ISSA Proceedings 2006 – Preface

The Sixth Conference of the International Society for the Study of Argumentation (ISSA), held in Amsterdam in June 2006, drew more submissions for presentations than any ISSA Conference before. After a strict selection procedure, 300 scholars were invited to present their papers at the Conference. In addition, the Conference attracted some 200 interested colleagues and students who just wanted to attend the presentations and take part in the discussions. All in all, 500 people interested in argumentation assembled in Amsterdam to present papers and exchange views.

The 2006 ISSA Conference was, like previous ones, an international meeting place for argumentation scholars from a great variety of academic backgrounds and traditions, representing a wide range of academic disciplines and approaches: speech communication, logic (formal and informal), rhetoric (classical and modern), philosophy, linguistics, discourse analysis, pragmatics, law, political sciences, psychology, education, religious studies, and artificial intelligence. Besides philosophical papers dealing with argumentation and epistemology, there are, for instance, theoretical papers about meta-dialogues and strategic manoeuvring in argumentative discourse, empirical papers about argumentation and persuasion, and papers dealing with argumentative practices in law, politics and religion. There are also a number of case studies, papers about argumentation and education and the teaching of argumentation, and papers about specific topics such as Buddhist argumentation. Among the general topics that are treated are, as always, the fallacies, and – increasingly popular – argumentation and artificial intelligence. In the opinion of the editors, the Proceedings of the Sixth ISSA Conference fully reflect the current richness of the discipline.

More than two thirds of the papers presented at the Conference are included in the Proceedings. Some of the papers presented at the Conference were not offered for publication in the Proceedings and after the papers that were submitted had been reviewed meticulously some papers were not accepted. The editors decided to publish only those papers that met their quality standards. Some papers have been revised on the basis of the reviewers’ comments.The Proceedings of the Conference are again published by Sic Sat. The 2006 Proceedings are published in two volumes. In addition to the hard copy publication, a CD ROM version is also available. For the reader’s convenience, in the Proceedings the papers are arranged in the alphabetical order of the authors’ surnames.

The three ISSA board member remaining after Rob Grootendorst’s death are joined as Proceedings editors by Bart Garssen, who was also actively engaged in organising the Conference. Frans H. van Eemeren and Bart Garssen took care of the practical details of the editorial process. As in the past, the editors were greatly helped by a large international team of experienced reviewers, who must remain anonymous. Their evaluations and constructive suggestions have enhanced the quality of these Proceedings, and the editors are grateful to them. In addition, we received invaluable assistance in preparing the Proceedings from the members of the Department of Speech Communication, Argumentation Theory and Rhetoric of the Universiteit van Amsterdam and from other members of the research group ‘Argumentation in Discourse’ of the Amsterdam School for Cultural Analysis (ASCA). We thank all these argumentation theorists for their help in getting the manuscripts ready for publication. Last but not least, we would like to thank our publisher friends Auke van der Berg and Ingrid Bouws for their careful work in producing these Proceedings.

For their support of the conference, the editors would like to express their gratitude to the Board of the University of Amsterdam, the Faculty of Humanities, the Amsterdam University Association (AUV), the City of Amsterdam, Springer Publishing House, John Benjamins Publishing Company and the International Centre for the Study of Argumentation (Sic Sat) in Amsterdam. For financial support of these Proceedings they are grateful to the Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences (KNAW), the Dutch-Belgian Speech Communication Association (VIOT), the Amsterdam School for Cultural Analysis (ASCA), and, again, the International Center for the Study of Argumentation and Speech Communication (Sic Sat).

March 2007
Frans H. van Eemeren –  Universiteit van Amsterdam
J. Anthony Blair – University of Windsor
Charles A. Willard – University of Louisville
Bart Garssen – Universiteit van Amsterdam