Practical Argument : A Text and Anthology

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  • Edition: 1st
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  • Copyright: 2010-07-30
  • Publisher: Bedford/St. Martin's
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From the best-selling authors of the most successful reader in America comesPractical Argument. No one writes for the introductory composition student like Kirszner and Mandell, andPractical Argumentsimplifies the study of argument. A straightforward, full-color, accessible introduction to argumentative writing, it employs an exercise-driven, thematically focused, step-by-step approach to get to the heart of what students need to understand argument. In clear, concise, no-nonsense language,Practical Argumentfocuses on basic principles of classical argument and introduces alternative methods of argumentation.Practical Argumentforgoes the technical terminology that confuses students and instead explains concepts in understandable, everyday language, illustrating them with examples that are immediately relevant to students' lives.

Author Biography

During their more than 25-year collaboration, LAURIE KIRSZNER and STEPHEN MANDELL have produced a number of best-selling college texts for Bedford/St. Martin’s, including Foundations First: Sentences and Paragraphs, Writing First: Practice in Context, Focus on Writing, and Patterns for College Writing. Laurie Kirszner teaches composition, literature, and creative writing at the University of the Sciences in Philadelphia. Stephen Mandell is the founder and former director of the basic writing program at Drexel University, where he teaches composition, literature, and technical and business writing.

Table of Contents

PART I—Understanding Argument
Introduction: Understanding Argument
    Encountering Arguments
       Why Instructors Assign Argument (box)
    Defining Argument
       What Kinds of Statements Are Not Debatable? (box)
     Logos, Pathos, and Ethos
       The Appeal to Logic  
       The Appeal to Emotion
       The Appeal to Authority 
1—The Structure of Argument
     AT ISSUE: Do the Benefits of Bottled Water Outweigh
      the Costs?
     The Pillars of Argument
        Thesis Statement
        Concluding Statement
        Checklist: Does Your Argument Stand Up?
         Nia Tuckson, Why Foreign Language Study Should Be
           Required (student essay)              
         Arnold Schwarzenegger, An Immigrant Writes       
      Benefits of Bottled Water Outweigh the Costs?
        New York Times, In Praise of Tap Water     
        Zak Moore, Defying the Nalgene        
        Tom Standage¸ Bad to the Last Drop       
        Polandspring.com, Poland Spring Water (advertisement)     
        Purewater2go.com, Pure Water 2GO (advertisement)     
    Template for Structuring an Argument 
Part II—Reading and Responding to Arguments
2—Thinking and Reading Critically
    AT ISSUE: Do Violent Media Images Trigger Violent Behavior?
    Reading Critically
        Guidelines for Becoming a Critical Reader (box)
   Becoming an Active Reader
        Comprehension Clues (box)
        Gerard Jones, Violent Media is Good for Kid      
        Suggestions for Highlighting (box)
        John Leo, When Life Imitates Video (with highlighting)     
        Checklist: Questions for Annotating
        John Leo, When Life Imitates Video
          (with highlighting and annotations)        
        Tim Miley, Media Violence May Be Real Culprit behind
          Virginia Tech Tragedy
        Patrick Mackin, Take Aim at Gun     
        Jessica Robbins, Don’t Withhold Violent Games    
    Writing a Critical Response
        Checklist: Questions for Critical Reading
        Katherine Choi, Critical Response to “When Life Imitates
          Video” [student response]        
    Template for Writing a Critical Response
3—Decoding Visual Arguments
    AT ISSUE: Do Violent Media Images Trigger Violent
      Behavior? [continued]
    Thinking Critically about Visual Arguments 
        Visual Texts vs. Visual Arguments (box)
    Applying Active Reading Strategies to Visual Arguments
        Comprehension Clues (box)
        Appeals: Logos, Pathos, and Ethos (box)  
        Rob Rogers, “You’re Not Watching…” [cartoon]
        United States Department of Justice, Crime Victims per
          1,000 Citizens (chart)          
        Distribution of Language, Sex, and Violence Codes in
          PG-Rated Movies (chart)           
        Homicides per 100,000 Population (chart)       
        John P. Murray, Routes of Influence of Television
          Violence (diagram)           
        Everylifecounts.info, “I Saw 7,000 People Killed”
        ACT Against Violence, Media Violence & Children
          (Web site)    
    Highlighting and Annotating Visuals
        Grand Theft Auto IV [desktop wallpaper]      
        Media Violence [photograph]         
        Checklist: Questions for Responding to Visual Arguments
    Responding Critically to Visual Arguments
        Jason Savona, Response to Grand Theft Auto IV
         Wallpaper (student response)          
    Template for Responding to Visual Arguments
4—Writing a Rhetorical Analysis
    AT ISSUE: Is It Ethical To Buy Counterfeit Designer
    What Is a Rhetorical Analysis?
