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Vladyslav Y.


Professor Fields

English Comp II

November 29, 2018

Clueless in Academe & Water

1. I believe David Foster was making an argument that we do not have to think
down a single selfish default path but use our liberal arts degrees to think
differently. One of his arguments was also that a liberal arts degree doesn't
necessarily teach us how to think, but it does allow us to have control over
the way we think. By doing this we become more introspective and in control
during situations which would have us come undone.

2. One of the most default ways of thinking I experience on a daily basis is

selfish impatience. Much like professor Foster pointed out whenever we get
impatient, we are thinking of the world as though it revolves around us, and
that we don't think that others may be inconvenienced at a greater capacity
than ourselves. I would like to further change this way of thinking in myself
because frankly, the feeling of impatience is useless and benefits no one, in
fact it only harms. By thinking of others I think that feeling will diminish

Another basic way of thinking is judgment of the unknown. I think it’s quite a
primal concept to judge others without any knowledge of their situation.
While I wouldn't say I do it often, I would say that there are still moments I
catch myself doing just that. Removing this uncouth behavior will lead to a
greater understanding of humanity and the removal of some selfishness
within us. I also believe the removal of unwarranted judgments can lead to
the attainment of interpersonal relationships.

3. In the “Why Johnny Cant Argue” chapter the author answers the question “so
what?” by thoroughly pointing out how damaging it is to students
everywhere to not be taught argumentative speaking and writing properly.
He also points out how the old formula, while teaching them to develop a
clearer theses, is counter productive to developing student’s own ideas and
voice in writing. I think the author makes us care about this topic by
addressing something we have all gone through. This old formula is still
forced into student’s minds everywhere. Personally, while reading this, I was
having a major “I knew it moment”. This is because even when I was in high
school, I knew something was off about the rigidity of the writing we were
taught, and it was great to see an author recognize and confirm my
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4. The academic philosophy for argumentative writing is old and outdated. It

often plays on formulas that don't motivate creativity in argument but
instead may in fact limit most students. By utilizing said formulae, teacher
criticism is equally hindered and at most times can even be demotivation, if
not outright damaging. Scholars must accept “The Conversation Principle”
into the classroom to progress their students argumentative skills, as well as
relate with arguments they have day to day in public forum.

5. P1. Children may be able to argue in daily situations but have a harder time
doing so when applied to academics.

P2. Scholars don't recognize that there is very little difference between
student arguments and scholarly ones.

P3. An environment in schools has been created where arguments in the

classroom are discouraged.

P4. Specific conventions of scholarly writing can make it very difficult on

students to have their own arguments, even in argumentative essays.

P5. “Real” and academic arguments differ based on structure.

P6. Students are often taught through academic assignments how to

construct a thesis, but not to truly argue.