Writing Arguments A Rhetoric with Readings, MLA Update Edition

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  • Edition: 10th
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  • Copyright: 2016-07-13
  • Publisher: Pearson
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Supplemental Materials

What is included with this book?


For courses in Argument and Research.

This version of Writing Arguments: A Rhetoric with Readings has been updated the reflect the 8th edition of the MLA Handbook (April 2016) *

The most thorough theoretical foundation available

Writing Arguments: A Rhetoric with Readings, 10/e integrates four different approaches to argument: the enthymeme as a logical structure, the classical concepts of logos, pathos, and ethos, the Toulmin system, and stasis theory. Focusing on argument as dialogue in search of solutions instead of a pro-con debate with winners and losers, it is consistently praised for teaching the critical-thinking skills needed for writing arguments. Major assignment chapters each focus on one or two classical stases (e.g. definition, resemblance, causal, evaluation, and policy). Each concept is immediately reinforced with discussion prompts, and each chapter ends with multiple comprehensive writing assignments. This comprehensive version contains a superlative thematic anthology of arguments on contemporary topics and some classics for balance.


Also available in a Brief version with rhetoric only (0133910695) and a Concise version (013396986X) which is a redaction of the Brief edition.


* The 8th Edition introduces sweeping changes to the philosophy and details of MLA works cited entries. Responding to the “increasing mobility of texts,” MLA now encourages writers to focus on the process of crafting the citation, beginning with the same questions for any source. These changes, then, align with current best practices in the teaching of writing which privilege inquiry and critical thinking over rote recall and rule-following.

Author Biography

John C. Bean is an emeritus professor of English at Seattle University, where he held the title of “Consulting Professor of Writing and Assessment.”  He has an undergraduate degree from Stanford (1965) and a Ph.D. from the University of Washington (1972).  He is the author of Engaging Ideas: The Professor’s Guide to Writing, Critical Thinking, and Active Learning in the Classroom, 2nd edition (Jossey-Bass, 2011).  He is also the co-author of three widely-used composition textbooks–Writing Arguments, The Allyn and Bacon Guide to Writing, and Reading Rhetorically.  He has published numerous articles and book chapters on writing in the disciplines as well as on literary subjects.   His current research interests focus on pedagogical strategies for teaching undergraduate research including quantitative literacy, disciplinary methods of inquiry and argument, and the problem of “transfer of learning” as students move through and across a curriculum.  He has delivered lectures and conducted workshops on writing-across-the-curriculum throughout the United States and Canada as well as for universities in Germany, Bangladesh, and Ghana.  In 2010 his article “Messy Problems and Lay Audiences:  Teaching Critical Thinking within the Finance Curriculum” (co-authored with colleagues from finance and economics) won the 2009 McGraw-Hill — Magna Publications Award for the year’s best “scholarly work on teaching and learning.”  


Table of Contents



1          Argument: An Introduction     

What Do We Mean by Argument?       

Argument Is Not a Fight or a Quarrel  

Argument Is Not Pro-Con Debate        

Arguments Can Be Explicit or Implicit

JUAN LUCAS (STUDENT), “An Argument Against Banning Phthalates”         

A student opposes a ban on a chemical that makes toys soft and flexible.

The Defining Features of Argument    

Argument Requires Justification of Its Claims 

Argument Is Both a Process and a Product     

Argument Combines Truth Seeking and Persuasion   

Argument and the Problem of Truth   



2          Argument as Inquiry: Reading and Exploring           

Finding Issues to Explore        

Do Some Initial Brainstorming

Be Open to the Issues All around You

Explore Ideas by Freewriting   

Explore Ideas by Idea Mapping          

Explore Ideas by Playing the Believing and Doubting Game 

Reading Texts Rhetorically    

Genres of Argument    

Authorial Purpose and Audience        

Determining Degree of Advocacy       

Reading to Believe an Argument’s Claims      

JAMES SUROWIECKI, “The Pay Is Too Damn Low”   

An American journalist argues for an increased federally mandated minimum wage combined with government policies to promote job growth and ensure a stable safety net for the poor.

