SU Argument Analysis Report

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Description

Structure the report as follows:

1. Introduction a. Introduce the argument to the reader with a brief description of what it argues for (or against), and why it is important (and to whom). The argument should be in English, publicly available, and found in the opinion section of a major online newspaper such as The New York Times, The Guardian, The Washington Post, The Independent, etc. Remember to reference the source properly and provide a link to the page containing the argument. b. Note: Make sure that the article indeed contains an argument. Do not pick articles from the news section; those are typically purely descriptive in nature. The argument should have at least three explicit premises.

2. Concepts

a. In this section, you should introduce the concepts of truth, rational belief, and what it means for an argument to be well-formed; these are fundamental to the subsequent analysis.

3. Method

a. Briefly describe the method of analysis. That entails summarizing the steps in Feldman (2013). You will provide details of the actual analysis in the next section so keep this brief.

4. Analysis

a. This should have at least two subsections: Reconstruction and Evaluation. Describe the reconstruction (evaluation), and the result thereof based on the proposed method in Feldman (2013). The reconstruction should contain the argument in standard form with each line labeled accordingly: each line should start with a line number and end with “(EP)” if it is an explicit premise, “(IP)” if it is an implicit premise or the numbers of the lines above the line it is derived from; the conclusion is indicated with a horizontal line above it. If the mapping between the original text passage and the argument on standard form is complicated, clarify your reasoning behind the reconstruction. Show that the argument indeed is well-formed by including a translation of it into symbolic form; Feldman (2013) refers to that as the “form” or “pattern” of the argument (see, e.g., Feldman 2013, p. 147). The terms validity and cogency are fundamental in the reconstruction.

5. Discussion

a. Present your conclusion about the rational strength of the argument you analyzed and write a critical appraisal of the analysis you performed. While there is no word limit, remember to make the report, in particular concerning the reconstruction, evaluation, and discussion, comprehensive; a reader should not have to guess your intentions or assumptions.

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