Session 1: Philosophy & Argumentation (English Language)


"Kenneth Burke's Pure Persuasion as Revealed in Creating a Female Language in Shangjiangxu, Jiangyong, China's Hunan Province: The Rhetorical Study of Nushu"
Lin Lee Lee (University of Minnesota)

In 1982, a village woman from Jiangyong, Hunan Province of China, visited a relative in Beijing and spoke a language that was unintelligible to others, an event that led to the recovery of Nushu or "Women's Script," an allegedly thousand-year-old female language sung and chanted by illiterate rural women over their needlework. The Nushu discovery led by Chinese scholars in the 1980s has attracted other scholars to decipher Nushu from cultural, sociological, anthropological, linguistic, and literary aspects. None of these studies has investigated or treated Nushu from a rhetorical perspective; my study is the first attempt to do so.

I survey the context in which Nushu was developed, including the location, religion, and cultural norms, particularly relevant to the status of Chinese women. I turn to examples from the ten extant Nushuan genres, using Kenneth Burke's theory of pure persuasion to analyze the themes that emerge. I argue that pure persuasion embedded in Nushuan discourse enables these village women to voice and to cry out against the marriage system and the Confucian cult of womanhood that condemns Chinese women to inferiority, ignorance, and dependence.

Nushuan discourse is as close to pure persuasion as we can get for primarily two reasons: 1) The pleasure of Nushuan discourse is in the performance; and 2) No true political or social "action" will result from its performance. It is pure as a kind of "dwelling" or "home" discourse, a place to be mindlessly (comfortably) mindful (reason). In this paradox, Nushuan discourse is hence "pure" (mindless, comfortable, home) "persuasion" (logical, reasoned, active, etc.). Nushuan discourse is pure persuasion par excellence. It is the paradigm example of the "form" Burke says is necessary for any rhetoric of motive.

"Aristotle on Emotions: Exploring the Relationship between Audienceand Rhetoric"
Takeshi Suzuki (Tsuda College)

Aristotle's The Rhetoric, Book II, contains the earliest systematic discussion of human psychology (Chapter 2-11: Propositions About the Emotions Useful to a Speaker in All Species of Rhetoric). It is generally understood that the purpose of the account is "to provide a speaker with an ability to arose these emotions in an audience and thus to facilitate the judgment sought" (Kennedy, p.122). Aristotle, however, does not specifically explain how to apply his analysis of emotions to each speech situation. Hence, it is necessary to for scholars of communication to find a way to apply his theories of emotions to persuasion. In this essay, I will first explain the relationship between understanding passions and persuading an audience. Second, I will discuss two representative examples of emotions pertain to the Aristotelian rhetoric, that is, anger and friendship. Third, I will describe the framework for an analysis of the audience emotions. Finally, I will explore the relationship between the audience and rhetoric as a practical art. I hope to locate the place of the emotion theory within the Aristotelian rhetoric, and draw some implications from the discussion.




"Tradition and Transitions of Debate Education in the United States"
Yukari Makino (Shizuoka University)

In order to discuss "Beyond 'East' and 'West,'" it is crucial to clarify what we mean by "East" and "West." In his "The Irony of 'Debate': A Sociological Analysis on the Introduction of 'Debate' Education in Japan," Yoshiro Yano (1999) describes how the word "dibeito," a set of Japanese phonetic letters for debate, was invented in the mid-1970s for the purpose of differentiating from "touron," an original Japanese translation for debate. In spite of such efforts, Yano points out that the definition of "dibeito" is arbitrary because scholars interpret the word differently, that is according to their own understanding and perception. As such, they tend to manipulate the meaning of the word for their own interests. They can solely agree on one thing that "dibeito" is something foreign. This study aims to help us understand more clearly what we call "debate" based on a historical analysis of American debate education. I would like to suggest that contemporary "debate" practices in the United States do not represent an authentic model of debate training or a model that is beyond dispute. It is rather a reflection of a change in the emphasis of education which is in fact, a change in the course of pedagogical development.