 Summary Writing as a Way of Reading to Believe     

Practicing Believing: Willing Your Own Belief in the Writer’s Views   

Reading to Doubt       

Thinking Dialectically

MICHAEL SALTSMAN, “To Help the Poor, Move Beyond ‘Minimum’ Gestures”         

The chief economist for the Employment Policy Institute opposes an increased minimum wage, arguing that it does nothing for the jobless poor and will in fact lead to increased joblessness.

Three Ways to Foster Dialectic Thinking        


Writing Assignment: An Argument Summary or a Formal Exploratory Essay   


TRUDIE MAKENS (STUDENT), “Should Fast-Food Workers Be Paid $15 per Hour?”  

Examining articles by Surowiecki, Saltsman, and others, a student narrates the evolution of her thinking as she researches the issue of minimum wage.




3          The Core of an Argument: A Claim with Reasons     

The Classical Structure of Argument  

Classical Appeals and the Rhetorical Triangle           

Issue Questions as the Origins of Argument    

Difference between an Issue Question and an Information Question  

How to Identify an Issue Question       

Difference between a Genuine Argument and a Pseudo-Argument   

Pseudo-Arguments: Committed Believers and Fanatical Skeptics      

A Closer Look at Pseudo-Arguments: The Lack of Shared Assumptions          

Frame of an Argument: A Claim Supported by Reasons         

What Is a Reason?      

Expressing Reasons in Because Clauses         


Writing Assignment: An Issue Question and Working Thesis Statements         


4          The Logical Structure of Arguments  

An Overview of Logos: What Do We Mean by the “Logical Structure” of an


Formal Logic versus Real-World Logic           

The Role of Assumptions        

The Core of an Argument: The Enthymeme   

The Power of Audience-Based Reasons         

Adopting a Language for Describing Arguments: The Toulmin System         

Using Toulmin’s Schema to Plan and Test Your Argument    

Hypothetical Example: Cheerleaders as Athletes       

Extended Student Example: Girls and Violent Video Games 

CARMEN TIEU (STUDENT), “Why Violent Video Games Are Good for Girls”  

A student argues that playing violent video games helps girls gain insight into male culture.

The Thesis-Governed “Self-Announcing” Structure of Classical Argument     


A Note on the Informal Fallacies        

Writing Assignment: Plan of an Argument’s Details


5          Using Evidence Effectively   

Kinds of Evidence      

The Persuasive Use of Evidence        

Apply the STAR Criteria to Evidence 

Establish a Trustworthy Ethos  

Be Mindful of a Source’s Distance from Original Data

Rhetorical Understanding of Evidence           

Angle of Vision and the Selection and Framing of Evidence 

Examining Visual Arguments: Angle of Vision

Rhetorical Strategies for Framing Evidence   

Special Strategies for Framing Statistical Evidence  

Creating a Plan for Gathering Evidence         


Writing Assignment: A Supporting-Reasons Argument


6          Moving Your Audience: Ethos, Pathos, and Kairos 

Logos, Ethos, and Pathos as Persuasive Appeals: An Overview          

How to Create an Effective Ethos: The Appeal to Credibility  

How to Create Pathos: The Appeal to Beliefs and Emotions  

Use Concrete Language         

Use Specific Examples and Illustrations         

Use Narratives 

Use Words, Metaphors, and Analogies with Appropriate Connotations

Kairos: The Timeliness and Fitness of Arguments       

Using Images to Appeal to Logos, Ethos, Pathos, and Kairos 

Examining Visual Arguments: Logos, Ethos, Pathos, and kairos         

How Audience-Based Reasons Appeal to Logos, Ethos, Pathos, and Kairos   


Writing Assignment: Revising a Draft for Ethos, Pathos, and Audience-Based Reasons          


7          Responding to Objections and Alternative Views   

One-Sided, Multisided, and Dialogic Arguments        

Determining Your Audience’s Resistance to Your Views         

Appealing to a Supportive Audience: One-Sided Argument  

Appealing to a Neutral or Undecided Audience: Classical Argument

Summarizing Opposing Views

Refuting Opposing Views        

Strategies for Rebutting Evidence      

Conceding to Opposing Views

Example of a Student Essay Using Refutation Strategy          

TRUDIE MAKENS (STUDENT), “Bringing Dignity to Workers: Make the Minimum Wage a Living Wage”       

A student writer refutes three arguments against increasing the minimum wage.

