ISSA Proceedings 2014 ~ Classifying Argumentation/Reasoning Schemes Proper Within The New Rhetoric Project

Abstract: Previous research on the New Rhetoric Project’s classification categories for argumentation/reasoning schemes has dismissed three overarching categories – association, dissociation, and breaking of connecting links, and focused on specific schemes proper. Challenging this communal understanding of the Project about the classification of schemes proper, this article will reconfigure the relationship between the overarching categories and schemes proper. In this process, a forth overarching category, or ‘re-confirming of connecting links’ will be proposed and defended.

Keywords: adherence, argumentation/reasoning schemes proper, association, audience, breaking of connecting links, dissociation, New Rhetoric Project (NRP), and re-configuring of connecting links

1. Introduction
Since Arthur Hastings’ dissertation on mode of reasoning was re-discovered in mid-1980s, research on argumentation/reasoning schemes[i] has flourished. Pragma-Dialecticians, rhetoricians, informal logicians, and computer scientists have written on the topic, which has helped argumentation schemes to gain presence within the community of argumentation scholars.

Before the research on argumentation schemes became significant, Chaim Perelman and Lucie-Olbrechts Tyteca examined various schemes/techniques of argumentation in their New Rhetoric Project (NRP). In classifying argumentation schemes proper, the NRP offers three overarching categories: association, dissociation, and breaking of connecting links. With association, arguers assemble entities that are thought to be different into a single unity, using techniques such as quasi-logical arguments, arguments based on the structure of the real, and arguments establishing the structure of the real. Each of these subcategories have their sub-subcategories under which specific argumentation schemes proper, such as argument from sign, analogical argument, or causal argument are discussed.

With dissociation, arguers dissemble what is originally thought to be a single unified entity into two or more different entities by introducing criteria for differentiation. Using dissociation, they help their audience members see the situation in a new light and attempt to persuade them to accept it. In short, dissociation attempts to establish a conceptual distinction and a hierarchy within what is believed to be a single and united entity.

In discussing dissociation, the NRP briefly refers to breaking of connecting links as a third category. This third category is referred to as opposition to the establishment of the connection, interdependence, or unity constructed by association.

In the first three chapters we examined connecting links in argumentation that have the effect of making interdependent elements that could originally be considered independent. Opposition to the establishment of such an interdependence will be displayed by a refusal to recognize the existence of a connecting link. Objection will, in particular, take the form of showing that a link considered to have been accepted, or one that was assumed or hoped for, does not exist, because there are no grounds for stating or maintaining that certain phenomena under consideration exercise an influence on those which are under discussion and it is consequently irrelevant to take the former into account. (Perelman and Olbrechts-Tyteca, 1969, p. 411)

In the breaking of connecting links, audience members mistakenly accept or assume that a key entity in the premise constitutes one and the same unity at the beginning of argumentation when it is actually made up of distinctively different entities; the inferential process reveals the audience members’ confusion and advances the thesis that reveals the distinction that exists. Forcing the audience members to recognize their confusion and understand the lack of connection can be substantiated “by actual or mental experience, by changes in the conditions governing a situation, and, more particularly, in the sciences, by the examination of certain variables” (Perelman and Olbrechts-Tyteca, 1969, p. 411).

While the NRP does not claim to be exhaustive in its treatment of argumentation schemes, the three categories seem to be general enough to encompass different scheme types. However, argumentation scholars have criticized its weaknesses (Eemeren, Garssen, Krabbe, Henkemans, Verheij, and Wagemans, 2014, pp. 291-292; Kienpointner, 1987, p. 39). A strong criticism against the NRP on its treatment of argumentation schemes proper comes from Kienpointner. He states that:

(T)he same scheme can be seen as means of association and dissociation, or with other words, means of justification and refutation. As most dissociative pairs correspond to associative schemes (which correspond on their turn to the types of warrants of the standard catalogue), I content myself to present the associative schemes. (Kienpointner, 1987, p. 283)

With this line of criticism he denies the necessity of the overarching categories of association, dissociation, and breaking of connecting links. Instead, he examines only argumentation schemes proper used for association, disregarding ones used for dissociation. Since his criticism denies the need for the triad categories and urges us to focus only on argumentation schemes proper, it constitutes a serious challenge to the NRP’s classification of argumentation. Therefore, it calls for our investigation.

In light of Kienpointner’s strong criticism, this article will attempt to inquire into the overarching categories of argumentation proposed by the NRP and redeem its treatment of argumentation schemes. Four key issues to be discussed in this article are as follows:

(1) How clear are the NRP’s overarching categories to classify argumentation schemes, based on association, dissociation, and breaking of connecting links?
(2) How are three overarching categories and argumentation schemes proper related to each other?
(3) How good are previous secondary research works on the NRP on its treatment of argumentation schemes by Kienpointner, Gross and Dearin, and Warnick and her colleagues?
(4) How comprehensive are the three overarching categories to classify argumentation schemes? In the following sections, this article will examine these key issues in this order for better situating the NRP’s approach to classify argumentation schemes proper within the current research on argumentation schemes, while keeping consistent with the spirit of the Project.

2. How clear are the NRP’s overcarching categories to classify argumentation schemes?
Kienpointner claims that there is no need for the classification categories based on association and dissociation because one and the same scheme can be used both with association and dissociation. For this reason he has dismissed dissociative schemes and focused only on associative schemes. Although he does not support his thesis against the NRP, actual texts of the NRP support his thesis. When discussing incompatibility as an instance of association, Perelman explicitly states that:

if we want to resolve an incompatibility and not just put it off, we must sacrifice one of the two conflicting rules, or at least ‘recast’ the incompatibility by a dissociation of ideas. (Perelman, 1982, p. 61).

Besides, when he discusses implicit dissociation, he refers to tautology – another instance of association.

A writer does not have to make explicit reference to a philosophical pair or one of its terms for the reader to introduce a dissociation spontaneously, when faced with a text that would be incoherent and tautological, and hence insignificant, without it. (Perelman, 1982, p. 135).

Furthermore, Perelman and Olbrechts-Tyteca state that “it is possible to interpret any analogy can be interpreted as dissociation” although they assign sections for analyzing analogy under association” (Perelman and Olbrechts-Tyteca, 1969, p. 429). Since Perelman and Olbrechts-Tyteca admit that these argumentation schemes proper can be used both with association and dissociation, Kienpointner rightly observes that there is some vagueness in the NRP’s classificatory system of argumentation schemes. From the textual support for the thesis advanced by Kienpointner, we must, at least, accept part of his thesis that one and the same scheme proper can be used with association and dissociation. Although it must be examined whether the association-dissociation categories are necessary, suffice it to say that the NRP is vague in its development of classifying argumentation schemes proper.

3. How are three overarching categories and schemes proper related to each other?
Kienpointner’s criticism exposes some weaknesses in the NRP’s classification categories for argumentation schemes proper. However, those categories can be coherently coordinated with schemes proper with a more careful scrutiny of the NRP. This article argues that the three classification categories (association, dissociation, and breaking of connecting links) are different from schemes proper, so it is a category mistake to reduce the former to the latter and examine only associative argumentation schemes.

For us to better understand the overarching categories, we must first revisit the aim of argumentation and the internal structure of a unit of argument as defined by the NRP. In discussing non-formal argumentative discourse, Perelman states as follows:

The purpose of the discourse in general is to bring the audience to the conclusions offered by the orator, starting from premises that they already accept – which is the case unless the orator has been guilty of a petitio principi. The argumentative process consists in establishing a link by which acceptance, or adherence, is passed from one element to another…, and this can be reached either by leaving the various elements of the discourse unchanged and associated as they are or by making a dissociation of ideas. (Perelman, 1979, pp. 18-19)

This short passage emphasizes that argumentation is conducted for increasing adherence of audience members to the thesis/conclusion of arguments. An argument starts with premises that audience members accept, then bring them to the conclusion with the assistance of the argumentative process. This argumentative process is also called schemes or techniques of argumentation in the NRP, and association and dissociation are extensively discussed, with breaking of connecting links being concisely described.

Figure 1. Summary of three categories of arguments

While Perelman and Olbrechts-Tyteca’s descriptions of these three categories are fuzzy, they informs us of key nature of rhetorical arguments. These three categories draw on audience members’ adherence as a general principle and classify premises and theses, as well as argumentation schemes. They classify types of premise and inform us whether audience members rightly or mistakenly regard key entities in the premise as unified or different, how the inferential process transforms their adherence or corrects their confusion, and whether the thesis establishes or clarifies a unity or a division. Since the three categories go beyond the inferential process and also cover audience members’ adherence to both premise and thesis, none of the three categories are identified with or reduced to argumentation schemes proper. Instead, they inform us of the functions that each of the constituent parts of an argument serve in transforming audience members’ adherence or correcting their confusion. From the roles that the three categories play in classifying the constituent parts of the argument and informing their functions, we can presume that the categories are relevant to and shed light on argumentation schemes proper, although that they feature a wider scope than argumentation schemes proper. The three categories function as umbrella terms that inform us of the function of the constituent parts of the argument in terms of the audience. However, it would be a mistake to reduce them to argumentation schemes proper, for they are just as relevant to argumentation schemes as they are to premises and theses. Figure 1 summarizes specific features of association, dissociation, and breaking of connecting links in light of the three components of arguments:

4. How good are previous secondary research works on the NRP’s treatment of argumentation schemes?
Based on the theses advanced in the previous sectiona, the previous research on the NRP’s approach to argumentation schemes proper seems to commit categorical mistakes. This section of the article will examine some of the previous research that has dealt with the NRP’s treatment of argumentation schemes.

As the previous section of this article has revealed, Kienpointner has rightly understood that one scheme can be used with association and dissociation. However, his dismissal of dissociation and breaking of connecting links and his exclusive focus on (sub-)subcategories of association fail to account for the roles that association, dissociation, and breaking of connecting links play in modifying audience members’ adherence to the premise and linking it to the thesis. Additionally, he fails to advance our understanding of the relationships between the three-partite categories and argumentation schemes proper. While it is possible to advance our understanding of argumentation schemes proper without referring to the three-partite classification categories as Kienpointner has done, the role and the significance of the audience members’ adherence become much more evident when we relate argumentation schemes proper to the overarching categories. Argumentation schemes proper generally lead the audience members to adhere to the thesis based on the acceptable premise. Still, the three-partite categories tell us more about how the audience members’ adherence is transferred from the premise to the thesis by resorting to a particular argumentation scheme proper. Given the central role that the audience plays in the NRP, Kienpointner’s dismissal inadequately recaptures the role of argumentation schemes in the Project at the theoretical level. At the practical level, his dismissal may end in insufficient incorporation of the conception of audience in analysis and appraisal of argumentative texts. As a research program aiming to advance our understanding on argumentation schemes proper, Kienpointner’s approach, which focuses only on argumentation schemes proper, is reasonable. However, as a research program aiming to grasp argumentation schemes proper within a theoretical framework emphasizing the role of the audience, his scope is too narrow to be comprehensive on theoretical or practical grounds. Therefore, while he seems to have rightly observed the relationships between the classification categories based on association, dissociation, and breaking of connecting links and argumentation schemes proper, his dismissal of the classification categories is off the mark in light of the NRP’s emphasis on audience. To put it simply, Kienpointner is not rhetorical enough in dealing with argumentation schemes proper.

While Kienpointner has dismissed dissociative arguments, Gross and Dearin, and Warnick and Kline have mistakenly treated dissociation per se as an argumentation scheme proper. However, they do not discuss association per se as an argumentation scheme proper. Instead, they discuss (sub-)subcategories of association as argumentation schemes proper. For example, Gross and Dearin assign one chapter to each of quasi-logical arguments, arguments from the structure of reality, arguments establishing the structure of reality, and dissociation (Gross and Dearin, 2003, pp. 43-97). Warnick and Kline set up a similar classification categories and discussed thirteen argumentation schemes proper, which includes dissociation per se. In both cases, while dissociation per se is treated as an argumentation schemes proper, association per se is not examined at all, so we are at a loss why or in what respect association is necessary in the classification of argumentation schemes. Furthermore, these scholars do not consider Kienpointner’s criticism and fail to account for (sub-)subcategories of association used with dissociation, such as incompatibility, tautology, or analogy.

Example (1) below shows that a so-called associative argumentation scheme is used with dissociation, thereby questioning the line of research pursued by Gross and Dearin, and Warnick and Kline. Toshisada Takada, a Japanese military officer stationing on the Amami Islands in Japan (to the north of Okinawa Prefecture) at the end of WWII, was demanded to sign a disarmament document. He used dissociation based on argument from consequence and denied signing the document unless it was revised.

Premise: The U.S. Tenth Army adheres to the understanding that the Amami Islands are Northern Ryukyu.
Scheme: While the Amami Islands can historically be regarded as Northern Ryukyu, they ought to be viewed as part of Kagoshima Prefecture for the purpose of carrying out disarmament of the Japanese Army stationed on the Amami Islands.
Thesis: The Amami Islands are classified as part of Kagoshima Prefecture, rather than Northern Ryukyu. (adapted from Takada, 1965, pp. 96-97)

In his attempt to counter the adherence by the US Tenth Army that was in charge of the negotiation, Takada introduces two ways to understand the Amami Islands: historical and administrative. Administratively, the Amami Islands had been part of Kagoshima Prefecture from the second half of the 19th century through to the end of World War II. This position is opposed to the American position that links the Amami Islands to Ryukyu, an old name for Okinawa Prefecture. By emphasizing his own understanding of geographical and historical conditions of the Islands, Takada discredits the American interpretation in light of the goal of the argumentative situation. Since the disarmament of the Japanese Army is the goal of the argumentative exchange between Takada and the U.S. Tenth Army, the historical perspective associating the Amami Islands with Northern Ryukyu is unconvincing to Takada and the Japanese Army. In contrast, the administrative perspective would lead to the desired end of disarming the Japanese Army in the area. This way, the Amami-as-Kagoshima thesis is more cogent than the Amami-as-Ryukyu thesis in this particular argumentative situation because of the potential consequences the former would likely bring about. In other words, the scheme used in this instance is pragmatic argument, or argument from the consequence, which is classified as a type of arguments based on the structure of reality. This dissociative argument confirms Kienpointner’s criticism that one scheme can be used with association and dissociation. It also confirms the author’s position that association, dissociation, and breaking of connecting links are overarching categories to classify argumentation schemes proper, rather than schemes proper per se.

Figure 2. Summary of previous research on argumentation schemes proper in the NRP

In summary, Kienpointner’s criticism against the NRP makes sense, but his research does not account for the overall picture of the three-partite categories in light of the audience. Gross and Dearin, and Warnick and Kline commit a categorical mistake and do not fully account for association per se and roles that argumentation schemes proper plays in dissociative arguments. Figure 2 summarizes what the previous scholarship by Kienpointner, Gross and Dearin, and Warnick and Kline.

5. How comprehensive are the three overarching categories to classify argumentation schemes proper?
The NRP has not claimed exhaustiveness in its treatment of argumentation schemes proper. However, for making the overarching categories more comprehensive, this article argues that there should be a fourth overarching category to classify argumentation schemes proper. Since this fourth type forces the audience members to recognize already-existing connecting links, it is called ‘re-confirming of connecting links.’ The argument for the existence of the fourth category hinges on the nature of breaking of connecting links and its relation to dissociation; therefore this article initially deals with the relationship between breaking of connecting links and dissociation, then that between dissociation and association.

The NRP has repeatedly emphasized that association and dissociation are two main categories and concisely described breaking of connecting links. In those concise descriptions, the NRP has consistently dealt with breaking of connecting links in contrast with dissociation. It is characterized as opposition to establishing associations or as techniques clarifying the existing divisions in the entities dealt in the premises of arguments. In other words, arguers make use of breaking of connecting links to force the audience members to accept that they fail to recognize the existing division.

While the NRP treats association and dissociation extensively, only dissociation has a complementary category called breaking of connecting links. If association is actually the other main category, then it must have same or similar qualifications, because two entities sharing essential characteristics must be treated in the same manner, according to the rule of justice that the NRP endorses. The NRP does not offer reasoning contrary to this speculative position. Therefore, we can presume that association must have a complementary pair including association and something else. Here comes the need for a fourth category of arguments.

