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ISBN-10 0205924271ISBN-13 9780205924271
ISBN-10 0205924255ISBN-13 9780205924257
Author(s): Bruce N. Waller
Publisher: Pearson
Copyright year: © 2014 Pages: 240

Facilitate honest, thoughtful and respectful consideration of controversial questions

An exciting first edition, Congenial Debates on Controversial Questions is designed to promote careful and vigorous yet congenial and respectful examination of a wide range of controversial ethical issues. It is unique in focusing attention on two steps that are essential prior to productive consideration of controversial questions: First, the elimination of strawman distortions that cause students to not only talk past one another but also to have a very negative view of those with whom they disagree; and second, the importance of understanding that those on the opposing side have legitimate and important concerns that can be understood and appreciated even by those who strongly disagree with their position.

With those problems cleared away, students can approach these difficult questions with openness to the best arguments on both sides: not with the goal of “meeting in the middle,” but of honestly appreciating the actual issues and the complexities of those issues.

Congenial Debates on Controversial Questions is organized around 15 major current issues, including the most vigorously debated contemporary social issues, such as abortion, capital punishment, drug legalization, immigration, same-sex marriage, church/state relations, the social responsibilities of corporations, and animal rights.

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Learning Goals

Upon completing this book, readers should be able to:

  • Recognize the misinformation and strawman arguments in daily conversations.

  • Explore new perspectives on examining difficult issues.

  • Gain a honest appreciation of the best points of differing views.