Open Questions : Reading for Critical Thinking and Writing

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  • Edition: 1st
  • Format: Paperback
  • Copyright: 2005-02-11
  • Publisher: Bedford/St. Martin's
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We all make many ethical choices, small and large, every day. Should we give money to that homeless person? Should we shade the truth to protect someone else's feelings? Should we endanger ourselves by chasing that purse-snatcher? A first-year college composition course devoted to critical thinking and writing presents an ideal opportunity for students to reflect on what goes into making such decisions, and to refine their own understanding of what constitutes ethical action. The first reader to tap into this opportunity,Open Questionspresents a wide variety of perspectives on profound ethical issues, along with a unique method of approaching those issues based on careful listening, analytic thinking, and persuasive writing.

Author Biography

CHRIS ANDERSON is professor of English and the composition coordinator at Oregon State University. Author of many scholarly articles and reviews and coauthor or editor of numerous books, including several textbooks for composition, he is also a much-published poet and writer of creative nonfiction, whose Edge Effects: Notes from an Oregon Forest was a finalist for the Oregon Book Award. His latest scholarly projects include the forthcoming Teaching as Believing: Faith in the University.

LEX RUNCIMAN is professor of English and former director of the writing center at Linfield College. He has written and lectured extensively on writing pedagogy, particularly writing across the curriculum. Coauthor or editor of several textbooks, he is the author of The St. Martin's Workbook (Bedford/St. Martin's, 2003). A poet and an editor of poetry anthologies, his latest collection of his own work is Out of Town.