        Overview of “Letter from Birmingham Jail,”
          by Martin Luther King Jr. (box) 
    Considering the Rhetorical Situation
        Strategies for Analyzing the Rhetorical Situation (box)
        The Writer
        Questions for Analyzing the Writer (box) 
        The Writer’s Purpose
        Questions for Analyzing the Writer’s Purpose (box)
        The Writer’s Audience
        Questions for Analyzing the Writer’s Audience (box)
        The Topic
        Questions for Analyzing the Topic (box)
        The Context
        Questions for Analyzing the Context (box)
    Considering the Means of Persuasion: Logos, Pathos, Ethos 
    Considering the Writer’s Rhetorical Strategies
        Stylistic Techniques
    Assessing the Argument
        Checklist: Writing a Rhetorical Analysis
    Sample Rhetorical Analysis
        Dana Thomas, Terror's Purse Strings       
        Deniz Bilgutay, A Powerful Call to Action [student essay]     
        Rajeev Ravisankar, Sweatshop Oppression       
    Template for Writing a Rhetorical Analysis
5—Understanding Logic and Recognizing Fallacies
    AT ISSUE: Do Merit-Based Scholarships Make Sense? 
    What is Deductive Reasoning?
    Constructing Sound Syllogisms
        Syllogism with an Illogical Middle Term
        Syllogism with a Key Term Whose Meaning Shifts
        Syllogisms with Negative Premises
    Recognizing Enthymemes
        Bumper Sticker Thinking (box) 
    Writing Deductive Arguments 
    What is Inductive Reasoning?
         Reaching Inductive Conclusions (box)
    Making Inferences
    Constructing Strong Inductive Arguments
        Pooja Vaidya, Football Fanatics [student paragraph]     
        Crystal Sanchez, College Should Be for Everyone
          [student essay]   
     Writing Inductive Essays
         William Saletan, Please Do Not Feed the Humans      
    Recognizing Logical Fallacies  
        Begging the Question
        Circular Reasoning
        Weak Analogy
        Ad Hominem  (Personal Attack)
        Hasty or Sweeping Generalization (Jumping to a Conclusion)
        Either/Or Fallacy (False Dilemma)
        Red Herring
        Slippery Slope
        You Also (Tu Quoque)
        Appeal to Doubtful Authority
        Misleading Statistics
        Post Hoc, Ergo Propter Hoc (After This, Therefore
          Because of This)
        Non Sequitur (It Does Not Follow)
        Bandwagon Appeal (ad populum)
        Patrick J. Buchanan, Immigration Time-Out      
      Merit-Based Scholarships Make Sense?
        Peter Schmidt, At the Elite Colleges – Dim White Kids     
        Zoe Mendelson, Paying for College 
        Brent Staples, A Broader Definition of Merit: The Trouble
          with College Entry Exams           
        Associated Press, Hamilton College to End Merit
          Scholarships in Favor of Need-Based Aid          
        Lewis & Clark College, Merit-Based Scholarships for
          Incoming Students  
    Template for Writing a Deductive Argument
    Template for Writing an Inductive Argument
6—Rogerian Argument, Toulmin Logic, and Oral Argument
    AT ISSUE: Is Distance Learning As Good As
      Classroom Learning?
    Understanding Rogerian Argument
    Structuring Rogerian Arguments
    Writing Rogerian Arguments
        Christopher Chu, Do the Olympic Games Need
          Permanent Host Sites? [student essay]         
    Understanding Toulmin Logic
    Constructing Toulmin Arguments
    Writing Toulmin Arguments
        Franco Ghilardi, Our Right to Burn or Burning Our
          Rights? [student essay]            
    Understanding Oral Arguments
    Planning an Oral Argument
        Tips for Designing and Displaying Visuals (box)
    Delivering Oral Arguments
    Writing an Oral Argument
        Chantee Steele, An Argument in Support of the
          “Gap Year” [student essay]            
      Learning as Good  as Classroom Learning?