Because the fourth category, or “re-confirming of connecting links” forces the audience members to recognize their mistaken adherence to the entities dealt with in the premise set, it is to association what breaking of connecting links to dissociation. In this fourth category of argument, audience members mistakenly accept or assume that premises constitute different entities when they actually constitute a single whole. The inferential process reveals the audience members’ mistaken adherence and advances the thesis, revealing the unity that actually exists but goes unnoticed by the audience.

As the dissociation starts with audience members’ adherence that the premise constitutes a single whole, the association starts with their adherence that the premise is composed of different entities. In contrast, the re-confirming of connecting links starts with their mistaken adherence that the premise is composed of different entities, although it actually constitutes a single whole. The inferential process of the association combines those different entities into a single whole, whereas that of the re-confirming of connecting links clarifies their mistaken adherence and forces them to understand that the premise set originally constitutes a single whole. The thesis of the association presents a single whole as a result of the inferential process, whereas that of the re-confirming of connecting links presents the originally existing single whole in a clearer manner. In other words, while the association transforms the audience members’ adherence to the premise by bringing separate entities together, the re-confirming of connecting links corrects their mistaken adherence to the premise by having them understand that they have confused a single entity with separate entities as the starting point of the argument. In conclusion, while the NRP focuses on the association and the dissociation as two main categories of argument and briefly discusses the breaking of connecting links, the existence of the re-confirming of connecting links is logically implied by these three categories, according to the rule of justice. With re-confirming of connecting links being added to the existing three categories, the NRP’s categories of arguments are summarized in figure 3:

Figure 3. Summary of four categories of arguments

Having speculatively argued for the existence of the fourth category, the onus is on the author to substantiate the thesis being advanced. In the following self-deliberation arguments, Haruki Murakami, a well-known Japanese novelist, argued with himself about whether a Aum Shinrikyo’s sarin gas attack victim suffered from different types of violence from Aum Shinrikyo and the company he worked for. He was forced to quit after the gas attack because he could not perform well due to the aftereffect of the attack.

Premise: A victim of the sarin gas attack on the Tokyo subway system suffered from excessive violence twice.
Scheme: The excessive violence can be subdivided into the violence of an abnormal society, Aum Shinrikyo and that of normal society, a company, with normal society being more regular and reasonable than the abnormal.
Thesis: The violence by Aum Shinrikyo is more deserving of condemnation than that by the company.

Premise: The two types of excessive violence seem to emerge from the same root.
Suppressed Scheme: The same root must have caused two different types of violence.
Thesis: The distinction between the two types of excessive violence are not persuasive to the victim of both. (Adapted from Murakami, 2001, pp. 3-4)[ii]

In example (2), Murakami attempts to dissociate different types of violence based on where the two violent acts come from. In example (3), however, he corrects his own thinking that the violent acts are two different entities. By directing his attention to the same metaphorical roots of the acts, he concludes that the two acts are the same. Since he makes himself recognize the unrecognized unity among the violent acts, it is an instance of re-confirming of connecting links. With the quality of these arguments being set aside, example (3) is a clear instantiation of re-confirming of connecting links.

6. Conclusion
In this article, the author has extended Kienpointner’s criticism against the NRP’s treatment of argumentation schemes proper. First, this article has acknowledged his criticism that the NRP is not clear about its classification framework of argumentation schemes proper. Next, this article has clarified the relationship between the overarching classification categories of argument (association, dissociation, breaking of connecting links and re-confirming of connecting links) and argumentation schemes proper, concluding that the former cannot be reduced to the latter. In light of this theoretical discussion, this article has critiqued previous secondary research on argumentation schemes proper from a NRP’s point of view, because it fails to account for the significance of the audience or distinguish the overarching categories from argumentation schemes proper. Finally, this article has added re-confirming of connecting links to the existing overarching categories based on the rule of justice that the NRP endorses. While the author admits that further case studies are needed to substantiate all the claims advanced in this article, this article has made a presumptively cogent case on how to classify argumentation schemes in accordance with the NRP.

Topics that merit further inquiries concerning the NRP’s treatment of argumentation schemes include (1) compilation of specific argumentation schemes proper used in dissociation, breaking of connecting links and re-confirming of connecting links, and (2) development of an approach to argument evaluation and criticism that incorporates audience. The first research topic is geared more toward empirical, and the second one is geared toward theoretical as well as empirical. As has been recently discussed by Johnson (2013) and Tindale (2013), the notion of audience calls for theoretical development as well as empirical substantiation. While there is no doubt that audience must play the central role in New Rhetorical theories of argumentation, discussion has been going on about how to crystallize the notion of audience although there has been no consensus (Crosswhite, 1996; Gross and Dearin, 2003; Jorgensen, 2009; Tindale, 1999, 2004). Discussing audience at the theoretical level through substantive evidence, we can hopefully refine our views on this challenging construct, thereby enriching the field of rhetorical argumentation.

This article is based on the author’s dissertation at University of Pittsburgh. I thank Gordon Mitchell, John Lyne, E. Johanna Hartelius, Nicholas Rescher, and Merrilee H. Salmon for their guidance and support.

i. While many scholars use ‘argumentation scheme’ as a key phrase, the author follows J. Anthony Blair’s position that schemes are predicated of reasoning (mental act of inferring) and argument (social speech act between parties) (Blair, 2001, pp. 372-373). This position is consistent with the New Rhetoric Project that considers self-deliberation (internal argumentation with arguers themselves) is an variation of argumentation with others.
ii. Since English translation of Murakami’s work omits some text, the author has referred to both English and Japanese edition.

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ISSA Proceedings 2014 ~ Where Is Visual Argument?

Abstract: Argumentation studies suffer from a lack of empirical studies of how audiences actually perceive and construct rhetorical argumentation from communicative stimuli. This is especially pertinent to the study of visual argumentation, because such argumentation is fundamentally enthymematic, leaving most of the reconstruction of premises to the viewer. This paper therefore uses the method of audience analysis, frequently used in communication studies, to establish how viewers interpret instances of visual argumentation such as pictorially dominated advertisements.

Keywords: advertising, images, pictures, reception studies, reconstruction, rhetoric, visual argumentation

1. Audiences and the reconstruction of pictorial argumentation
The reconstruction of pictorial and visual argumentation has been pointed out as especially problematic since pictures neither contain words or precise reference to premises, nor has any syntax or explicit conjunctions that coordinate premise and conclusions. Researchers have been critical of speculative reconstruction of visual premises and arguments that are – they claim – not there; or at least that we cannot know for sure are there. So a central question becomes: Where is argument? Or rather where is visual argument?

I propose that we should more often turn to studies of audience reception; because if an audience actually perceives an argument when encountering an instance of visual communication, then surely an argument has been provided.
The first audience analysis must have been Aristotle’s description of the various types of human character in the Rhetoric. However, in rhetorical research empirical audience analyses are rare, and in argumentation studies they seem to be completely absent. More than anything rhetorical argumentation research is text focused.
When rhetoricians actually discuss the audience, they are mostly concerned with the audience as theoretical or textual constructions. They examine the universal audience (Perelman & Olbrechts-Tyteca 1969), the second persona (Black 1998), the audience constituted by the text (e.g. Charland 1987), the ignored or alienated audience (e.g. Wander 2013), or they theorize about the audience’s cognitive processing of messages (W. Benoit & Smythe 2003).

Instead of limiting ourselves to such textual and theoretical approaches, I propose that research into rhetorical argumentation should more often examine the understandings and conceptualization of the rhetorical audience. From mostly approaching audience as a theoretical construction that are examined textually and speculatively, we should give more attention to empirical explorations of actual audiences and users.

When argumentation theorists discuss the audience mostly they engage in discussions about the identity of the audience and the (im)possibility of determining the identity of the audience (Govier 1999, 183 ff.; Johnson 2013, Tindale 1992, 1999, 2013). Because it is hard to define or locate the audience aspirations to examine audiences are sometimes countered with the argument that such studies are futile, because we cannot really know who the audience is. Trudy Govier, for instance, in her book The Philosophy of Argument, questions how much audience “matter for the understanding and evaluation of an argument”. She introduces the concept of the “Noninteractive Audience – the audience that cannot interact with the arguer, and whose views are not known to him” (Govier 1999, p. 183).

The mass audience, which is probably the most typical audience in the media society of our days, is “the most common and pervasive example of a Noninteractive Audience”. The views of this noninteractive and heterogenous audience, Govier says, are unknown and unpredictable (Govier 1999, p. 187). This means “trying to understand an audience’s beliefs in order to tailor one’s argument accordingly is fruitless” (Tindale 2013, p. 511). Consequently, “Govier suggests, it is not useful for informal logicians to appeal to audiences to resolve issues like whether premises are acceptable and theorists should fall back on other criteria to decide such things”.

Ralph Johnson, continues this line of reasoning, and proposes that a Noninteractive audience is not only a problem for pragma-dialectics, as Govier suggests, but also for rhetorical approaches; because it is not possible to know this type of audience. Johnson criticises the views of Perelman and Christopher Tindale, which holds, “the goal of argumentation is to gain the acceptance of the audience” (Johnson, p. 544). Advising a speaker to adapt to the audience when constructing arguments, says Johnson “is either mundane or unrealistic” (Johnson 544). It is unrealistic because, we cannot truly grasp an audience as an objective reality.

Johnson is right in saying that grasping an audience, understanding and defining its identity, is a difficult matter. However, while this issue of the audience might be a problem for the speaker, it need not cause so much anxiety for the researcher. Because, the desire to determine the identity of the audience is, I think, is not the most fruitful way to an understanding of how rhetorical argumentation works. Desperately seeking the audience (cf. Ang 1991) is not the way forward.

I am not arguing that researchers should stop speculating about what an audience is, nor do I claim that speakers should refrain from defining their audience and adapt their messages accordingly. But, I am arguing that the primary concern for scholars of rhetoric and argumentation should not be to determine the exact identity of the audience or settle whether or not an argument, or another instance of rhetoric, creates adherence.
What we should be more concerned with is how an argument or any rhetorical appeal is constructed, how it is audience-oriented, and – which is the main point of this paper – how it is received, interpreted, and processed – that is: how actual audiences actually respond to instances of rhetorical argumentation.
As pointed out by Edward Schiappa (2008, p. 26): “We need to find out what people are doing with representations rather than being limited to making claims about what we think representations are doing to people.” This requires a combination of close readings of rhetorical utterances, contextual analyses of the situation, and empirical studies of audience reception and response. This is why I have done reception studies of ads exploring the responses of focus groups to pictures and pictorially dominated ads.

2. Focus group studies
Through focus groups I have attempted to find out if respondents perceive arguments in the advertisements, how they perceive them, and tried to explore in this way the characteristics of visual argumentation. The three focus group interviews carried out for this essay were done in Norway during June 2014. The groups consisted of, respectively, six pensioners in their 70s, five young women aged 18-19, and four university students that did not know each other. The groups were selected in order to allow for variation and breadth in knowledge and life situation.

The respondents were first introduced to each other and the focus group situation, and then asked to fill out a short survey with relevant personal information. They were then explained that I as researcher was interested in hearing what they thought about some images that I wanted to show them. They were not told that I was particularly interested in visual argumentation. I explained that I would first show them five pictures, each for less than one minute, and requested that they during this they should write five words or short sentences about the first thoughts that came to mind when they saw each picture.

Steimatzky book chain ”Read more”. Courtesy of: Shalmor Avnon Amichay/Y&R Interactive Tel Aviv

When this activity was done, I instigated focus group conversations with open questions such as “What do you think when you see this picture”, and open follow-up questions such as “why?” or “how?” Other pictures than the one mentioned in this paper were shown to the respondents and discussed during the focus groups. One of the advertisement I examined was this one, from the Israeli bookstore Steimatzky.[i]

When I asked a young group of women the age of 18-19 what we could say about this ad the first respondent immediately said:
You lose intelligence by watching television, because your head becomes smaller by that (MI/AN 5:33)[ii].

Another respondent followed up:
I think that you become more focussed on watching television, than building knowledge by reading. So, according to the advertisement the head will become smaller and smaller when watching television. However, it will become larger and larger by reading books. (MI/AN 05:55)

When asked what the ad proposed, most of the young women answered: “Read instead of watching TV” (MI/AN: 07:21). When I asked why one should read; the young women generally responded something in the lines of either: “Because reading makes you smarter” (MI/MA 06:52), or “Because watching television makes you stupid” (MI/JA: 05.55).

In a group of pensioners in their 70s the first response to my question “What can we say about this picture” was: “That you should read instead of watching television” (BR/UN 09:37).

When a respondent from a group of university students, saw the ad, a male respondent immediately said, “it implicates that if you don’t read you will become stupid” (MA/BJ 08.32). I asked him why, and he answered: “because he has such a little head compared to his body, it implicates that if you do not read you will become stupid” (MA/BJ 10:25).

When asked how one could implicate that, he explained: “there is (only) room for a small brain inside, and a small brain figuratively means stupid” (MA/BJ 12:29).

A young woman in the same focus group added to this explanation that she read the message of the ad: “more as instead of watching television, because he is sitting there with the remote control” (MA11:55, my emphasis).

So, it is clear that the respondents actually decode an argument from the ad. And it is clear that the without the visuals the argument would not be constructed. Almost all respondents created the argument: “Read more, because if you don’t, you will become stupid”. Several, as we saw, added the circumstance: “Read more, instead of watching television”.

We should note as well that the formulations of the argument do not say that the person in the picture should read more. In general the respondents do not talk specifically about him, when reconstructing the argument. Instead they use general pronouns such as “one should read more”, or “you should read more”, They thus move from the specifics of the picture to a general level expressing a moral claim.

3. Pragmatic decoding
It is obvious that the respondents construct the term “stupid” from the visual representation of the little head. In general, it seems possible to visually evoke adjectives such as big, small, stupid, and the like. At the same time, we would probably be inclined to say, that images because of their lack of syntax and grammar are unable to evoke conjunctions that connect premises in an argument and create the necessary causal movements for an argument to be established. What does conjunctions such as “therefor”, “hence”, and “then” look like?

However, as we have seen, respondents do actually use conjunctions such as “then” and “therefor” both explicitly and implicitly. They also use formulations saying the visual elements “implicate” certain conclusions. Furthermore, the respondents explicitly mention the adversative conjunction “instead of”. Like the other conjunctions, the term “instead of”, and they way it is used to connect premises, is neither in the caption “read more”, nor represented anyway directly in the picture.

So, where do the conjunctions come from? In making sense of the three central elements in the ad – the caption “read more”, the little head, and the person’s sitting-position with the remote – a connection has to be made. In light of the advertising genre the most relevant and plausible connection would be argumentative conjunctions.

This kind of search for argumentative meaning is clear in several of the respondent’s interpretations. Take the pensioner, who said about the Steimatzky ad: “That you should read instead of watching television” (BR/UN 09:37). When I asked her to elaborate the woman said:
Well, if it is an advertisement for a bookstore, then they obviously want to give a message saying that he needs to read more, right? And then, where is the message in that picture? That’s got to mean that his head is so small, that he needs to fill up” (BR/UN, 09:37)

It is clear from this that she is not only searching to make sense of the ad by connecting verbal, visual, and contextual elements. She is also presupposing that the message has a persuasive character. Because of the imperative mood in the caption she immediately assumes that “read more” is the claim, and she naturally proceeds by looking for the reason. Her short elaboration illustrates two things.

Firstly, it illustrates that audiences are active in an exploring kind of mental labour while looking for the meaning and assumed argument in an image. This mental exploring is not incidental, but is generally performed in accordance with pragmatic rules of speech acts (Austin 1975, Searle 1969), relevance (Sperber & Wilson 1986), and implicature (Grice 1989); theories which we know have been successfully applied to the study of argumentation in for instance pragma-dialectics (e.g. Eemeren & Grootendorst 1983, Henkemans 2014). People obviously make implications, are consciously aware that the ads are trying to convey messages even arguments. And they clearly try to reconstruct these arguments.

