Objectivism: The view that moral truths are objective truths, independent of what we think about them. Similar to the way that “smoking causes cancer,” is true regardless of what we think about it, the objectivist thinks that “discrimination is wrong,” is a true statement no matter what our attitudes are.
Write an essay in which you defend one of these views. In doing so, follow the instructions on argumentative essays and ensure that your essay contains the essentials of argumentative essays.
A philosophy paper is a formal piece of academic writing in which you give reasons in defense of some claim about a philosophical theory or argument. In this class you will write two kinds of philosophy paper: (a) an argument analysis paper and (b) an argumentative essay. Table 1 lists the main differences between these kinds of paper.
Table 1: Argumentative Essay and Argument Analysis Paper
Argument Analysis Essay
Subject: a general topic, issue or controversy
Goal: to persuade a reader to accept the reasonableness of a view
Writer’s Opinion: present throughout the essay
Subject: a specific argument
Goal: to evaluate the validity and soundness of an argument
Writer’s Opinion: present in the final paragraph
The Argumentative Essay: Present, Explain, Articulate (PEA)
The goal of an argumentative essay is to persuade your readers that some position on a controversial topic is reasonable. You might not persuade them to fully agree with the position but you should be able to show that there are good reasons to hold the view you write in favor of. Philosophers do not always write argumentative essays for positions they personally hold. The famous atheist philosopher Richard Rorty once credited Christian philosophers such as Alvin Plantinga and William Alson with persuading him that it is not irrational to believe basic Christian doctrines, or, in other words, that believing Christian doctrines is reasonable. Rorty did not become a Christian but acknowledged in the essay that one could reasonably be a Christian.
An argumentative essay includes the following essentials. The essentials are the items mentioned in the rubric for Argumentative Essays
Presents a controversial topic, including
The source of the controversy,
The significance of the controversy
How readers will benefit by considering reasons for the position you articulate
Explains why the topic is controversial, including
Reasons the controversy is not resolved,
The values that influence conflicting views on the topic
The barriers to discovering facts that will resolve the conflict
The difficulties finding compromise on the values involved
Articulates a reasonable position(s) on the controversial topic, including
The motivation for the position you articulate
The reasons the position you articulate is attractive
The benefits of accepting the position you articulate
An explicit statement of the argument(s) for the position
Why the position you articulate is preferable to other positions
Why some might not be persuaded to accept the position you articulate
Difficulties accepting the position you articulate
Good argumentative essay exhibit intellectual virtues:
They represent the controversy and positions fairly
They appeal to statements that opponents or others thinking about the controversial topic have accepted or would accept
They acknowledge that others have reasons for their views
They articulate a position in modest rather than dogmatic terms
They acknowledge the articulated position has limits, has some uncertainties, and is revisable
They avoid informal fallacies
Argumentative essays should be between 750 – 1000 words.
Please do not pad the length of your essay.
An essay that is shorter than 750 but remains focused will do better than an essay that exceeds 750 words but contains significant fluff.
All argumentative essays should have proper in-text citations when utilizing the ideas of others.
All argumentative essays which draw on outside sources should also contain a reference page.
Please utilize MLA format for any citations.
USE INTRODUCTION TO MORAL PHILOSOPHY BY ROBERT L. MUHNICKEL, PH. D FOR SOURCE
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