Textbook Exercises: 3.2.1, philosophy homework help

Textbook Exercises: 3.2.1

There is a lot of busy work in this assignment. I would prefer that you just write a brief description of strategic action and of communicative action indicate the appropriate contexts for each. A briefly stated example of each would be helpful. 100-200 words will suffice.

Write two short dialogues illustrating an example of strategic action and an example of communicative action. Each dialogue should involve two speakers and five speech acts. Conclude with a paragraph comparing the two dialogues.

Textbook Exercises: 3.4.1

Take 2 items from Exercise 3.2.2 found below Jane and St. Anslem In each case, determine some of the horizontal, contextual, and background information one would use to understand the argument. 100-200 words for each should suffice. The following summaries may help.


1. Jane Addams on War. In 1915, shortly after the beginning of World War One, Jane Addams, a social activist from Chicago and co-founder of Hull House, travelled to Europe with a group of women peace advocates. The women met with the leadership of most of the countries that declared war and also met with soldiers, medical personnel, and the mothers of soldiers. On her return from Europe, Addams gave a speech at Carnegie Hall in New York City. The following excerpt is from the conclusion of her address. ?The old notion that you can drive a belief into a man at the point of a bayonet is in force once more. It is quite as foolish to think that if militarism is an idea and an ideal, it can be changed and crushed by counter-militarism or by a bayonet charge. And the young men in these various countries say of the bayonet charges: ?That is what we cannot not think of.? We heard in all countries similar statements in regard to the necessity of the use of stimulants before men would engage in bayonet charges-that they have a regular formula in Germany, that they give them rum in England and absinthe in France; that they all have to give them ?dope? before the bayonet charge is possible. Well, now, think of that. ?No one knows who is responsible for the war; all the warring nations are responsible, and they indict themselves. But in the end human nature must reassert itself. The old elements of human understanding and human kindliness among them must come to the fore, and then it may well be that they will reproach the neutral nations and will say: ?What was the matter with the rest of the world that you kept quiet while this horrible thing was happening, and our men for a moment had lost their senses in this fanaticism of national feeling all over Europe??? (Addams, 1915, 359)

2. St. Anselm’s Conversation (Argument) with and About God ?And so, Lord, do thou, who dost give understanding to faith, give me, so far as thou knowest it to be profitable, to understand that thou art as we believe; and that thou art that which we believe. And, indeed, we believe that thou art a being than which nothing greater can be conceived. Or is there no such nature, since the fool hath said in his heart, there is no God? But, at any rate, this very fool, when he hears of this being of which I speak-a being than which nothing greater can be conceived-understands what he hears, and what he understands is in his understanding; although he does not understand it to exist. ?For, it is one thing for an object to be in the understanding, and another to understand that the object exists. When a painter first conceives of what he will afterwards perform, he has it in his understanding, but he does not yet understand it to be, because he has not yet performed it. But after he has made the painting, he both has it in his understanding, and he understands that it exists, because he has made it. Hence, even the fool is convinced that something exists in the understanding, at least, than which nothing greater can be conceived. For, when he hears of this, he understands it. And whatever is understood, exists in the understanding. And assuredly that, than which nothing greater can be conceived, cannot exist in the understanding alone. For, suppose it exists in the understanding alone: then it can be conceived to exist in reality; which is greater. ?Therefore, if that, than which nothing greater can be conceived, exists in the understanding alone, the very being, than which nothing greater can be conceived, is one, than which a greater can be conceived. But obviously this is impossible. Hence, there is no doubt that there exists a being, than which nothing greater can be conceived, and it exists both in the understanding and in reality.? (Saint Anselm, 1903)

Notes for 3.4.1

“Foreground knowledge

Horizontal: “the perceived environment” that is “embedded in concentrically arranged spatiotemporal horizons that are not perceived” but which constitute “the center of the speech situation.” If someone stopped walking on encountering a deep ditch, you would not ask why he stopped walking (it is obvious: the ditch) but how he might get across it. It is a statement of the problem as it presents itself.

