Tips for Anticipating and Responding to Arguments
Being able to respond to arguments in a skillful and organized manner is core to any debate. When you have to respond on the spot, keep your cool and do not panic. It helps to go into a debate round familiar with likely areas of clash and then logically spell out your reasoning as you argue each of their points one by one. Even if you don’t know exactly what to say next, starting off by summarizing what the other side said can give you a jumping-off point while also helping you be clear and well-organized.
|Skill and Technique||Guidance|
|1.||Anticipate Potential Clash||
When you prepare, anticipate what central issues or interpretations will be most important in the debate.
Organization is key to help your listeners follow your train of thought. Taking complete notes is essential to organization.
|3.||Vary Your Responses.||
A few options for responses include:
|4.||Use Link Chains||
Link chains are a way of leading us along the stepping stones of your argument and avoiding “logic leaps” that lack reasoning.
|5.||Highlight Actual Clash||
Do not get overly bogged down in technical details. Highlight the big picture issues and what major arguments or philosophies directly clash with one another.