|Prof. Michael Kagan
||Office Hours in RH-436
|PHL 312-01, An Introduction to
|Logic and Critical Thinking
|| and by appointment.
|Syllabus for Spring 2005
COURSE OBJECTIVE The
main aim of this course is to help students to:
- develop their abilities to
detect and defend
deceptive arguments and attempts to persuade;
- evaluate arguments and
attempts to persuade
- construct better arguments
of their own.
- Dale Carnegie, How
to Win Friends and Influence
in many editions).
- Gavin de Becker. The
Gift of Fear
- Deborah Tannen, Talking from 9 to 5
(1994, Quill/HarperCollins edition).
- Michael Kagan.
Working draft chapters from
Logic as a Martial Art," photocopy (2001; revised and expanded, 2004)
referred to as ILMA in assignments). These will be made available
in class, at the department's cost of making photocopies.
- H. Anthony Medley.
Art of Being Interviewed, revised edition (Ten Speed Press,
1992). This book is not available from the campus store, as it
is between editions (the next is supposed to be available in May,
2005. You should be able to get a good copy of the 1992 edition
from one of the internet booksellers. One copy has been
placed on reserve in the library.
- I also recommend you
buy a copy of Elgin's The
Gentle Art of Verbal Self-Defense and her Genderspeak: Men, Women, and the
Gentle Art of Verbal Self-Defense, which I will also put on reserve
in the library.
OPTIONAL TEXTS AND READINGS
- Amdur, Ellis. Dueling
the Myth of the Warrior Sage. Available from www.ellisamdur.com.
- Nicholas Capaldi. The
Art of Deception,
Buffalo, New York: Prometheus Books, 1979 [new revised edition, 1987].
- Robert B. Cialdini. Influence:
Psychology of Modern
Persuasion, revised edition. New York: Quill, 1991.
- Suzette Haden Elgin. The
Gentle Art of
First published in the USA by Prentice-Hall in 1980.
- Suzette Haden Elgin, Genderspeak:
Women, and the
Gentle Art of Verbal Self-Defense (John Wiley & Sons, Inc.,
- Darrell Huff. How to
Lie with Statistics
by Irving Geis). New York: W. W. Norton & Company, Inc., 1954.
- R.H. Johnson and J.A.
second edition. Toronto: McGraw-Hill Ryerson Limited, 1983.
- Michael Kagan. Educating
Heroes. Durango, Colorado:
- Machiavelli. The
Prince and The Discourses,
with an introduction by Max Lerner. Modern Library College Edition. New
York: Random House Modern Library Edition, 1950 (available in many
- Miyamoto Musashi. A
Book of Five Rings,
by Victor Harris. Woodstock, New York: The Overlook Press, 1974.
- Sun Tzu. The Art of
War, edited with a
James Clavell. New York: Delacourte Press, 1983.
- Carl Wellman. Challenge
Ethics. Carbondale and Edwardsville: Southern Illinois University
- Anthony Weston, A
Rulebook For Arguments,
- We will introduce and
examine the techniques of
logic as answers to the general question, "When ought one accept a
conclusion on the basis of argument?" To do this, we will consider the
classical sources of logic in the analysis of debates, and what is now
called "informal logic." This will be the focus of the earlier lectures
and the readings.
- We will apply these
skills to attempts at
to general audiences as well as to other encounters. A major
of our study will be defense against fallacies and frequently used
of attack and illegitimate persuasion. We will consider these
as used in a wide variety of fields (psychology, ethics, politics, and
advertising among them) as well as in our own argument experiences.
will be required to find examples of arguments addressed to the public,
and to relate or create examples of their own debates on issues of
EVALUATIONS AND REQUIREMENTS
Grading is done
scale: 94-100 = A RANGE; 90-93 = A-; 87-89 = B+ ; 84-86=B;
C (70-79) and D (60-69) ranges are subdivided like the B range. Failure
to complete any of (1)-(4) can result in a failing grade. Plagiarism
result in a failing grade.
- In-class exam, Friday, April 15 (25%)
- Final Project and its
PROJECTS DUE: Mon., Apr. 18;
presentations begin ) (25%)
- Seven short writing
- Participation, in-class
writings, optional writings
credit assignments (25%). Since you are not participating
you don't attend class, you will need to make up any absences with
assignments and journaling.
Students are expected to be familiar with
in the lectures, discussions, and the required text.
Final Projects and other assignments will be
on the basis of each student's goals. Possibilities include the
This version of the final project
consists of a
presentation and analysis of both sides of a debate on some
moral, political, religious, philosophical or other issue (please check
with the instructor). This presentation may take a variety of forms.
example, the student may write a dialogue or story presenting arguments
for both sides of an issue, or comment on and analyze a series of
to the editor or editorials on the chosen issue. If the argument is
[e.g., from the editorial page], the student will be obliged to show
the weaker arguments might be strengthened. If a clear loser emerges in
the debate, the grade will be weighted in terms of the performance of
loser [as augmented by the student's suggestions for improvements in
case of a presented debate].