Appealing to a Resistant Audience: Dialogic Argument         

Creating a Dialogic Argument with a Delayed Thesis 

ROSS DOUTHAT, “Islam in Two Americas”    

A conservative columnist asks readers to explore aspects of American identity that suggest that Muslims should not build a community center near Ground Zero.

Writing a Delayed-Thesis Argument    

A More Open-Ended Approach: Rogerian Communication    

Rogerian Communication as Growth for the Writer     

Rogerian Communication as Collaborative Negotiation         

Writing Rogerian Communication      

COLLEEN FONTANA (STUDENT), “An Open Letter to Robert Levy in Response to His Article ‘They Never Learn’ ”  

Using the strategies of Rogerian argument, a student writes an open letter about the problem of gun violence on college campuses to an advocate of minimal gun control laws and more guns.


Writing Assignment: A Classical Argument or a Rogerian Letter         


LAUREN SHINOZUKA (STUDENT), “The Dangers of Digital Distractedness” (A Classical Argument)  

Using the classical argument form, a student writer argues that being a skilled digi-tal native also “harms us by promoting an unproductive habit of multitasking, by dehumanizing our relationships, and by encouraging a distorted self-image.”

MONICA ALLEN (STUDENT), “An Open Letter to Christopher Eide in Response to His Article ‘High-Performing Charter Schools Can Close the Opportunity Gap’ ” (RogerianCommunication)   

Using the strategies of Rogerian communication, a student writer skeptical about charter schools initiates dialogue with a charter school advocate on ways to improve education for low-income and minority students.




8. Analyzing Arguments Rhetorically

Thinking Rhetorically about a Text

Questions for Rhetorical Analysis

Conducting a Rhetorical Analysis


Writing for the conservative magazine National Review, Kathryn Jean Lopez argues against the emerging practice of egg donation enabled by new reproductive technology.

Our Own Rhetorical Analysis of “Egg Heads”  


Writing Assignment: A Rhetorical Analysis      

Generating Ideas for Your Rhetorical Analysis

Organizing Your Rhetorical Analysis  


ELLEN GOODMAN, “Womb for Rent–For a Price”     

Columnist Ellen Goodman explores the ethical dilemmas created when first-world couples “outsource” motherhood to third-world women.

ZACHARY STUMPS (STUDENT), “A Rhetorical Analysis of Ellen Goodman’s ‘Womb for Rent–For a Price’ ”           

A student analyzes Ellen Goodman’s rhetorical strategies in “Womb for Rent,” emphasizing her delayed-thesis structure and her use of language with double meanings.


9          Analyzing Visual Arguments 

Understanding Design Elements in Visual Argument  

Use of Type    

Use of Space or Layout          

An Analysis of a Visual Argument Using Type and Spatial Elements 

Use of Color    

Use of Images and Graphics   

An Analysis of a Visual Argument Using All the Design Components  

The Compositional Features of Photographs and Drawings    

An Analysis of a Visual Argument Using Images         

The Genres of Visual Argument          

Posters and Fliers        

Public Affairs Advocacy Advertisements         


Web Pages     

Constructing Your Own Visual Argument        

Guidelines for Creating Visual Arguments      

Using Information Graphics in Arguments       

How Tables Contain a Variety of Stories         

Using a Graph to Tell a Story 

Incorporating Graphics into Your Argument   


Writing Assignment: A Visual Argument Rhetorical Analysis, a Visual Argument, or a Microtheme Using Quantitative Data  207




10        An Introduction to the Types of Claims          

The Types of Claims and Their Typical Patterns of Development      

Using Claim Types to Focus an Argument and Generate Ideas: An Example 

Writer 1: Ban E-Cigarettes       

Writer 2: Promote E-Cigarettes as a Preferred Alternative to Real Cigarettes  

Writer 3: Place No Restrictions on E-Cigarettes          

Hybrid Arguments: How Claim Types Work Together in Arguments     

Some Examples of Hybrid Arguments 

An Extended Example of a Hybrid Argument 

ALEX HUTCHINSON, “Pounding Pills: Your Daily Multivitamin May Be Doing More Harm Than Good”        

Writing for an outdoor sports magazine targeting health and fitness enthusiasts, a journalist reviews the scientific literature against daily multivitamins and other supplements.


