ISSA Proceedings 2014 ~ Historical Inquiry Into Debate Education In Early 20th Century Japan: The Case Of Intercollegiate Debates In Yūben


Abstract: This paper analyzes intercollegiate debates hosted by Yūben (1910-1941), a monthly magazine specializing in oratory. From 1930 to 1935 Yūben held a total of 14 intercollegiate debates in which college students argued over such controversial topics as capital punishment. By examining the transcripts of the debates, relevant Yūben articles, and historical documents on academic debate in the United States, the paper seeks to trace the American influence on debate education in early 20th century Japan.

Keywords: American influence, history of debate, intercollegiate debate, modern Japan, Yūben

1. Introduction
This paper aims at shedding light on the influence of American-style academic debate in early 20th century Japan by scrutinizing intercollegiate debates hosted by Yūben (1910-1941), a monthly magazine specializing in oratory. Despite the fact that Yūben was the most influential publication devoted to promoting speech and, to a lesser extent, debate in Japan at the time, very few studies have been conducted to examine its role and impact. A close analysis of Yūben thus offers us a new window into debate education in pre-World War II Japan and thereby provides further historical insights into argument practices in non-Western societies.

From 1930 to 1935, Yūben held a total of 14 intercollegiate debates in which college students were invited to argue over controversial policy topics of the day such as capital punishment and international marriage. Importantly, the debates were billed as an experiment with the debate format being widely practiced in the West back then. While the first debate was allegedly modeled on the British style, the subsequent debates were in fact more similar to those practiced at American schools. More specifically, as opposed to the traditional (elocutionary and belles-lettristic) style of debate, the intercollegiate debates in Yūben emphasized research, the use of evidence, and a direct clash of arguments. Given that a similar shift from elocution to argumentation occurred in the United States around the same time, it can be surmised that contrary to popular belief, American debate practices continued to influence debate education in Japan during the 1920s and 30s. By examining the transcripts of the debates, relevant Yūben articles, and historical documents on academic debate in the United States, the paper seeks to trace the American influence on debate education in early 20th century Japan and to consider why Yūben was so eager to introduce American-style debate shortly before the breakout of the Pacific War.

2. Yüben in a historical perspective
As Aonuma, Morooka, and Senō (2013) note, “the modern Japanese forensic practice has always been under the American influence since its inception” (p. 1). It is telling that Yukichi Fukuzawa’s Kaigiben (How to Hold a Conference, 1874) and Sadamasu Ōshima[i] and Aikoku Horiguchi’s Kagi Bempō (Rules on Holding an Effective Conference, 1874), which were among the first books on Western debate in Japan, were renditions of James N. McElligott’s the American Debater and Luther Cushing’s Rules of Proceeding and Debate in Deliberative Assemblies, respectively. At the same time, the British influence was equally, if not more, noticeable in those days. For example, Kenkichi Ōi’s Kaigi Shinan (Instructions for Conducting a Meeting, 1878) and Gendō Nishimura’s Seiyō Tōron Kihan (The Principles of Western Debate, 1881) were both partial translations of Frederic Rowton’s the Debater.

Efforts to introduce the American and British styles of debate to Japan continued to be made in the first decade of the 20th century when Seiji Noma, founder of the major publishing house Kodansha (then named Dainihon Yūbenkai [the Great Japanese Oratorical Society]), launched Yūben. Published in February 1910, its inaugural issue was immediately sold out; the subsequent issues were also widely read among students, intellectuals, and politicians (Tomasi, 2004, p. 147). Rōichi Okabe (1987) elaborates on the role the magazine played in stimulating public interest in Western-style oratory:

Every month it carried diverse articles on Western rhetorical theory and practice, many texts of speeches delivered by prominent Japanese, and translated texts of speeches of British and American orators. This monthly magazine was instrumental in nurturing the seed of Western rhetoric on Japanese soil at the turn of the century and in promulgating learning and knowledge of the Western world to the enlightenment-conscious people of the late Meiji and early Taisho era (1912-1926). (p. 37)