- A report or creation of
a dialogue between the
another person containing an argument, with the student's analysis and
- An investigation of how
some aspect(s) of race,
class, gender and/or religion may affect some range or type of
- Students may
present and analyze an argument
to a general audience.
- The final project
In coordination with
Academic Support Center (ASC), reasonable accommodations are
for qualified students with disabilities. Please register with the ASC
Office for disability verification and determination of reasonable
After receiving your accommodation form from the ASC, you will need to
make an appointment with me to review the form and discuss your needs.
Please make every attempt to meet with me within the first week of
so your accommodations can be provided in a timely manner. You can
stop by the ASC, Library, 1st floor, or call (445-4118-voice or
to make an appointment.
PRESENTATIONS: For every presentation, you will be required to
in an outline or abstract of your presentation,
complete with a list
of all works used. Also, if you use any web pages, not only
these be listed on the outline with the rest of your bibliography, but
you are also required to turn in a printout of all web pages used in
the presentation. If your group divides the work into separate
each member of the group will need to provide his or her own
and printouts. Outlines/abstracts, and printouts are to be
given to me BEFORE the presentation.
You may use up
to but not more than 5 minutes of videotaped material for your
the class is meeting in a room with a built-in VCR, make sure you know
how to use it. If you need to bring in a VCR or a computer for
presentation, you may order one from AV by calling 445-4380 or on the
In the event of a
glitch or delivery problem make sure you can present without the
(e.g., PowerPoint) or videotaped material.
No classes on the following dates: Mon., Jan. 17 (Martin Luther King,
Jr. Day), Mon, Feb. 21 (President's Day), Wed. Mar. 23 (instructor attending conference), Mar 24-27
(Easter Break), Mar. 28-April 3 (Spring Break).
PROJECT PROPOSALS DUE Fri., Feb.
25. WRITTEN PROJECTS DUE: Mon., Apr. 18.
LAST DAY OF CLASS - May 6.
TENTATIVE COURSE SCHEDULE AND
divided into 15 weekly divisions; assignments are due as indicated:
- Week #1 (of Wed., Jan. 19)
Formal and informal logic, classical and medieval origins, the nature
dialogues, possible uses, philosophical importance. Informal logic as
basic principles. What is an Argument? What is persuasion?
persuasion and attacks.
Required reading: ILMA, Ch. 1. Be
exercises. Preliminary discussion of the three basics of audience,
- Weeks #2 & 3
(of (Mon., Jan.
24 and Mon. Jan. 31) Short writing assignment #1 is
the ESSAY DUE MONDAY JAN. 31, ON YOUR GOALS FOR THIS COURSE. Turn in
copies so I have one available for the end of semester evaluation.
(Note, if your goals change as a result of what you learn during the
course of this semester, this will NOT in itself hurt your grade - it
may even reflect the kind of progress that could help you accomplish
more in the course).
Look over the materials for the course, consider your goals.
why you want to achieve them, how you intend to achieve them, and
how this class can help you towards them (or how your work for
class could be modified to help you towards them).
Read ILMA, Ch. 2 and Ch. 3. Be prepared
Goals and training. Discussion of the method of training: the
between formal exercises, free exercises, competition, and contests
more severe stakes. "What is an Argument?" (continued): premises,
and enthymemes; implication and inference; induction, conduction, and
validity, soundness and truth; persuasion and conviction. Basic
in evaluating arguments. Is there an argument? Who is the audience? Who
the proponent? Is an attack involved? What is the field or subject? The
tactics of the Topics.
- Week #4 (of Mon., Feb. 7)
"When and how do we challenge arguments?" The basics: Is there an
Knowing your opponent, knowing the field or subject, knowing
The issue of emergencies and when not to challenge.
Sun Tzu and Musashi. Detecting and defending against fallacy. What is a
fallacy? Read ILMA, Ch. 4. Be prepared to discuss exercises. You
should have started reading Gift of Fear and Sweaty Palms.
writing assignment #2 due Friday: How do Sun Tzu's three kinds of
knowledge apply to the work of Medley and de Becker? Extra credit
assignment: How might they bear on some of the tasks of the
and how might they be irrelevant or interfere with doing philosophy?
- Week #5 (of Mon., Feb. 14) Diversionary
tactics and how to reply. Ad hominem fallacies, types and tactics.
tactics continued. Fallacies of straw, guilt by association, red
Read ILMA, Ch. 5. Read de Becker through ch. 4. Be
to discuss exercises. Short writing assignment #3 due
In what ways do these diversionary tactics resemble de Becker's list of
criminals' confidence techniques (forced teaming, too many details,
casting, etc.)? How do they differ?
