What is argumentation? Argumentation is defined as; a process of making arguments intended to justify beliefs, attitudes, and values so as to influence others. A perfect example of argumentation or an argument occurred on 10/7/02 at 8:02pm, when President George Bush outlined the Iraqi threat and argued that action is necessary. Argumentation involves reasoning, evidence and claims, all of which can be found in the president's speech. Bush begins his speech with a proposition, "to discuss a grave threat to peace . . . The threat comes from Iraq." A proposition is a type of claim, a main claim that serves as a basis for an extended argument. Iraq as a threat to peace in the United States and peace in the world is the proposition (claim) that Bush supports throughout his speech using reasoning, evidence, and other claims. This essay will examine his speech and analyze the claims, evidence, and reasoning used throughout. Claims will be identified, and looked at in terms of claims and evidence, in order to get a broad view of argumentation and its components.
Iraq as a threat.
"The threat comes from Iraq." As stated in the above introduction, this was the proposition (main claim) presented by President Bush regarding the problems with Iraq. A proposition is important in order to present a good argument; it makes the difference between possibly winning people over or not. The proposition by Bush is well placed in that it leaves him plenty of room to elaborate on why Iraq is a threat. He sets the boundaries for the rest of the argument, leaving room for both evidence and reasoning. The claim that Iraq is a threat covers the three major types of claims listed in the text, factual, value and policy. The claim is factual in that later in the speech evidence is brought up supporting the fact that Iraq is a threat. It can be seen as a value claim in that the claim involves moral and aesthetic judgments, which may affect the entire world.