        Sandra C. Ceraulo, Online Education Rivals
          “Chalk and Talk” Variety 
        Suzanne M. Kelly, The Sensuous Classroom: Focusing
          on the Embodiment of Learning      
        Marilyn Karras, Calling a University “Virtual” Creates
          an Actual Oxymoron                  
        elearners.com, Frequently Asked Questions about
          eLearning [Web page]           
        Naugatuck Valley Community College, Distance Learning   
        Two Views of Distance Learning [photographs]    
Part III—Writing an Argumentative Essay
7—Planning, Drafting, and Revising an Argumentative Essay
    AT ISSUE: Should College Campuses Go “Green”?
    Choosing a Topic
        Topics to Avoid (box)
    Thinking about Your Topic
        Brainstorming Notes
        Informal Outline
    Taking a Stand
    Understanding Your Audience
    Gathering Evidence
        Kinds of Evidence
        Criteria for Evaluating Evidence in Your Sources
        Detecting Bias in Your Sources
    Refuting Opposing Arguments
        Daniel Halperin, Putting a Plague in Perspective      
    Revising Your Thesis Statement
    Understanding Essay Structure
        Supplying Background Information (box)
        Using Induction and Deduction
        Constructing a Formal Outline
    Preparing to Write
        Establishing Your Credibility
        Maintaining Your Credibility (box)
        Being Fair
    Writing Your Draft
        Some Transitions for Argument (box)
    Revising Your Argumentative Essay
        Asking Questions
        Checklist: Questions about Your Essay’s Supporting Evidence
        Checklist: Questions about Your Essay’s Structure and Style
        Getting Feedback
        Adding Visuals
        Editing and Proofreading
        Choosing a Title (box)
    Shawn Holton, Going “Green” [student essay]    
Part IV—Using Sources to Support Your Argument
8—Evaluating Sources
    AT ISSUE: Should Data Posted on Social Networking Sites Be
      “Fair Game” for Employers?
    Evaluating Print Sources
        Michael Gregoris, Stay Informed on Facebook’s
          Third-Party Privacy  Policies         
        Maria Aspan, How Sticky Is Membership on Facebook?
          Just Try  Breaking Free         
        Lew McCreary, What Was Privacy?     
    Evaluating Internet Sources
        Using a Site’s URL to Assess Objectivity (box)
        Avoiding Confirmation Bias (box)
        Jonathan Kleiman, The Importance of User Education
          in Privacy   
        Facebook, Facebook Principles     
        Kim Hart, A Flashy Facebook Page, at a Cost to Privacy    
        Carolyn Elefant, Do Employers Using Facebook for
          Background Checks  Face Legal Risks?       
        The Electronic Journal of Human Sexuality,
          Mission Statement   
9—Summarizing, Paraphrasing, Quoting, and
        Synthesizing Sources
    AT ISSUE: Should Data Posted on Social Networking Sites Be
      “Fair Game” for Employers? [continued]
    Summarizing Sources
        When to Summarize (box)
        How to Summarize Sources (box)
    Paraphrasing Sources
        When to Paraphrase (box)
        How to Paraphrase Sources (box)
    Quoting Sources
        When to Quote (box)
        How to Quote Sources (box)
        Alison George, Things You Wouldn’t Tell Your Mother   
    Working Source Material into Your Argument
        Using Identifying Tags
        Verbs in Identifying Tags (box)
        Working Quotations into Your Sentences
         Distorting Quotations (box)
    Synthesizing Sources
10—Documenting Sources: MLA
    Using Parenthetical References
    Preparing the Works-Cited List
        Internet Sources
        Erin Blaine, Should Data Posted on Social Networking Sites
          Be “Fair  Game” for Employers? [Sample MLA Paper]     
11—Avoiding Plagiarism
    AT ISSUE: Where Do We Draw the Line with Plagiarism?
