A Rhetoric of Argument, 3rd Edition

Random House, 2003

When it was first published in 1982, A Rhetoric of Argument developed a ground-breaking new approach to teaching argument. The "stasis approach" pioneered by Fahnestock and Secor distinguished among the four basic questions that arguments are written to answer: What is it? (Definition arguments); How did it get that way? (Causal arguments); Is it good or bad? (Evaluation arguments); What should we do about it? (Proposal arguments). These four questions, now standard in many argument texts, give students a constructive, engaging way to analyze readings by other writers and to construct their own arguments.