11        Definition and Resemblance Arguments       

What Is at Stake in a Categorical Argument? 

Consequences Resulting from Categorical Claims     

The Rule of Justice: Things in the Same Category Should Be Treated the Same Way

Types of Categorical Arguments         

Simple Categorical Arguments           

Definition Arguments  

Resemblance Argument Using Analogy         

Resemblance Arguments Using Precedent     

Examining Visual Arguments: Claim about Category (Definition)       

The Criteria-Match Structure of Definition Arguments

Overview of Criteria-Match Structure  

Toulmin Framework for a Definition Argument           

Creating Criteria Using Aristotelian Definition 

Creating Criteria Using an Operational Definition       

Conducting the Match Part of a Definition Argument 

Idea-Generating Strategies for Creating Your Own Criteria-Match


Strategy 1: Research How Others Have Defined the Term      

Strategy 2: Create Your Own Extended Definition      

Writing Assignment: A Definition Argument    

Exploring Ideas           

Identifying Your Audience and Determining What’s at Stake  

Organizing a Definition Argument      

Questioning and Critiquing a Definition Argument     


ARTHUR KNOPF (STUDENT), “Is Milk a Health Food?”          

A student argues that milk, despite its reputation for promoting calcium-rich bones, may not be a health food.

ALEX MULLEN (STUDENT), “A Pirate But Not a Thief: What Does ‘Stealing’ Mean in a Digital Environment?”        

A student argues that his act of piracy–downloading a film from a file- sharing torrent site–is not stealing because it deprives no one of property or profit.

LOS ANGELES TIMES EDITORIAL BOARD, “College Football–Yes, It’s a Job”       

The Editorial Board of the Los Angeles Times supports a court decision that scholarship football players at Northwestern University are “paid employees” of the university and therefore have the right to unionize.


12        Causal Arguments     

An Overview of Causal Arguments      

Kinds of Causal Arguments     

Toulmin Framework for a Causal Argument    

Two Methods for Arguing That One Event Causes Another    

First Method: Explain the Causal Mechanism Directly

Second Method: Infer Causal Links Using Inductive Reasoning         

Examining Visual Arguments: A Causal Claim           

Key Terms and Inductive Fallacies in Causal Arguments       

Writing Assignment: A Causal Argument         

Exploring Ideas           

Identifying Your Audience and Determining What’s at Stake  

Organizing a Causal Argument           

Questioning and Critiquing a Causal Argument          


JULEE CHRISTIANSON (STUDENT), “Why Lawrence Summers Was Wrong: Culture Rather Than Biology Explains the Underrepresentation of Women in Science and Mathematics” (APA-format research paper)       

A student writer disagrees with Harvard president Lawrence Summers’s claim that genetic factors may account for fewer women than men holding professorships in math and science at prestige universities.

DEBORAH FALLOWS, “Papa, Don’t Text: The Perils of Distracted Parenting”

Linguist Deborah Fallows argues in The Atlantic that by texting and talking on cell phones instead of interacting with their young children adults are jeopardizing their children’s language learning.

CARLOS MACIAS (STUDENT), “‘The Credit Card Company Made Me Do It!’–The Credit Card Industry’s Role in Causing Student Debt”     

A student writer examines the causes of college students’ credit card debt and puts the blame on the exploitive practices of the credit card industry.


