Dialogues : An Argument Rhetoric and Reader

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  • Edition: 7th
  • Format: Paperback
  • Copyright: 2010-10-18
  • Publisher: Longman
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Dialogues presents argument not as a battle to be won, but as a process of debate and deliberation --the exchange of opinions and ideas-- among people with different values and perspectives.

Table of Contents



PART ONE Strategies for Reading and Writing Arguments


CHAPTER 1 Understanding Persuasion: Thinking Like a Negotiator


What Makes an Argument

The Uses of Argument


Moving from Debate to Dialogue



    Deborah Tannen, “Taking a ‘War of Words’ Too Literally”

Sample Arguments for Analysis

    Michael Lewis, “The Case Against Tipping”

    Paula Broadwell, "Women Soldiers Crucial to US Mission"


CHAPTER 2 Reading Arguments: Thinking Like a Critic

Why Read Critically?

Preview the Reading

Skim the Reading

Sample Arguments for Analysis

    Henry Wechsler, “Binge Drinking Must Be Stopped”

Consider Your Own Experience

Annotate the Reading

Summarize the Reading

Analyze and Evaluate the Reading

Argue with the Reading

Create a Debate and Dialogue Between Two or More Readings

Sample Arguments for Analysis

    Fromma Harrop, “Stop Babysitting College Students” (student essay)

Construct a Debate

Sample Arguments for Analysis

    Kathryn Stewart and Corina Sole, “Letter to the Editor” from the Washington Post

    James C. Carter, S. J., “Letter to the Editor” from the Times-Picayune

Deliberate About the Readings

Look for Logical Fallacies


CHAPTER 3 Finding Arguments: Thinking Like a Writer

The Writing Process

Finding Topics to Argue

Developing Argumentative Topics

Finding Ideas Worth Writing About

Refining Topics

Sample Arguments for Analysis

    Stephanie Bower, “What’s the Rush? Speed Yields Mediocrity in Local Television News” (student essay)


CHAPTER 4 Addressing Audiences: Thinking Like a Reader

The Target Audience

The General Audience

Guidelines for Knowing Your Audience

Adapting to Your Readers’ Attitudes

Sample Arguments for Analysis

Derrick Jackson, "Let's Ban All Flavors of Cigarettes"

Gio Batta Gori, "The Bogus 'Science' of Secondhand Smoke"

    Danise Cavallaro, “Smoking: Offended by the Numbers” (student essay)

Choosing Your Words


CHAPTER 5 Shaping Arguments: Thinking Like an Architect

Components of an Argument

Sample Arguments for Analysis

    Clara Spotted Elk, “Indian Bones”

Analyzing the Structure

Sample Arguments for Analysis

    Ron Karpati, “I Am the Enemy”

Analyzing the Structure

Two Basic Types for Arguments

Position Arguments

Sample Position Arguments for Analysis

    Sean Flynn, “Is Anything Private Anymore?”

Analysis of a Sample Position Argument

Proposal Arguments

Sample Proposal Arguments for Analysis

    Amanda Collins, “Bring East Bridgewater Elementary into the World” (student essay)

Analyzing the Structure

Narrative Arguments

Sample Narrative Arguments

    Jerry Fensterman, “I See Why Others Choose to Die”

Analyzing the Structure

Analyzing the Narrative Features


CHAPTER 6 Using Evidence: Thinking Like an Advocate

How Much Evidence is Enough?

Why Arguments Need Supporting Evidence

Forms of Evidence

   Kari Peterson, “The Statistic Speaks: A Real Person's Argument for Universal Healthcare” (student essay)

Different Interpretations of Evidence

    S. Fred Singer, “The Great Global Warming Swindle”

Some Tips About Supporting Evidence

Sample Arguments for Analysis

    Arthur Allen, “Prayer in Prison: Religion as Rehabilitation”


CHAPTER 7 Establishing Claims: Thinking Like a Skeptic

The Toulmin Model

Toulmin’s Terms

Finding Warrants

Sample Arguments for Analysis

    Steven Pinker, “Why They Kill Their Newborns”

An Analysis Based on the Toulmin Model

    Michael Kelly, “Arguing for Infanticide”

Sample Student Argument for Analysis

    Lowell Putnam, “Did I Miss Something?” (student essay)