    Understanding Plagiarism
        Modern Language Association, Definition of Plagiarism
        Using Sources Responsibly
        Internet Sources and Plagiarism (box)
        Intentional Plagiarism (box)
        Knowing What to Document
        Austin American-Statesman, Cheaters Never Win     
    Revising to Eliminate Plagiarism
        Source 1: Christina Hoff Sommers, from “The War
                          against Boys”
        Source 2: Rosalind C. Barnett and Caryl Rivers, from
                       “Men Are from  Earth, and So Are Women. It’s
                         Faulty Research That Sets Them Apart”
      We Draw the Line  with Plagiarism?
        Jack Shafer, Sidebar: Comparing the Copy       
        Lawrence M. Hinman, How to Fight College Cheating     
        Deborah R. Gerhardt, The Rules of Attribution  
        Richard A. Posner, The Truth about Plagiarism      
        Doris Kearns Goodwin, How I Caused That Story      
        Carol Foster Segal, Copy This        
    Template for Writing an Argument about Plagiarism
    Writing Assignments: Avoiding Plagiarism
Part V—Patterns and Purposes
12—Argument by Definition
    AT ISSUE: Is Wikipedia a Legitimate Research Source?
    What is Argument by Definition?
    Developing Definitions
        Dictionary Definitions (Formal Definitions)
        Extended Definitions
        Operational Definitions
    Structuring an Argument by Definition
        Adam Kennedy, Why I Am a Non-Traditional Student
          [student essay]   
        GRAMMAR IN CONTEXT: Avoiding Is Where and Is When
        Gayle Rosenwald Smith, The Wife-Beater       
        Nikki Grimes, What is a Good Poem?       
        Courage (poster)
        Courage is not the Absence of Fear (poster)
      a Legitimate  Research Source?
        John Seigenthaler, A False Wikipedia Biography     
        Randall Stross, Anonymous Source is Not the Same as
          Open Source   
        Encyclopedia of Earth, Policy on the Use of Content
          from Wikipedia   
        Neil Waters, Wikiphobia: The Latest in Open Source     
        The Stanford Daily, Wikipedia with Caution      
        Wikipedia, Revision History of “Global Warming”      
        Wikipedia, Global Warming (difference between revisions)    
    Template for Writing an Argument by Definition
    Writing Assignments: Argument by Definition
13—Causal Argument
    AT ISSUE: Will Lowering the Drinking Age Solve the Problem of
      Binge Drinking among College Students?
    What is Causal Argument?
        Take the Keys. Call a Cab. Take a Stand.  (advertisement)     
        Gun Control Bumper Stickers (photograph)     
        Caution: Cigarette Smoking May be Hazardous to
          Your Health. (photograph)          
        Surgeon General’s Warning (photograph)       
    Understanding Cause and Effect Relationships
        Main and Contributory Causes 
        Immediate and Remote Causes
        Causal Chains
        Key Words for Causal Argument
        Post Hoc Reasoning
        Nora Ephron, The Chicken Soup Chronicles      
    Structuring a Causal Argument
        Kristina Mialki, Texting: A Boon, Not a Threat, to Language
          [student essay]            
        GRAMMAR IN CONTEXT: Avoiding “The reason is because”
        Marjorie O. Rendell, U.S. Needs an Educated Citizenry     
      the Drinking Age Solve the Problem of Binge Drinking Among
      College Students?
        Amethyst Initiative, Statement      
        Radley Balko, Amethyst Initiative’s Debate on Drinking a
          Welcome Alternative to Fanaticism          
        Joanne Glasser, Alcohol and Those Under 21 Don’t Mix   
        Andrew Herman, Raise the Drinking Age to 25     
        Bradley R. Gitz, Save Us from Youth      
        Robert Voas, There’s No Benefit to Lowering the Drinking Age   
    Template for Writing a Causal Argument
    Writing Assignments: Causal Argument
14—Evaluation Arguments
    AT ISSUE: Do the Harry Potter Books Deserve Their Popularity?
    What is Argument by Evaluation?
        Making Evaluations (box)
        Criteria for Evaluation
    Structuring an Evaluation Argument
        Loren Martinez, Not Just a “Girl” [student essay]      
        GRAMMAR IN CONTEXT: Comparatives and Superlatives
        Kalamazoo Gazette, Do We Have the World’s Best
          Medical Care?    
      Potter Books  Deserve Their Popularity?