Secondly, the example illustrates that much more is going on in the reception of this kind of visual argumentation, than can be expressed by stating only the premises and conclusion of the argument. The picture, so to speak, holds much more than the content of these short assertions.

4. Thickness and condensation
It is an important characteristic of predominantly visual argumentation that it allows for a symbolic condensation that prompts emotions and reasoning in the beholder. In the focus group of students, for instance, a young woman commented on the ad in this way:
if you do not read you will become a narrow-minded, potato-couch – non-thoughtful. He is not exactly sitting in a position, which is considered very flattering, intellectual, positive. The whole position is connected with a sick person” (MA/SI 11:34).

The basic argument: “Read more, because if you do not read you will become stupid” is clearly present in this comment, but the interpretation involves much more. Let me illustrate the significance of this visual surplus-meaning with a Norwegian ad for the tram-system in Oslo (see below, ill. 2). The ad shows a scene from the tram. The light blue box in the upper left has the same appearance as a ticket for the tam, however the text says: “Avoid embarrassing moments. Buy a ticket”. At the bottom of the ad the text says: “There are no excuses for dodging the fare (We are intensifying our controls)”.

Most respondents sum-med up the argument from this ad something like this: “Buy ticket, and you will avoid an unpleasant situation” (MV/MA 48:43). We could state the argument like this: “You should buy tickets, because it will make you avoid an unpleasant situation” However, if we reduce visual arguments to only these kind of context-less, thin premises, we also limit ourselves to putting forward only the skeleton of the rhetorical utterance instead of the full body. We reconstruct, in a sense, a lifeless argument.

Ad for the tram in Oslo: ”Unngå pinlige øyeblikk” (”Avoid embarrasing momente”).

In contrast to this, it quickly became obvious, when I interviewed people about the ads that much more was going on. We see that the stating of the premises and the reconstruction of the argument is embedded in a much thicker understanding of the depicted situation, and of similar situations and emotions evoked by the ad.

We discover that one of the benefits of visual or multimodal argumentation is that they provide what I call thick descriptions, a full sense of the situation, making an integrated, simultaneous appeal to both the emotional and the rational (cf. Kjeldsen 2012, 2013). One respondent said:
Well, they are obviously playing on the embarrassment of getting caught when not having a ticket. The way you shrink yourself when the inspector comes” (MV/BJ 48:43)

He later continued, saying: “You try to hide a little, you want to sink into the ground; because it is so embarrassing to get caught, you make yourself as little as possible.” (MV/BJ 48:43) Another respondent elaborated even more on what she felt the ad represented (MI/AN 31:15):
I am thinking that the person, the little man, has sneaked in. And when there is a ticket inspection, you always end up with those embarrassing situations, those looks, and you become embarrassed. Because it says, the text, “Avoid embarrassing moments. Buy tickets”. And then you would avoid being tense and get caught. And there are a lot of other people around that might think “Oh well, he got caught now”; and then you begin to think strange thoughts about the person that got caught.

The image clearly evokes imagined or previous experiences of embarrassment connected with sneaking on public transport. One person told that she herself had witnessed a “grown man” seemingly well enough off to pay the fare, but he still got caught without a ticket (MA/SI 48:43). Another vividly told about his fear and shame when he himself almost got caught without a ticket. All these descriptions and evoked emotions are, in fact, relevant parts of the argument. The more you feel the embarrassment, the more persuasive the argument will be. This, however, does not mean that the contribution of the image – or the ad as such – is just psychological and irrational persuasion.

It is true in this case, that the argument is more or less fully expressed by words in the text in the upper left corner, which says “Avoid embarrassing moments. Buy a ticket”. However, the premises created by these words alone, lack the full sense of situation and embarrassment experienced by the respondents, and expressed when they talk about the ad.

So, if we limit ourselves to reconstructions of the argument with short premise-conclusion assertions found only in textual analyses we will only get part of the argument expressed multimodally in the ad. Because the more I feel the embarrassment the more forceful the argument is, and the more correct the argument actually is; because the feeling of embarrassment is an important part of the argument. If you do not really feel the embarrassment, then you have not really understood the argument, since the good reason offered to buy a ticket is the possibility to avoid an unpleasant feeling. Of course one could attempt to express this in writing by saying something like: “You should buy a ticket, because it will make you avoid a very unpleasant situation”. However, adding modal modifiers to the premises does not truly capture the sense of embarrassment offered by the visual parts of the ad, and it is not likely to evoke the same kind of memories and full descriptions that the image clearly evoked in the respondents.

5. Conclusion
The point of the focus group analysis has neither to claim that the respondents’ interpretations are ”the correct interpretations”, nor to claim that other audiences will necessarily interpret the ads in the exact same way – even though this is what the focus group interviews clearly suggest. The point is simply to show that the ads invite the construction of a specific argument, and that the respondents generally made the preferred reading (cf. Hall 1993).

Much more could be said about the ads and reception analyses of visual argumentation. My studies of these and other ads, for instance, also suggest that the active interpretation of respondents evolves to an active form of arguing back, when images are seen to claim something in which the respondents disagree about. However, even though this has only been a very brief account of a small part of the focus group studies carried out, hopefully a few things has become clear:
Firstly, it is clear that audiences are cognitively involved in interpreting the meaning of pictures and multimodal utterances. In this rhetorical involvement audiences actively reconstruct arguments from pictures. They not only reconstruct the premises of an argument, but also the conjunctions that connect these premises.
Secondly, it is also clear that audiences can and do move argumentatively from the specific content in a picture to more general moral assertions.
Thirdly, the audiences’ reconstructions of the arguments as (thin) premises are generally embedded in a condensed, thick understanding of situations, experiences, and emotions that is invoked by the picture and influence the character and force of the argument.

So, where is visual argument? It is obviously present. It is found in argumentative situations, and we can locate it not only in images, but also in the minds of audiences. A place I believe we should into more frequently.

[i] I have previously written about several of the pictures (including the Steimatzky-ad) shown to the respondents (cf. Kjeldsen 2012). This afforded the possibility to assess my previous interpretations of the visual argumentation in relation to the actual interpretation in the focus group situation.
[ii] This code marks the focus group (MI), the identity of respondent (AN), and the timeslot in the tape and the transcription for the utterance.

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ISSA Proceedings 2014 ~ Changing The Practice Of Knowledge Creation Through Collaborative Argument Mapping On The Internet

Abstract: Based on a definition of knowledge as “justified true belief,” this paper develops a vision of global, collaborative knowledge creation in a World of Arguments that is centrally stored on the Internet. Knowledge claims and hypotheses would be formulated, justified, and debated on continuously growing and improved argument maps. Additionally, the paper discusses a few problems of this vision.

Keywords: AGORA-net, argument mapping, collaboration, computer-supported argument visualization (CSAV), individuality, Internet, knowledge, logosymphesis, scientific practice, visualization.

1. Introduction
The definition of knowledge as “justified true belief” – which seems to be widely shared in philo¬sophy since Plato introduced it in his dialog Theaetetus (201d) – requires that one can know only what one is able to justify. What we cannot justify, we might believe, but we do not “know” it. Only those statements can be claimed to be knowledge that can be justified by reasons. For this reason we can say that the process of justifying claims and hypotheses is at the core of knowledge creation. Providing reasons is the essence of scientific activity.

Based on this consideration, I will develop in this contribution a vision of how the practice of knowledge creation can be substantially changed by using collaborative argument visualization software that allows synchronous and asynchronous collaboration on graphically represented “argument maps” on the Internet. Starting from a description of traditional knowledge production as a four-step process of research, publication, debate, and new research, I will show in the first part that computer-supported collaborative argument visualization – CSCAV, as I call it – can change the practice of knowledge creation in a variety of ways, most importantly by putting collaboration in the centre of scientific activity, so much even, that the contribution of individual scientists and scholars might disappear behind the communal effort.

In the second part, I will discuss some problems of such a shift to CSCAV-based knowledge production: How can large-scale argument mapping be integrated with the rhetorical demands of communicating knowledge? What happens if the very idea of “publication” becomes obsolete because in collaborative argument mapping there is no point in time when the process of reasoning, deliberating, communicating, and fighting about a position comes to a stop? Will the concept of “authorship” lose its significance when the focus of knowledge production is on representations of knowledge that grow without limits in space and time in form of growing argument maps? And then there are more technical questions such as: How can it be possible to revise the overall structure of huge argument maps and their main conclusion, especially if there are conflicts on how to frame a knowledge area? How to keep the right balance in collaborative systems between openness and security when it comes, for example, to dealing with trolls and other destructive behaviour?

2. From “publishing” to “logo¬symphesis”
We are all familiar with what can be described roughly as a four-step process of research, publication, debate, and new research. First, we do research and develop arguments in texts. Then we publish these texts in the form of journal articles, chapters, books, or conference presentations. In a third step, we debate publications – ours and those of others – and, finally completing the circle, we engage in new research. This recursive process is characterized by a clear separation between individual and social activities. Papers and books are written by individuals or, usually, small groups of authors, while social exchange happens in peer review, at conferences, in seminars, and in person-to-person communication.

Given the tremendous changes that newly developed software tools and the Internet brought to almost all areas of life over the past decades, an important question for the future of science is what the possibilities of the Internet will, could, and should mean for the creation of knowledge. There is already – particularly in computer science and fields close to it – a large amount of literature that discusses this question. For example, in Knowledge Cartography, Alexandra Okada, Simon Buckingham Shum, and Tony Sherborne asked contributors to describe visualization tools they developed, ranging from “mind mapping” and “concept mapping” to argument, evidence, issue, web, and thinking mapping (Okada et al., 2008). Katy Börner provided an even broader picture in her Atlas of Science: Visualizing What We Know (Börner, 2010). In addition to an impressive collection of visualizations that focus, in particular, on information and data, Börner locates her work on “science maps” in a history of visionary approaches to knowledge collection, encyclopaedias, knowledge dissemination, knowledge classi¬fication, knowledge interlinkage, knowledge visualization, man-machine symbiosis, and the “global brain” (pp. 14-25).

Compared to this broad range of activities, the following considerations focus on a very small and specific area. Based on the philosophical definition of knowledge as “justified true belief,” I limit the term “knowledge creation” here exclusively to the following four, connected activities:

1. formulating knowledge claims and hypotheses;
2. providing reasons and evidence for them;
3. debating claims and their justifications; and
4. continuously improving these claims and justifications.

With this very narrow focus in mind, we can point at three types of examples in which the Internet played already a major role for the creation of knowledge. First, there is web-based debate about published work. For example, there was in the beginning of this year a lively online debate about a pair of articles published by Harukos Obokata and her team in Nature that describe a new method to create pluri-potent cells out of ordinary non-stem cells (Economist, 2014a). Since research with stem cells requires the use of aborted foetuses, there is a great deal of interest in methods that allow the same kind of research with cells taken from adults. So, the astonishing results led quickly to attempts to replicate them, but without success. This failure was reported immediately online, which again led to extensive discussions on blogs and websites about irregularities in diagrams and pictures of the two articles. On July 2nd, only five months after publication, Nature formally retracted the two papers (Economist, 2014b).

A second type of example for the role of the Internet for knowledge creation is a process called “open peer review.” Fritz and Gloning (2012) define it as a process “in which anyone can appoint herself a peer and criticize work that has entered the public domain.” In open peer review, the secrecy of traditional peer review and the unaccountability of reviewers is overcome, but the process is obviously less controllable.

A third type are blog discussions on articles submitted to open peer review. This refers to a mixture of the two first types of examples (Fritz and Gloning, 2012). As Fritz and Gloning discuss, these three types of activities that contribute to knowledge creation of the web have the potential to change important aspects of scientific communication:

* They substantially enlarge the reach of scientific information, but they may also “attract unqualified and disruptive participants” (pp. 229-230).
* They increase the “speed of publication,” but it is also noteworthy that “rash replies increase the risk of injury” (p. 229).
* They increase the amount of interactivity between scholars.
* They provide transparency for the general public about important scientific controversies.

It should be noted, however, that these three types of contributions to web-based knowledge creation still remain within the boundaries of the traditional four-step-process of research, publication, debate, and new research. Web-based debate about published work is still a form of debate, only faster and with a wider reach. Open peer review of journal submissions still remains within the idea of traditional publishing, and blog discussions that might branch off of reviews on articles submitted to open peer review simply combine debate and publication.

The question, thus, is: Does the Internet provide possibilities that substantially change the usual four-step-process? Based on the crucial role that justifications play for the creation of knowledge, I can imagine a world in which central areas of knowledge production – formulating claims and hypothesis, providing reasons and evidence for them, debating claims and their justifications, and continuously improving claims and justifications – are done online in the form of collaboration on centrally stored “argument maps.”

An argument map is, as Tim van Gelder – one of the pioneers of “argument mapping” – writes in an encyclopaedia entry on the topic, “a ‘box and arrow’ diagram with boxes corresponding to propositions and arrows corresponding to relationships such as evidential support” (van Gelder, 2013). Such a graphical representation of arguments has the advantage, compared to representing arguments either in texts or in numbered lists of propositions, that the structure of more complex argumentations – in which, for example, reasons might be justified by further arguments, and so on – is more easily to comprehend. Working step by step from one area of a two-dimensional map to the next should reduce the cognitive load that is required, in each moment, to analyse and understand arguments (Hoffmann, 2013).

The vision that I have in mind includes the following. There might be one place on the web where a “World of Arguments” can be found. This world might be accessible through a variety of portals (for example for different languages or different groups of people such as professionals on one hand and different educational levels on the other, or lawyers v. journalists or companies, etc.). Arguments might either be organized in fixed knowledge fields, be it disciplines, sub-disciplines, and subject areas, or problem areas in which multiple disciplines collaborate, or they might be organized dynamically, dependent on user interests and abilities to manage the system. The lowest level of any organization consists of claims and theses. Everybody, from all over the globe, can click on such a claim and an argument map opens that provides a justification for this claim in form of an argument map. The argument map is the place where collaboration happens. Users can add arguments to existing assumptions that might be questionable, they can add objections to specific assumptions and justify them by arguments, and they might be able to add comments, definitions, questions, references, friendly amendments to improve existing formulations, and links to both other arguments and to other resources on the web, if reasons are justified by experimental data and so on. Of course, everybody can also create new arguments either for other claims, opposing claims, or only slightly different claims. Additionally, it should be possible to copy existing maps to modify them and to copy strings of justifications from one map into another. Collaboration on arguments should be both synchronous – meaning that users can change things at the same time – and asynchronous so that things can be changed and added at any time.

There are already CSCAV tools available online that provide most or some of the functionality that is required to realize this vision, even though in very different ways (see Table 1). Since I developed myself AGORA-net, and since the AGORA software realizes already most of the functionality listed above, I will use it in the following as an example for my vision of collaborative knowledge creation. Computer-supported collaborative argument visualization (CSCAV) that allows the graphical presentation of arguments and collaboration on argument maps on the Internet has the potential to fundamentally change the practice of creating knowledge in a variety of ways.

Table 1: Some currently available CSCAV tools, alphabetically ordered. Only tools are listed that are both collaborative and allow two-dimensional representations. These tools are designed for very different purposes, from education to public deliberation, corporate decision making, and legal argumentation. * indicates commercial products

1. By focusing exclusively on the structure of arguments and argumentations (that is: on inferential relations), CSCAV minimizes distractions and the marginalization of certain perspectives that might occur when discussions can be dominated by non-argumentative means such as rhetorical tricks or simply repeating the same ideas time and again, as it often happens in blogs.
2. By allowing and fostering collaboration through the entire process of knowledge production on a large scale, individual and social aspects of knowledge production are more closely intertwined in CSCAV as it is traditionally the case.
3. A centrally located “World of Arguments” would provide one place where all knowledge of the world could be found and everything is accessible for everyone in one large structure of world knowledge; one place where all disagreements are debated, and all possible perspectives on things have a place to be developed, justified, and criticized. The latter means that every claim can be framed by whatever conceptual, theoretical, or ideological means a user brings to a knowl¬edge area. One central location does not mean that there would be centralized control. As any representational system, such a World of Arguments would have representational constraints (one can only represent those entities that are provided by the software), but the content that users create should not be controlled by anyone; diversity needs to be guaranteed to secure innovation and development.
4. By creating all knowledge within an already existing structure, there is no need – as we do it currently in publications – to contextualize our contribution by describing a problem and providing a review of the literature. The accepted knowledge from which we start – the “shoulders on which we stand” – is already given in arguments that are already in the system. As knowledge creators, we work at different “construction zones” of argument maps, or we create new ones.
5. And we are always working with others. We add to, or criticize, the arguments of others and others add to, and criticize, our arguments. At the core of such a World of Arguments is collaboration, be it realized in the form of mutual support or adversarial criticism.

