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How to Criticize with Kindness: Philosopher Daniel Dennett on the Four Steps to Arguing Intelligently

https://www.brainpickings.org/2014/03/28/daniel-dennett-rapoport-rules-criticism/#

brainpickings.org

How to Criticize with Kindness: Philosopher Daniel Dennett on the Four Steps to Arguing Intelligently
"In disputes upon moral or scientific points," Arthur Martine counseled in his magnificent 1866 guide to the art of conversation, "let your aim be to come at truth, not to conquer your opponent. So you never shall be at a loss in losing the argument, and gaining a new discovery."

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How to criticize with kindness

  • Re-express your target’s position so fairly that your target says, “Thanks, I wish I’d thought of putting it that way".
  • List any points of agreement (especially if they are not matters of general or widespread agreement).
  • Mention anything you have learned from your target.
  • Only after, you can say so much as a word of criticism.

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