ERIC Number: ED214220
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1982-Feb
On the Senses of "Argument."
In order to clarify and define the subject matter of argumentation, this paper examines the two senses of argument identified by D. J. O'Keefe and then proposes a third sense of argument as another legitimate perspective in argumentation. As discussed in the paper, O'Keefe's two senses of argument are a thing people make and a kind of interaction people have. The third sense of argument proposed in the paper refers to the mental processes by which arguments occur within people and includes (1) the perceptual and inferential event of noticing an argument or the need for one, (2) the memorial processes of storage and retrieval of pertinent cognitive elements, (3) the information processing that is applied to the argument and its potential parts, (4) the creative energies that generate new arguments or responses to them, and (5) the productive abilities that give form to utterance. The paper examines the theories of Plato, Aristotle, C. A. Willard, B. R. Burleson, J. W. Wenzel, and C. Perlman, finding evidence of this sense of argument, and then reviews the features of the first two senses of argument, discovering that the third sense is useful in understanding them. In conclusion, the paper examines the S. Jackson and S. Jacobs program of research on conversational argument and finds that it is heavily dependent on the third sense of argument. (FL)
Publication Type: Information Analyses; Opinion Papers; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the Western Speech Communication Association (Denver, CO, February 19-23, 1982).