How can you be reasonable in an unreasonable world? In this comprehensive guide, tech philosopher Tom Chatfield offers an answer to this question, with thinking concepts crucial for both students and professionals. Particularly useful to future academics, the workbook format keeps the material engaging and relevant. Using real-world examples with corresponding exercises, Chatfield makes complicated theories accessible. He’ll help you learn how to critically evaluate information and challenge you to build solid arguments, while also providing guidance in attention management and digital engagement.
Recognizing an argument is the first step in learning to reason.
An argument is basically a claim backed by justification. When people present an argument, they are trying to persuade you to agree with their opinion by providing you with their reasoning. Once you recognize the reasoning behind their statement and the conclusion they have drawn, you can begin to assess the argument. This means considering other arguments on the topic, deciding if they have supported their assertions and perhaps engaging in debate to change their – or your – opinion.Persuasion using emotional appeals, rather than reasoning, is not an argument, nor are mere descriptions or explanations.
To reconstruct someone’s argument, identify the premises that support their conclusion and clearly verbalize the person’s assumptions. This ensures you have fully comprehended the argument. Identifying these things will allow you to spot extraneous information that may have obscured important facts and led to flawed conclusions.
Even if you believe your counterpart’s opinion is wrong, deal with the person’s argument in the most charitable way, ensuring that you find the strongest points...