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h. What role does context (and especially audience) play in effective reasoning?

NOTES_

1 In the process of unpacking, however, we usually think of additional, separate reasons that did not immediately occur to us. For example, in thinking through the detail of the economic reason, we might also come up with other reasons. One that occurs to me is that there is a moral argument concerning the rights of citizens to free education.

2 See the introduction to H. Reynolds, The Other Side of the Frontier, Penguin Books, Melbourne, 1980.

3 Note that this requirement to think ahead about counter-arguments is particularly important in written reasoning. In a conversation, we have an immediate opportunity to respond to objections, but in a written argument, there are no such opportunities.

4 See chapter 9 for a brief discussion of objective strength (determined without reference to audience) as opposed to intersubjective strength (in which the audience plays a significant role). This complex philosophical debate is too involved to discuss here and, whether or not you believe that knowledge can be objectively true, the need to think about audiences remains very important.

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