HomeDLSU Dialogue: An Interdisciplinary Journal for Cultural Studiesvol. 22 no. 1 (1987)

Contemporary Debate

Eduardo T. Deveza



The authors followed the deductive order in the treatment of their subject matter, "Contemporary Debate." They dealt first with general argumentation as "a particular type of human interaction that occurs when people held what they think are incompatible beliefs ...” Then they proceeded to the topic of debate as formalized argumentation. Of the enumerated particular varieties of debate--like political debates, legal debates, scholarly debates in professional organizations, and mass media debates--this critic paid close attention to the academic debates where: (1) the debate is concerned with a specific Issue of public policy that is identified and formally stated in advance, (2) two teams of two advocates each support and oppose the statement of the issue, and (3) the final decision is based not on the judge's view of the subject but on the judge's comparative estimate of the skills of the debaters, This will be the main topic around which this reviewer will focus his conformity and/or nonconformity with the writers' suggestions on debating--simply based on past experiences in debate contests within the Philippine milieu.