, Volume 25, Issue 1, pp 115-122
Date: 05 Sep 2010

Frans H. van Eemeren and Bart Garssen (eds): Pondering on Problems of Argumentation: Twenty Essays on Theoretical Issues

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As anyone familiar with the genre can attest, a good tapas menu offers a variety small entrées that are often meant to be shared among diners. Not only do patrons experience a variety of tastes and textures, the smaller portions are designed to encourage conversation among the people in the party. In my mind, the collection of essays in Pondering on Problems of Argumentation is a scholarly equivalent to an exceptionally good evening at a tapas bar. In most cases, the comparatively short essays provide just enough of the flavor of the author’s approach to stimulate thought and encourage discussion. The table of contents presents an extensive menu of scholars representing an eclectic blend of approaches to argumentation research including modern and classical rhetoric, linguistics, formal and informal logic, communication, social influence, normative pragmatics, and pragma-dialectics. Although no reasonable collection of essays could feature every theory or approach to studying argumenta