13        Evaluation and Ethical Arguments   

An Overview of Categorical Ethical Evaluation Arguments    

Constructing a Categorical Evaluation Argument       

Criteria-Match Structure of Categorical Evaluations   

Developing Your Criteria        

Making Your Match Argument

Examining Visual Arguments: An Evaluation Claim   

Constructing an Ethical Evaluation Argument

Consequences as the Base of Ethics  

Principles as the Base of Ethics          

Example Ethical Arguments Examining Capital Punishment 

Common Problems in Making Evaluation Arguments 

Writing Assignment: An Evaluation or Ethical Argument        

Exploring Ideas            290

Identifying Your Audience and Determining What’s at Stake  

Organizing an Evaluation Argument  

Questioning and Critiquing a Categorical Evaluation Argument        

Critiquing an Ethical Argument          


LORENA MENDOZA-FLORES (STUDENT), “Silenced and Invisible: Problems of Hispanic Students at Valley High School”

A physics major critiques her former high school for marginalizing its growing numbers of Hispanic students.

CHRISTOPHER MOORE (STUDENT), “Information Plus Satire: Why The Daily Show and The Colbert Report Are Good Sources of News for Young People”           

A student favorably evaluates The Daily Show and The Colbert Report as news sources by arguing that they keep us up to date on major world events and teach us to read the news rhetorically.

JUDITH DAAR AND EREZ ALONI, “Three Genetic Parents–For One Healthy Baby”  

Lawyers specializing in medical research argue that mitochondrial replacement (which enables a child to inherit DNA from three parents) “might be a way to prevent hundreds of mitochondrial-linked diseases, which affect about one in 5, people.”

SAMUEL AQUILA, “The ‘Therapeutic Cloning’ of Human Embryos”   

A Catholic archbishop finds therapeutic cloning “heinous,” despite its potential health

benefits, “because the process is intended to create life, exploit it, and then destroy it.”


14        Proposal Arguments  

The Special Features and Concerns of Proposal Arguments  

Practical Proposals versus Policy Proposals   

Toulmin Framework for a Proposal Argument 

Special Concerns for Proposal Arguments      

Examining Visual Arguments: A Proposal Claim        

Developing a Proposal Argument       

Convincing Your Readers that a Problem Exists         

Showing the Specifics of Your Proposal         

Convincing Your Readers that the Benefits of Your Proposal Outweigh the Costs      

Using Heuristic Strategies to Develop Supporting Reasons for Your Proposal 

The “Claim Types” Strategy    

The “Stock Issues” Strategy     

Proposal Arguments as Advocacy Posters or Advertisements  

Writing Assignment: A Proposal Argument      

Exploring Ideas           

Identifying Your Audience and Determining What’s at Stake  

Organizing a Proposal Argument        

Designing a One-Page Advocacy Poster or Advertisement     

Designing PowerPoint Slides or Other Visual Aids for a Speech        

Questioning and Critiquing a Proposal Argument       


MEGAN JOHNSON (STUDENT), “A Proposal to Allow Off-Campus Purchases with a University

Meal Card”      

A student writes a practical proposal urging her university’s administration to allow off-campus use of meal cards as a way of increasing gender equity and achieving other benefits.

IVAN SNOOK (STUDENT), “Flirting with Disaster: An Argument Against Integrating Women into the Combat Arms” (MLA-format research paper)    

A student writer and Marine veteran returned from combat duty in Iraq argues that women should not serve in combat units because the inevitable sexual friction undermines morale and endangers soldiers’ lives.


An organization devoted to saving bees calls for support for a moratorium on the use of certain chemical pesticides that are deadly to bees.

SANDY WAINSCOTT (STUDENT), “Why McDonald’s Should Sell Meat and Veggie Pies: A Proposal to End Subsidies for Cheap Meat” (speech with PowerPoint slides)      

A student proposes the end of subsidies for cheap meat for the benefit of both people’s health and the environment.

MARCEL DICKE AND ARNOLD VAN HUIS, “The Six-Legged Meat of the Future”      

Two Dutch entomologists argue that insects are a nutritious and tasty form of protein and less environmentally harmful than cattle, pigs, or chickens.