Although Okabe’s article is highly informative especially for non-Japanese readers, it is not without problems. One shortcoming is its failure to separate speech from debate. While it is true that “[t]he Yūben magazine, especially during its first six years of publication, was instrumental in introducing American public address to Japanese cross-nationally” (Okabe, 1987, p. 49), articles on debate were few and far between in its early issues. Hence it is not clear if and how much Yūben sought to promote debate activities in those days. Although Yūben carried out written debate competitions (daikenshō tōronkai) twice for a brief period of time, they were not actual debates but a selection of readers’ opinions for and against pre-announced topics such as strengthening Japan’s naval forces. Moreover, while Yūben had frequently organized or sponsored speech meetings and oratorical contests since 1914 (Tomasi, 2004, p. 147), it had not been until 1930 that it began to hold a debate event. Read more

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ISSA Proceedings 2014 ~ Argumentation In Bulgarian Political Virtual Forums And Social Networks


Abstract: This study examines specific features of the argumentation in virtual political forums and social networks. The subjects of research are political forums and Facebook groups as a part of the civil protests in Bulgaria over the period of two years (2012-2013). The main goal is investigation on arguments used by Bulgarian citizens in virtual dialogues, appropriateness and effectiveness of argumentation. The second goal includes survey of specific verbal, visual and multi-modal arguments used in the social networks.

Keywords: argumentation, visual and multi-modal arguments, political virtual forums, social networks

1. Introduction
The new Bulgarian state has reached 135 years of independent history and form of government since 1879. From 1945 to 1991 (during socialism) the form of government was a specific kind of republic (the People’s Republic of Bulgaria). The Constitution from July 1991 states that Bulgaria is a parliamentary representative democratic republic. The multi-party system was established after 45 years of socialist and totalitarian government. A transition towards a pluralistic and democratic society is taking place.

Bulgarian political communication plays a role in the civil society; it continues to be a function of the state institutions and political parties. Political and civil rhetoric practices and influence have immensely grown during the Bulgarian civil protests and demonstrations (1989, 1990, 1996–1997). Political communication has transformed since 2010 and Bulgarian citizens vow their demands in more definite forms combining direct, media and virtual channels. Bulgarian citizens largely use the Internet as a tool for increased social activities in the civil society. The participants in the protests in Bulgaria (2012–2013) use Facebook as an instrument of civic activity and acceleration of the protests. The protesters use Facebook as virtual tribune and Internet forums as virtual discussions where they raise topics and conduct dialogues.

2. Hypothesis and research questions
The hypothesis initiating the present search is that the argumentation in the Bulgarian political forums and social networks during the protests from 2010 to 2013 goes through different transformations as a result of technical, technological and social factors. In addition, the traditional kinds of arguments are transformed; virtual communication includes verbal, visual and multi-modal arguments and has achieved new forms of display. The manners and modes of presenting the ideas have changed as a result of the changes in the attitudes of the e-communicators and protesters. Bulgarian virtual civil communication has diverse forms of manifestation and characteristics.

The aim of the current study is to try to give answer the following research questions:
* What was the significance of virtual forums and social networks during the protests?
* Which are the main features of virtual forums?
* Which rhetorical figures, arguments and tools did the protesters use purposefully to convey their main messages, influence the public conscience of the citizens and mobilise them to support their ideas?
* How verbal, visual and multi-modal arguments create opportunities to persuade Bulgarians to participate more actively in the civil society events? Read more

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ISSA Proceedings ~ Argumentative Moves In An Inquisitive Context About Psychological Harassment In The Workplace: A Case Study In Québec


Abstract: We summarize a recently (2013) completed doctoral research, which analyzed and commented a series of interviews led by four public servants, the mission of which was to ascertain admissibility for further inquiry, of claims of psychological harassment on the workplace by complainants, in Québec province (Canada). We combine with Argumentation and Rhetoric tools and concepts a Conversation Analysis (CA) perspective, showing how meaning obtains in speech acts constructed in interaction.

