Lesson Five Love is a Fallacy ---- by Max Shulman
Aims • To have a basic knowledge of the terms in logic. • To appreciate the humor in the story. • To analyze the structure of the story • To appreciate the language
Teaching Contents • Special terms in logic • Detailed study of the text • Organizational pattern • The chief attraction of the story • Language features • Exercises
Time allocation • Terms in logic (15 min.) • Detailed study of the text (110 min.) • Structure analysis (15 min.) • Language appreciation (15 min.) • Exercise (25 min.)
Lesson Five • I. Special terms in logic • argument--a statement which is offered as an evidence or a proof. • It consists of two major elements • 1. conclusion • 2. premises -- a previous statement serving as a basis for an argument. • Conclusion is to be drawn from premises.
Special terms in logic • fallacy -- false reasoning, as in an argument • a weakness and lack of logic or good sense in an argument or piece of reasoning
fallacy • Usually, an argument is correct (deductively valid) if the premises can provide enough conclusive evidence for the conclusion. Otherwise the argument is wrong. It is said to be fallacious.
Special terms in logic • Three kinds of fallacy: • 1. material fallacy -- in its material content through a misstatement of the facts. • 2. verbal fallacy -- in its wording through an incorrect use of terms. • 3. formal fallacy-in its structure through the use of an improper process of inference.
False Analogy • "High school should not require a freshman writing course . Harvard doesn't require a freshman writing course, and the students get along fine without it". • --- The analogy is false because the two items don't have strong enough similarities to predict that what happens in one will happen in the other.
Dicta Simpliciter • "Everyone wants to get married someday." • --- The example starts a logical train of thought with an assumption that is false. Not "everyone" wants to get married.
Evading the issue • There are a number of handy fallacies that people press into service to side step a problem while appearing to pursue the point. (文不对题)
1）Distraction • "Suds ' n ' Puds is a great restaurant : you can see how shining clean the kitchens are ". • --- The example is called distraction because the reader's attention is drawn to the cleanliness of the kitchen instead of to the excellence of the food, which is usually the determiner of a great restaurant.
2）Ad hominem • "against the person". "poisoning the well" • " Ms Bauer is a terrible English teacher. She always wears blue jeans" • --- Instead of point out faults in teaching technique, it calls attention to things about a teacher as a person that are unrelated to her teaching performance.
3）Ad misericordian (an appeal to pity) • "Look at this fourteen-year-old child who's run away from home to hide her shame-- pregnant, unwashed, friendless. penniless, at the mercy of our social service agencies. Can you till claim that sex should be taught in the classroom?"
3）Ad misericordian (an appeal to pity) • --- In this shifty approach to argumentation, the writer gives tear jerking descriptions of the cruel opponents' victims in order to arouse sympathy from the reader.
Hasty Generalization • "Mr Wang's handwriting is terrible. Mr. Hu's handwriting is also terrible and you know how terrible men's handwriting is ." • --- It applies a special case to general rule. That fact that certain person's handwriting is bad doesn't imply that all men‘s handwriting is bad.
Post hoc, ergo propter hoc – • “After this, therefore because of this" • "The last five times that I've worn my white pants, something depressing has happened. I'm not going to wear those pants again!" • -- This fallacy assumes that if event Y happened after event X, then X must be the cause of Y.
Circular Reasoning • or Begging the question: • "Juan is an impressive speaker because he always touches his listeners deeply."
Circular Reasoning • --- This problem occurs when the writer tries to support a claim by restating it in different words. You can tell this example is circular by considering this “Why is Juan an impressive speaker?” “Because he touches his listeners deeply.?” “Why are Juan's listeners touched so deeply?” “Because he is an impressive speaker.” • impressive = touching someone deeply
reel back • -- step away suddenly and unsteadily, as after a blow or shock • When she hit him, he reeled back and almost fell.
overcome -- be overwhelmed • If you are overcome by a feeling, you feel it very strongly • I was overcome by a sense of failure. • He was overcome with astonishment.
infamy – • wicked behavior, public dishonor, being shameful/ disgraceful • infamous – • well known for wicked, evil behavior. • infamous action, wicked, shameful, disgraceful
rat -- metaphor (Am. sl.) • used for describing a sneaky, contemptible person.
modulate – • adjust, vary the pitch, intensity of the voice • Some people are able to modulate their voices according to the size of the room in which they speak.
