[eDebate] what does "limit" the topic really mean
Wed Jun 1 16:52:07 CDT 2005
how are you, i am great, hope all is well. . a few thoughts.
1) I want to preserve competitive space for small teams, duh, but does this
have to be accomplished by limiting potential cases? Perhaps we should more
carefully explore ways in which we limit the rez before advocating the
wording- for example by solvency mechanism, actors, existing policy,
direction, degree of change? I agree with jackie's concern with the
infinite ways these limitations can be ideologically driven and prevent
certain types of arguments, and stiffle critical thinking and discovery
2) real quick, i liked the analysis that we lose out educationally in
affirmative case construction with narrow wording. i argue that we do a
large disservice to students and the judges listening when we don't allow
debaters to define the need and origins of change (that predicates case
construction). This is a critical skill for real-world advocates and even
policyMAKERS. to me, the framing of the need and plan should carry the
ideological baggage of the debaters/literature, not the resolution. i
thank my novice debaters, real-world assocaites, and especially teams like
louisville for reminding me of the implications (to individual debaters and
community-wide) that our preferences in topic orientation and assumptions
concerning mechanism's of solvency.
3) I see some of these harms particularly in the negative rhetoric
surrounding the false critical vs. policy distinction. in my observation,
this distinction has formed a competitive norm of non-engagement of 1AC
claims based on ideological preference. a lot of people refer to the way
that critical teams ignore the social contract of the resolution. on the
flip-side, critical teams complain that their debates never evolve past
framework/T. this probably isn't good for competition, but to me it
signals a positive challenge to the framework and style of evidenced-based
am debate. chill out, my mentors say this is always happening, i think it
is the way debate "works".
4) fairness isn't always about competition, and neither is debate. the
topic is about what we will discuss all year long. it serves as the map for
many educators, the subject of many learners, and is extremely relevant to
the current era. it is about funding and recruitment. it is about more
than creating fairn competition.
5) i am still thinking we should accomodate a flexible notion of change in
the wording of the resolution. i think that rejecting the framwework
becomes less competitvely advantageous or even necessary when the topic
creates the space for the most folks. i see the most important areas of
argumentation for our community lately are in the actor (both necessity of
US/state action, and the debater as actor) and the action (in round with the
role of style and mode of delivery, and also the realm of solvency). i
still like a list of broad areas for potential change.
so, does what aspects of he topic needs to be sufficiently limited? how
much does this really affect our prep/research time or competitive
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