CHAPTER 8 Using Visual Arguments: Thinking Like an Illustrator

Common Forms of Visual Arguments

Analyzing Visual Arguments


    Pablo Picasso’s Guernica

    Norman Rockwell’s Freedom of Speech


    Sample Ads for Analysis

    Toyota Prius Ad

    Fresh Step Cat Litter

    Victoria’s Dirty Secret 

Editorial or Political Cartoons

    Mike Luckovich's "Let's Be Responsible" Cartoon

    Pat Bagley’s “Back in Aught-Five ...” Cartoon

    Daryl Cagle’s “I Hate Them” Cartoon

News Photographs

Ancillary Graphics: Tables, Charts, and Graphs

Sample Student Argument for Analysis

    Lee Innes, “A Double Standard of Olympic Proportions” (student essay)


CHAPTER 9 Researching Arguments: Thinking Like an Investigator

Sources of Information

A Search Strategy

Sample Entries for an Annotated Bibliography

Locating Sources

Evaluating Sources

Taking Notes

Drafting Your Paper

Revising and Editing Your Paper

Preparing and Proofreading Your Final Manuscript




Where Does the Documentation Go?

Documentation Style

A Brief Guide to MLA and APA Styles


    Shannon O’Neill, “Literature Hacked and Torn Apart: Censorship in Public Schools” (MLA) (student essay)

    Dan Hoskins, "Tapped Out: Bottled Water's Detrimental Side" (APA) (student essay)


PART TWO    Essays and Readings          


CHAPTER 10: Advertising and Consumerism     


Targeting a New World  

Joseph Turow

“With budgets that add up to hundreds of billions of dollars, the [advertising] industry exceeds the church and the school in its ability to promote images about our place in society–where we belong, why, and how we should act toward others.”


Which One of These Sneakers Is Me?

Doug Rushkoff

“The battle in which our children are engaged seems to pass beneath our radar screens, in a language we don’t understand. But we see the confusion and despair that results. How did we get in this predicament, and is there a way out?”


Branded World: The Success of the Nike Logo

Michael Levine

“How did Nike transform the category of sports footwear into the massive $14 billion business it is today? And how did it manage to grab an astounding 45 percent of the market by the year 2000.”


The $100 Christmas

Bill McKibben

A small revolt takes hold in the author’s New England hometown when a local minister proposes families celebrate a “$100 holiday.”




Spent: America After Consumerism

Amitai Etzioni  

"A culture in which the urge to consume dominates the psychology of citizens is a culture in which people will do most anything to acquire the means to consume…they will buy homes beyond their means and think nothing of running up credit-card debt."


The Design Imperative

Robert Horning

"Thanks to this 'variety revolution,' once mundane products like toilet brushes, spatulas, and ice cube trays are now complemented by design so flamboyant that it’s unmistakable even to the untrained consumer’s eye, affording them an a-ha moment in which they can think to themselves, with some satisfaction, 'Wow, that toilet brush is cool.'”


With These Words, I Can Sell You Anything

William Lutz

“Advertisers use weasel words to appear to be making a claim for a product when in fact they are making no claim at all.”


The Language of Advertising

Charles A. O’Neill

“The language of advertising is a language of finely engineered, ruthlessly purposeful messages.”


Sample Ads and Study Questions


CHAPTER 11:  Gender Matters


Saplings in the Storm

Mary Pipher

“Something dramatic happens to girls in early adolescence. Just as planes and ships disappear mysteriously into the Bermuda Triangle, so do the selves of girls go down in droves. They crash and burn in a social and developmental Bermuda Triangle.”


The Bully in the Mirror

Stephen S. Hall

“Tormented by an unattainable ideal, boys are learning what girls have long known: it isn’t easy living in a Baywatch world.”




 What I Think About the Fashion World

Liz Jones

“We decided to publish two covers for the same edition [of Marie Claire]–one featuring Sophie Dahl, a size 12; the other, Pamela Anderson, a minute size 6–and we asked readers to chose . . . You would think that we had declared war.”


Man-Child in the Promised Land Kay Hymowitz

"Not so long ago, the average mid-twentysomething had achieved most of adulthood’s milestones–high school degree, financial independence, marriage, and children. These days, he lingers–happily–in a new hybrid state of semi-hormonal adolescence and responsible self-reliance."


In the Combat Zone

Leslie Marmon Silko

“It isn’t height or weight or strength that makes women easy targets; from infancy women are taught to be self-sacrificing, passive victims.”