Table of Contents

    Preface for Instructors
    Preface for Students
    What Would You Do? Three Scenarios
    Questions and Answers
    Ethical Thinking is Critical Thinking
    Private and Public: Personal Convictions and Civic Rhetoric
       Randy Cohen, Downloading Music from the Internet
       Exchange between Randy Cohen and Siva Vaidhyanthan
    Ethical Systems: Five Examples
    Critical Thinking: An Ethics of Learning
    Listening and Analyzing: Logos, Pathos, Ethos
       Lindsy Van Gelder, Marriage as a Restricted Club
    Annotating Your Books, Keeping a Reading Journal
    Participating in the Conversation
    Contributing to Civic Rhetoric: Making Claims
    Reconsidering in Light of New Information, New Understandings
    Community, Integrity, and Compromise: an Approach to Argument
  1. Where Are You Coming From?
    What Would You Do? Speaking Up for a Friend
    Benjamin Saenz, Exile: El Paso Texas
    Sarah Vowell, Shooting Dad
    Elmaz Abinader, Profile of an Arab Daughter
    Langston Hughes, Theme for English B (poem)
    Maxine Hong Kingston, No Name Woman
    Peter Steiner, You can be anything you want to be -- no limits! (cartoon)
    Robert Coles, I Listen to My Parents and I Wonder What They Believe
    Barbara Kingsolver, Stone Soup
    Winona LaDuke, Voices from White Earth
    John Daniels, The Authentic Trail
    For Community Learning and Research
  2. Are We Responsible for Others?
    What Would You Do? Considering an Intervention
    Henry Wechsler, Charles Deutsch, and George Dowdall, Too Many Colleges Are Still in Denial about Alcohol Abuse
    Bowen H. McCoy, The Parable of the Sadhu
    Stephen L. Carter, Welcoming the Stranger
    Cornel West, The Moral Obligations of Living in a Democratic Society
    Garrett Hardin, Lifeboat Ethics: The Case against Helping the Poor
    Esther Dyson, Cyberspace: If You Don't Love It, Leave It
    Joy Williams, Save the Whales, Screw the Shrimp
    The Earth Charter
    Joan Didion, On Morality
    William Stafford, Traveling Through the Dark (poem)
    For Community Learning and Research
  3. Is Violence Necessary?
    What Would You Do? Mediating a Confrontation
    Andre Dubus, Giving Up the Gun
    Merrill Joan Gerber, I Don't Believe This
    Michael Levin, The Case for Torture
    The Dalai Lama, The Need for Discernment
    Terry Tempest Williams, Two Words
    Andrew Sullivan, The Pursuit of Happiness: Four Revolutionary Words
    Alex Gregory, If you still want to belong to an organization dedicated to killing Americans, there's always the tobacco lobby (cartoon)
    Kofi Annan, Nobel Prize Lecture
    Dan Baum, The Casualty
    Chris Hedges,Eros and Thanatos
    Jane Goodall, Compassion and Love
    For Community Learning and Research
  4. Are We Our Bodies?
    What Would You Do? Judging Based on Appearance
    Authentic Elegance (advertisement)
    Jenefer Shute, life size (fiction)
    Scott Russell Sanders, Looking at Women
    Bernard Cooper, A Clack of Tiny Sparks: Remembrances of a Gay Boyhood
    Brent Staples, Just Walk on By: Black Men and Public Space
    Judith Ortiz Cofer, The Story of My Body
    Nancy Mairs, On Being a Cripple
    Lance Armstrong, It's Not About the Bike
    Ellen Goodman, Who Lives? Who Dies? Who Decides?
    Sally Tisdale, We Do Abortions Here
    Bill McKibben, Designer Genes
    For Community Learning and Research
  5. Is Honesty the Best Policy?
    What Would You Do? A Case of Plagiarism
    James Frey, How Do You Think It Makes Your Mother Feel?
    Stephen Carter, The Best Student Ever
    Donald McCabe and Linda Trevino, Honesty and Honor Codes
    Bill Watterson, Today at school I tried to decide whether to cheat on my test or not (cartoon)
    Lawrence Hinman, Virtual Virtues: Reflections on Academic Integrity in the Age of the Internet
    Nora Ephron, The Boston Photographs
    Simson Garfinkel, Privacy Under Attack
    Malcolm Gladwell, Big and Bad
    Naomi Wolf, The Beauty Myth
    George Orwell, Politics and the English Language
    For Community Learning and Research
  6. What Is This Worth?
    What Would You Do? Making a Questionable Bargain
    Alice Walker, Am I Blue?
    Barbara Ehrenreich, Serving in Florida
    Eric Schlosser, What We Eat
    Rebecca Mead, Eggs for Sale
    Toni Cade Bambara, The Lesson (short story)
    Milton Friedman, The Social Responsibility of Business Is to Increase Its Profits
    Robert Haas, Ethics: A Global Business Challenge
    Aldo Leopold, The Land Ethic
    Paul Hawken, A Teasing Irony
    For Community Learning and Research
  7. Why Change Your Mind?
    What Would You Do? Rethinking a Decision
    Scott Adams, I teach my kids that these things are right and these things are wrong. (cartoon)
    Studs Terkel, C. P. Ellis
    Naomi Shahib Nye, Long Overdue
    Annie Dillard, Singing with the Fundamentalists
    David Denby, Passion at Yale
    Richard Rodriguez, The Achievement of Desire
    Adrienne Rich, Claiming an Education
    Helen Prejean, Executions Are Too Costly -- Morally
    Ruth Benedict, The Case for Moral Relativism
    Parker Palmer, The Community of Truth
  8. What Would You Do?
    What Would You Do? Taking a Stand
    U.S. Department of Homeland Security, Get Ready Now. (pamphlet)
    Tracy Kidder, The Good Doctor
    Barbara Lazear Asher, On Compassion
    Peter Singer, The Singer Solution to World Poverty
    Rebecca Solnit, The Silence of the Lambswool Cardigans
    Wendell Berry, Out of Your Car, Off Your Horse
    Kathy Moore, The World Depends on This
    Martin Luther King Jr., Letter from Birmingham Jail
    From the Atlanta Journal Constitution, Why I Volunteer
    Brenda Ueland, Tell Me More
    For Community Learning and Research
  Index of Authors, Titles, and Terms

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