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Understanding and Shaping Arguments
Clear thinking, critical listening, and careful analysis are vital to democratic discourse and to our civic, professional, and personal lives—in the arguments we make in face-to-face conversation as well as those we encounter in the mass media, social media, blogs, and Twitter.
This highly regarded textbook explores the skills that active citizens and professionals need to make and evaluate arguments effectively, with an emphasis on argument in a wide range of real-life contexts. Drawing on classical and contemporary theory and principles, Dr. Herrick explores the structure of arguments; relationships between reasons and conclusions; the criteria of evidence, validity, and definitional clarity; common types of arguments and fallacies; and issues of adapting arguments to audiences.
The new edition is updated to reflect recent theory, including expanded discussion of visual argument and evidence, and the issues that arise with the rapidly expanding use of Internet resources and digital media. Throughout the book, examples have also been carefully updated to reflect current events and public concerns.
focus on argument in students’ own lives, from personal and professional contexts to public and civic discourse
substantive, clear, and engaging explanations of major principles and guidelines
systematic, step-by-step approach to understanding and analyzing arguments
an emphasis on ethics and audience-centered argument
examples from a wide range of contemporary issues and contexts
FEATURES OF THE NEW EDITION
extensive updating of examples and exercises, reflecting current events, issues, and media
expanded discussion throughout of Internet resources and digital literacy, including a new section on public discourse in our era of social media, blogs, and Twitter (Chapter 3)
expanded discussion of visual evidence (Chapter 6) and visual arguments (Chapter 17)
expanded discussion of practical debate concepts and skills (Appendix A)
conversion of audience and analysis and policy debate chapters to appendixes for greater classroom flexibility
recommended web sites at the end of each chapter, providing additional resources for students
abundant exercises following each chapter
key terms at the beginning of each chapter and a glossary at the end of the book
epigrams, pull quotes, figures, and photos highlighting salient points and adding visual interest
photographs illustrating visual argument and evidence, and underscoring the pervasive role of argument in contemporary life
instructor’s manual with many additional exercises and teaching resources
COMMENTS FROM PROFESSORS
"The revisions are excellent. I appreciate the updated examples and treatment of the Internet as a tool."
Indiana University Southeast
COMMENTS ON PREVIOUS EDITIONS
"I particularly like the book’s tools for analyzing argument. I find students dog-ear this section as much as they do the fallacy chapter, and I refer to it constantly so that the students don’t fall back on their previous habit of forming their opinions without thinking about why they hold those opinions.”
Sam Houston State University
“Major strengths include the scanning and diagramming material.”
Concordia College, Moorhead
"This building-block process helps the students assimilate new cognitive processes more easily.”
M. I. Lauer
Western Illinois University
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
James A. Herrick is the Guy Vander Jagt Professor of Communication at Hope College. He received his B.A. from California State University, Fresno; his M.A. from the University of California, Davis; and his Ph.D. from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.
Professor Herrick regularly teaches courses in argumentation, rhetorical criticism, and the history of rhetoric. He has received the John and Ruth Reed Faculty Achievement Award for excellence in teaching and research.
Herrick is the author or editor of seven books, on topics ranging from the history of rhetoric to Enlightenment religious discourse. His co-edited collection of essays, After the Genome: A Language for our Biotechnological Future, received the edited volume of the year award from the Ethics Division of the National Communication Association in 2013.