15        Finding and Evaluating Sources       

Formulating a Research Question Instead of a “Topic”           

Thinking Rhetorically about Kinds of Sources

Identifying Kinds of Sources Relevant to Your Question         

Approaching Sources Rhetorically     

Finding Sources         

Conducting Interviews

Gathering Source Data from Surveys or Questionnaires         

Finding Books and Reference Sources           

Using Licensed Databases to Find Articles in Scholarly Journals, Magazines, and News Sources      

Finding Cyberspace Sources: Searching the World Wide Web           

Selecting and Evaluating Your Sources         

Reading with Rhetorical Awareness    

Evaluating Sources    

Taking Purposeful Notes         



16        Incorporating Sources into Your Own Argument      

Using Sources for Your Own Purposes

Writer 1: A Causal Argument Showing Alternative Approaches to Reducing Risk of Alcoholism        

Writer 2: A Proposal Argument Advocating Vegetarianism     

Writer 3: An Evaluation Argument Looking Skeptically at Vegetarianism       

Using Summary, Paraphrase, and Quotation  




Punctuating Quotations Correctly       

Quoting a Complete Sentence           

Quoting Words and Phrases    

Modifying a Quotation

Omitting Something from a Quoted Passage 

Quoting Something That Contains a Quotation         

Using a Block Quotation for a Long Passage  

Creating Rhetorically Effective Attributive Tags         

Attributive Tags versus Parenthetical Citations           

Creating Attributive Tags to Shape Reader Response

Avoiding Plagiarism   

Why Some Kinds of Plagiarism May Occur Unwittingly          

Strategies for Avoiding Plagiarism      

Conclusion      374


17        Citing and Documenting Sources      

The Correspondence between In-Text Citations and the End-of-Paper List of Cited Works     

MLA Style       

In-Text Citations in MLA Style

Works Cited List in MLA Style 

Works Cited Citation Models   

MLA-Style Research Paper     

APA Style       

In-Text Citations in APA Style

References List in APA Style  

References Citation Models    

APA-Style Research Paper     


Appendix         Informal Fallacies       

The Problem of Conclusiveness in an Argument        

An Overview of Informal Fallacies      

Fallacies of Pathos     

Fallacies of Ethos       

Fallacies of Logos      




The Future of Food and Farming        


ARTHUR L. CAPLAN, “Genetically Modified Food: Good, Bad, Ugly”

A professor of bioethics defends genetic engineering but takes the biotech companies to task for their mismanagement of the technology.

ROBIN MATHER, “The Threats from Genetically Modified Foods”     

A food columnist outlines the concerns about and consequences of using GMOs.

MICHAEL LE PAGE, “Wrong-Headed Victory”

A writer argues that when biotech companies fight labelling efforts they only fuel consumer suspicion and delay promising research.

JOHN HAMBROCK, “Harley, I’m Worried About Gene Transfer” (editorial cartoon)     

A cartoonist imagines how GMO plants might cross-pollinate with unmodified strains.

JOE MOHR, “Monsanto’s Reasons for Fighting GMO Labeling? It Loves You”

A cartoonist satirizes the biotech companies’ arguments against labelling of GM foods.

CAITLIN FLANAGAN, “Cultivating Failure”     

A journalist questions the value of school gardens as an educational tool, focusing particularly on the effects for Hispanic and low-income students.

BONNIE HULKOWER, “A Defense of School Gardens and Response to Caitlin Flanagan’s ‘Cultivating Failure’ in The Atlantic”       

A marine scientist and environmental planner performs a rhetorical analysis of Flanagan and refutes her claims.

TOM PHILPOTT, “Thoughts on The Atlantic’s Attack on School Gardens”    

A food and agriculture columnist reflects on school gardens as a teaching tool, and disagrees with Flanagan’s conclusions.

JESSE KURTZ-NICHOLL, “Atlantic Gets It Wrong!: School Gardens Cultivate Minds Not Failure

A former high school teacher with a Master’s in Public Health disputes Flanagan’s claims about access to healthy food and the need for food education.


Higher Education: How and Why We Learn Matters 


REBECCA MEAD, “Learning by Degrees”       

A New Yorker staff writer acknowledges the appeal of skipping college to pursue financial success, but also questions economic advancement as the sole reason for attending college.

