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Higher-order strategic maneuvering in argumentation

Mitchell, GR (2010) Higher-order strategic maneuvering in argumentation. Argumentation, 24 (3). 319 - 335. ISSN 0920-427X

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Abstract

In a critical discussion, interlocutors can strategically maneuver by shading their expressed degree of standpoint commitment for rhetorical effect. When is such strategic shading reasonable, and when does it cross the line and risk fallacious derailment of the discussion? Analysis of President George W. Bush's 2002-2003 prewar commentary on Iraq provides an occasion to explore this question and revisit Douglas Ehninger's distinction between argumentation as "coercive correction" and argumentation as a "person-risking enterprise." Points of overlap between Ehninger's account and pragma-dialectical argumentation theory suggest avenues for harmonization of rhetorical and dialectical perspectives on argumentation. Out of this conceptual convergence comes theoretical resources for understanding strategic maneuvering, by accounting for ways that discussants exploit gaps between their externalized and actual "discussion attitude." As such higher-order strategic maneuvering played a major role in the 2003 Iraq prewar "discourse failure," perspicacious understanding of this particular argumentative maneuver carries practical, as well as theoretical import. © 2010 Springer Science+Business Media B.V.


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Details

Item Type: Article
Status: Published
Creators/Authors:
CreatorsEmailPitt UsernameORCID
Mitchell, GRgordonm@pitt.eduGORDONM
Centers: University Centers > University Center for International Studies (UCIS)
Date: 25 January 2010
Date Type: Publication
Journal or Publication Title: Argumentation
Volume: 24
Number: 3
Page Range: 319 - 335
DOI or Unique Handle: 10.1007/s10503-009-9178-3
Schools and Programs: School of Medicine > Clinical and Translational Science
Dietrich School of Arts and Sciences > Communication: Rhetoric and Communication
Refereed: Yes
ISSN: 0920-427X
Date Deposited: 29 Oct 2012 15:19
Last Modified: 24 Jan 2019 06:55
URI: http://d-scholarship.pitt.edu/id/eprint/15996

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