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Decision by Debate
Douglas Ehninger & Wayne Brockriede
Available through store
Decision by Debate broke new ground in argumentation and debate with its publication in 1963. Ehninger and Brockriede were the first to recognize debate as fundamentally a co-operative enterprise, with the competitive clash of ideas occurring within a framework in which everyone has the opportunity to speak, in which everyone agrees to suspend judgment until all arguments are presented, in which everyone agrees to abide by the decision of the adjudicator.
The most lasting legacy of Decision by Debate is its break with formal, deductive logic and its introduction of Stephen Toulmin’s model of argument to undergraduate student debaters. Since Brockriede and Ehninger’s introduction, the Toulmin model has become a mainstay of what many have called the Renaissance of argumentation studies. Without the work presented in Decision by Debate, contemporary interdisciplinary views of argumentation that now dominate many disciplines might have never have taken place or at least have been severely delayed.
Douglas Ehninger taught at the University of Florida and the State University of Iowa.
Wayne Brockriede taught at Miami University, Carthage College, Universities of Illinois, Oklahoma, and Colorado and California State University, Fullerton.
Karen Rasmussen is a member of the Department of Communications Studies at California State University, Long Beach.