Where the Boys Aren’t

Melana Zyla Vickers

Here's a thought that's unlikely to occur to twelfth--grade girls as their college acceptances begin to trickle in: After they get to campus in the fall, one in four of them will be mathematically unable to find a male peer to go out with.


READING THE VISUAL: Don Reilly's "Asking for Directions" Cartoon 


And May your First Child Be a Feminine Child 

Aaron Traister

"My buddies ribbed me about having a yucky girl baby. One friend went so far as to assure me my wife and I would only have girl babies for future pregnancies as well. It would be a plague on my house. When it turned out the curse had been lifted -- or, more precisely, that it never existed -- I admit: I crowed."


The Men We Carry in Our Minds

Scott Russell Sanders

"When the women I met at college thought about the joys and privileges of men, they did not carry in their minds the sort of men I had known in my childhood."


Chapter 12             Church and State


The Wall That Never Was  

Hugh Heclo

"A hundred years ago, advanced thinkers were all but unanimous in dismissing religion as a relic of mankind’s mental infancy. What’s being dismissed today is the idea that humanity will outgrow religion.”


Why We’re Not One Nation “Under God”

David Greenberg

“Since the founding, critics of America’s secularism have repeatedly sought to break down the church-state wall.”


READING THE VISUAL: Rob Rogers' "C hurch and State"  Cartoon


God of Our Fathers  

Walter Isaacson

"Whenever an argument arises about the role that religion should play in our civic life, such as the dispute over the phrase ‘under God’ in the Pledge of Allegiance... assertions about the faith of the founders are invariably bandied about.”


Public Prayers on State Occasions Need Not Be Divisive or Generic

Charles Haynes

“Since it’s difficult to imagine any... president eliminating the tradition of opening and closing the inauguration with prayer, is there a way to pray that is genuine and yet somehow speaks to our nation’s expanding diversity?”


READING THE VISUAL: Church and State 


What Happy Holidays?

Cathy Young

“Peace on Earth? Forget it. Nowadays, Christmas is a battle in the culture wars.”


Deck the Halls?

Bridget Samburg

“The tension that we face is a larger tension about what the relationship of religion and state should be in America. We agree that the notion of a triumphant Christianity in society or in the classroom is inappropriate.”


End the War on Christmas

Edward Grinnan

"To proclaim the existence of a war on Christmas and then start fighting it, on both sides, is odious, whether it's an atheist taking umbrage over an innocuous nativity display or a Christian intolerant of any homogenization of the season."


Prayer and Creationism -- Met with Supreme Hostility

Stuart Taylor Jr.

"It may now be unconstitutional for a public school teacher or student leader to recite the Pledge of Allegiance in class. Or at a football game. Or at a graduation. Or to recite the Declaration of Independence. Or to sing the national anthem."


A New Theology of Celebration

Francis S. Collins

“As one of a large number of scientists who believe in God, I find it deeply troubling to watch the escalating culture wars between science and faith, especially in America.”


Chapter 13             University Life


Diversity: The Value of Discomfort

Ronald D. Liebowitz

"It is no longer adequate to understand only one’s own culture.... To succeed in the 21st century you need to be multi-cultural, multi-national, and multi-operational in how you think. And you can only be multi-cultural, multi-national, and multi-operational if you feel comfortable with the notion of difference.”


Who Should Get into College?

John H. McWhorter

“Even as we seek diversity in the worthy, we must recognize that students need to be able to excel at college-level studies. Nobody wins, after all, when a young man or woman of whatever color, unprepared for the academic rigors of a top university, flunks out.”


What’s Wrong with Vocational School? 

Charles Murray

“[Unqualified students] are in college to improve their chances of making a good living. What they really need is vocational training. But nobody will say so, because ‘vocational training’ is second class. ‘College’ is first class.”


Welcome to the Fun-Free University

David Weigel

“Many college administrators throughout the country are taking great pains to keep their students under tight control. The return of in loco parentis is killing student freedom.”


Parental Notification: Fact or Fiction

Joel Epstein

On campuses across the country, inebriated students are being written up and told that under a newly enacted disciplinary policy their parents will be notified. Can a school really confront student drinking in this manner?


 A’s for Everyone!

Alicia Shepard

"The students were relentless. They showed up at my office to insist I reread their papers and boost their grades. They asked to retake tests they hadn't done well on. They bombarded me with e-mails questioning grades. What was going on?"


