Argument Structure:: Representation and Theory by James B. Freeman

By James B. Freeman

This monograph first provides a mode of diagramming argument macrostructure, synthesizing the normal circle and arrow strategy with the Toulmin version. A theoretical justification of this technique via a dialectical knowing of argument, a serious exam of Toulmin on warrants, an intensive dialogue of the linked-convergent contrast, and an account of the right kind reconstruction of enthymemes follows.

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Notice that the warrant of the proponent’s argument at this point, unlike Modus ponens which is a two-premise formal inference rule, is a one-premise material inference rule. 4 Integrating the Standard Approach and the Toulmin Model From: To infer: 15 Demand for x in general is rising Prices for x in general will rise Should the challenger ask for the warrant, stating this rule would be the proper answer. Now it is at least conceivable that in composing an argument, a proponent might begin by asserting (1) Prices for goods in general will rise because (2) Demand for goods in general is increasing But, taking the challenger as representative of the audience he is addressing, he might imagine her not seeing why (2) is relevant to (1).

The core argument presents a fact about the will to justify the claim about Judith’s share in the inheritance. How does the rest of the passage fit into the argumentation? Mental incompetence could invalidate a will. The proponent is considering an objection to his inference. But his reply that Mrs. Wilson was known competent does not, by itself, constitute evidence for the conclusion about Judith’s share in the inheritance, nor does the stated premise explain why the statement about mental competence is relevant to the claim about Judith’s share, nor does that premise need this information about mental competence to be seen relevant to the claim.

Sworn witnesses testify that he had talked about stealing money. He had opportunity—he owned a gun, ski mask, and he knew that the bank would be deserted of customers in the early afternoon. Most telling of all, most of the bills stolen were stored in his garage. It looks like the prosecutor has a good case, but the defense attorney now introduces the testimony of witnesses who will swear to having seen and recognized the defendant at another place at the time bank video equipment indicates that the robbery occurred.

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