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Toulmin’s Model of Argumentation




Toulmin’s Model of Argumentation

1. a) Machiavelli was a critic of the Enlightenment tradition. Several theorists support this after thorough analysis of his works. Machiavelli differs from enlightenment because of many reasons such as his beliefs and ideologies, but the most difference arose in the concept he created. The concept of Fortuna contradicted the very basis of the enlightenment tradition. He believed that the tradition was good because it encompassed the issue of generalizations in the population. However, he also believed that the element of Fortuna could not be eliminated from the human form and life regardless of the level of generalization the people posses. This belief, therefore, makes him a string critic of the enlightenment tradition.

b) Karl Marx is a critic of the enlightenment tradition. He believes that tradition is a result of industrial capitalism, whereby the people owning the production methods exploit their workers to obtain higher profits from their businesses. Marx states that the notion of political freedoms is just an illusion to the citizens. He concurs with the statement that actual freedom should be acquired instead of the notion of freedom derived from the enlightenment tradition. Therefore, Marx believes in material freedom rather than ideological freedom that the tradition brought forth.

2. a) Machiavelli’s opinion on enlightenment contrasts with positions taken by contemporary conservatives, liberals and socialists. They contradict the concept of Fortuna; this makes them oppose Machiavelli’s perspective. This is because the reason he disputed the enlightenment tradition was based on the concept of Fortuna that he had created initially. They believed that the concept of Fortuna wring as it did not apply to all civilizations as Machiavelli thought it did when he invented it.

b) Marx’s opinion of enlightenment seems to contrast with positions taken by the conservatives, liberals and socialists, as well. His critics were mainly the supporters of tradition and political freedoms. They opposed him on grounds that he was too focused on material wealth instead of the well-being of the citizens. They believed that the only way to bring political freedom was by embracing the enlightenment tradition. This was in direct contradiction of Marx’s views as he considered freedom as an illusion rather than reality.

3. a) Machiavelli was a supporter of freedom and equality. This is proven by several of his works, which emphasize the need of freedoms in the country. He believes that the acquisition of freedom will later yield equality in the society. In Fortuna, one of his most popular works, he stated that the greatest enemy to the political order is fortune or wealth. This signifies that he believed that wealth and the people who possessed it altered the issue of freedom and equality. During that period, wealthy individuals who ensured that freedom and equality was not achieved held key leadership positions. Machiavelli believed that freedom and equality were intertwined, and one could not be attained without the other. Therefore, he supported the quest for freedom and equality.

b) Marx was a supporter of freedom and equality, as well. He stresses the fact that true freedom could only be realized if there were no more conflicts between the social classes. He believed that the higher ranked individuals did not support freedom since they knew they would lose their source of labor. They, therefore, ensured that freedom was not implemented since they held the key positions in government. Consequently, he supports the issue of freedom and equality.

4. a) Machiavelli had a different idea of the state and its functions. He credited with the creation if the modern state. The previous states or forms of government were mainly monopolies that were to some extent dictatorial governments. This is because leadership positions were hereditary in most civilizations during that period. Leaders than used the coercive method of leadership and made all the decisions for their subjects. Citizens had no role to play in politics except to follow the orders of their rulers. Machiavelli came up with a notion of a different form of leadership that involved the subjects. In his concept, he believed that rulers had to change their methods of ruling in order to engage people in the decision-making process of the country. This form of government is similar to the modern day nation.

b) Marx understands of the state and politics was rather clear and direct. He did not believe in the leadership that oppressed the citizens. Rather, he believed in the need for equality in the sense that the people also played a role in the governance of the country. He disregarded the belief that only the aristocrats and the wealthy could hold leadership positions. Government’s main purpose was to serve the people, as opposed to the reverse.

5. a) Machiavelli believed that the main forces involved in making history were the people and that they were able to initiate historical change. He attributed a lot of power to the people in an era where they were not considered important. Categorically, he stated that if the people became aware of their freedoms and rights, they could create change, however difficult it may seem. This is because they easily outnumbered the elite who ruled them. Machiavelli was one of the few people who stated that the forced behind historical change is the populations in the different civilization that existed before.

b) Marx understood the forces involved in making historical change to be the citizens. He believed that if they set their minds to it, they would better their lives. This could be done by agitating for change and thus acquiring complete freedom, as opposed to the illusion of freedom with which they were provided.

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