Keywords: Interviews, psychological harassment, argumentation, conversation analysis, rhetoric, admissibility, speech acts

1. Introduction
This proposal looks at argumentative strategies between complainants and investigators around harassment issues at work. A recently (2013) completed doctoral research analyzed and commented, from an argumentative point of view, a very specific corpus: a series of four interviews, totalizing ten hours, led by four public servants, the mission of which was to ascertain a first recognition of validity for further inquiry, of claims of psychological harassment on the workplace by complainants, in Québec province (Canada). The interviews having taken place in 2006, using a convention taking back accepted notations. One interesting theoretical achievement done in the research is probably to combine a Conversation Analysis (CA) perspective, claiming that meaning obtains in speech acts constructed in interaction, with argumentative figures and cues taken in Aristotle, Perelman, Walton and Van Eemeren.

In the context of a doctoral research in philosophy (Ph.D.), we wanted to study specific discourses that certainly have a rhetorical dimension: claims of psychological harassment presented by plaintiffs and their treatment by investigators. Different conceptual and methodological tools have been used, which are coming from rhetoric, argumentation studies and also from Conversation Analysis (CA). The notions of logos, ethos and pathos were examined and used in the analysis of a corpus of scripts of taped argumentative exchanges, between complainants and investigators; details and conventions utilized are given below. We will start by providing the social and professional context of the study, recall briefly Aristotle’s notions, then look at Perelman’s notion of the audience’s adhesion, with some contributions of Van Eemeren and Walton; we will limit ourselves to specific elements of these theories here. Then the research method used, by reference to CA, will be explained briefly while we will be finishing with the presentation of a few examples illustrating our main results about the rhetorical effects of narrative accounts of psychological harassment in the context of specific investigative interactions.

2. Research context
Our research context was provided by a public organization, the Commission des normes du travail (CNT), which is a Labour Standards Commission having its jurisdiction in Québec, Canada. People who have suffered for different reasons at work, can file complaints in front of that organism for psychological harassment, the complaints are then treated by professionals. Since 2004, it is possible in Québec for a worker (blue or white collar) to file such a complaint, with the aims of putting an end to the problematic situation. The law that clarifies the recourse determines the nature of manifestations that can be associated with psychological harassment; the text refers to notions such as “A vexatious behaviour in the form of repeated conduct, verbal comments, actions or gestures that are hostile or unwanted, that affect the employee’s dignity or psychological or physical integrity and make the work environment harmful”, (L.Q. 2002, c.80). This sentence includes a number of possible situations which resonates with workers who experience different forms of suffering in the workplace. These possible victims can then refer to CNT as a public office, even though the procedure will represent an enormous challenge for people who feel they were or still are being harassed at work. Read more

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ISSA Proceedings 2014 ~ That’s No Argument! The Ultimate Criticism?


Abstract: What if in discussion the critic refuses to recognize an emotionally expressed (alleged) argument of her interlocutor as an argument? In this paper, we shall deal with this reproach, which taken literally amounts to a charge of having committed a fallacy of non-argumentation. As such it is a very strong, if not the ultimate, criticism, which even carries the risk of abandonment of the discussion and can, therefore, not be made without burdening oneself with correspondingly strong obligations. We want to specify the fallacies of non-argumentation and their dialectic, i.e., the proper way to criticize them, the appropriate ways for the arguer to react to such criticism, and the appropriate ways for the critic to follow up on these reactions. Among the types of fallacy of non-argumentation, the emphasis will be on the appeal to popular sentiments (argumentum ad populum). Our aim is to reach, for cases of (alleged) non-argumentation, a survey of dialectical possibilities. By making the disputants themselves responsible for the place of emotion in their dialogues, we hope to contribute to a further development of the theory of dialectical obligations.