Feb. 21. No class - President's Day.
- Week #6 (of Wed., Feb. 23) Disguise
and deception. Read ILMA, Ch. 6, disguise and deception: masks,
misrepresentation, and secret writing. Be prepared to
discuss exercises. Read de Becker, ch. 5, and Medley, Chs. 5-7.
reading: Huff, Chapter 8, "Post Hoc Rides Again," pp. 87-99; and
The Prince, Chapter XVIII, "In What Way Princes Must Keep Faith."
and deception continued. Optional reading: Machiavelli, The Discourses,
Chapter XL, "Deceit in the Conduct of a War is Meritorious," and
XLVIII, "Any Manifest Error on the Part of an Enemy Should Make us
some Stratagem." Short writing assignment #4 due February 25:
On the basis of your experience, including other studies, and the
readings in this course, write a 2-3 page essay on plagiarism and
how it can be understood in the context of a persuasion situation.
- PROJECT PROPOSALS DUE Fri., Feb.
- Week #7 (of Mon., Feb. 28) Fakes
and feints. Loaded terms, ambiguity, equivocation,
vagueness. Read ILMA, Chapter 7, "Oldies but Goodies: Equivocation and
some other Appealing Strategies." Be prepared to discuss
Bluffs and threats. Read Medley, Ch. 10, and de Becker, Chs. 6
7. Short writing assignment #5 due Friday, Mar.
Discuss three kinds of intimidation from the readings. Try to
what they presuppose, and what you can learn from them.
- Week #8 (of Mon., Mar. 7) Fallacies
in retrospect. Why do fallacies work? Optional Readings:
Weston, Ch. X. "Fallacies," JB, Chapter 7, "The
of Fallacious Reasoning"; and Cialdini, "Epilogue."
Other techniques of the classical
of memory; these techniques applied to test taking and public debate.
#9 & 10 ((Mon.,
Mar. 14 and Mon., Mar . 21).
Introductory Lectures on Carnegie and Tannen. Read all of Carnegie and
read Tannen's chs. 1-4. Gender
informal logic as a martial art. Wing Chun, Ng Mui, Brurria. Optional
reading, Genderspeak Chs.
1-2. Gender, semantics, and body language. Optional
assignment: read Genderspeak Chs. 3-4.
- No classes Wed. Mar. 23 (instructor attending conference), Mar 24-27
(Easter Break), Mar. 28-April 3 (Spring Break).
- Week #11 (of Mon.,
Of rank, status, and power. Read Tannen, chs. 5-7. Elgin's
basic forms, Satir modes and defusing hostility; sensory modes
and enhancing communication. Optional Genderspeak, Chs.
- Week #12: (of Mon.
Metaphors and traffic - the healthy conversation and how it works
and. Verbal abuse and violence, the problem
of sexual harassment. Read Tannen, Ch. 8, (optional reading from
Elgin, Chs. 8-11). Read Medley,
ch. 11. Read and print a copy of the executive summary of
Moyne's policy (http://www.lemoyne.edu/campus_services/human_resources/executiv.htm_).
writing #6 due Friday, April 15: What do these discussions
in common? How do they differ? Which is most valuable to
- In-class exam, Friday,
- Week 13 (of Mon. Apr.
Who gets heard, conversational styles, spatio-temporal breakdowns in
communication - inside and out. Bridge building.
Read Tannen ch. 9. Optional assignment, read Genderspeak,
Chs. 12-14. Review Carnegie. Discussion: What do
Tannen, Carnegie and Elgin teach us about informal logic as
self-defense? How can
we practice what we have learned?
(Wed., April 20 - Wed., May 4) Student presentations on
will take about 15-20 minutes per student, depending on the number of
presenting. Students who are unable to do their individual
at the scheduled time will need to schedule a make-up presentation.
- Optional short
#i due Fri., Apr. 22: List the five assigned texts. Give a
brief description of each one. What do you think each author
is the most important issue s/he presents? Why? (Make an extra
of this if you want to do next week's optional assignment.)
assignment #ii due Fri., Apr 29. Of the issues discussed in
the texts, and in student presentations (so far, including your own),
do you think is the most important thing you learned in this
- Short writing
#7 due Mon., May 2: What progress have you made with respect to
the goals you described in the first short writing assignment?
May 6. Last day of class.
MAKE-UP PRESENTATIONS: LAST DAY OF CLASS.. Final
Evaluations, if they have not already been distributed.
- As time
permits: An extra lecture on the use of stories in arguments,
some connections between rhetoric and poetics. Evaluations
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