Types of Argument

Types of Argument
Classical Argument:
Matters for deliberation are argued; that is, issues that have more than one potential
resolution. The speaker marshals evidence in part by knowing counter-positions.
The speaker attempts to demonstrate superior reasoning by clear logic and excellent
support. The speaker demolishes opponent’s position by superiority.
Five Canons of Rhetoric (From Cicero)
Invention-84 BC- defined invention as the “discovery of valid arguments to render one’s
cause probable.” Methods to help invention are brainstorming, nut shelling, and graphic
organizers. In journalism, a nut graph is a paragraph, particularly in a feature story, that
explains the news value of the story. It is a contraction of the expression "in a nutshell"
Arrangement like flowers, writer gets to decide. Classical writers used a house
metaphor. For your opening, walk into portico. Get into main idea, open door to
threshold. Pause or transition and enter dining room. Look at various courses in dining
room. These are bits of evidence. Wash your dishes, say eloquent good bye and depart.
Logic is one arrangement of ideas-from general to specific.
Syllogism-all men are mortal, Socrates is a man, Socrates is mortal.
Universally accepted and true so conclusion is inevitable. The sun rises everyday. This is
Tuesday. The sun rose Tuesday. Bad rhetoric gathers support while leaving out major
premise. Kate is a woman, of course she is wise. The premise all women are wise is
missing. Major premise is arguable.
Enthymeme is a syllogism with one of the major premises left out.
Introduction-exordium weaves the web
Narration-what leads to position
Partition-angles or perspectives for deliberation on issue
Confirmation-evidence for position
Confutation-other side’s less informed position
Peroration-final rhetorical move to assure audience of superiority Arrangement:
Introduction establishes connection
Narration of how speaker came to position.
Fair statement of position and possible outcomes.
Fair statement of opposing position and possible outcomes, as well as potential
opportunities and limitations.
Conclusion: rationale for adopting at least some part of a speaker’s position.
Style –ornamentation or plain? Addition of figurative language; not added on but
intricately a part of the meaning.
Memory-memorize; know by heart
Delivery-How something is physically presented.
Rogerian Persuasion:
Matters of deep disagreement or conflict are probed; that is, issues that have a history of
lack of resolution. Or, a speaker feels that audience may be hostile to position.
The speaker uses evidence and experience to explain position. The speaker attempts to
move to action through mediation.
Fallacies-Gaps in logic
Ad hominem-the argument “to the man” rather than to the idea. Argues personality. He
can’t do a good job in office because he is a Catholic.
Bandwagon-the argument for group think. Everybody else get to. If it’s popular it must
be correct.
Non sequiter-an argument that does not follow from the premises advanced. It’s raining
on her wedding day so the marriage doesn’t have a chance.
Hasty generalizations-an argument that depends on thoughtlessness, too quick
judgments from speaker and audience. The enemy is building up weapons, we must
declare war now.
Beg the Question-Get a job (to a protestor for peace) An argument that assumes a
premise rather than proves it; We’re ready to fight because we’re Americans.
Slippery Slope-an argument that suggests that one action will necessarily occasion
another. When you don’t have Direct TV you get mad; when you get mad you play war
games with Charlie Sheen. False cause and effect; no logic or evidence.
Straw Man-create an argument you can easily knock down. Gas may be expensive, but
beans are cheap.
Red Herring- throw off from the subject. No, I don’t know anything about the Middle
East, but look how cute my shoes are.
Mud Slinging- irrelevant but may be true. He only reads trashy novels, so he can’t be