"The Cultural Significance of Stereotypes: Argumentative Tools for Self-Criticism"
Yoshiko Ikeda (Osaka University)

This paper reconsiders functions of stereotypes. The dominant understanding of the function of stereotype is bound up with the ideologically charged concept of "race." Stereotypes are commonly believed to have been created to reinforce the status quo, preserve the dominant culture, and maintain the positions and rights of the empowered class. Stereotyped others are also considered and examined in light of powerful ideological formations in political practices of wars and colonization. In the process, notions of stereotypes have been reduced to a mere political function and the symbolic functions of stereotypes are overlooked.

This paper presents an approach that recognizes the cultural significance of stereotypes and their intricate relations with such issues as self-questioning and self-construction. The author addresses that stereotypes are symbolic tools through which human and cultural variations are constructed, understood, and experienced. From this point of view, stereotypes also serve to reconstruct the identity of people who produce such stereotypes. For instance, the Japanese stereotypes in American films serve to redefine Americans themselves as well as the Japanese. Through an analysis of the Japanese stereotypes depicted in American films, this paper attempts to expand cultural functions of stereotypes from a mere defensive system to a constructive role of criticism that actively reshapes culture. Stereotyped others can be argumentative tools for self-criticism.




柿田秀樹 Hideki Kakita(青山学院大学)
この私論は日本のコミュニケーションという一学問分野の言説的編成(discursive formation)をその議論実践のテクスト分析を通して解明していく。アカデミックな言説は元来議論的なものである。その形成過程はある真理を追求し、その真理性を議論実践を通じて認証する真理への意思を貫くこととなる。その真理への意思は議論というレトリックの一種の実践のなかで発見、配置されるのである。そこに見い出される議論的言説の規則性を探究することはそのレトリックの理論的な構築の可能性となり得るはずである。今回焦点を当てるコミュニケーション学者の議論実践は日本という対象物を西洋で発見されたコミュニケーション研究の受容を通じて存在化させる言説である。それをエドワードサイードのオリエンタリズムの対照物としてのオクシデンタリズムと呼ぶ。その分析の中心は西洋理論の選択的受容による遡及的な行為遂行性の構築を見い出す。 


"History AS/IS Argument?: The Case of Post-War Historical Revisionism"
Satoru Aonuma (Kanda University of International Studies)

This paper attempts to challenge the notion that history IS a kind of argument/argumentation. The author tries to take issues with scholars of argument who hold that history is a product and/or a process of argumentative exchange. The author's contention is two-fold. First, viewing history as argument / argumentation ignores the non-textual dimension of human experience that constitutes an important part of our historical understanding. Second, equating history with argument/argumentation underestimates the dimension of "power" that, as often as not, limits the possibility of any "rational" exchange in human communication. Using the post-war historical revisionism (both in Japan and the United States) as an example, the author concludes that history AS/IS argument should be taken not "literally" but "figuratively" at best.



"Anti-argumentative Nature of Japanese: Problematic Ideological Construction of Intercultural Communication"
Aya Matsushima (University of Iowa)

The primary objective of this essay is to critically examine one ideological construction of the anti-argumentative nature of Japanese culture. Japanese communication scholars take it as a true representation of Japanese culture and are embedded it in their textual constructions of Japanese communication styles. In fact, the anti-argumentative nature of the Japanese has been accepted by many intercultural communication scholars with their distinctive method of describing cultural differences between the United States and Japan. Focusing on the representative work of John Condon, I will argue that the selective introduction of atypical examples indeed enables Condon to represent the two cultures as asymmetrical. Thus, the dominant rhetoric of the field articulates a relationship of a social binary opposition that clearly and unfairly demarcates the two different cultures. My paper will show how this binary opposition makes one side lose against the other by having lesser value in terms of ideal communication behavior. By closely attending to Condon's work, I will argue that the ascription of cultural difference is not at all what intercultural communication scholars call an objective attitude for academic scholarship, but rather constitutes a subjective engagement that invents the uniqueness of Japanese anti-argumentativeness.

