Be Prepared Come Out On Top

Essay by EssaySwap ContributorCollege, Undergraduate February 2008

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Be Prepared and Come Out on Top When you come to the podium of debate, having an idea of how your opponent is likely to argue will render you more prepared. Logic states that the more prepared you are for a task the higher your chances are for success. This directly applies to debate and argument. In class we are reading a book called Perspectives on Argument. In this book the author, Nancy Wood, gives generalities on different debate styles based on culture, gender, and race. She made statements about African Americans, Asians, and women. All of her statements pointed out general weaknesses in argument style of each of these groups. Many of the members of our class took her statements as insults and declared that they were wrong. I, being a Caucasian male, was given no stereotypes, and was able to view these reactions and generalities objectively.

The class, lead by the professor, took all credit out of her argument and simply declared it wrong and that it should not even be a part of the book.

The mood of the class was that these were quite simply stereotypes. They felt that they were oversimplified and were therefore wrong. They did not attack her evidence nor did they attack the credibility of the expert opinions she brought up. Yes, I do agree that stereotyping a person based on there appearance, cultural background, race or gender is a bad thing. They should be allowed to present themselves, free from prejudice, before any conclusions are drawn about them. I am not saying that stereotyping has any benefit in debate, because by definition stereotypes are oversimplified. Oversimplification is definitely a bad thing. This is why Nancy Wood uses statements like generally, many, and often. In using these terms she is...