KEN SAXON, “What Do You Do with a B.A. in History?           

An entrepreneur and leader in the nonprofit sector speaks to freshmen at UC Santa Barbara about the value of a liberal arts education.

AARON BADY, “The MOOC Moment and the End of Reform”

A postdoctoral fellow interrogates the hype surrounding MOOCs and the wisdom of integrating them into a university education.

SCOTT NEWSTOK, “A Plea for ‘Close Learning’ ”      

An English professor argues for the value of face-to-face interactive learning.

DAVE BLAZEK, “Melissa Misunderstands Massive Open Online Courses” (editorial cartoon)  

A cartoonist humorously illustrates one of the drawbacks of MOOCs.

CHRISSIE LONG, “The Changing Face of Higher Education: The Future of the Traditional University Experience” 

Recognizing that the traditional classroom won’t disappear, a writer argues for the benefits and transformative potential of MOOCs, particularly, the opportunities they offer learners in developing countries.


Immigration in the Twenty-First Century        


FATEMEH FAKHRAIE, “Scarfing It Down”      

A media critic argues that coverage of countries’ attempts to ban the wearing of hijab distorts the issue by labeling it a religious freedom issue and by leaving out the voices of the women themselves.

STEPHANIE PAULSELL, “Veiled Voices”       

A professor at Harvard Divinity School addresses Muslim women’s varying reasons for wearing hijab.

 MADELINE ZAVODNY, “Unauthorized Immigrant Arrivals Are on the Rise, and That’s Good News”   

An economics professor reads the number of illegal immigrants as an economic index and argues for reforms for immigrant workers’ visas over governmental spending on increased border security.

CHIP BOK, “Processing Undocumented Children” (editorial cartoon) 

An editorial cartoonist comments on the difference in the handling of undocumented children in 2 and in 2014.


The executive director of the Center for Immigration Studies details the flaws he sees in the DREAM Act and other amnesty legislation.

LEE HABEEB AND MIKE LEVEN, “Immigration, America’s Advantage”         

A columnist and a businessman team up to advocate for the benefits of maintaining an immigrant workforce.

JOHN K. KAVANAUGH, “Amnesty?”    

A Roman Catholic priest and philosophy professor asks anti-immigration groups to see the human face of undocumented immigrants and to support a path to amnesty.

LOS ANGELES TIMES, “Young, Alone, and in Court”

The editors of the Los Angeles Times argue for a multinational, humanitarian response to the issue of child migrants and a better process for handling unaccompanied children in the U.S. immigration system.

NATIONAL REVIEW, “Border Crisis in Texas”  

The editors of the National Review blame the Obama administration’s amnesty policies for the surge in illegal-immigrant children.



Millennials Entering Adulthood         


KATHRYN TYLER, “The Tethered Generation”          

A writer analyzes how technology has affected the way Millennials work and communicate, and proposes management strategies for employers.

ERIN BURNS, “Millennials and Mentoring: Why I’m Calling Out ‘Bullpucky!’ on Generational Differences and Professional Development”   

A young professional refutes the assumption that her generation requires “special handling” in the workplace.

AMERICA, “Generation S”      

The editors of a Catholic weekly magazine argue that the spirit of service instilled in the current generation of students should be modeled by all Americans.

RAFFI WINEBURG, “Lip Service Useless for Millenials”          

A recent graduate reflects on the challenges facing Millennials as they enter the workforce and calls for more constructive treatment of them.

KAY S. HYMOWITZ, “Where Have the Good Men Gone?”      

The author of Manning Up: How the Rise of Women Has Turned Men into Boys claims that too many men in their twenties have succumbed to a new kind of extended adolescence.

EVE TUSHNET, “You Can Go Home Again”   

A writer challenges the stigma faced by young adults who move back in with their parents.


Choices for a Sustainable World       


MARK A. DELUCCHI AND MARK Z. JACOBSON, “Meeting the World’s Energy Needs Entirely with Wind, Water, and Solar Power”  

A research scientist and an engineering professor propose a combination of wind, water, and solar power as the best alternative to fossil fuels, and explain how the transition can be made quickly and cost effectively.