The fact that collaboration is so deeply ingrained in what I envision as computer-supported collaborative argument visualization in a World of Arguments will lead, I assume, to a fundamental shift in how we perceive our individuality as scientists and scholars in contrast to the knowledge we produce. Currently, our individuality is documented in the things we publish: journal articles, books, book chapters, blogs, and so on. However, shifting all this to what could be perceived as mere “contributions” to an already existing World of Arguments could imply for many the experience that their individuality will take a back seat in favour of the growing World of Arguments itself. In an article in which I discussed some of these ideas for the first time, I coined the term “logosymphesis” to describe what is going on (Hoffmann, 2013; more precisely, I called it “syn¬ergetic logosymphesis”). “Symphyestai” is Greek and means “growing together into a unity.” “Logo-symphysis” is intended to refer to the growth of argumentative structures. More precisely, I define logosymphysis as a process in which an argumentative structure (composed of arguments, counterarguments, counter-counterarguments, and so on) grows continuously in a collaborative effort. In CSCAV this argumentative structure is an argument map that is stored online.

Logosymphesis in an Internet-based World of Arguments realizes an idea that Charles S. Peirce, the founder of American pragmatism and semiotics, envisioned about a hundred years ago when he wrote about the “growth of reasonableness” and the “development of Reason.” For Peirce, individual acts of reasoning are, at the same time, governed by the “development of Reason” (because all reasoning uses signs and representations that are socially shared and develop over time) and they constitute this process. Peirce conceives “this very development of Reason” as the “creation of the universe,” a process that is “still going on today and never will be done.” Individuals like us are just “giving a hand toward rendering the world more reasonable whenever, as the slang is, it is ‘up to us’ to do so” (Peirce, EP II 255; and Peirce, CP 1.615, 1903).

3. Problems
In order to get a clearer picture of what I suggest here as collaborative argument mapping on the Internet, CSCAV, or logosymphesis in a World of Arguments, it should be bene¬ficial to discuss some of the problems that come immediately to mind. I would like to start this discussion with a few argument maps or, more precisely, with some excerpts from those maps since the size of infinitively growing argument maps excludes them, obviously, from traditional modes of publication. These maps are produced in AGORA-net. They are accessible online at To just to see them in their entirety, “Enter as Guest,” but if you like to engage in collaborative argument mapping, you have to register. The easiest way to find these maps in a database of currently almost 10,000 argument maps (most of them are not publicly accessible, though) is to search for their map ID.

The first argument map (#9771) justifies the thesis “collaborative argument mapping (logosymphysis) is better than individual argument mapping.” Figure 1 shows the entire map. You will not be able to read anything, but this picture shows the overall structure. The blue parts represent the original argument whereas the orange parts represent an objection to a specific assumption of the original argument, together with its justification (also in orange). As you will see also in Figure 2, the main conclusion of this argument is located in the top-left corner of a two-dimensional space that can expand infinitively (as far as I can tell) to the right and downwards. This conclusion is defended by three independent arguments that are located from top downwards on the left side. (Since AGORA-net creates only logically valid arguments, every argument has always three types of components: one conclusion, one “enabler,” that is the premise located underneath the “therefore” in Figure 2, and an arbitrary number of reasons.) The reason of the first argument in the top-left corner is defended by two further independent arguments, and so on.

Figure 2 shows the first main argument, the one that is located in the top-left corner of Figure 1. This argument is provided here only to illustrate the structure of one complete argument. More import for the purpose of this discussion is Figure 3. Based on the limits of reproduction, the conclusion of this argument is cut off. But as you can see in Figure 1, the line of the left side of Figure 3 is going up to the main conclusion as it is represented in Figure 2.

I want to show two different things with this example. On the one hand, I would like to focus on the content of this argumentation and the controversial question what role assigning individual merit plays for the growth of knowledge. The objection of “GeorgePBurdell” (in this case a fictional character) should be perfectly reasonable. This means that the relation between individuality and logosymphysis that I discussed at the end of the previous section is a real problem for creating knowledge through collaborative argument mapping.

Figure 1: An argumentation for the thesis “collaborative argument mapping (logosymphysis) is better than individual argument mapping.” Zoomed-out to visualize the structure. The entire map can be found in AGORA-net, map ID 9771. Some details are shown in the following figures.

Figure 2: The first main argument of map 9771. The arrow on the far right of the picture shows that this reason is justified by further arguments. The line leading downwards ends finally in the line that is depicted in the following figure. Figure 3: In blue the third main argument. The text in the orange box at the bottom is an objection against the enabler of this argument. This objection is justified (not visible here) by two arguments that show that a large number of scientists and scholars will probably not contribute to the growth of knowledge if individual contributions are not recognized by the scientific community. One of these arguments refers to an empirical study: Bader et al., 2012.

On the other hand, I would like to use this example to illustrate how the process of collaborative knowledge creation through argument visualization could go from here. Since I, as the author of the original argument, accept the objection provided by Burdell, I would like to reformulate my argument. Since it is impossible, in AGORA-net, simply to delete or change what other users wrote (it shouldn’t be too easy to get rid of strong criticism),[i] I have to copy the entire argumentation. This way I gain ownership of all components of the map, including the ones provided by Burdell, and I can change whatever I want. To make clear, though, that I am using material provided by other people in a copy, every text box that is taken from the original map includes behind the author name a small, red button “PA,” meaning “previous author.” If I move the mouse over it, the name of the original author pops up. At the same time, every viewer of the new map can click on “history” on the right panel that is visible on each argument map to get access to the original map.

Now, going back to the content of this argumentation, I would think that the original argument should be improved by changing the overall conclusion, and by justifying this change by adding a reason that is directly taken from Burdell’s objection. What I have in mind as a better argument is depicted in Figure 4.

Figure 4: AGORA map 9773, created from a copy of map 9771 which is depicted in the previous figures.

The main change of the conclusion is that it is now formulated as a conditional statement. The addition of the condition is justified by the third reason on the right, which goes back directly to Burdell’s objection. It should be noted that the decision, in designing AGORA-net, to show the user name of the person who creates a text box within this text box, was motivated by the kind of considerations that are discussed in these maps. In collaborative argument mapping it should be clear who contributed what. However, it still remains a serious question whether this is enough to cope with the concern that scholars and scientists would engage in collaborative argument mapping as a new form of knowledge production only if their engagement is honoured by their respective scientific community, for example when it comes to promotion and tenure.

Another problem of collaborative argument mapping that becomes visible in this example relates to the more technical – or procedural – question of how to deal with revisions of argumentations that affect their overall structure. Every author of a text box can change the formulation of its text at any time, so I could have inserted the main conclusion of Figure 4 also in the main conclusion of Figure 2. But often such a change requires changes also in the formulations of the reasons and/or their overall structure. As in Figure 4, I can always add reasons to an existing argument, but I could not delete my own reason that is depicted in Figure 3 since an objection by somebody else is attached to it (again, that would make it too easy to get rid of critique). As I said, the only thing I can do is to copy the map and change everything as I need it.

The problem is that this could lead – in collaborations with large numbers of users – to an enormous variety of maps on the same topic. That would not only be very confusing, but it would also cost a lot of effort and time for everybody to study the differences, and then to decide where to contribute. It would be better if collaborators could deliberate what to do, on which maps they should focus, and which ones should be deleted. AGORA-net provides a rudimentary infrastructure for such deliberation. (A chat function and the possibility to add to each text box friendly amendments and comments, and the possibility to add further comments and other things to existing comments and other things. – If the small triangle at the bottom of a text box is yellow instead of white, as visible in Figures 2-4, that indicates that there are those additions that can be seen when one clicks on this triangle.) But this deliberation infrastructure in itself will not be sufficient to cope with the complexity of such deliberations.

Further problems that should be discussed refer to rhetorical necessities to communicate knowledge; the idea of “publishing” that goes through the window if there is simply no point in time when a growing argument map can be declared “completed”; and the question of how to balance the openness of online collaboration with security issues.

With regard to the first point, the question of how to deal with rhetorical demands of communicating knowledge, it is hard to say how serious that is. It is clear that in the process of creating knowledge in the form of large-scale argument maps, scientists would focus exclusively on the inferential structure of knowledge and evidential relations. But if this is indeed the core of scientific knowledge, then there should be no harm in delegating everything else to modes of communication that exist outside a World of Arguments. In educational settings, a teacher or instructor will still use all sorts of rhetorical means, such as storytelling, problem descriptions, and contextualization, that are helpful to introduce the novice to knowledge and the process of knowledge production. And anybody else is free to do the same.

Questionable, I think is also whether there is much harm in giving up traditional publications. Journal articles, books, blogs, and material provided on web-pages do not have a value in themselves. Historically, they were developed to facilitate scientific exchange and debate. Today, they are additionally important to assess the “value” and “impact” of individual scientists. But if all these functions can be achieved by other means – and at least for the representation, creation, debate, and ongoing improvement of knowledge that seems to be the case – then the question should be: what is the best way to do things? At this point, we should note that traditional publications have many disadvantages: they are always isolated entities that are connected to their respective contexts only by means of references; they do not allow any collaboration with people outside of the group of authors; and they might insinuate an idea of completeness that is not appropriate – whatever appears to be perfectly justified in a publication can be criticized from alternative or opposing points of view. In a growing argument map, by contrast, everything can be accepted as justified as long as there is at least one independent argument whose premises are not defeated or questioned.

More serious, I think, is only the question of how to find the right balance in collaborative systems between openness and security when it comes, for example, to dealing with trolls and other destructive behaviour. Bad arguments can be criticized or ignored – for example by allowing voting on the quality of argumentations – but destructive or disruptive behaviour as it has been observed in many areas of online activities, from gaming to blog discussions, can be so annoying that the entire project of collaborative knowledge production on the Internet could be endangered. From a technical point of view, it would not be a problem to erase all contributions of a certain user from a database, but the question is who decides on such a drastic step based on which criteria. Any serious knowledge infrastructure will need a governance structure that would develop policies and mechanisms for decision making and for enforcement. However, since everybody whose user account has been eliminated this way can create a new account at any time, it might be necessary to develop knowledge systems so that personal identities can be checked. This, however, raises again serious privacy and data security issues.

4. Conclusion
In this paper I showed that collaborative argument mapping on the Internet can sub¬stantially change the practice of knowledge creation, and I discussed some of the problems that would arise from such a change. Like everything else that happens on the web, logosymphesis – a process in which argumentative structures grow continuously in a collaborative effort – can overcome limits of space, time, and access, and would, thus, contribute to the empowerment of users from all over the world. More importantly for scientific purposes, it can enormously increase the level of collaboration so that indivi¬dual and social aspects of knowledge production are more closely intertwined than in traditional scientific activity. Moreover, everything we know in a specific area could be found at one place. If all knowledge would be formulated, justified, debated, and improved in one World of Arguments, there would be no need for a literature search, everything would already be there. While the potential of computer-supported collaborative argument visualization (CSCAV) for knowledge creation should be clear, the problems of such a change – a decrease of the importance of individual contributors in favour of the growing knowledge structure in itself; a decreasing role of traditional publications; and problems of governing online interaction among others – seem to require, on the one hand, the further development of available CSCAV tools and, on the other, certain changes in well-established institutional structures, for example with regard to the assessment of scientists and their impact. But even if it turns out that my vision of changing the practice of knowledge creation through collaborative argument mapping on the Internet goes too far, available tools can still be useful for things like the organization of large-scale meta-reviews that summarize research in the form of growing argument maps.

This research and the development of the AGORA software has been supported by a grant from the U.S. Department of Education (FIPSE Grant P116S100006). I thank the audience at ISSA 2014 for helpful feedback and suggestions.

i. At least on published maps. In “projects” (accessible only for those users that the creator of the project added as “members”) it is possible to switch between an “adversarial” und “collaborative mode.” In the latter, every member can change everything

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ISSA Proceedings 2014 ~ Argumentation From Analogy In Migrants’ Decisions

Abstract: Basing on the Argumentum Model of Topics (AMT) within the general framework of a pragma-dialectical viewpoint on argumentation, this paper analyses the role of argumentation from analogy in international migrants’ decision-making processes on the basis of a corpus of interviews to migrant mothers resident in the greater London area. Reasoning from analogy allows evaluating pragmatic decisions – such as leaving one’s home country, staying over in a foreign country, etc. –in terms of feasibility and reasonableness.

Keywords: Argumentation from analogy, loci, international migration, migration strategy, inner argumentation, functional genus.

1. Introduction
In the framework of analysis of contextualised argumentative discourse, this paper approaches argumentation from analogy in international migrants’ decision making processes. International migration is a phenomenon which can be approached in a variety of dimensions and contexts, from families to institutions, to media portraits of migration. Amongst these contexts, a significant case in which an argumentative analysis may help shed light on the phenomenon of migration is family and individual decision processes concerning the decision to migrate or (not) to go back to one’s home country.

In the literature on international migration, general terms to describe the reason why individuals migrate are defined push/pull factors or migration determinants (cf. Castles and Miller 2009: 21ff). These terms, however, only cover general concepts that tend to identify social tendencies without explaining individual trajectories and objectives. Other authors introduce the notion of migration strategy in order to more specifically account for the long-term goals and projects of the individuals who opt for international migration. For example, in studying strategies of Polish migrants to the UK, Eade (2007) distinguishes (amongst other categories) between hamsters, who consider their stay in the UK as a one-off act, intending to return to their home country as soon as they have accumulated enough capital; and searchers, namely “those who keep their options deliberately open”, thus being characterized by “intentional unpredictability” (Eade 2007: 34). Approaching individual migration strategies from an argumentative viewpoint means casting a new light on the individual goals and reasons why each migrant chooses to start a migration trajectory, thus allowing a nuanced view of this phenomenon. With the intention of moving forward on this path, I consider international migration from an argumentative viewpoint in the framework of personal decision-making strategies, thus also approaching the field of inner argumentation (Greco Morasso 2013).

Amongst the possible argument schemes used by migrants in their inner argumentative dialogue, I claim that a significant role is played by argumentation from analogy, allowing migrants to compare their present situation, in which a decision whose effects are uncertain has to be faced, with other more familiar situations. In migrants’ decision making, the locus from analogy appears as a prominent feature, both in terms of frequency of occurrence and in strategic terms, because it is often subservient to the crucial decision of leaving one’s country as well as to equally important decisions, such as to return or not to return (Finch et al. 2009). Some examples of migrants’ argumentation from analogy have been shown in Greco Morasso (2013). In this paper, I will claim that analogical reasoning is never the ultimate basis on which a migrant decides to leave (or not to leave), but it is part of a more complex reasoning process. Arguments from analogy, in fact, seem to mainly serve the purpose of evaluating the feasibility of a certain migration strategy.

In order to discuss this topic, I will proceed as follows. Section 2 will situate this work in a theoretical framework on argumentation and, in particular, on the approach to argument schemes that will be adopted. The data on which the analysis is based will be presented in section 3 and analysed in section 4, while section 5 will present some general discussion about the main results of the analysis. Finally, possible openings of this research will be discussed in section 6.