Keywords: Abandonment of discussion, Ad populum, Criticism, Dialogue, Emotion, Fallacy, Non-Argumentation, Ultimate criticism

1. Introduction
In this paper, we want to study the so-called fallacies of non-argumentation and the corresponding kind of fallacy criticism: the accusation of having presented no argument at all. This may count as a sort of ultimate criticism.
Generally, fallacy criticisms point out a problem and ask for repair so that in a metadialogue (a dialogue about the dialogue) one may deal with the problem. But an accusation of “non-argumentation” denies that there even is an argument. Therefore it seems to leave no room for any amendments or further discussion. Let us look at an example. It’s from the ongoing discussion about gay marriage.
When last year the Republican Senator Rob Portman decided to support same-sex marriage, the Speaker of the House, John Boehner, was asked what he thought about that. Boehner then rejected gay marriage by an expression of his gut feelings about it. This again led to an accusation of non-argumentation:

CASE 1: Gay marriage
Asked about Portman’s change of heart, House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) explained on ABC’s This Week, “I believe that marriage is the union of a man and a woman.”
Asked if his position might change, Boehner explained and elaborated (not really):
“Listen, I believe that marriage is the union of one man and one woman. … It’s what I grew up with. It’s what I believe. It’s what my church teaches me. And I can’t imagine that position would ever change.” (Leon 2013, italics as in the original)

Commentator Michael Leon criticizes Boehner by a charge of non-argumentation: Boehner’s repeated assertions that he feels this way because he believes this way is not an argument […] (Leon 2013, italics as in the original).

This case is not so simple as it may appear. For one thing, in order for a fallacy charge of non-argumentation to be appropriate, the accused should be in a position where he or she is indeed expected to provide an argument. A mere expression of one’s opinion, where this opinion has not been called into question, cannot amount to a fallacy of non-argumentation. Leon seems to suppose that in the case he considers this condition has been met; probably, because politicians are supposed to argue. Further, there must really be no reconstructable argument. In Case 1, however, this is doubtful since Boehner invokes the teaching of his church, which amounts to a – be it rudimentary – argument from authority. Read more

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ISSA Proceedings 2014 ~ The Study Of Reasoning In The Lvov-Warsaw School As A Predecessor Of And Inspiration For Argumentation Theory


Abstract: The hypothesis proposed in this paper holds that the Polish logico-methodological tradition of the Lvov-Warsaw School (LWS) has a chance to become an inspiring pillar of argumentation studies. To justify this claim we show that some ideas regarding classifications of reasoning may be applied to enrich the study of argument structures and we argue that Frydman’s constructive account of legal interpretation of statutes is an important predecessor of contemporary constructivism in legal argumentation.

Keywords: classifications of reasoning, argument structures, schemes for fallacious reasoning, legal constructivism, the Lvov-Warsaw School

1. Introduction
The motivation for this paper lies in exploring possible applications of the heritage of the Lvov-Warsaw School (LWS) in argumentation theory. After presenting a wider map of current research strands and future systematic applications of the LWS tradition in contemporary argument studies (Koszowy & Araszkiewicz, 2014), in this paper we focus on the study of reasoning as one particular area of inquiry which constituted the core concern of the LWS. The main justification of the need of focusing on the inquiry into the nature of reasoning in the LWS is twofold. Firstly, it manifests clearly that apart from purely formal accounts, the School elaborated the broader pragmatic approach to reasoning which may be also of interest for argumentation theorists. Secondly, it may be particularly inspiring for contemporary argument studies because of the possibility of applying it in (i) argument reconstruction and representation and (ii) identifying the structure of fallacious reasoning.

The research hypothesis proposed in this paper holds that the Polish logico-methodological tradition of the Lvov-Warsaw School (LWS) has a chance to become an important theoretical pillar of contemporary study of argumentation. This hypothesis may be justified by undertaking systematic inquiry which would show that some key ideas of the LWS may be applied in developing some crucial branches of the contemporary study of argumentation. In order to argue that such an inquiry is a legitimate research project, we will show that apart from the developments of formal logic which are associated with the works of such outstanding logicians and philosophers as Tarski, Leśniewski or Łukasiewicz, in the LWS there was also present a strong pragmatic movement which may be associated e.g. with the works of Ajdukiewicz. Moreover, our aim is also to show that even ‘purely formal’ approaches to reasoning (e.g. the theory of rejected propositions proposed by Łukasiewicz) may turn out to be inspiring for argument analysis and representation.