ASHUTOSH JOGALEKAR, “Vaclav Smil: ‘The Great Hope for a Quick and Sweeping Transition to Renewable Energy Is Wishful Thinking”

A science blogger uses Vaclav Smil’s research to argue that substantial obstacles still stand in the way of the widespread conversion to renewable energy.

U.S. ENERGY INFORMATION ADMINISTRATION, “The U.S. Energy Story in Numbers: Energy Supply and Disposition by Type of Fuel, 1975—2010”        

Statistics gathered by a U.S. agency tell a wealth of stories about U.S. energy production and consumption.

ROBERTY BRYCE, “The Real Energy Revolution Shrinking Carbon Dioxide Emissions? It’s Fracking”          

A writer from a conservative think tank maintains that fracking has enabled the United States to make greater strides than other nations in reducing its emissions, and at a lower cost.

ABRAHM LUSTGARTEN, “Fracking: A Key to Energy Independence?”         

An investigative journalist questions the speed with which the U.S. and other nations have embraced fracking.

JASON POWERS, “The Problem Is the Solution: Cultivating New Traditions Through


An activist argues that developing a sustainable approach to using resources is critical to the survival of a culture.

VANDANA SHIVA, “The Soil vs. the Sensex”  

An environmental activist sets the interests of the small farmer against those of the Sensex, India’s stock exchange.


Digital Literacies       


AN INTERVIEW WITH SHERRY TURKLE, Digital Demands: The Challenges of Constant


In an interview on PBS’s Frontline, scholar and researcher Sherry Turkle suggests that constant connectivity may make us more lonely and less inclined to find stillness or think deeply about “complicated things.”

ALISON GOPNIK, “Diagnosing the Digital Revolution: Why It’s So Hard to Tell if It’s Really

Changing Us”  

A professor and expert in child learning and development suggests that claims for the negative impact of technology on young people may be overstated.

MARY ANN HARLAN, “Deconstructing Digital Natives”           

In this scholarly article, a teacher and librarian makes the distinction between tech-nological savvy and digital literacy.

SUSAN NIELSEN, “An Internet ‘Eraser’ Law Would Hurt, Not Help, Oregon Teens”     

A journalist argues that allowing teens to erase past web indiscretions teaches them that they can behave poorly without forethought or consequence.

GARY VARVEL, “Meet Jack” (editorial cartoon)          

A cartoonist humorously demonstrates the consequences of sharing too much on social media.

ADRIENNE SARASY, “The Age of the Selfie: Taking, Sharing Our Photos Shows Empowerment, Pride”      

A high school journalist argues in her student newspaper that selfies can be empowering and help to redefine standards of beauty.

ROBERT WILCOX, “The Age of the Selfie: Endless Need to Share Tears Society’s Last Shred of Decency” 

In the same student newspaper, a student editor argues that oversharing through selfies goes beyond narcissism and may actually be dangerous.

AASHIKA DAMODAR, “The Rise of ‘Great Potential’: Youth Activism against Gender-Based Violence”         

An anti-trafficking activist analyzes the potential of social media as a tool for activism, arguing that it is most effective when combined with offline action.


Argument Classics    


GARRETT HARDIN, “Lifeboat Ethics: The Case Against Aid That Does Harm”           

An ecologist argues against foreign aid and open borders, promoting wider understanding of the “tragedy of the commons” and stimulating new thinking about the causes of poverty and ways to combat it.

RACHEL CARSON, “The Obligation to Endure”          

A marine biologist and writer exposes the subtle, insidious dangers of the pesticide DDT, and in so doing helps launch the environmental movement.

E. O. WILSON, “Apocalypse Now/Letter to a Southern Baptist Minister”         

A biologist and secular humanist attempts to bridge the gap between science and religion, asking Christians and environmentalists to come together to save the multitude of species threatened by climate change.

MARGARET SANGER, “The Morality of Birth Control”           

A pioneer of the birth control movement seeks to redefine what is “moral” when considering access to birth control and assessment of the consequences.




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