Weston PDF

By Anthony Weston

A Rulebook for Arguments is a succinct advent to the artwork of writing and assessing arguments, equipped round particular ideas, every one illustrated and defined soundly yet in brief. This generally well known primer - translated into 8 languages - is still the 1st selection in all disciplines for writers who search common advice approximately the right way to verify arguments and the way to cogently build them.

The fourth variation deals a made over and extra tightly targeted method of prolonged arguments, a brand new bankruptcy on oral arguments, and up to date examples and issues all through.

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Extra info for A Rulebook for Arguments (4th Edition)

Example text

The “Yes” version may still be weak (Rule 11 returns to it), but it certainly gives you much more to chew on, so to speak, than the “No” version. In a generalization about a small set of things, the strongest argument should consider all, or at least many, of the examples. A generalization about your siblings should consider each of them in turn, for instance, and a generalization about all the planets in the solar system can do the same. Generalizations about larger sets of things require picking out a sample.

Ask whether their conclusions might have to be revised and limited, or rethought in more subtle and complex directions. The same rules apply both to others’ arguments and to yours. The only difference is that you have a chance to correct your overgeneralizations yourself. III Arguments by Analogy There is an exception to Rule 7 (“Use more than one example”). Arguments by analogy, rather than multiplying examples to support a generalization, argue from one specific example to another, reasoning that because the two examples are alike in many ways, they are also alike in one further specific way.

Libraries have at least some checks on the reliability of the books and other materials they collect. Reputable publishers consult the community of experts before presenting any views as expert. Some publishers are even renowned for employing offices of fact-checkers. But on the Web anyone can say anything whatsoever, and with a little skill or money even the flimsiest opinion site can be dressed up to look sober-minded and professional. There are very few checks on the content of Web sites—often no checks at all.

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