READING THE VISUAL:  The Gazette's "Passive Activism Ideal" Cartoon


What’s the Matter with College?

Rick Perlstein

"College campuses seem to have lost their centrality. Why do college and college students no longer lead the culture? Why does student life no longer seem all that important? Here’s one answer: College as America used to understand it is coming to an end."


The Post-Everything Generation

 Nicholas Handler

"On campus, we sign petitions, join organizations, put our names on mailing lists, make small-money contributions, volunteer a spare hour to tutor, and sport an entire wardrobe’s worth of Live Strong bracelets advertising our moderately priced opposition to everything from breast cancer to global warming. But what do we really stand for?"


Chapter 14             Race and Ethnicity


The Myth of the Latina Woman

Judith Ortiz Cofer

“There are... thousands of Latinas without the privilege of an education or the entrée into society that I have. For them life is a struggle against the misconceptions perpetuated by the myth of the Latina as whore, domestic or criminal.”


Leaving Race Behind

Amitai Etzioni

"I refused to check off one of the specific racial options on the U.S. Census form and instead marked a box labeled 'Other.'  I later found out that the federal government assigned me to a racial category. Learning this made me conjure up what I admit is a far-fetched association. I was in this place once before…when I was a Jewish child in Nazi Germany.”


Who Is a Whiz-Kid?

Ted Gup

"Stereotypes that hint at superiority in one race implicitly suggest inferiority in another. They are ultimately divisive, and in their most virulent form, even deadly.”


Why Racial Profiling Makes for Dumb Security

Ahmed Rehab

"The racial profiling argument is lazy and unimaginative; most of all it is irresponsible because it evades the real problem starring us in the face: a fatal breakdown in communication between our intelligence units."




You Can’t Judge a Crook by His Color

Randall Kennedy

Racial profiling may be justified, but is it still wrong?



American Civil Liberties Union


Welcome to the Dollhouse

Francie Latour

"Is it really fair to expect a toy conglomerate to be at the vanguard of ideas about race and beauty? For that, we would presumably look to real black women leaders. And when we look up to them, what we find is more straight hair. Actually, straight hair with blinding sheen."


Our Biracial President

James Hannaham

"But both radical leftists and radical right-wingers need to understand the same thing: Obama is not Malcolm X. He's not even Kanye West."


Chapter 15            Passing the Buck: Our Economy in Crisis?


How the Crash Will Reshape America

Richard Florida

"No place in the United States is likely to escape a long and deep recession. As the crisis deepens, it will permanently and profoundly alter the country’s economic landscape. I believe it marks the end of a chapter in American economic history, and indeed, the end of a whole way of life."


Saving Yourself
Daniel Akst

"Unfortunately, for a people who love money, we’ve become very good at making it disappear, a task to which we’ve brought characteristic ingenuity and verve. Reckless overspending was until recently a course open to practically every American, just like reckless investing."


Let It Die
Douglas Rushkoff

"With any luck, the economy will never recover. Alas, I’m not being sarcastic. If you had spent the last decade, as I have, reviewing the way a centralized economic plan ravaged the real world over the past 500 years, you would appreciate the current financial meltdown for what it is: a comeuppance."


READING THE VISUAL: Scenes from the Depression


Generation Debt

Anya Kamenetz

"If you look at where public resources are directed–toward the already wealthy, toward building prisons and expanding the military, away from education and jobs programs–it is easy to see a prejudice against young people as a class."


Millennials’ Heads Under a Rock
Ed Schipul

"The GI generation, by all accounts, appears to have raised one of the biggest groups of spoiled kids our country has ever seen. The Baby Boomers. And the Boomers are burying the Millennial generation and their grandkids in debt and chaos. And that seems wrong to this Gen X'er."


Recession a Dose of Reality for Young Workers
Megan K. Scott

“Why don’t they want to hire me? I went through four years of college, graduated. You get praised while you are working and then all the sudden you are not employable.”


Maxed Out

James D. Scurlock

"Janne O’Donnell remembers when she took her took her son Sean to college. As they carried Sean’s belongings across campus, she noticed a number of tables advertising credit cards. 'But I didn’t worry,' she recalls. 'Sean was 18, he didn’t have a job. Who would give him a credit card?'"


Why Won't Anyone Give Me a Credit Card?

Kevin O’Donnell

"My quest for credit is a paradoxical one: How can I establish a credit history when banks won't let me create one in the first place?"


