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What are 4 steps of critical analysis of writing?

1. Read carefully and determine the topic and major conclusions of the passage.
2. Identify the arguments or theories presented.
3. Analyze the arguments/theories presented.
4. Evaluate each argument\theory and the passage as a whole.


Where is the best place to look to determine the topic of a piece of writing?

The introductory material: first few paragraphs, the title.


Should you incorporate the main points into the topic of the passage?



When is the author presenting an argument?

When he/she gives reasons for believing something or acting in a certain way. Reason is the keyword here.


What are some argument "indicator words"?

Because, therefore, hence, since, it follows that, so.


Do argument indicator words absolutely indicate the presence of an argument?



What is the difference between descriptive and argumentative writing?

The purpose. In descriptive writing, the author is describing something. In argumentative writing the author is trying to prove something by giving reasons.


What is a diatribe?

Diatribe is bitter and violent criticism.


What is explanation?

1. The answer to the questions "why" or "how".
2. The answers about why something happened or happens.
3. Why something is the case.
4. How to do something.


How is explanation different from argument?

In explanation we are not trying to prove anything, just explain something that is known already.


What is one strategy to differentiate between explanation and an argument?

To give a passage a test drive. Pretend that it is an explanation and see if it makes sense as such. Then pretend it is an argument.


What is meant by argument analysis?

1. Distinguish all premises and conclusions.
2. Indicating which premises lead to which conclusions.


What is a principle of charitable interpretation?

It is that we should always try to interpret an argument in the way that makes it most reasonable


What are the steps of a critical writing?

1. State your arguments.
2. State objections that one might have to your arguments.
3. State replies to those objections.
4. State opposing arguments.
5. State replies to the opposing arguments.


What problems do authors of the course book see with the practice of leaving the important decisions to experts?

1. How do we decide of experts in which fields to turn to when we need a certain problem solved.
2. Experts disagree on topics.
3. Experts can be personally or politically interested in certain view of the topic.


What strategy do authors of the book suggest to dealing with the issue of relying on experts?

1. Create your own arguments and theories.
2 .Cautiously rely on experts.


When the piece of writing is a description?

When the author is attmepting to:
1. State what has happened.
2. State what is the case
3. State what something is like.


What should you do to determine the main topics of a written work?

Ask yourself what the author is saying about the topic.


"The stock market crashed because the investors lost confidence" - is this an argument of explanation?

This is an explanation. We are not trying to prove that the market has crashed - we already know it did. What we are trying to do is to explain why.