Category Archives: writing

 MY CRITICAL THINKING CLASS NOTES / RHETORICAL DEVICES

These are meant to be used when reading articles and commentary. Enjoy a deeper understanding . . .

MY CRITICAL THINKING CLASS NOTES / RHETORICAL DEVICES
I reduced the class down to less than three pages!
Juanita Holloway-Walters aka Texas Lady Juanita

PERSUASIVE:

EUPHEMISM – Good expression replacing bad one that may offend

INUENDO – Insinuation of something deprecatory

RHETORICAL DEFINITION – To influence attitude or affect behavior, use images w/ positive or negative emotions (also known as Rhetorical Explanation and Rhetorical Comparison)

DYSPEMISM – Bad expression used to tone down the good

LOADED QUESTION – Question that rests on one or more unwarranted or unjustified assumptions

RHETORICAL DEVICE – Influence attitudes or beliefs through association – adds to persuasive but not logical

DOWNPLAYER – Diminish importance of claim

PROOF SURROGATE – Expression in place of actual evidence or authority

HORSE LAUGH – Ridicule disguised as reasoning to reject claim

RHETORIC – Persuade rather than prove logically

STEREOTYPE – Oversimplified generalization about a person of a certain class

HYPERBOLE – Extravagant Overstatement

WEASELER – Expression used to protect claim from criticism by weakening it

COMMON FALLACIES:

AD HOMINEM – Argument against claim based on who made the claim instead of against the actual claim (cannot resist pointing out that The Tea Party people are attacked this way, with Ad Hominem arguments on the six o’clock news – by other political parties calling us names we would normally attribute to far left, and not debating the issues)

FALSE DILEMMA – Fallacious reasoning – x and y can both be false — false reasoning says x is true because y is false

PERSONAL ATTACK AD HOMINEM – Refusing claim because person making it we do not like, or we disapprove of them

APPEAL TO IGNORANCE – Lack of evidence against a claim doesn’t mean the claim gets any positive points

GENETIC FALLACY – YO Mama! Not really ha ha – Rejecting a claim on the basis of its origin or history

POISIONING THE WELL – Discrediting the claim in advance because we don’t like the person

BEGGING THE QUESTION – Argument in which conclusion is identical to the argument (restates argument)

INCONSISTENCEY AD HOMINEM – You can’t make that claim due to prior opposing stance (or your actions are opposite)

MISPLACED BURDEN OF PROOF – Case where burden of proof is on the wrong side

LINE-DRAWING FALLACY – Insisting that a line be drawn at x, when it could also be drawn at y or z

SLIPPERY SLOPE – Arguing that because x happens, then y and or z will also happen

CIRCUMSTANTIAL AD HOMINEM – Attempting to discredit claim by discrediting the person making the claim

PERFECTIONIST FALLACY – Concluding claim is false because its conclusion is not perfect

STRAW MAN – Ignores actual position and argues a distorted, exaggerated, or misrepresented position

PSYCHOLOGICAL & RELATED FALLACIES

WISHFUL THINKING – Accepting it because you want it to be true and vice versa

GUILT TRIP – Making someone feel guilty for not accepting claim

ARGUEMENT COMMON PRACTICE – Justify or defend on grounds that everyone knows it or does it

NATIONALISM – Because of nationalism one may be led to blind endorsement of policy or claim

ARGUMENT FROM ENVY – Induce acceptance by arousing feelings of envy

ARGUMENT FROM OUTRAGE – Invoking anger with inflammatory words followed by conclusion

ARGUMENT BY FORCE – Using threat to support some conclusion

ARGUMENT BY PEER PRESSURE – Threatened by rejection if you don’t accept a claim

GROUP THINK FALLACY – Identifying with a group takes the place of reason and deliberation on an issue

ARGUMENT FROM PITY – Supporting claim by invoking pity rather than legitimate argument

SCARE TACTICS – Frightening scenario instead of facts to get someone to see it your way

ARGUMENT FROM POPULARITY – Convince of argument just because all or most believe it

SMOKE SCREEN – Irrelevant topic introduced to lead you away from original issue (Politicians in Washington like this one)

RATIONALIZING – False pretext to satisfy our desires or interests (teens love this one)

SUBJECTIVISM – An assumption that is true for one person, yet not for another

RED HERRING – Same as SMOKESCREEN

ARGUMENT FROM TRADITION – Using tradition as the basis of a claim

RELATIVISM – Error that two different cultures can believe different on a fact (oh, I could write a book on this one)

TWO WRONGS MAKE A RIGHT – Saying I can hit you because you would hit me

SCAPEGOATING – Placing the blame on a person or a group in error because they are an easy target

Texas Lady Juanita

Copyright © 2018 by Juanita Holloway-Walters
All Rights Reserved.

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