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GEORGE PIERCE BAKER
HENRY BARRETT HUNTINGTON
COPYRIGHT, 1895, 1905, BY GEORGE PIERCE BAKER
The Athenæum Press
PREFACE TO THE SECOND EDITION
The study of argumentation has increased so rapidly in schools and colleges during the ten years since the first edition of this book was published that it is no longer necessary to justify the educational importance of the subject, nor is it necessary now to explain in detail the kind of argumentation taught in this book. For these reasons a large amount of justificatory and explanatory material which filled the early pages of the first edition has been removed. On the other hand, in the ten years since the Principles of Argumentation appeared, it has become steadily clearer that the principles of analysis needed restating for greater accuracy and simplicity; that the difficult subject of evidence, especially refutation, should be given fuller treatment; that the material in the chapter on brief-drawing could be simplified and clarified by rearrangement and a different emphasis; that persuasion needed much more detailed exposition; and that, perhaps the most marked need of all, the importance of rhetoric in argumentation should be given insistent emphasis.
The purpose of the editors in their thorough rewriting of the old book has been to represent as exactly as possible the theory of argumentation as they have been teaching it during the last two or three years. The new book contains no untried theorizing: it is the result of repeated classroom exercises, extensive reading of manuscripts, and consultation with many kinds of students at Harvard University, Brown University, and elsewhere. The authors wish to insist that this book is not meant to be used by the teacher as the basis of lectures on the subject, but should be constantly in the hands of the class. In a subject like argumentation, theory should be but the steppingstone to practice, and a practice that is frequent and varied. Convinced of this from experience with their classes, the authors have provided a large amount of illustration of the theory set forth, and exercise material which should be ample enough to provide a teacher for two or three years without important repetition. The work of the teacher using the revised Principles should be not merely to repeat it to the class but to amplify, reëmphasize, reillustrate, and, above all, by quizzes and exercises to make sure that his class can successfully apply the theory expounded. The more the student can be made to do for himself the better : as far as possible the teacher should be only the guide and critic who leads him, or, if necessary, obliges him, to grasp by application the principles which he has read in the book. Good argumentation rests ultimately on the ability to think for one's self.
Perhaps the chief weakness today of the greatly increased number of courses in argumentation is so rigid an observ✓ ance of rules that the product is nearly or entirely lacking
in literary value. Such a result shows either that the students are still so hampered by consciousness of principles to be observed as to be unable to combine with them their preceding knowledge of rhetoric, or that the teacher fails to recognize that argument is really good only when, as in other forms of expression, it has attained the art that conceals art. Throughout the present volume the authors have tried to keep before their readers the relation of thought to style, and have meant to decry steadily any rigidity or formality of expression when the principles have once been mastered. In good argument, thought must of course precede presentation, but without fitting presentation even good thinking often becomes futile.
It is a pity that in many instances study of argument is regarded only as a stepping-stone to successful debating, the most rigid of argumentative forms. In reality it is a training, often much needed among college students, in habits of accurate thinking, fair-mindedness, and thoroughness. If this new edition helps to instruction in which argument is regarded from the start by teacher and pupil as above all a means to accurate, thorough, formulated thinking, enjoyable to the thinker, presented in a wellphrased and individual style, the chief desire of the authors in their revision will be fulfilled.
Acknowledgment is due the many teachers whose helpful comment and criticism on the old book have helped greatly in reworking its material. The authors wish to thank also the following students, past or present, of Harvard, Brown, and Yale universities for work of theirs included among the illustrations: Messrs. J. J. Shepard, H. H. Thurlow, A. W. Manchester, R. D. Brackett, R. W. Stearns, A. W. Wyman, R. H. Ewell, A. Fox, C. D. Lockwood, I. Grossman, and F. B. Wagner. They are indebted to Mr. G. W. Latham, Instructor in English at Brown University, for helpful suggestions as the book has been in preparation; as well as to Assistant Professor W. T. Foster of Bowdoin College for material used in the Appendix; and especially to Mr. R. L. Lyman, Instructor in English at Harvard University, both for aid in preparing illustrative material printed in the Appendix and for constant helpful suggestions.
GEORGE P. BAKER
H. B. HUNTINGTON CAMBRIDGE, February, 1905