2. Theoretical background
Considering migrants’ individual decisions brings us to consider a particular type of argumentation, namely what has been called inner argumentation (Billig 1996), argumentative monologue (Rigotti 2005, Rocci 2005) or “debating with oneself” (Dascal 2005). In fact, even though in the data analysed in this paper certainly portrait a social discussion between the researcher and the participants to this research, the same data also provide clues to participants’ inner dialogue, most especially concerning their crucial migration decisions (Greco Morasso 2013). In a pragma-dialectical framework, as in other approaches, argumentation per se is a social phenomenon (van Eemeren and Grootendorst 2004). However, despite clear differences between inner and social forms of argumentation, several authors have acknowledged the importance of inner argumentation in people’s decision making processes. Perelman and Olbrechts-Tyteca (1958: 54) claim that inner deliberation should be legitimately considered as a form of argumentation; drawing on Isocrates, they observe that the arguments that we use in order to persuade others are the same as those we use when reflecting with ourselves. Van Eemeren and Grootendorst (2004: 120) claim that “It is even possible for one person to assume the role of both protagonist and antagonist of one and the same standpoint and to conduct a dialogue intérieur by way of self-deliberation”. Billig (1996: 142) argues that, in inner argumentation, “Part of the self turns itself into a harsh critic against the rest of the self” and that inner argumentative discussions count as a highly dramatic arena of argumentation.

According to Dascal (2005), there is evidence for contiguities and analogies between inner and social argumentation. Contiguity refers to the fact that dialogue with others and dialogue with oneself often follow each other in a temporal sequence. Thus, most especially in front of a difficult decision, one will reflect with herself and come to a provisional conclusion; then talk to family and/or friends; then, again, reconsider their advice and possible objections in personal thoughts before making a final decision… and so on. From this perspective, social and inner argumentation are contiguous segments of one and the same line. Analogies can be found in how social and inner argumentation are structured: both are informed by the presence of others’ standpoints and arguments, as well as their refutation. Greco Morasso (2013) has shown how it is possible to reconstruct even complex argumentative discussions within inner dialogue[i]. The present paper contributes to this research stream by focusing on the role of argumentation from analogy inner argumentation in migrants’ decisions.

In order to analyse argumentation from analogy, I will adopt the Argumentum Model of Topics (Rigotti & Greco Morasso 2006, 2010; Rigotti 2008, 2009), while at the same time situating my approach in the pragma-dialectical theory of argumentation. The Argumentum Model of Topics will be used for the analysis of argumentation from analogy, because it allows a specific consideration of the inferential configuration of argument schemes. The combination of pragma-dialectics and AMT has already proven fruitful in a number of previous works, amongst which Greco Morasso (2011) and Palmieri (2014).

In the AMT, analogy is considered as one of the extrinsic loci. Intrinsic and extrinsic loci, namely the two fundamental categories of the typology proposed by the AMT, are distinguished on the basis of a criterion based on the “proximity” of the (world of the) argument to the (world of the) considered standpoint. Such criterion has been first introduced by Cicero in his Topica, although its systematic application is initiated only later by Boethius (see the discussion in Rigotti & Greco, forthcoming). In the case of intrinsic loci, standpoint and argument belong to one and the same possible world. For example, if one says that a tree has fallen because of a violent thunderstorm[ii], the three and the thunderstorm (efficient cause) belong to the same world. Contrastingly, with extrinsic loci, argument and the standpoint belong to different worlds. For example, with the locus from the opposites, we reason that one and the same thing cannot be A and non-A at the same time and under the same respect. Hence, Lisa cannot be in London and in Amsterdam on the same day and at the same time. “Lisa being in London” and “Lisa being in Amsterdam” are events that certainly do not belong to one and the same world; they belong to two different (and in this case alternative) possible worlds.

The same holds with analogy. For example, in the summer 2011, it was not rare to read in European newspapers the forecast that Italy was going to need a bailout loan soon. This forecast was sometimes motivated on the basis of the experience of Greece, a country which had needed a bailout in 2010. Such argument was obviously based on an analogy between these two countries; the latter, however, are obviously different under many respects, and “crisis in Italy” and “crisis in Greece” constitute two logically distinct worlds. In this case, these two worlds are not mutually exclusive; rather, they actually co-exist.

Several authors have considered how the main problem with argumentation from analogy is comparability of the concerned entities or states of affairs. Some argue that argumentation from analogy is built on the basis of a functional genus, which is not a genus in the “traditional” Aristotelian sense of this word, but rather a pragmatic category under which both entities are said to fall (see in particular Macagno 2014). In an AMT perspective, the functional genus is functional precisely because it connects two possible worlds, working on an extrinsic locus such as analogy is. Following up on this view of analogy, as Juthe (2005: 9) remarks, “Two things seemingly very dissimilar with few properties in common can still be analogous in important respects while two other objects with many properties in common are not analogous in the way one superficially thinks”.

More specifically, in his account of argument schemes, Whately (1828[1963]: 85-86) considers that in argumentation from analogy there is an explicit reference to a common class under which both analogues fall. This author adds that this common class (wich arguably corresponds to the notion of functional genus) is actually a relation: “The two things (viz. the one from which, and the one to which, we argue) are not, necessarily, themselves alike, but stand in similar relations to some other things; or, in other words, that the common genus which they both fall under, consists in a relation. Thus an egg and a seed are not in themselves alike, but bear a like relation, to the parent bird and to the future nestling, on the one hand, and to the old and young plant on the other, respectively; this relation being the genus which both fall under: and many Arguments might be drawn from this Analogy (Whately 1828[1963]: 90-91). Whately’s intuition, which we might represent as a proposition (parent bird : future nestling = old plant : young plant), has been then called analogy based on proportion or proportional analogy (see the discussion in Rigotti 2014).

3. Migrants’ decision-making processes: empirical data
The corpus which this paper will be drawing on has been collected in the framework of the project “Migrants in transition: an argumentative perspective”[iii] and consists in the transcriptions of 29 reconstructive interviews to international mothers in the process of migrating and settling down in London. In these interviews, participants reconstruct how they lived a moment of rupture and the following transition a posteriori (Zittoun 2009: 415ff). One of the main goals of these interviews (conducted between September 2010 and March 2011) was to provide an empirical basis for the study of the boundary between social argumentation and inner forms of debate and self-controversy (see Greco Morasso, 2013).

Twenty-nine migrant women with children, coming from different ethnic and linguistic backgrounds (aged 25 to 50) have been interviewed about their experience of international migration. At the time of the study, all participants had been living in the greater London area for a period of one to twenty-two years. The interviews lasted from 32 to 90 minutes; they were all recorded and transcribed according to the standards of conversation analysis adapted to the needs of an argumentative analysis (for a discussion on this aspect, see Greco Morasso 2011).

In a perspective of socio-cultural psychology, migration can bear one or more ruptures (Kadianaki 2010; Lutz 2013) which require adaptation. Because motherhood may potentially amplify the ruptures of migration (Sigad & Eisikovits 2009; Tummala-Narra 2004) and, therefore, make involved decisions more complex, I have chosen to focus on pragmatic argumentation by migrant mothers, who need to take the wellbeing of their children and family into account when they design migration strategies.

4. Argumentation from analogy in migrants’ decisions
Due to the ruptures that a migration decision introduces in a person’s experience, migrants face a new experience, which puts them to decide under conditions of uncertainty when they make their decisions. In such situations, the prominence of argumentation from analogy is not surprising. In fact, because analogy permits to compare different worlds and highlight their comparability and differences, it may orientate migrants, helping them to figure out how their migration projects will end up, by comparing them to other similar cases.

Whately’s 1828[1963] observation about the relational nature of the functional genus in analogy appears particularly useful in this respect. Analogy would be represented as a sort of proportional reasoning, which, in the case of migrants, could be represented as follows:

Person x : Migration situation 1 = Person y : Migration situation 2

In this formula, Migration situation 2 (phoros, in terms of Perelman & Olbrechts-Tyteca 1958) is already known (i.e. it is a world in the past) while Migration situation 1 (theme, in terms of Perelman & Olbrechts-Tyteca 1958) is the unknown experience that awaits the migrants who needs to decide. This proportion qualifies the functional genus of “international migration experience”, which is implicitly advocated by participants when introducing this type of arguments.

In the extracts collected from my corpus, I have identified two main types of analogical reasoning relative to migrants’ decisions and to their evaluation in terms of feasibility. In the former case, Migration situation 2 has been lived by someone else, who might be family or friends, or somebody whom the participant in question knows. In the latter case, Migration situation 2 has been lived by the participant herself in the past. I will now briefly present these two types of analogical reasoning and then focus my analysis on some of the most representative examples.

4.1 Migration situation 2 lived by someone else
The first extract is taken from an interview to Katarina, a young migrant from Poland who is working in London and is mother to a young girl, who was born in the UK. Katarina elaborates on the reason why she left Poland for London. If the main reason of her move was economic – i.e. searching for a job – still she confesses that the experience of a friend who had done the same thing was inspirational to her: “I thought oh she she did it why (.) why cannot I […] do the same?” (lines 6-8 and 10).

This type of reasoning, in which a migrant compares her experience to that of someone else who has lived a similar situation, has been very often found in this corpus. A very similar case is made by Kate from New Zealand: “[…] most of my friends as I said had done it already had this experience before (.) and they were already back to New Zealand (.) a lot of them were married ( ) and I decided to yeah so”. Also similar to Katarina’s case is Linda from Switzerland, who moved to the UK because her husband found a job in a prestigious UK university. She reasoned out that she could adapt to a new life in England, because her husband had done the same thing some years before, when he followed her from The Netherlands to Switzerland. When asked if her mixed marriage helped her, she replies as follows: “[…]I think (.) the problem is I don’t know thinking that in any case he did it already this step coming to Switzerland fro- from Holland he had already: to adapt a bit to a new life[iv]”.

Figure 1: AMT representation of Katarina’s argument

The AMT analysis of Katarina’s argumentation from analogy is represented in Figure 1. The locus from analogy, as any locus, does not directly intervene in the inferential configuration of arguments. In other words, loci are not immediate constituents of argument schemes. Rather, they guarantee a principle of support (in terms of Garssen 2001) linking arguments to their standpoint. Loci are the basis on which the procedural component of argument schemes is founded (Rigotti and Greco Morasso 2010). In particular, different maxims can be drawn from each locus, each representing an “if…then” inferential connection working as a major premise. In Katarina’s argumentation (Figure 1), the relevant maxim is constructed on the basis of the above mentioned proportion between her situation (Migration situation 1) and her friend’s past situation (Migration situation 2): “If something has been possible to person x in situation 1, the same thing will be possible to person y in situation 2, which is of the same functional genus of situation 1”. Other maxims are also possible for the locus from analogy, as for example “If two entities are analogous, they need to be judged analogously”, which counts as analogy based on a rule of justice, i.e. analogy combined with the principle of consistency (Garssen 2009: 136).

A maxim, together with a minor premise, activates a syllogistic procedure which allows drawing a Final conclusion. Such conclusion coincides with the standpoint to be defended, namely “I can move to the UK for good” (hence the name “final conclusion”), as argument schemes by definition count as inferential moves backing up standpoints in argumentation.

Yet, as it clearly appears if looking as Figure 1, while maxims are abstract inferential rules, which might be valid in different contexts, minor premises need to derive their validity from some further backing because they are never justified in themselves. In this case, the minor premise “My friend in a situation of the same functional genus as my situation could move to the UK for good” needs to be confirmed in reality. Drawing on this consideration, the AMT model highlights that there is also a material component in each and every argument scheme (Rigotti and Greco Morasso 2010), which is represented on the left side of the quasi-y inferential configuration in Figure 1. The material component is constituted by another syllogistic reasoning. The major premise in the material component is constituted by an endoxon, an Aristotelian term indicating an opinion that is accepted by the relevant audience, namely the interlocutors who are jointly participating in the argumentative discussion in question. Endoxa are general propositions concerning knowledge or values, and their validity is situated in a particular conversational context. In Katarina’s argument, for example, the endoxon is “The experience of my Polish friend who migrated to the UK and my experience as a Polish who migrates to the UK are of the same functional genus “Polish women who move to the UK”. The functional genus is constructed within the endoxon, thereby postulaitng comparability between Katarina’s situation and her friend’s. A minor premise of factual nature (datum) is then associated to the endoxon; this minor premise (“My friend could move to the UK for good”) acknowledges that her friend had a positive experience when migrating to the UK, which is implicitly conveyed by the term “inspiration” used to describe her. Endoxon and datum, if combined, bring to the conclusion that “My friend in a situation of the same functional genus as my situation could move to the UK for good”, which explains the intertwining between material and procedural components in argumentation. The connection between the procedural and material components also provides the required contextual backing to the procedural component.

Note that in this case, as in the cases of Kate and Linda mentioned above, the standpoint is not immediately pragmatic; it is rather an evaluation of feasibility of migration to the UK. In other words, Katarina did not leave Poland because her friend had; she left Poland in search of a job and of a new opportunity for her life. Her friend having already made a similar experience was inspirational in the sense that Katarina knew that this migration project was realistic and (possibly) satisfying. Evaluating if something is possible is a form of knowledge-oriented argumentation, yet subservient to a pragmatic decision (whether to leave or not).

4.2 Migration situation 2 lived by the migrant herself
In the second type of analogical reasoning found in my corpus, Migration situation 2 is lived by the migrant herself in the past. This happens because some of the participants had experience of living abroad before their move to the UK. In these cases, it can still be said that analogy is built on the comparison between possible worlds, because present and past are compared, as well as different destinations. Extract 2 reports a passage of the interview to Linda from Switzerland, already mentioned in section 4.1. After discussing her husband’s experience as a Dutch migrant to Switzerland (see above), she moves to build another analogy relative to her personal experience.

Excerpt 2

11 […] (.) and in any case the experience being from Ticino is a bit
12 different because even if you stay in your country (.) eh going to the
13 French or the German parts of Switzerland was a cultural change in any
14 case: another language other traditions respectively influenced by
15 France or Germany ehm (.) I don’t know I found it in any case almost
16 like going abroad even if you stay in your country (.) stamps are the
17 same your bank is the same but (.) language and cultures are different
18 (.) and (.) ( ) it’s fairly peculiar you know =

Linda considers her present move from Switzerland to the UK as substantially similar to the move she made when leaving the Ticino Canton, where she comes from, to settle in a city in the German part of Switzerland. Interestingly, she draws such analogy even though reflecting on all possible differences that can be found between international migration and migration from one to the other linguistic areas in Switzerland. She argues that, while “stamps are the same your bank is the same” (lines 16-17), i.e. the institutional framework does not change, languages and cultures are different (lines 14 and 17) because of the traditions respectively influenced by France (in the French speaking cantons) or Germany (in the German speaking cantons, see lines 14-15). This represents a meta-reflection on comparability, which has been often found in the interviews where analogy is built on the basis of a participant’s previous experience. A similar case has been found, for example, in the interview to Lucy from St. Lucia, who compares the time when she left for the UK to a previous moment in which she left St. Lucia in order to attend university in Jamaica. She says that her experience in Jamaica had toughened her up and this made it easier to leave for the UK later. Lucy also argues that Jamaica and the UK are comparable, despite all obvious differences, because of the similar financial conditions needed to live in these two countries: “I mean in some ways it’s [Jamaica is] like England because (.) you need quite a lot of money for you to be comfortable there”.

Figure 2: AMT representation of Linda’s argument (adapted from Greco Morasso 2013)

Both in the case of Linda and in that of Lucy, meta-argumentation is advanced because the attribution of a functional genus is not taken for granted. As a matter of fact, a functional genus is pragmatic and it is not necessarily accepted as it is; an example of this is discussed in Xenitidou and Greco Morasso (2014), who analyse a focus group of Greek residents discussing the effects of immigration to their home country. Within this multi-party discussion, an analogy between Greek immigrants to Germany, on the one hand, and Eastern European immigrants to Greece, on the other hand, is drawn, then refuted, then drawn again. If these examples are considered from the viewpoint of the Argumentum Model of Topics, it clearly appears that it is the endoxon to be discussed, because the endoxon is where the functional genus is constructed as something that can be taken for granted. This appears in Figure 1 as well as in Figure 2, where the AMT representation of Linda’s argument is proposed.

5. Discussion
In all cases considered, argumentation from analogy is used to support knowledge-oriented argumentation aimed at the evaluation of the feasibility and/or reasonableness of a migration project. This amounts to typically knowledge-oriented standpoints. Such knowledge-oriented standpoints, however, are always subservient to justify a pragmatic standpoint concerning a migration decision, normally justified a posteriori (after or during a transition process). In all cases, the decision to migrate has been necessarily made under conditions of uncertainty, because migrants cannot but imagine what they are going to live in the “new world”, but they cannot anticipate their experience.