        Michiko Kakutani, An Epic Showdown as Harry Potter is
          Initiated into Adulthood                
        Carlie Webber, We’re All Still Wild About Harry              
        A. S. Byatt, Harry Potter and the Childish Adult      
        Charles Taylor, A. S. Byatt and the Goblet of Bile      
        Christine Schoefer, Harry Potter’s Girl Trouble      
    Template for Writing an Evaluation Argument
    Writing Assignments: Evaluation Arguments
15—Proposal Arguments
    AT ISSUE: Should College Lectures Be Made Available
      as Podcasts?
    What is a Proposal Argument?
    Stating the Problem
        Allchokedup.org, I Love This Town But the Traffic Is
          Killing Me (advertisement)        
        Sunshineweek.org, Let the Sunshine In (advertisement)     
    Proposing a Solution
    Demonstrating that Your Solution Will Work
    Establishing Feasibility
    Discussing Benefits
    Addressing Possible Objections
        Nyc.gov, It’s Your City.  It’s Your Earth.(advertisement)     
        John Leo, If I Ran the Zoo          
    Structuring Proposal Arguments
        Melissa Burrell, Colleges Need Honor Codes [student essay]    
        GRAMMAR IN CONTEXT: Will vs. Would      
        T. Boone Pickens, My Plan to Escape the Grip of
          Foreign Oil   
        Murray Jensen, Lecture is Dead: Take 3      
        Robert Schneider, The Attack of the Pod People     
        Jeff Cutro, Globalizing Education One Podcast at a Time   
        The Pitt News, iPod Addiction Goes Academic      
        Fabienne Serriere, Teaching via iPod       
        Apple.com, iTunes U and Mobile Learning (advertisement)     
    Template for Writing a Proposal Argument
    Writing Assignments: Proposal Arguments
16—Argument by Analogy
    AT ISSUE: Should Credit Card Companies Be Permitted to
      Target College Students?
    What is Analogy?
        Key Words for Analogy
    What is Argument by Analogy?
        Avoiding Weak Analogies
    Positive and Negative Analogies
    Structuring an Argument by Analogy
       Anthony Luu, Does Separate Housing for Minority Students
          Make Sense? [student essay]                
       GRAMMAR IN CONTEXT: Using Like and As
       Nat Hentoff, Civil Rights and Anti-Abortion Protests    
      Card Companies Be Permitted to Target College Students?
        Erica L. Williams and Tim Westrich, The Young and
          the Indebted  
        Contra Costa Times, Non-Issue Needs No Law     
         FindCollegeCards.com, College Student Credit Cards  
         Jessica Silver-Greenberg, Majoring in Credit-Card Debt  
   Template for Writing An Argument by Analogy
    Writing Assignments: Argument by Analogy
17—Ethical Arguments
    AT ISSUE: How Far Should Colleges Go to Keep Campuses Safe?
    What is an Ethical Argument?
     Stating an Ethical Principal
    Ethics versus Law
    Understanding Ethical Dilemmas
        Treadlighly.org, Ride Hard, Tread Lightly (advertisement)     
        Human Meat (photograph)         
        Linda Pastan, Ethics          
    Structuring Ethical Arguments
        Chris Munoz, The Promise to Educate [student essay]     
        GRAMMAR IN CONTEXT: Subordination and Coordination
        National Anti-Vivisection Society, Animals in
          Scientific Research   
      Colleges Go to Keep Campuses Safe?
        M. Perry Chapman, Openness vs. Security on Campus     
        Brett A. Sokolow, How Not to Respond to Virginia Tech – II     
        Jesus M. Villahermosa, Jr., Guns Don’t Belong in the Hands
          of Administrators, Professors, or Students             
        Timothy Wheeler, There’s a Reason They Choose Schools     
        Isothermal Community College, Warning Signs: How You
          Can Help Prevent Campus Violence                          
        Gone But Not Forgotten                
   Template for Writing an Ethical Argument
   Writing Assignments: Proposal Arguments
Part VI—Readings
18—Should We Eat Meat? 
        Laura Fraser, “Why I Stopped Being A Vegetarian”     
        Jonathan Safran Foer, “Let Them Eat Dog”      
19—Do We Still Need Newspapers?
