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Debate Instructions for American Public Discourse
|The debate is a short, informal, extemporaneous “parliamentary debate.” A full explanation of parliamentary debate, by Robert Branham and John Meany, can be found at Debate Central. We are using a stripped down version.|
1. Preparation. Using materials from course packet, class lectures and supplementary library research, construct arguments on both sides of the debate. Write an outline of each position. You must create a total of four five-minute arguments. You cannot write out a speech, just put your arguments in outline form. Include list of sources.
The “proposition” is the posted debate resolution. The four arguments are called:
2. Performance. I will be the “Speaker,” in charge of timekeeping and rules. You will not know which side of the debate you will argue until you arrive in class on the day the debate is scheduled. At that time you will be assigned to a team. One team will be the “proposition” and the other will be the “opposition.” Each team makes one constructive and one rebuttal. The proposition team argues for the proposition and rebuts the opposition’s arguments. The Opposition team argues against the proposition and rebuts the proposition’s arguments.
During the constructive arguments you may raise a “point of information” to the person speaking. This is a short answer or challenge, in the form of a pointed question or clarification, to what the speaker is saying. The person speaking may accept or refuse to recognize the point of information.Meanwhile, the audience’s job is to indicate approval by tapping their desks and disapproval by hissing. After the four initial speeches the audience may ask questions or raise points of their own.
|3. After the debate you have till 11:59 pm that evening to revise and submit your outline and reference list in one Word file to the Blackboard assignment window.|
|Any questions? E-mail me at email@example.com.|
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