Now, argumentation from analogy never represents the main reason why they leave their home country. Intuitively, one would not leave his or her home country just because someone else has left. There must be some other profound reason why a person is thinking to leave in the first place. From an argumentative viewpoint, ultimate reasons to migrate are likely to be supported by means-end argumentation (locus from final cause), based on a series of goals ranging from economic reasons, to a desire to improve one’s conditions of life, to a marriage, and so on (see Greco, submitted). Argumentation from analogy comes into play when participants ask themselves whether a given decision will actually be feasible for them. Analogy, thus, works as a side-argument, seemingly answering the question: is it reasonable for me to think that I will make it? Will I cope with this?

What said is important for a global evaluation of this type of argumentation. If it is true that the maxim “If something was possible for a person in a migration situation of the same functional genus as mine, then it is possible for me” is weak under some respect, because things can always change, and the comparability between the two migration situations could be questioned, it is true that migrants may lack other ways to study the feasibility of their project. As it happens with examples, analogies of this kind are valid as far as they show how things could be, of course without cogently proving what will happen in the future, which would be impossible.

6. Conclusion
In this paper I have analysed argumentation from analogy in migrants’ decision processes. I have shown that the locus from analogy is often used in order to support a knowledge-oriented standpoint, concerning the feasibility and reasonableness of a migration project. In the cases observed, this type of knowledge-oriented argumentation is generally subservient to pragmatic argumentation, more specifically concerning whether to migrate or not. This recurrent combination of means-end argumentation (locus from final cause) and locus from analogy in the specific context of migrants’ individual decisions brings us close to the notion of argumentative pattern, introduced by van Eemeren and Garssen (2014) as a characterization of institutionalised argumentative discourse. In the cases discussed in this paper, however, institutional constraints are limited, while it could be hypothesized that the pattern observed is linked to the type of decision which migrants need to make. The possibility to interpret the observed regularity as an argumentative pattern characterizing migration projects, however, is in need for further exploration at the theoretical level.

Table 1: Transcription symbols

Another theoretical aspect which could be developed as a follow-up of this paper concerns the relation between argumentation from analogy and framing. The connection between framing and argumentation has been explored in previous works (Greco Morasso 2009, van Eemeren 2010, Greco Morasso 2012, Bigi & Greco Morasso 2012). In the specific case of analogy, the construction of a functional genus, which is by definition a pragmatic move, could be interpreted as a process of framing in the context of an arguer’s strategic manoeuvring.

I am grateful to the Swiss National Science Foundation for the fellowship PBTI1-133595 which funded the project “Migrants in transition: an argumentative perspective”. The data used in this paper are taken from this project.

i. Greco (submitted) analyses migrants’ pragmatic argumentation in inner dialogue, while Perrin & Zampa (submitted) approach this topic in a fairly different context, as they describe journalists’ inner argumentative reflections while making decisions about their newspapers’ articles.
ii. In this case, we are on the boundary between argumentation and explanation of a physical fact.
iii. The project was funded by the Swiss National Science Foundation (PBTIP1-133595). Research was based at University College London (2010-2011) and at the University of Surrey, UK (2011-2012). See
iv. In the case of Linda, the interview was in Italian and has been translated into English. For an AMT analysis of this argument, see Greco Morasso (2013).

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ISSA Proceedings 2014 ~ The Ubiquity Of The Toulmin Model In U.S. Education: Promise And Peril

Abstract: Secondary and university instructors in the United States rely heavily on the Toulmin model to teach written argumentation. To date, pragma-dialectics (van Eemeren and Grootendorst 2004; van Eemeren 2010) is not a visible presence in American composition textbooks. This session encouraged writing consultants to ask critical questions not only associated with Toulmin’s model but also those of the pragma-dialectic model of critical discussion in order to improve the critical thinking of writers.

Keywords: composition, critical thinking, critical questions, pragma-dialectics, teaching, Toulmin model, United States of America, writing

1. Introduction
Both secondary and university instructors in the United States of America rely heavily on the Toulmin model to teach written argumentation (Hillocks 2011; Ramage, Bean and Johnson 2001; Smith, Wilhelm, and Fredricksen 2012). No other theoretical models of arguments are as prominent in composition textbooks and curricula.

Because of the emphasis on argumentative writing in Common Core State Standards (newly adopted in many U.S. states), a flurry of new books and curricula on teaching argumentation have been published in the last five years. One can see how predominant the Toulmin model is by simply flipping the pages of Teaching Argument Writing by George Hillocks (2011, xix) and Oh Yeah? Putting Argument to Work Both in School and Out by Michael W. Smith, Jeffrey Wilhelm, and James Fredricksen (2012, 12). Teachers have questions. They need good resources. The Toulmin model is the backbone of most argumentative writing curricula in the United States because it meets real needs. It is helpful because it defines a vocabulary for the elements of an argument; and it visually illustrates the relationship between claims, data, and warrants. When facing common problems in writing instruction, the Toulmin model provides a schema for diagnosis and treatment.

Because student writers struggle to compose written arguments, teachers do need solid understandings to help students improve. Perhaps the Toulmin model is a popular frame for argumentative writing curricula because it allows teachers to focus attention on problems that often occur with key elements of arguments: claim, data, warrant, backing, qualifiers, and conditions of rebuttal. Helping students to invent and include these elements in their papers is much of the substance of current argumentation curricula.

In this article, I want to step back and look at this reliance on the Toulmin model from the distance afforded me by a sabbatical at the University of Amsterdam, where the pragma-dialectical model of argumentation holds the privileged place that Toulmin’s does in the U.S.A. (Van Eemeren and Grootendorst 2004; Van Eemeren 2010). I am beginning to wonder whether some of the problems that teachers face when teaching argumentative writing might be problems not that the Toulmin model can help them to effortlessly solve, but ones that a reliance on Toulmin might be intensifying.

2. Common problems
These are the common problems that sound familiar to writing teachers and tutors:

When coaching student writers who need help addressing these problems, the Toulmin model is a useful tool for certain things. It helps us to visually remind writers that claims need support, that support needs to be warranted, and that qualified claims aren’t weak, they are responsible. The Toulmin model is not, however, a heuristic for deliberation. It does not describe or assist the process of developing claims by thinking critically through the implications of possible stances on tough intellectual issues. Stephen Toulmin states this explicitly. The task he tackled in The Uses of Argument (1958) was to describe how already-held opinions might be justified logically:

We are not in general concerned in these essays with the ways in which we in fact get to our conclusion, or with methods of improving our efficiency as conclusion-getters. It may well be, where a problem is a matter for calculation, that the stages in the argument we present in justification of our conclusion are the same as those we went through in getting at the answer, but this will not in general be so. In this essay, at any rate, our concern is not with the getting of conclusions but with their subsequent establishment by the production of a supporting argument. (16-17)

Because I believe that it is vitally important that we do teach the process of coming to good decisions, of reasoning one’s way to conclusions carefully, I think American teachers and tutors of writing need to supplement Toulmin’s model in our teaching argument writing toolbox.

3. Differences in writing tasks
In fact, beyond the Toulmin model diagram, a whole field of argumentation studies is thriving. In the Netherlands, secondary and university level instruction in argumentation is informed by what is called pragma-dialectics. In the version of pragma-dialectics developed by Frans van Eemeren & Peter Houtlosser (2002) and extended by van Eemeren (2010), argumentation is defined as the pragmatic marriage of dialectic (the rational search for the best solution to a problem through dialogue) and rhetoric (the search for the best available discursive means to one’s desired ends). Van Eemeren (2010) developed the concept of strategic maneuvering in pragma-dialectics to describe the ways that writers combine dialectical and rhetorical strategies in order to compose texts that are both reasonable (dialectic) and effective (rhetoric).

I am drawn to pragma-dialectics because it shifts the definition of argumentation away from claims supported by data, and toward discourse aimed to resolve a difference of opinion. This changes (it reframes) the tasks of a writer. This reframing was an epiphany for me. I had been frustrated with the lack of attention to the intellectual work of developing good claims through the process of drafting argumentative prose. Like others, I had been particularly irked by the power of the ACT writing test to shape classroom instruction. The ACT writing test asks students to identify their topic and invent a main claim very quickly, too quickly, in fact, almost arbitrarily.

Teachers feel intense pressure to teach to this test. Furthermore, the ubiquity of a Toulmin model-based understanding of argumentation has sanctioned the habit of beginning with a claim (I know what I believe; don’t try to change my mind.) and moving quickly to brainstorming and organizing support for that claim. Then students keep moving forward, considering and including any necessary warrants to explain the move from data to claim, qualifying the force of the claim, and acknowledging possible rebutting conditions.
By contrast, the pragma-dialectical model for critical discussion, if used as an argument-writing heuristic, encourages writers to move through four phases, not necessarily linearly:

* the confrontation stage: identifying a difference of opinion
* the opening stage: establishing the terms and common starting points, i.e. the common ground between those who have the difference of opinion, perhaps the writer and the reader
* the argumentation stage: developing evidence and reasons to support standpoints and respond to critical questions
* and the concluding stage: evaluating the results of this argumentation on the merits, sometimes moving into a new confrontation stage when a new difference of opinion within the issue is identified.

This model of critical discussion was developed through a descriptive study of actual language use understood through the lens of the long philosophical tradition of dialectic. The purpose of dialectic is to come to the best possible solution to a problem through discussion.

By contrast, Stephen Toulmin’s purpose in creating an argument model was to offer a critique of mathematical logic as a tool for assessing the strength of practical arguments. To this end, he looked to the practice of law. “In the studies which follow,” he says by way of introduction to The Uses of Argument, “the nature of the rational process will be discussed with the ‘jurisprudential analogy’ in mind” (7). Why does this matter? Well, in law, it is not the lawyer’s job to choose whether to support the plaintiff or the defendant. In law, the client chooses the lawyer to represent him, and the lawyer’s job is to find the best available means of defending that client, of strengthening the case. A student writer, however, unless taking part in some school domain language game in which the roles are assigned, must develop his or her own standpoint as part of the composing process. Learning how to come up with a topic and deliberate among viewpoints when writing academic arguments is central to the endeavour. To this end, Stephen Toulmin’s work is less helpful than others’.

In 1958, Stephen Toulmin wrote The Uses of Argument within the field of philosophy as a critique of the geometric approach to logical validity. In order to show that syllogistic reasoning is not the only way to argue logically, Toulmin developed a visual representation of argument structure. In his introduction, he explained the small scale of the unit for which he was designing a model: “An argument is like an organism. It has both a gross, anatomical structure and a finer, as-it-were physiological one…. The time has come to change the focus of our inquiry and to concentrate on this finer level.” (87) While the book was not influential among philosophers in Britain, its innovative message was recognized by speech communication scholars in the United States. Application to written composition followed in subsequent decades. Even though Stephen Toulmin carefully defined the scope of his work as a description of the smallest units in arguments that justify pre-chosen claims, his model is currently used to teach the whole, macrocosmic structure and invention process of written argumentative texts. This constitutes a four-step retooling of his work: from philosophy to communication, from oral discourse to written prose, from microcosmic to macrocosmic structure, and from description to invention. I think that this has led to confusion.

4. Microcosmic model/macrocosmic application
The Toulmin model for understanding the structure of single argumentation – one claim, supported by one piece of data, whose relevance is explained by one warrant, with one modal qualifier signalling its degree of force or probability, with one nod to its exceptions or possible rebutting conditions – this microcosmic structure is used as a curriculum for teaching the macrocosmic composition of whole essays. This is problematic because the common expectation for longer argumentative papers is that they include multiple argumentation supported by subordinate or coordinative argument structures. While it is true that each claim within more complex argument structures can individually be examined for explicit or implied warrant, backing, qualifier and conditions of rebuttal, simply knowing these six elements does not help students to compose well-organized macrostructures.

5. Rebutting conditions are not rebuttals
The definition of several terms are also confusing as a result of this application of Toulmin’s critique of analytic philosophy to the macrocosmic invention stage of written composition. Confusion exists about the difference between qualifier and rebutting conditions, as Toulmin defined them, and the bigger units of an argument: qualifications and rebuttals of rebuttals, and the difference among the terms qualifier, qualification, rebuttal, condition, exception, and counterargument. We struggle to teach argumentation well in schools when teachers don’t have uniform understandings – or even confidently unique – understandings of these terms.

Toulmin explains his terms by explicating the following argument:
Following the pattern of the model:

D—->So, Q, C
|                  |
Since Unless

He defines his terms thus:
Just as a warrant (W) is itself neither a datum (D) nor a claim (C), since it implies in itself something about both D and C–namely, that the step from the one to the other is legitimate; so, in turn, Q and R are themselves distinct from W, since they comment implicitly on the bearing of W on this step  – qualifiers (Q) indicating the strength conferred by the warrant on this step, conditions of rebuttal (R) indicating circumstances in which the general authority of the warrant would have to be set aside. To mark these further distinctions, we may write the qualifier (Q) immediately beside the conclusion which it qualifies (C), and the exceptional conditions which might be capable of defeating or rebutting the warranted conclusion (R) immediately below the qualifier. (93)

This diagram and its explanation are adapted in multiple and varying ways in writing textbooks.

There is confusion over the difference between a modal qualifier and a qualification. The former is a single word such as “presumably” in Toulmin’s example, or probably, maybe, or to indicate strength, definitely. Outside of school, when we ask for qualifications or ask someone to qualify a statement, we are often asking for fully articulated conditions of exception. This is closer to what Toulmin called the rebuttal.

In Toulmin’s example, the rebuttal is a mention of the hypothetical conditions under which the claim might not be true: if Harry had, despite having been born in Bermuda, sometime later become a naturalized American, then he would not be a British citizen. Confusingly, the word “rebuttal” in common legal discursive practice and secondary school debate is used to mean a fully articulated counter-argument, or counter-counter argument. In the teaching of writing in secondary schools, students are often asked to include a counter-argument and a rebuttal of that counter-argument in their papers. When the Toulmin model diagram is referenced as an aid to organization, and if teachers are trying to teach students to add fully articulated counter-arguments, then they may use the word rebuttal or leave it out and replace it with the word response to describe the act of undermining the strength of this counterargument in order to maintain the persuasiveness of their initial standpoint.

Illustrating the potential confusion caused by conflicting definitions of these little words, in Hillocks’ (2011) book on argumentative writing, the word “Rebuttal” appears in his Toulmin model diagram. However, Hillocks subsequently dispenses with this word in the body of his text, mentioning it nowhere. Instead of including the concept of “conditions of rebuttal” that Toulmin includes in his structure, Hillocks teaches teachers that because argumentation concerns matters of probability, “two other elements are necessary: qualifications and counterarguments.” He encourages the use of qualifying terms: “probably, very likely, almost certainly, and so forth,” staying close to Toulmin’s text. But the use to which he puts counterarguments differs from Toulmin’s rebutting conditions. Hillocks states, “The very idea that we are dealing with arguments of probability suggests that differing claims are likely to exist,” and therefore, if hoping to make a persuasive argument, writers “would have to make a counterargument.” Readers are left here without a clear explanation. Is the counterargument the summary of the standpoint and reasons of the imagined audience with whom the writer has a difference of opinion; or is it an argument whose standpoint is that the reasons or warrants of his antagonists are weak? Hillocks doesn’t say, and this is not clarified for students. What is clear is a need for more thoroughgoing dialectic, as evidenced by the adaptation to the Toulmin model not only in the work of Hillocks (2011) but also Williams and Colomb (2001) and Smith, Wilhelm, and Frederickson (2012). All of these authors supplement the “rebutting conditions” in Toulmin’s actual work with “counterargument” or “acknowledgment” and “response.”

