The Art of Debate
Learn the "Art of Debate" on The Great Courses through our RBdigital app! This course is taught by Dr. Jarrod Atchison, Associate Professor of Communication and Director of Debate at Wake Forest University. This course will teach you how to better formulate and articulate a constructive argument. You can apply what you learn to all aspects of your everyday life.
So, Why Debate?
Debate is the activity that brings the art of reading, thinking and speaking together in one place. When medieval scholars set out to establish the curriculum of the world’s first universities, they considered three liberal arts essential for leadership and promotion of the best ideas: grammar, logic, and rhetoric (reading, thinking, speaking). When they sought to test the depth to which these skills had sunk in, medieval faculty demanded students participate not in exams or papers, but in disputations—in other words, debates. The ability to conceive, articulate, and evaluate arguments remains not only the lifeblood of democracy and society, but essential to the development of an engaged and ethical individual living in contemporary technological democratic society.
So, debating still matters. The art of debate involves mastering skills of obvious intrinsic value: the confidence to speak in public, and make sense; the construction of a logical argument; the ability to read an audience’s reactions; and, perhaps most importantly, the willingness to hear others’ arguments, and to respond to them. Instead of going into a constructive and educational argument with no context, utilize this course to expand how you think and how you articulate your arguments.
We hope you enjoy the course and we hope that you will enjoy other courses from The Great Courses!