       Chris Hedges, Requiem for Real News     
       Gary S. Becker, Yes, Newspapers are Doomed    
20—What Rights Should the Homeless Have?
        John Derbyshire, Throw the Bums Out: But Do So with
          Compassion — Coolidge-Style Compassion         
        America, The Meanest Cities        
21—Should the US Government Drop its Sanctions
          against Cuba?
        Lincoln Diaz-Balart, Opposition to Rep. Rangel Amendment
          to Life Embargo on Cuban Regime          
        Jacob Weisberg, Thanks for the Sanctions    
22—Should Undocumented Immigrants Be Entitled to
          Driver’s Licenses?
        National Immigration Law Center, Fact Sheet: Why Denying
          Diver’s Licenses to Undocumented Immigrants Harms
          Public Safety and Makes Our Communities  Less Secure         
        Michael W. Cutler, States Should Not Issue Driver's
          Licenses to Illegal  Immigrants          
23—Should the U.S. Drill for Oil in Environmentally
          Sensitive Areas?
        Pete Du Pont, Drill, Baby, Drill      
        Lamar Alexander, To Drill or…       
        Ed Markey, …Not to Drill       
        Natural Resources Defense Council, Arctic National
          Wildlife Refuge: Why  Trash an American Treasure for a
          Tiny Percentage of Our Oil Needs?   
24—Should Felons Permanently Forfeit Their Right to Vote?
        Bill McCollum, Felons Don’t Merit Automatic Rights   
        Edward Feser, Should Felons Vote?       
        Rebecca Perl, The Last Disenfranchised Class     
        New York Times, Felons and the Right to Vote    
25—Should Openly Gay Men and Women Be Permitted to
          Serve in the Military?
        John M. Shalikashvili, Second Thoughts on Gays in
          the Military   
        Vance Coleman, Written Statement to Subcommittee on
          Military Personnel, House Armed Services Committee,
          U.S. House of Representatives   
        Stephan Benjamin, Don’t Ask, Don’t Translate     
        Daniel L. Davis, Homosexuals in the Military: Combat
          Readiness or Social  Engineering?        
        Brian Jones, Statement to Subcommittee on Military
          Personnel, House Armed  Services Committee, U.S. House
          of Representatives     
       David Benkof, Allow Gays to Serve in Non-Combat Roles     
26—Should Every American Have the Right to Go to College?
        Robert T. Perry, On “Real Education” – II     
        Margaret Miller, The Privileges of the Parents    
        Charles Murray, What's Wrong with Vocational School?   
        Pharinet, Is College for Everyone?       
27—Do Workers Still Need Unions?
        Wendy Zellner
, How Wal-Mart Keeps Unions at Bay:
          Organizing the Nation’s  No. 1 Employer Would Give
          Labor a Lift      
        John L. Lewis, Labor and the Nation      
        Fielding Poe, Watch Out for Stereotypes of Labor Unions    
        Paula Green and Malcolm Dodds, Look for the
          Union Label    
        James Sherk, Do Americans Today Still Need
          Labor Unions?   
, Allegory of the Cave        
        Niccolò Machiavelli, From The Prince      
        Andrew Marvell, To His Coy Mistress
        Jonathan Swift, A Modest Proposal        
        Thomas Jefferson, Declaration of Independence      
        Elizabeth Cady Stanton, Declaration of Sentiments
          and Resolutions    
        Margaret Sanger, The Cause of War     
        Rachel Carson, The Obligation to Endure        
        Martin Luther King Jr., Letter from Birmingham Jail    
Appendix A—Writing Literary Arguments
    What is Literary Argument?
    Stating an Argumentative Thesis
    Choosing Evidence
    Writing a Literary Argument
        Megan McGovern, Confessions of a Misunderstood Poem:
          An Analysis of  “The Road Not Taken”  [student essay]      
Appendix B—Documenting Sources: APA
    Using Parenthetical References
    Preparing a Reference List
    Internet Sources
        Deniz Bilgutay, The High Cost of Cheap Counterfeit
          Goods (Sample  APA Paper)         

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Stunning March 17, 2011
I ordered this textbook for my daughter's college class...arrived in great shape as advertised and in time for her class assignments to begin. I'm very satisfied. My daughter says that the book is very straightforward and has great examples for persuasive arguments. I would recommend this textbook with pride.
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