"The Suppressed Rhetoric in the Late Tokugawa Japan: A Study of ChoeiTakano's Tale of a Winter Night's Dream in 1838"
Yoshihisa Itaba (Dokkyo University)

Even before U.S Commodore Perry "successfully" negotiated a treaty of amity that led Japan to put an end to its isolationist policy in the mid-19th century, Japan was not free from acts of argumentation and advocacy about foreign-policy issues, although the pre-Perry period was the time when expressing one's political opinions in public was viewed as antithetical to maintaining the social order, and under such circumstances, rhetorical acts were at times suppressed by the government critical of the cultural notion of shoshi ogi, or "political discussion beyond the station of the commoners." Yet the situation, which was unfavorable to open discussion and debate, did not make the thinkers refrain from rhetoric. This study examines one of such cases in which Japanese rhetorical acts occurred under rhetorically unfavorable circumstances. Specifically, I choose to analyze some important rhetorical strategies employed by Choei Takano in his Tale of a Winter Night's Dream in 1838 (Bojutsu Yume Monogatari), in which Takano criticized the government's isolationist policy, and which, although the author himself was soon imprisoned, significantly drew people's attention. In this essay, I first provide historical background of the pre-Perry rhetoric on Japan's foreign policies in order to clarify the rhetorical context in which Takano's discursive act took place. Second, I analyze the text in an effort to reveal his strategies in response to the historical and cultural context in which this rhetoric occurred. Finally, based on my analysis, I draw forth some critical humanist implications.




"Identification and Public Argument: The Case of Puerto Rican Nationalism"
David Williams (University of Missouri-Rolla)

Issues of "cultural identity" and "national identity" underlie the post-colonial debate concerning self-determination; the current paper brings these identity arguments to the forefront in its analysis of the discourse of Puerto Rican nationalism, a discourse which situates itself within a broader critique of colonialism. Drawing upon the orientation toward "identification" and "rhetoric" set forth by Kenneth Burke, this paper will 1) develop a theoretical framework for understanding the functions of public argument in the processes of identity formation, especially in the formations of collective social identities such as "cultural identity," "ethnic identity," and "national identity;" 2) apply this critical perspective toward public argument to the on-going status and Vieques controversies between the United States and its territory, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico; and 3) explore the implications of this case study for both the understanding of nationalistic and incipiently ethnic arguments of identification generally and the more specific understanding of the functions of such arguments in the contemporary vestiges of U.S. colonial empire.



鈴木雅子 Masako Suzuki (慶應大学)

鈴木忍のぶ Shinobu Suzuki (北海道大学)


鎌田裕文 Hirofumi Kamada (九州大学






"The 'Discussion Theory' of Max Weber: 'Wertdiscussion' and Cultural Comparison"
Yoshiro Yano (University of Tokyo)

"Transcultural Approach in Teaching of Persuasion Skills"
Yukari Makino (Shizuoka University)
The authors designed a program for persuasion in a transcultural approach and analyzed students' learning process with the perspective of Educational Technology in mind. The program includes the three steps: (1) learning linear logic, the logic system of American rhetoric, (2) developing linear logic into configural logic, the logic system of Japanese rhetoric (Makino, 1998-9), and (3) choosing a more effective logic system in terms of the relationship between the speaker and the audience in a rhetorical situation. According to the results of the classroom implementation at Shizuoka University, only a few students among many who participated were good at configural logic and some of them were strong on linear logic. The aim of this study is neither to reemphasize a contrast between Japanese and American rhetorics nor to prove in which logic system the students were more skillful. Rather, this study aims to show that Japanese students are able to construct two different types of arguments using two different types of logic systems which reflect the traditional "East and West" contrast in persuasion, regardless of their cultural affiliations.

"An Analysis of Relational and Rhetorical Orientations to Argumentation: A Proposal of an Integrated Approach"
Qingwen Dong (University of the Pacific)

"Asking the Right Questions: Essential to Debate, Argumentation and a Liberal Education"
Thomas H. Miller (University of California-LA)



"Arguing with 'Irrational' People"
Tetsuya Kono (National Defense Academy)

Can we discuss rationally about values? The prevailing view would give a negative answer to the question. According to this view, rationality provides merely most effective means to achieve an end or a goal. Such instrumental notion of rationality gives us no way to evaluate the end itself. However, if an end or a goal were not rational, its means, even if effective, would be ultimately irrational.