In this paper, we will discuss two areas of applying ideas of LWS: argumentation schemes and legal argumentation. The aim of the paper will be accomplished in following steps. In section 2 we will sketch an outline of those research areas in the LWS which might be particularly interesting for argument studies. This preparatory discussion will constitute an introduction to Section 3 which is aimed at discussing the issue of applicability of LWS ideas regarding classifications of reasoning in argument representation. In Section 4, we will discuss the second area of applying the tradition of LWS in the study of argumentation is the domain of legal argumentation. We will argue that Frydman’s constructive account of legal interpretation of statutes (1936) is an important predecessor of a contemporary view in theory of legal argumentation referred to as constructivism and advanced for instance by Hage (2013). Finally, in the concluding section, we will sketch an answer to the question of how the two specific contexts discussed in the paper form a good starting point for a broader research project concerning application of methods and ideas developed in the LWS to contemporary open problems of argumentation theory. Read more

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ISSA Proceedings 2014 ~ Isocrates’ Moral Argumentation


Abstract: Two of Michael Calvin McGee’s unpublished manuscripts hint at how the ancient Greek philosopher Isocrates developed a perspective on argumentation that may be useful for contemporary analysis of public affairs. The first manuscript describes Isocrates as a “cultural surgeon” who operated using “moral argumentation.” The second manuscript suggests how individuals may repair cultural faults using moral argumentation. Through rhetorical analysis of Spanish 15­M protest logoi, this paper explores the critical utility of Isocratic moral argumentation.

Keywords: Isocrates, Michael Calvin McGee, social movements, protest, 15-M, rhetoric, public argument, argumentation

1. Introduction
How may an understanding of argumentation scholar Michael Calvin McGee’s use of the term “moral argumentation” inform the analysis of modern-day protest activity? Exploration of this question promises to enrich understanding of this term and shed light on how argumentation by twenty-first century protestors may contribute to the processes of deliberation and unity formation. McGee first describes moral argumentation in the first of his two unpublished manuscripts on the topic of Isocrates (McGee 1986, 1998). In this manuscript, “Isocrates: A Parent of Rhetoric and Culture Studies,” McGee provides no direct definition of moral argumentation; however, some preliminary understandings may be extrapolated from McGee’s use of the term by reading this paper in tandem with the second manuscript, “Choosing A Poros: Reflections on How to Implicate Isocrates in Liberal Theory.” Although the term moral argumentation has been employed in other philosophical contexts, McGee inflects it in a unique and particular way that warrants further study (Habermas 1984, 1988, 1990, 1996). This paper aims to (re)construct the meaning of McGee’s “moral argumentation” to support a case study of protest logoi (i.e., reasoned arguments, such as protest slogans) by the Spanish protest group 15-M.

2. Moral argumentation
In the first manuscript, “Isocrates: A Parent of Rhetoric and Culture Studies,” McGee argues that Isocrates’ argumentation may be characterized as the “skill and talent of discovering how best to apply values to a given circumstance” [emphasis added] (McGee 1986). McGee’s definition attributes an implicit and intrinsic moral component to Isocrates’ form of argumentation, which is signaled by McGee’s use of the term “values,” a word that connotatively and denotatively carries ethical and moral implications (McGee 1986). McGee contends that for Isocrates, engaging in or performing “moral argumentation encouraged right action” (McGee 1986). McGee asserts that Isocrates stated that “moral knowledge” could be obtained through studying the “history of public address,” which also serves as a history of “virtue in action” (McGee 1986). By “public address,” McGee most likely gestures to the classical Greek understanding of the term, encompassing a variety of speeches (e.g., forensic, epideictic, deliberative, encomiastic) that were traditionally delivered at “the law courts, in political assemblies, and on ceremonial occasions at public festivals” (Ilie 2009, p. 833; McGee 1986). Thus, inherent in McGee’s description of this acquisitional process is the salient role history plays in obtaining “moral knowledge,” which is further articulated in the manner in which Isocrates constructed arguments (McGee 1986). Read more

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