6. The difficulty with warrants
There is also significant confusion about how to help students learn to identify and to invent warrants, if the number of articles published in English Journal on the topic is any indication (Anderson and Hamel 1991; Warren 2010; Hillocks 2010). In Toulmin’s model, the warrant links one’s data to one’s claim: “These may normally be written very briefly (in the form of ‘If D, then C’); [or they can be expanded] ‘Data such as D entitle one to draw conclusion, or make claims, such as C’, or alternatively ‘Given data D, one may take it that C.'” (Toulmin 91). Yet it is rare to find examples of warrants in this “if-then” form. In their article, “Teaching Argument as a Criteria-Driven Process,” Anderson and Hamel exemplify this difficulty. Their own definitions of warrants and backing seem at odds with the example they give. Here are their definitions:

Warrant: So what? (What’s the principle or rule being cited to connect the grounds to the claim?)
Backing: What’s the ultimate principle, theory, or tradition underlying the warrant? (or, What makes you think so?)

And here are their examples; notice that the “if-then” statement is listed as backing rather than warrant:

So what? That isn’t fair. I deserve a chance.
What makes you think so? Fairness is an important principle for students to learn in sports. If students appear to be able to participate effectively, they should be given a chance to show their competence in a game. (44)

In my experience, possessing a declarative knowledge of the definitions of warrants and backing does not easily translate into a procedural ability to identify them in everyday usage. Nor does it help writers to decide when warrants and backing need to be stated explicitly and when they can be left to readers’ implicit understanding.

7. Defensiveness training
Fourth (and I think most importantly), I think we in the United States have a systemic problem that an overreliance on the Toulmin model is not helping us to fix. Teachers feel pressured to coach students to quickly defend and justify their opinions in order to succeed on timed writing tests like the ACT. More time seems to be devoted to teaching the process of justifying opinions (Toulmin’s focus) than learning to develop nuanced positions through a process of critical deliberation. This troubles me because cognitive scientists tell us that humans have a natural tendency toward confirmation bias – toward noticing the data that supports beliefs. This is an adaptive strategy for our minds. Because our five senses can collect more information than we can process, we can only attend to the information that seems important. Unfortunately, this selection process tends to blind us to disconfirming evidence. Unless we are taught to slow down, to actively seek data that might support multiple viewpoints, humans tend not to. It is my hope that we develop more curricula that treats written argumentation as a means of critically assessing the strength of opposing viewpoints, that is, argumentative writing as a tool for coming to conclusions about which answer is the strongest one with regard to the questions that we ask.

8. Conferring effectively
How can pragma-dialectics help teachers to supplement the lack of attention to deliberation in the Toulmin model? It can provide even more questions to ask of writers, critical questions to add to the ones offered by Toulmin to help foster the reasonableness and the strength of argumentation. Rather than simplistically equating argumentative writing and persuasive writing, pragma-dialectics offers a more nuanced definition. Argumentative texts are understood as turns of talk in a critical discussion (van Eemeren and Grootendorst 1984, 1992, 2004). Pragma-dialectics understands the writer to be a participant in a critical discussion during which he or she tries to support a standpoint (claim) in the face of the reader’s doubts or criticisms. While the aim of resolving a difference of opinion with one’s audience and the aim of persuading one’s audience are similar (because one way to resolve a difference of opinion is to effectively persuade one’s audience to agree with your standpoint), they are not identical. Pragma-dialectics (as its name suggests) enriches argumentation by reference to the long tradition of dialectic, reminding students from the outset that their purpose is to evoke a dialogue, to try to live up to the ideal of a critical discussion – even if the text has a single author whose audience is addressed in the imagination as he or she composes.

In Toulmin’s The Uses of Argument, he suggests that data is given to support a claim when an audience asks, “What have you got to go on?” (Smith, Wilhelm & Fredricksen translate this as “What makes you say so?”) Arguers are prompted to articulate their warrant when asked, “How is that relevant?” (“So what?” ask Smith, Wilhelm & Fredricksen.) In addition to these questions, there are others that teachers can use to confer effectively.

At the most fundamental level, “How’s it going?” is the most helpful step to begin a conversation with students about their work (Anderson 2000). Listening carefully to a student’s answer, writing coaches can determine whether the student has a topic or not. By thinking through the stages of a critical discussion, writing coaches can help students to understand their role as interlocutors tasked with identifying and then working to resolve a difference of opinion. I suggest the following questions for use in writing conferences.

If a student seems to be working on the confrontation stage:
• What’s the issue that you are writing about?
• Who is your audience for this paper? Is there an audience other than your teacher?
• Is there a difference of opinion about this issue?
• What are the different points of view with regard to this issue?
• Which point(s) of view seem(s) best to you?
• Who might doubt that opinion or disagree with that point of view?

If the student seems to be working on the opening stage:
• When it comes to this issue, what do the possible points of view have in common?
• What do you and your readers probably agree about when it comes to this issue?
• What are the constraints of your assignment? Does the assignment give clear instructions about length, genre, and definition of effective writing?[i]

If the student seems to be working on the argumentation stage:
• How is your text going to resolve a difference of opinion?
• What reasons can you imagine to support that point of view?
• Are you making a cause and effect argument, a symptomatic argument, or an argument by analogy?
• It sounds like you are making a cause & effect argument;
– will that effect indeed follow? Or could it be achieved more easily by way of another measure?
– is the effect of the cause really as good or as bad as you assert?
– are there any other good or bad side-effects that will follow?

• It sounds like you are making a symptomatic argument;
– is that quality also a symptom of anything else?
– do things like that have other typical characteristics as well?

• It sounds like you are making an argument by analogy;
– have you accurately described both of the situations or things you are comparing?
– have you clarified the resemblance between them?
– are there crucial differences between them? Are there perhaps other situations or things that better resemble the present case? (Adapted from van Eemeren & Grootendorst 1992: 101, 102)

If the student seems to be working on the conclusion stage:
• Which stance on this issue seems the strongest?
• Are the arguments for that standpoint completely persuasive to you?
• Do you have any doubts about them?
• Have you changed your mind about this issue through the process of writing this paper?
• Did you discover any differences of opinion about sub-issues while you worked on this paper?
• What do you think that readers should consider next in order to understand either the causes or the consequences of this difference of opinion?

9. Conclusion
If teachers of writing were to strategically ask these questions while conferring with students, the latter would improve not only their persuasiveness (rhetoric), but also their reasonableness (dialectic). Teachers and tutors can help students not only to support points of view, but also to determine those points of view though critical thinking. Eventually, the questions that teachers ask may become the questions that students ask themselves. Conferring with pragma-dialectic critical questions in mind can help students to learn which questions to ask themselves during the invention stage of the writing process to evaluate which claim should be their main claim, which solution, among all of the possible solutions, should be the one that they advocate.

I am indebted to all of the members of the Argumentation and Rhetoric research program at the University of Amsterdam. Thank you for welcoming me so warmly for a year-long research sabbatical, during which I studied pragma-dialectics. Special thanks go to Bart Garssen and José Plug for agreeing to let me be a visiting scholar, to Annemiek Hoffer for managing the details, to all who presented during Friday research colloquia, to Frans van Eemeren for long lunch conversations, and to Ingeborg van der Geest for sharing her desk and her friendship.

i. Graded written work within the education domain almost always has both a primary and a secondary rhetorical context, even if the teacher is the only audience. The teacher or some other audience may be the interlocutor in a critical dialogue about the issue, but always in the background is the primary context of schooling—the issue of a student’s satisfactory progress toward learning goals. In effect, every graded assignment asks a student: Are you capable of effectively accomplishing this composing task? Every assignment handed in asserts the claim: Yes, I am capable of effectively accomplishing this composing task. The extent to which the composition is effective argumentation to the secondary rhetorical situation is implicit argumentation in support of the claim to the student’s intellectual capabilities.

Anderson, E. M., & Hamel, F. L. (1991). Teaching argument as a criteria-driven process. English Journal, 80(7), 43-49.
Anderson, C. (2000). How’s It Going? A practical guide to conferring with student writers. Portsmouth, NH: Heinemann.
Eemeren, F. H. van (2010). Strategic maneuvering in argumentative discourse: Extending the pragma-dialectical theory of argumentation. Amsterdam; Philadelphia: John Benjamins.
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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).

According to McGee, Isocrates used the “exercise of reason” (i.e., logismo) to arrive at logoi (i.e., reasoned arguments), a process which in the case of Isocrates involved transforming historical knowledge into “present action” (McGee 1986; Poulakos 2008, p. 87). In essence, history provides a collection of topoi (i.e., “argument schemes”) that may be mimetically altered through logismo to arrive at logoi (van Eemeren 2010, pp. 101–103). McGee further nuances Isocrates’ use of logos by arguing that Isocrates “established the possibility of performing […] surgery on ‘culture,’” due to his use of logos, citing as evidence his ability to create logoi that had the potential to move a group of Athenians to “re-define their Being […] from the ideology of ‘Being-in’ a polis (‘I am Athenian’) to an ideology of ‘Being-In’ a linguistically-defined culture (‘I am Greek’)” (McGee 1986). Further developing this line of thought, McGee propounds that Isocrates was not a cultural “diagnostician” but rather a “surgeon,” an assertion that McGee evidences through highlighting that Isocrates did not compose dialogues that illustrated “how to find faults in a culture” as had Plato, but rather left examples of employing “principles of moral argumentation to model for positive cultural change” [emphasis added] (McGee 1986). McGee concludes this manuscript by proposing that we use Isocrates’ oeuvre as “resources to see cultural faults and to perform the surgery necessary to repair them” (McGee 1986).

In the second manuscript, “Choosing A Poros: Reflections on How to Implicate Isocrates in Liberal Theory,” McGee further develops his characterization of Isocrates’ form of argumentation through a discussion of the identificatory effects of his logoi (McGee 1998). McGee argues that Althusser’s orientation to identification is “analogically” closest to “Isocrates’ orientation to his audiences” and thus identifies an important conceptual component to understanding the effects of Isocrates’ logoi, “interpellation” (McGee 1998). Before exploring “Isocratean interpellation” in greater depth, it may be useful to briefly discuss Althusserian interpellation to allow for a proper contrast of these two forms of hailing.

Louis Althusser introduced the concept of “Ideological State Apparatuses” (ISAs) in his 1970 essay, “Ideology and Ideological State Apparatuses (Notes toward an Investigation),” built upon the Marxist conception of the State or the State apparatus as a repressive apparatus that functions as a repression machine which perpetuates bourgeoisie domination over the proletariat and articulates State power (Althusser 2008, pp. 11, 14, 16–17). By contrast, the State Apparatus itself contains institutions (e.g., the army, police, and government) that operate through violence (Althusser 2008, pp. 16–17). Ideological State Apparatuses are a “number of realities which present themselves… in the form of distinct and specialized institutions” (e.g., political, legal, and educational systems, the family, religion, and culture) that function by ideology (Althusser 2008, pp. 16–17). The critical difference between Ideological State Apparatuses and what Althusser refers to as the (Repressive) State Apparatus lies in their functioning, with the former relying primarily upon ideology and only secondarily through repression and the latter functioning in the complete inverse (Althusser 2008, pp. 18–19). To illustrate how ideology, defined as “the system of the ideas and representations which dominate the mind of man or a social group” functions in the life of the individual, Althusser introduces the concept of interpellation (Althusser 2008, pp. 32, 40). Althusser predicates his conceptualization of interpellation on the premise that ideology exists as a result of the “category of the subject,” given that ideology is destined for “concrete subjects” (Althusser 2008, pp. 44–45). Following this assertion, Althusser propounds that “the category of the subject is only constitutive of all ideology insofar as all ideology has the function (which defines it) of ‘constituting’ concrete individuals as subjects” (Althusser 2008, pp. 44–45). To describe how ideology constitutes subjects, Althusser contends that it operates by recruiting subjects from individuals or by transforming individuals into subjects through “interpellation or hailing” (Althusser 2008, p. 48). In order to illustrate this action, Althusser provides an example of a police official exclaiming, “‘Hey, you there!’” to an individual on the street, compelling him or her to turn around, and by virtue of this action, he or she is interpellated into a subject (Althusser 2008, p. 48).

In the second manuscript, McGee argues that Althusser understood interpellation to be a power of the State and consequently “always [a] negative” action, which sharply contrasts with the positivity McGee attributes to “Isocratean interpellation” (McGee 1998). McGee describes Althusserian interpellation as “evil [and a] virtually demonic” action in contrast to the “good” Isocratean interpellation, which he terms “positive interpellation” (McGee 1998). For Althusser, “the existence of ideology and… interpellation of individuals as subjects are… the same thing,” therefore, according to McGee, Althusser “sees” an erasure of subjectivity by contrast to Isocrates, who views subjectivity as a “hard-won acquisition… [a] realization of the possibility of Being a subject” (Althusser 2008, p. 49; McGee 1998). McGee couches his argument by stating that there exist “many reasons” to justify his use of the term interpellation vis-a-vis “Isocratean rhetoric” and cites the following three reasons:

1) both “discuss political struggle,”
2) both “study callings,” and
3) both “understandings of calling are tied to the theory and praxis of power” (McGee 1998). McGee concludes this manuscript with a discussion of how contemporary “Liberalism” has given way to the “the individual,” who has contributed to Western “political and cultural fragmentation” (McGee 1998). For McGee, “the individual” is a “cultural [fault]” of modern democracies, citing America as a geographical region where this phenomenon may be observed (McGee 1998). As such, McGee proposes looking to Isocrates for solutions to repair 21st century disunity by way of Isocratean interpellation and argues that it may produce a “positive becoming of the collective, rather than a negative ceasing-to-be of the individual” (McGee 1998).

To summarize, upon piecing together elements from both of McGee’s manuscripts, a definition of moral argumentation begins to emerge, one that speaks of moral argumentation as a particular kind of argument practice that exhibits particular characteristics (McGee 1986). It would appear that for McGee, Isocrates’ moral argumentation involved the [communicative] process of transforming topoi of the past, through logismo, into logoi that appropriately addressed the given oratorical circumstances of the present, producing logoi that had the potential to produce two differing types of interpellative calls. These two types of callings were designed to interpellate either a group of individuals or an individual to engage in a specific deliberative action, yielding a particular communicative outcome. In the case of the individual, this would entail inspiring the individual to engage in dissoi logoi (i.e., the internal practice of “pulling apart complex questions by debating two sides of an issue”) in order to form wise judgments (Mitchell 2010, p. 108). In contrast, the deliberative action for a group of individuals would be synerchesthe (i.e., a form of interactive collective inquiry and deliberation that leads to the formation of wise judgments and unity) (Mitchell & McTigue 2012, pp. 92, 96; Mitchell 2010, pp. 108–109, 111, 2011, pp. 62–63). McGee’s definition may be better understood by contextualizing it in the pedagogical program of Isocrates, as this will illustrate the manner in which McGee’s definition re-articulates pedagogical touchstones and values from Isocrates’ paideia (i.e., educational program) and provide greater clarity to McGee’s definition of Isocrates’ moral argumentation, which will henceforth be referred to as “Isocratic moral argumentation.” The following figure provides a visual representation of the structure and components of Isocratic moral argumentation.

Corral Edmonds1

3. Isocratic moral argumentation
The first component of McGee’s Isocratic moral argumentation relates to the process of studying and mimetically transforming historical topoi into logoi for present and future action, a process articulated in many of what Isocrates terms “moral treatise[s]” (Isocrates 1928d, sec. 3–7). Isocrates’ paideia was in perpetual engagement with history, as it served as a cultural text from which topoi were extracted, modified, and improved upon, in order to address the given oratorical needs of a situation (Isocrates 1928a, sec. 96–100, 1928c, sec. 8–11, 1928d, sec. 11–24; 32–35, 1928e, sec. 34–38, 1929a, sec. 82–84, 1929b, sec. 82–84, 1945d, sec. 7–11). Isocrates did not wish for his students to be “shameless babblers” and merely repeat per verbatim “the same things which [had] been said in the past,” but rather to “surpass them” (Isocrates 1929a, sec. 82–84, 1945d, sec. 7–11). This rhetorical practice is most clearly described in Panegyricus: “For the deeds of the past are, indeed, an inheritance common to us all; but the ability to make proper use of them at the appropriate time, to conceive the right sentiments about them in each instance, and to set them forth in finished phrase, is the peculiar gift of the wise” (Isocrates 1928c, sec. 8–11). Isocrates’ paideia highlights three important nuances in the creation of new logoi from historical topoi. First, this process must not be performed in a hasty manner, but rather, as described in Antidosis, through the critical “exercise of reason” or reasoning (i.e., logismo), which leads one to be mistaken “less often” in one’s “course of action” (Isocrates 1929a, sec. 290–293). Second, one should endeavor to mimetically alter and exceed what has “been said in the past” and not blindly copy (Isocrates 1929a, sec. 290–293). Third, one must not neglect to be mindful of the kairos (i.e., timing) of the moment, in order to allow for the effective delivery of logos (Isocrates 1928c, sec. 8–11). Thus, the first component in the process of Isocratic moral argumentation may be understood as an argument creation phase that leads to the second phase: the delivery of logoi.

