Customer Reviews: Writing Arguments: A Rhetoric with Readings (9th Edition)
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on November 17, 2004
"Writing Arguments" shines like a beacon in the dark and murky waters of composition textbooks. Although some have critiqued it for its "passive" approach, I support both the approach and the layout as the best way I've found to approach basic argumentation. A solid understanding of audience (in particular) is vital for successful writing, and it's also something inexperienced, self-focused writers often lack.

Rather than pushing a "win at all costs" or "go with your gut" victory-based approach to rhetoric, the authors promote rhetorical writing grounded in Perelman's audience concepts, Toulmin's warrants, and Aristotelian enthymeme. By encouraging students to locate common ground (warrants) between themselves and their real or imagined audience, this book sets them up to engage in rhetoric as participants in a broader civic culture. And this is the rhetoric that will ultimately equip them to survive in the real world--where knowing what a client or an opponent wants and believes is critical to "winning" the argument in a lasting and productive way.

No theory or approach is perfect (not that I've found so far at least), and a rigid application of the Toulmin model or the schema as outlined in this book will inevitably bog down writers as they move into more advanced composition. But that, afterall, is why we teachers are there. By focusing students' attention on the basic principles in the book--audience awareness, orderliness, situational groundedness, etc.--rather than forcing them to memorize rules or endlessly construct Toulmin models, I may just be able to help my students develop a new respect for argumentation as discovery (and themselves as rhetors) in the public sphere. And if we can do that, maybe there's a little civil light in the civic culture tunnel after all.
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on September 16, 2012
As an instructor, I am in LOVE with this text. I teach an argument-based research composition course and this text has improved the effectiveness of my teaching methods while at the same time making learning enjoyable for my students. The text is easy to read and uses language familiar with students of all ages (I teach at a community college and as a result the age range is tremendous). In addition, the book includes relevant examples that students can further relate to. I have taught this course previously using another textbook for three semesters and I dreaded the use of the previous textbook. Now, teaching this course, while using this text for the first time, I get excited creating my class agenda. The activities included in the text allows for the students to foster dynamic discussion. I have never before LOVED textbook this much. I look forward to continuing using this text.
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on January 11, 2011
I have just started reading the first 4 chapters. It sticks to the point of what you need with learning how to write a successful argumentation paper. I have ADHD and I am able to understand and write with the instructions in this book
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VINE VOICEon March 1, 2007
Presented in textbook fashion, WRITING ARGUMENTS: A RHETORIC WITH READINGS, doesn't exactly make for compelling reading, but is certainly a critical source for argumentation documents. Author's Ramage, Bean and Johnson guide the reader through the process both deliberately and succinctly, covering every aspect of argument presentation, beginning with definition through source documentation.

Mine is an older edition and the technology aspect is dated, but nonetheless, I turn often to this book to guide me through argument preparation. Though certainly intended for classroom study, this book is also useful outside the classroom. I have prepared a fair number of arguments for political presentation and have found this to be a useful volume.
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on February 23, 2011
This is a textbook required for an English Composition class. To date, I've found it suprisingly well written and provacative. It's been many years since I took an English composition course and I may actually find I enjoy it in part due to this text.
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on February 17, 2016
While the book WAS clean on the inside, thankfully, the outside was a different matter. There were NUMEROUS old UPC labels from previous sales; at one point I removed at least TEN of them! The book condition was rated as GOOD, but it should have only been 'ACCEPTABLE.' Now, with those tags gone, it WILL be GOOD to VERY GOOD when we resell it! My granddaughter is using it and quite satisfied with it, so far. This is why it is SO important to see photos of the actual book you are buying! ReputaBle sellers will include them! I ALWAYS do, when I list books for sale.
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on September 13, 2013
This book is basically a high school book assigned to college students. It gets you all the basic rhetorical strategies you'll need, but the example arguments they give you are far from mature academic writing.
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on January 28, 2015
This book had a lot of writing already done in it, as well as highlighting of course. The cover had a bit of wear and tear but nothing too major. No water damage or anything of the sort. However, for the class I'm taking it doesn't much matter what's already written in, it actually gives me a bit of an upper hand. Almost like having a partner leave me notes. The only problem is that it's going to hard to sell again later because it will be ever MORE USED. If you're on financial aid and you'd like to sell the books later for extra summer cash, then I wouldn't suggest buying anything THIS used, because it will be horrid condition once you're done with it. If you're just looking for a cheap and easy way to get your book then go for this.
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on February 3, 2014
This was a recommendation for a college class I was taking, and though it's full of fun facts, anything I get for college is hardly worth reading again. If you want to better understand the concept of arguing though, I would recommend this book.
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on March 14, 2014
pretty basic writing book needed for eng 101 in college. i bought mine used because it's not worth it to buy a new textbook. which took me some times to accept since i'm a bookhead and love the smell of new printings lol.
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