Apr 24, 2009

Stock issues

Working on my paper to be presented at the ICA annual conference, I stumbled upon a very interesting point (the PDF was password-protected, so I had to manually type the whole quote - very annoying):

In argumentation and debate theory, stock issues are the general issues that a policy advocate must successfully address in order to persuade targets in favor of a proposed action (Ehninger & Brockeriede, 1978; Inch & Warnick, 2002; Lee & Lee, 1989). Most theorists agree that successful policy persuasion depends on addressing two major aspects of the problem - ill and blame - and two critical aspects of its solution: cure and cost-benefit (e.g., Inch & Warnick, 2002). That is, policy advocates must establish that there is a significant wrong or harm to be resolved (ill), that particular causes are to blame (blame), that the advocated plan of action can work to resolve ill (cure), and that the plan has both strong benefits and few manageable limitations (cost-benefit)
Framing in policy terms can be viewed as a rhetorical strategy in debates that touch upon issues that go beyond policy issues.

Further reading:

  • Ehninger, D., & Brockeriede, W. (1978). Decision by debate (2nd ed.) New York: Harper and Row.
  • Inch, E.S., & Warnick, B. (2002). Critical thinking and communication: The use of reason in argument. Boston: Allyn & Bacon.