Forum – Book Report/Review Example

THE ARGUMENT CULTURE: MOVING FROM DEBATE TO DIALOGUE One word to describe the book: Remarkable The argument culture is an amazing book that will forever restructure how we perceive and communicate with the world. In the book, Dr. Tannen argues that American discourse has become submersed with numerous conflicts and that “the argument culture: moving from debate to dialogue” promotes an adversarial frame of mind. The book illustrates examples of warlike metaphoric language that is heard daily. These metaphors include: the war on cancer, the war on drugs, turf battle among politicians, the battle of sexes among others (Tannen, 45).
These metaphors spread through our talk and influence the way we think. The early chapters of the book focus on the media, indicating how famous programs like Crossfire knowingly and irresponsibly frame problems in terms of diametrically opposed sides. This, according to Tannen, has compromised the quality of information received. In the political arena, she pin-points an increasingly warring mentality, whether during confirmation hearings, at the election period, or without more ado following the president’s State of the Union makes a speech when the response from the opposition must always be presented (Tannen, 257). Throughout the book, she shows how deeply entrenched this cultural practice is, its form, and how it directly or indirectly affects our daily lives; either in a positive or a negative way. Tannen argues that legal action tries to find solutions to problems by purposely pitting one side against another, and finds basic patterns of violent response in various settings such as schools. In conclusion, this book is not an assault of the argument culture, but it acts as a highway for argument culture, opposition and debate in public discourse (Tannen, 302).
Tannen, Deborah. The Argument Culture: Stopping Americas War of Words. New York: Ballantine Books, 1999. Internet resource.