Chapter 16             Our Lives Online


Is Google Making Us Stoopid?
Nicolas Carr 

"Over the past few years I’ve had an uncomfortable sense that someone, or something, has been tinkering with my brain, remapping the neural circuitry, reprogramming the memory. My mind isn’t going–so far as I can tell–but it’s changing."


In the Beginning Was the Word

Christine Rosen         

"Screen technologies such as the cell phone and laptop computer that are supposedly revolutionizing reading also potentially offer us greater control over our time. In practice, however, they have increased our anxiety about having too little of it by making us available anytime and anywhere."


My Facebook, My Self

Jessica Helfand 

"Who is to say what’s right or wrong, what’s appropriate or not, what’s shared, what’s seen, what’s hidden? But as projections of ourselves, a Facebook identity, made manifest through a person's posted photo albums, inhabits a public trajectory that goes way beyond who and what we are. And it all starts with what–and more critically, who–we actually show."


Scientific Proof in an Age of Wikipedia

TJ Kelleher 

"Wikipedia. Much of the world thinks of it as an indispensable first step for researching anything, but it still has its critics: Some have called Wikipedia 'a public toilet' and its editorial style 'digital Maoism.'"


Three Tweets for the Web

Tyler Cowen 

"The printed word is not dead. But we are clearly in the midst of a cultural transformation. There is no question that books are becoming less central to our cultural life."


READING THE VISUAL: Marty Bucella's "My Kids, MySpace" Cartoon


Treading Water in a Sea of Data 

Peter Suderman

 "We have entered the age of push technologies. But the problem is that they turn out to be, well, pushy."


Facebook Sees Dead People

Sandip Roy 

"When William showed up as a suggested friend on Facebook I almost clicked on the link. Then I remembered I had gotten a mail about his memorial service months ago. In the eternal sunshine of Facebook’s mind we could still become friends."


Facebook, the Mean Girls, and Me

Taffy Brodesser-Akner

"Am I pathetic? Maybe. But what I also am, finally, is a popular seventh-grader. I think of my younger self, eating her lunch alone, wondering when this agony will be over. I wish I could tell her I haven't forgotten about her. I wish I could tell her I've made it OK."


Chapter 17             Human Rights and Wrongs


Universal Declaration of Human Rights

General Assembly of the United Nations

The full text of the historic Universal Declaration of Human Rights adopted and proclaimed in 1948 by the General Assembly of the United Nations is presented.


Don’t Close Gitmo

Judith Miller

"It’s time for the Obama administration to acknowledge that Gitmo, or another center like it, will be needed as long as the War on Terror–no matter what our commander-in-chief calls it–endures."


The Torture Memos

Noam Chomsky

"Historical amnesia is a dangerous phenomenon, not only because it undermines moral and intellectual integrity, but also because it lays the groundwork for crimes that lie ahead."


The Meaning of Freedom

The Economist

"Western governments, and decent people everywhere, should try to ensure that the things they say do not entrench religious prejudice or incite acts of violence; being free to give offence does not mean you are wise to give offence. But no state, and certainly no body that calls itself a Human Rights Council, should trample on the right to free speech enshrined in the Universal Declaration.”


READING THE VISUAL: Piero Tonin's "Media Blitz" Cartoon


The Detention Debacle

Arlene Roberts

"Across the nation detention facilities are run by private companies that are not held accountable for what transpires within the confines of their facilities. As a result, former detainees recount tales of horror and abuse."


Statement from Marlene Jaggernauth, Women's Refugee Commission

“Had I not personally experienced detention, I would never have believed such inhumane conditions existed in the United States. I was trapped in a cruel unjust system, and I could only watch, powerless, as lives unraveled around me.”


Immigration Quotas vs. Individual Rights: The Moral and Practical Case for Open Immigration

Harry Binswanger

"A foreigner has rights just as much as an American. To be a foreigner is not to be a criminal. Yet our government treats as criminals those foreigners not lucky enough to win the green-card lottery."


Why Feminism is AWOL on Islam

Kay S. Hymowitz

"Argue all you want with many feminist policies, but few quarrel with feminism’s core moral insight, which changed the lives (and minds) of women forever: that women are due the same rights and dignity as men. So, as news of the appalling miseries of women in the Islamic world has piled up, where are the feminists? Where’s the outrage?"






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