There is an alternative notion of rationality: the "coherent" or "consistent" notion which considers rationality as consistency or non-contradiction in a system of propositions. This notion seems to support the possibility of rational argument about values, since according to this view, rationality is not a mere means for an end, but give us an end itself through establishing a synthesis or a coordination among divers seemingly opposing value propositions. In this case, argument is a paradigm case for rationality.

Nevertheless, if one supposes that the latter rationality always works well, this supposition is too optimistic, because participants need to accept rational argument itself as having primary value among other values. Here is a true difficulty of rational talk about values. We sometimes, in reality, find "irrational" people who seem to adhere to one-sided opinion and continue to hold on to their beliefs without any proof. What they lack is not intellectual ability but their will to participate in an argument and relativize their opinion. The real opposite of rationality is not ignorance or irrationalism but particularism.

If so, how rationality can reconcile with particularism? I will discuss these problems, focusing on the relation between rationalism and value in reference to the works of philosophers and psychologists like G.Harman, R.Norzick, and J.Piaget.


"Counterexamples by Conjunctions, Tacit Assumptions and Tacit Premises"
Claude Gratton (University of Nevada-Las Vegas)
I argue that there are at least two kinds of tacit premises; describe a certain type of counterexample against the validity of arguments, and then use it to show how one kind of tacit premise is identified. I distinguish these two classes of tacit premises on the grounds that they are constructed differently, and have different logical relations to each other. Despite these distinctions, we fail to distinguish these two classes of tacit premises, and consequently diminish the quality of our understanding and our teaching of argument construction or evaluation.




"Dialectical Tier and Stasis: A Rhetorical Look"
Takuzo Konishi (University of Windsor)
This paper investigates Ralph H. Johnson's theory of dialectical tier from a rhetorical standpoint. Johnson argues that besides having a good reason to support the thesis advanced, a good argument must posses a dialectical tier in which arguer responds to objections or alternative positions. Despite his novel idea, Johnson's conception of dialectical tier is still underdeveloped. In this paper, drawing on Joseph W. Wenzel's criticism of Johnson's theory from a rhetorical perspective of argument, I will examine whether rhetorical theory can help develop dialectical tier. Specifically, I examine whether a classical rhetorical theory of stasis can help an arguer anticipate possible objections and alternative positions.
"Reinterpreting Stasis: From Immobility to Insurrection"
Michael McFarland (Stetson University) & Mark H. Wright (Tsuda College)

"Revisiting Topoi: Their Use for Contemporary Argumentation and Debate"
Joseph Zompetti (Mercer University)




"On Viewing Arguments for Japanese Missile Defense as Delicious but Deceptive American Exports"
Gordon Mitchel & Anthony Todero (University of Pittsburgh)

"Social Controversies Surrounding the Fiftieth Anniversary of the Ends of World War II in Japan"
Hiroko Okuda (Northwestern University)

"May Others Speak of their Disgrace, I am Speaking of Mine: Narration and Argumentation in the Debate about the Exhibition, War of Extermination, Crimes of the Wehrmacht 1941-1944"
Kati Hannken-Illjes (Martin-Luther-University, Halle-Wittenberg)

On March 13th 1997 the German parliament (the Bundestag) engaged in a debate whether to show the exhibition _War of Extermination. Crimes of the Wehrmacht 1941 to 1944" (_Vernichtungskrieg. Verbrechen der Wehrmacht 1941 bis 1944") in the fronthall of the Bundestag or not. This debate was widely recognized for its _unparliamentary" form of discourse. It shifted from an ordinary debate to a remarkable discourse in which the speakers tried to bridge the gaps between the generations. In this essay I will argue that the reason for this remarkable shift within the debate lay in the integration of personal narratives into the argumentation. The personal narratives served either the function of an _interpretive lens" for the arguments advanced by the speakers or as arguments themselves. This shift would not have been detectable without a special focus on the role of narrative. Thus, models of argumentation analysis need to integrate the notion of narrative to be able to grasp the full scope of argumentative discourse.


"Ideological Argument both Within and Across Borders: The Case of Reparations and Treatment of Americans of Japanese Dissent"
Brian Lain (University of Iowa)



Last Updated:
URL: http://www.kt.rim.or.jp/~jda