These newly created logoi have the potential to create two differing types of interpellative calls depending on the audience (i.e., individuals or an individual), which is where a salient distinction arises with regard to how the interpellative component of Isocrates’ logoi functioned. This distinction relates to the disjuncture that occurs with regard to the eventual “Communicative Outcome” of the audience-specific interpellative calls. Logoi destined for an audience comprised of individuals were composed in such a way that they would interpellate that group of people to engage in a particular “Deliberative Action” called synerchesthe, an important capability of Isocratic logos that is highlighted in a section of Nicocles or the Cyprians, referred to as the “hymn to logos.” In this passage, logos was offered as the reason “we escaped the life of wild beasts […] come together and founded cities and made laws and invented arts; and […] there is no institution devised by man which the power of [logos] has not helped us to establish” (Isocrates 1928b, sec. 6–7). The hymn to logos reveals that for Isocrates, logos is intrinsically linked to humanity and, through the cultivation of logos, citizens may assist their city in making wise choices through engaging in “reasoned political debate” (Morgan 2004, p. 145). Isocrates acknowledged that logos could be a source of social unification or disagreement, and as such, produce centripetal or centrifugal effects (Haskins 2004, p. 97; Mitchell & McTigue 2012, pp. 92–93). Consequently, Isocrates instructed his students to deliver logos in such a manner that their performance would be capable of spurring synerchesthe, which would serve as a source of social unification, binding the demos together into a “political community” (Poulakos 2008, p. 16). Isocrates described three related actions that indicate how the unity formation of synerchesthe may be invoked through “coming together deliberatively”: first, collective inquiry; second, deliberation; and third, alliance formation (Mitchell & McTigue 2012, p. 92; Poulakos 2008, p. 19). In essence, logoi composed for individuals produced an interpellative call that could spur the “Communicative Action” of synerchesthe, leading to the “Communicative Outcome” of forming wise judgments through deliberation and creating unity among those participating in the collective deliberation of a given inquiry.

In contrast, the second type of interpellative call produced through Isocratic moral argumentation is the call directed toward the individual alone. The “Deliberative Action” produced by these logoi has a distinct “Communicative Outcome” that is best represented in Isocrates’ letters To Alexander, To the Children of Jason, To Archidamus, and To Demonicus and Nicocles or the Cyprians, wherein one may observe the manner in which logoi are constructed to interpellate the individual into engaging in the “Deliberative Action” of dissoi logoi (Isocrates 1928b, sec. 7–10, 1928d, sec. 32–35, 1945a, sec. 3–5, 1945b, sec. 16–19, 1945c, sec. 6–9; 9–13). This particular communicative action (i.e., dissoi logoi) highlights a pervasive component in Isocrates’ paideia: debate. Protagoras of Abdera, a key teacher of Isocrates, practiced a politically­infused program of education based on dissoi logoi and argumentative practice (Smith 1918, pp. 197–199, 202–203). Isocrates, having been influenced by Protagoras’ argumentative­focused pedagogy, interpellated those whom he advised and instructed them to engage in this “Deliberative Action” in order to arrive at the “Communicative Outcome” of forming wise judgments. In To Demonicus, Isocrates describes his paideia as one that teaches students “how they may win repute as men of sound character… [and] improve their moral conduct” (Isocrates 1928d, sec. 3–7). For Isocrates, engaging in dissoi logoi enabled wise decision making and consequently lead to improved “moral conduct” (Isocrates 1928d, sec. 3–7). In Nicocles or the Cyprians, Isocrates contends that “we regard as sage those who most skillfully debate their problems in their own mind” and similarly, in To the Children of Jason, “nothing can be intelligently accomplished unless first […] you reason and deliberate” (Isocrates 1928b, sec. 7–10, 1929a, sec. 253–256; 256–259, 1945c, sec. 6–9). The aforementioned passages elucidate the importance of internal deliberation to arriving at a well-formulated judgment and the ultimate “Communicative Outcome” of the interpellative call directed at the individual. Thus, one may understand Isocratic moral argumentation as the creation of argument(s) that produce(s) nuanced interpellative calls, depending on the audience, to engage in differing communicative actions that result in the formation of wise judgments and, in the case of a group of individuals, also unity.

Isocratic moral argumentation is a particularly useful hermeneutical tool for examining how protest argumentation carries the potential to create unity among protest group members. In both of McGee’s unpublished manuscripts related to Isocrates, he gestures toward the utility and insightful perspective that may be gained through considering Isocrates’ concepts as “resources” that may aid in the analysis of contemporary “political rhetoric” (McGee 1986, 1998). Similarly, argumentation scholar Gordon Mitchell has also drawn upon Isocratean concepts for the contemporary study of diverse deliberative settings (Mitchell & McTigue 2012; Mitchell 2010, 2011). Furthering this theoretical approach, in order to elucidate the hermeneutical merit of Isocratic moral argumentation, this paper performs a case study of the Spanish protest group 15-M’s protest logoi from the summer of 2011, in order to illustrate how this type of argumentation may be performed to create a “positive Becoming of the collective” amid the contemporary milieu of fragmentation (McGee 1986). A particular angle of inquiry will focus specifically on how historical topoi were transformed into logoi used by 15-M to interpellate people into their protest acampadas [encampments], where they engaged in synerchesthe and ultimately created unity.

4. 15-M
In the summer of 2011, Spain had a youth unemployment rate of 45%, out of which 650,000 were below the age of 30 and neither worked nor studied (Taibo 2013, p. 156). This growing group of young people is referred to as the “ni-ni,” ni estudia ni trabaja [“neither-nor,” neither studies nor works] (Roseman 2013, pp. 401–402; Santos Blázquez 2013, p. 386). In 2011, the Spanish labor market presented multiple challenges for young people, such as being paid in dinero negro [off the books] and providing an “abundance of contratos-basuras,” which are employment contracts that pay low salaries and have a tendency to engage in illegal treatment toward employees (Taibo 2013, p. 156). Concurrently, in the public university system, “a visible deterioration” in the quality and accessibility occurred with the onset of the large hike in tuition fees and scholarship cutbacks (Perugorría & Tejerina 2013, p. 427; Taibo 2013, p. 156). Difficulties also abounded in the Spanish economic sector, which was experiencing a financial crisis due to a number of factors (e.g., the bursting of the Spanish real-estate bubble and the international financial crisis) (Castañeda 2012, p. 310; Cortés 2013, p. 66; Éltető 2011, pp. 41, 45; Pino 2013, pp. 234–235; Royo 2009, p. 28). Amid this economic, social, and political turmoil, the internet-based Spanish platform ¡Democracia Real YA! [Real Democracy NOW!] issued a nationwide call for mobilization through social media, to be held on May 15, 2011 (Morell 2012, p. 387; Perugorría & Tejerina 2013, p. 428; Serrano Casado 2012, pp. 27, 30). This demonstration was set to occur one week prior to the elecciones municipales [municipal elections] and those of the comunidades autónomas [autonomous federal regions of Spain], in order to protest issues such as “corruption of the political parties,” high unemployment levels, and governmental “mismanagement” of the economic crisis (Cedillo 2012, pp. 573–574; Jiménez & Estalella 2011, p. 20; Serrano Casado 2012, p. 27).

Demonstrations occurred in over 50 Spanish cities, with the participation of hundreds of thousands of Spanish citizens (Ceisel 2013, p. 159; Perugorría & Tejerina 2013, p. 428; Serrano Casado 2012, p. 29). Following the close of the demonstration on May 15, 2011, in Madrid’s Puerta del Sol, a group of over 30 individuals continued their protest by spending the night in the plaza, a decision that would mark the formation of the protest group known as 15-M and the creation of Acampada Sol [Sol Encampment] (Jiménez & Estalella 2011, p. 20; Romanos 2012, p. 186). Thereafter, Madrid’s acampada was replicated across Spain and, in acts of solidarity, in international cities, such as London and Paris (Juventud Sin Futuro 2011, p. 82; Velasco 2011, pp. 24–25, 33). A key factor that likely contributed to the growth and size of transnational acampadas were 15-M’s logoi.

Two of 15-M’s protest logoi (i.e., slogans) will be examined to highlight how 15-M engaged in the first phase of Isocratic moral argumentation – the transformation of historical topoi into new logoi. One European social movement in particular had a significant influence on 15-M’s arguments: the French May ’68 protests (Feixa, Sánchez García, Soto, & Nofre 2013, p. 199; Pedret Santos 2011, p. 98). 15-M transformed the two following topoi from May ’68 into new protest logoi: “Enragez-vous” [Become outraged] and “Ne prenez plus l’ascenseur, prenez le pouvoir” [Stop taking the elevator, take the power] (Bussetti & Revello 2008, pp. 44, 78). The first May ’68 topos, “Enragez-vous” [Become outraged], was transformed via logismo into “Indígnate ya, sin lucha nadie te escucha” [Become outraged now, without a fight no one hears you] (García 2011). This example illustrates how 15-M transformed the affective rage from the May ’68 topos into an argument that channeled this emotion into a multifaceted interpellative call of affect, identity, and action. 15-M’s argument calls individuals to change their affective state to one of outrage, to become an indignado, and to move into action (i.e., participate in 15-M’s acampadas).

The second May ’68 topos, “Ne prenez plus l’ascenseur, prenez le pouvoir” [Stop taking the elevator, take the power], was transmuted to “Sin tele, sin cerveza, toma la plaza con cabeza” [Without TV, without beer, take the plaza with intelligence] (Velasco 2011, p. 69). This transmutation elucidates the manner in which 15-M borrowed with subtle modification May ’68’s juxtaposition of passivity and action, such as changing “take the power” to “take the plaza.” It should be noted that in this May ’68 logos, no direct instructions are provided with regard to how one should “take the power,” rhetorically producing an interpellative call lacking direction. 15-M, by contrast, provides explicit instructions to “take the plaza,” where, in reality, power is not what was taken, but rather created through occupation.

The two examined protest logoi demonstrate how 15-M created interpellative logoi from May ’68 topoi to call individuals to their acampadas, thereby increasing their growth and sustaining high participation rates. It should be noted that 15-M acknowledged their connection to May ’68 during the acampadas and created a logos that expressed how they understood themselves in relation to this antecedent movement. In Acampada Sol, a 15-M poster read “Esto no es mayo del 68: nosotros vamos en serio” [This is not May ’68: we are serious], highlighting 15-M’s desire to surpass May ’68 (Velasco 2011, p. 47). This action evokes a key component of Isocratic moral argumentation: surpassing or exceeding the actions of the past. This very point has also been noted by political science scholar, Juan Carlos Monedero, who argues that this protest logos is evidence that 15-M has learned from the past (Monedero 2012, p. 128).

The abovementioned logoi, in addition to many others, produced “Interpellative Calls” that brought multitudes of individuals to 15-M’s acampadas, wherein protestors were perpetually engaging in the “Deliberative Action” of synerchesthe, as 15-M practiced a culture of debate in their acampadas. Evidence of this culture may be observed in the manner in which virtually all of 15-M’s decisions were made through collective deliberation in asambleas [assemblies] (Benítez Martín 2013, p. 47). One 15-M protestor described the asambleas as, “un espacio de debate al principio, muy importante, se nos llamaba ágoras, porque era espacio de discutir ideas de trabajar, además poner en común ideas muy contrarias” [in the beginning, a space for debate, it was very important, we called it the agoras, because it was a space to debate working ideas, and put in agreement conflicting ideas] (Cabezas 2011, p. 198). There were multiple asambleas of varying sizes and topic matters that met with differing levels of frequency and duration, depending on the needs of an acampada (de la Rubia 2011, p. 160). In addition, working groups and commissions formed and held asambleas on a wide range of topics such as: feminism, healthcare, politics, economics, the maintenance and infrastructure of acampadas, and internal coordination (de la Rubia 2011, pp. 160–166). This description of 15-M’s culture of debate exemplifies the second component of the second phase of Isocratic moral argumentation: “Deliberative Action.” Given that synerchesthe was an unavoidable argumentative practice in the acampadas, two “Communicative Outcomes” ensued: 1) “wise judgment” formation and 2) “unity” formation.

In the acampadas, 15-M created a space where “wise judgment” formation became a collective, participatory, deliberative goal, evidenced in a guide created by the Commission of Dynamism from Acampada Sol on the topic of popular assemblies (Ruiz Trejo 2013, p. 29; Torres López et al. 2011, pp. 69–89). In this text, the commission describes an asamblea as follows: “un órgano de toma de decisiones participativo que busca el consenso… [y]… los mejores argumentos para tomar la decisión más acorde” [a participatory decision making entity that looks for consensus… [and]… the best arguments in order to make the most appropriate decision] (Torres López et al. 2011, p. 70). This statement demonstrates that 15-M understood the purpose of collective deliberation as an argumentative practice that would lead to making the “best” and “most appropriate” decision. Intrinsically imbedded in 15-M’s conceptualization of the asamblea is an argumentative ideal articulated in Isocratic moral argumentation: the arrival at wise judgment via deliberation with oneself or, in the case of 15-M, with a group of individuals through synerchesthe.

Through practicing deliberative argumentation, protestors who participated in the acampadas were also able to create unity among one another, the second “Communicative Outcome” of Isocratic moral argumentation for groups of individuals. 15-M protestors and scholars alike have commented on the unity the acampadas created (Cañero Ruiz 2013, p. 101; Costa-Sánchez & Piñeiro-Otero 2012, p. 1463; García Espín 2012, p. 300). To illustrate, one protestor from Madrid’s acampada said that it “alumbró una comunidad [en] que se hizo auténtica unidad orgánica” [illuminated a community in which authentic and organic unity was formed] (Mora, Esteban, & G. Rubio 2011, p. 96). This quote further substantiates the assertion that the argumentative practices of the acampada contributed to the creation of unity among protestors and thus reflects a “Communicative Outcome” of Isocratic moral argumentation.

5. Conclusion
This case study has considered how 15-M, engaging in what might be called Isocratic moral argumentation, borrowed May ‘68 topoi to create new protest logoi. Isocratic terminology helps explain how these new logoi served as “Interpellative Call[s]” to attract individuals to 15-M’s acampadas to engage in the “Deliberative Action” of synerchesthe. In the acampadas, synerchesthe produced two “Communicative Outcomes:” wise judgment formation and the creation of unity among protestors. These insights illustrate how contemporary protest activity can be understood as argumentative phenomena, through the application of a theoretical framework grounded in argumentation theory and classical Greek rhetoric.

Future application of this argumentative practice could involve an examination of other social protests groups that have been influenced by 15-M (e.g., the 2011 Greek Indignant Citizens Movement and the American Occupy Wall Street movement). Such an investigation would provide greater insight into the transnational impact of 15-M’s argumentative practices and allow for the study of the application of Isocratic moral argumentation in differing national contexts.

In addition, future scholarship concerning Isocratic moral argumentation could also examine how the dynamics of this form of argumentation could be altered when practiced in a virtual format. A study that examines the use of Isocratic moral argumentation in a virtual asamblea would be a particularly salient area of future investigation, given the exponential rise of social media use by social movements within the past ten years. Isocratic moral argumentation and the conceptual framework it introduces to the study of social movement argumentation demonstrate the enduring salience and relevancy of implicating Isocratean concepts in modern-day contexts.

It is with immense gratitude that I acknowledge the guidance and support of Dr. Gordon R. Mitchell.

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