Contextual: what “a speaker can presuppose within the framework of a common language, the same culture, similar schools of thought. { i.e., the assumptions, which are often vaguely conceived] Such knowledge amounts to commonly accepted expectations about situations and how problems are solved: Republican: better economy and personal liberty from low taxes and minimal government.

Background knowledge

“Deep-seated background knowledge … [that] cannot readily be brought to consciousness


background knowledge has the character of “immediate certainty”;

background knowledge retains a kind of absolute character until, all at once, it collapses

background knowledge has the character of “totalizing power”, a core of knowledge and a vague boundary that contracts rather than allowing new knowledge to cross and destabilize the whole.

Prejudice – not necessarily but not excluding racial disparagement: Galileo confronted such an entrenched belief when he championed Copernicus’s that the Earth orbits the Sun, not vice versa.] Other examples: War is a heroic and noble endeavor. Blacks are inferior intellectually to whites. White men can’t jump.

PS I am not all that clear on where the boundary between foreground contextual and background belief lies. Pratt is rather vague about this. It seems that contextual knowledge is just more readily expressible in words and clear to consciousness.

Textbook Exercises: 3.7, 1-5 and 15-20

Whoever set up this assignment has 11 problems. Let’s make it an even 10. Do 1-5 and 16-20. Identify the fallacy and say something very briefly about why you think that is the fallacy. Sometimes more than one fallacy may be committed in a passage; you only have to identify one. Moreover, your reason could get you full or partial credit if you don’t get the one that we professors think is right.

Also, you can do any of numbers 6-15 for Discussion. Just copy the problem and give your answer. I urge you to get practice this way before submitting this quiz. Also there are more in the Self-Assessments you can do for Discussion.

1. The mayor of a small Oregon town declared that her proposal for land use policy was the finest in the state. When asked for reasons, she explained that the chair of the state land use board said that it was the finest. It turned out that she was also the chair of the state land use board.

2. The police arrested the burglar for stealing computers from residence halls on campus using a stolen key. The burglar demanded to be released on false charges since the key he used was not stolen but made from an impression of the locks.

3. When faced with the prospect of intervening in another nation’s troubles, we can either take forceful action or do nothing. If we do nothing, the troubles could spread. So we must take forceful action.

4. In a recent philosophy course a student argued that substance must be understood as one and not many. The reason for this, he explained, was that anything that was many could not be one.

5. The salmon runs will come back naturally over time. I tagged several fish three years ago and one returned this spring. Since one salmon survived, we can be confident that the salmon run will survive.

16. The reason I haven’t called or returned your calls is because I thought we were no longer together. Your sister told me that you were sick of this relationship and that you wanted to break-up or at least take some time apart. So for my part, I was only doing what you wanted.

17. The press secretary announced that it was likely that Uzbekistan had nuclear weapons capability. A reporter asked for a reason for his claim. The press secretary explained that he had been up for over 24 hours and was exhausted and upset about the situation. A second reporter asked again for a reason. The press secretary shook his head and said that if we failed to understand the risk now, we could all be destroyed.

18. If you support the conservative cause you need to vote for the Republican candidate in the next presidential election. It is true that the Republican candidates will be far from being ideal conservatives, but they will be more conservative than the Democratic candidates and therefore they will be all we have to choose from.

19. Going ahead on the new reality show is a moral issue. Even if it displays graphic violence that may offend many people, we must go forward because we have a moral obligation to our shareholders to turn a profit. Our ratings are terrible and this show will change all that. We are morally obligated to air the program.

20. Regardless of how much higher the ratings are when we air the new show as opposed to when we don’t, shamelessly displaying scantly dressed women for no real reason is disrespectful and offensive to our fans. We need to think about our fans first because they are the ones whose viewership supports this station and if they start tuning out we’ll be out of business very soon.

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