jitterbug -- • 1. a quick active popular dance of the 1940's • 2. a person who did this sort of dance • Am. sl. • a person who is very nervous • jitters -- n. • jittery -- adj. nervous, unstable
Frankenstein • The young student in Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley (1797--1851) romance of that name (1818), a classic horror story. Frankenstein made a soulless monster out of corpses from church-yards and dissecting-rooms and endued （赋予）it with life by galvanism.（流电疗法） The tale shows the creature longed for sympathy, but was shunned (躲避) by everyone and became the instrument of dreadful retribution （惩罚）on the student who usurped the prerogative （特权）of the creator • http://frankenstein.monstrous.com/
The main idea of this lesson: • It is about a law student who tries to marry the girl after suitable re-education, but he's been too clever for his own good. • The narrator, Dobie Gillis, a freshman in a law school, is the protagonist
Protagonist: • a law school student • very young • clever • over-conceited -- cool, logical, keen, calculating, perspicacious, acute, astute, • powerful, precise, penetrating
Antagonists • 1. Petey Burch -- pitiful, dump, roommate, faddist • 2. Polly Espy --- beautiful, gracious, stupid
III. Organizational Pattern • 4 sections • Sect. I para 1-3 • It is the author's note. • 1. The author's idea about this story. • 2. The author's idea about the purpose of this story.
III. Organizational Pattern • Sect II para. 4 --59 • the bargain between the law student and his roommate over the exchange of the girl,
III. Organizational Pattern • sub-divisions: • 1) p4 introduction of the narrator -- protagonist • 2) p5-21 introduction of the first antagonist -- Petey Burch • He downgrades his roommate, who has nothing upstairs. • 3) p22 -- 27 introduction of he second antagonist -- Polly Espy
III. Organizational Pattern • 4) p 28--40 sounding out / finding out the relationship between Petey and Polly. • 5) p.40 --59 unethical transaction over Polly • The student gives the raccoon coat the roommate wants, and his roommate gives his girl friend in return. They have a kind of deal.
III. Organizational Pattern • Sect III. para 60 -- 124 • the teaching of 8 logical fallacies • 10 sub-divisions: • 1. p60 --61 • a survey, first date with the girl, first impression of the girl. He tries to find out how stupid she is.
III. Organizational Pattern • 2. p62 -- 74 the teaching of Dicto Simpliciter • 3. P75 -- 79 the teaching of Hasty Generalization • 4. p80--85 Post Hoc • 5. p86 --96 Contradictory Premises • 6. p97--98 interposition, He wants to give the girl back.
III. Organizational Pattern • 7. p99 --104 Ad Misericordiam • 8. p105--108 False Analogy • 9. p109-- 114 Hypothesis Contrary to Fact • 10.p 115--124 Poisoning the Well
III. Organizational Pattern • Sect.IV. para125– the ending of the story • backfiring of all the arguments • The girl learns her lessons too well. She uses all the logical fallacies to fight back her teacher.
Pay attention to the change of his emotions: • 1. favoring her with a smile • 2. chuckled with amusement • 3. chuckled with somewhat less amusement • 4. forcing a smile/ ground my teeth • 5. croaked, dashed perspiration from my brow • 6. bellowing like a bull
IV. The chief attraction of this lesson • It's humor • The whole story is a piece of light, humorous satire, satirizing a smug, self-conceited freshman in a law school.
IV. the chief attraction of this lesson • Why : • 1) the title • The title is humorous. The writer wants the readers to conclude that "love" is an error, a deception and an emotion that does not follow the principles of logic.
IV. the chief attraction of this lesson • 2) the author's note • "spongy", "limp", "flaccid" are specific characteristics of his essay. He is joking, which indicates that the whole story is humorous. • 3) the contrast -- • the law student & the girl & Petey • boasting himself ----- downgrading the others • the student ---- the girl
IV. the chief attraction of this lesson • 4) the ending of the story • the raccoon coat which the law student despises and give it to his roommate for the exchange of his girl friend has finally become the rootcause of his losing his girl friend. • 5) the clever choice of the names • Pettey ---- pity • Espy ---- I spy
V. Language features: • 1. American colloquialism • 2. Informal style • short sentences • elliptical sentences --- to increase the tempo of the story • dashes • 3. rhetorical devices
V. Language features: • 4. sharp contrast in the language • 1) the law student uses ultra learned terms • standard English • 100% correct • 2) clipped vulgar forms, slang words • gee, magnif, terrif, pshaw, • 5. inverted sentences