HOW TO DEBATE THE BASICS GET EXCITED • • • • • • • • BASIC DEBATE STRUCTURE ROLES OF SPEAKERS TYPES OF DEBATES CONTENT OF SPEECHES HOW TO GIVE A SPEECH HOW TO WIN A DEBATE POINTS OF INFORMATION FUNDAMENTALS HOW TO NOT LOOK LIKE A NOOB •A debate is a competitive, logical argument between 2 teams on a given topic • • • • Two teams – one for the motion, one against it Figure out which one you are and STICK TO IT LOGICAL argumentation – have points, be clear ARGUMENTATION – be persuasive. Your goal is to convince the audience. • COMPETITIVE – you want to beat the other team. • First speaker • Second Speaker • [Third Speaker] • Replies (Negative always goes first, Affirmative always ends the debate) • Points of Information • Adjudicator observes • Decides who wins • Decides who is the best speaker • Gives you feedback • This is an organised, polite, and ACADEMIC debate • Westminster style • • • • • • • • Don’t swear Don’t shout Don’t yell out when someone else is speaking Don’t pull the fingers Wear clothes (and continue to do so throughout the debate) Don’t be drunk Don’t’ be generally dumb/ridiculous Respect the institution – it is a rich, historical act which has many followers around the world and stems from a noble tradition of intelligent discussion and fun. So do that. Not the other thing. TURNS OUT THERE IS A POINT TO BEING A DIFFERENT SPEAKER • • • • • Each speaker has a different role First speaker – intro and 1-2 points Second speaker – substantive arguments and rebuttal Third speaker – advance some arguments and mostly rebuttal Reply – summarise and cogent analysis • Changes in turn if you are First Negative or First Affirmative speaker Not a hard and fast rule – you just have to make your point the most convincingly and this formula has historically been the most convincing break-down of speaker allocations and roles. • • • • • • Introduction Split Points Narrative Facts and analysis Context and definition • Negative first speaker • Rebuttal • Own context and definition • • • • • Rebuttal 2-3 substantive points DOES THE MOST IN TERMS OF ADVANCING THE CASE Facts, arguments Split • Negative second • More rebuttal • Usually doesn’t have a substantive point • Depends the style of debating you are doing • Focus on rebuttal • BUT • Don’t do that thing that school kids do where they read out a list of points and tell the adjudicator why they are wrong • This is BAD • • • • • • Can be first or second speaker Generally tends to be first speaker Summarises the debate Outlines the main points Outlines the strongest arguments and who won them Tells the adjudicator why their team won all the important points TURNS OUT NOT EVERY DEBATE IS THE SAME…. • There is always a point to the debate • We don’t just want to sit around and hear all the stuff you know on a random topic • There is a principled argument at the heart of these debates • Find it • Debate about it • • • • • • Debates where something is wrong/bad/not ideal Saw WHY that thing needs to be changed Propose to change it Say HOW you are going to change Say WHY that model for change will work Say WHY changing the thing will be good/better/amazing for the world/the country/a particular group of people/an institution in question. • If you are in the negative – say the opposite of all of these things • Debates where you have to evaluate something/say why something is good/bad • Will be indicated in the wording of the moot • Requires evaluation • Say what is good • Say why it is good • Say what a good x would be, and what about y makes it a good x • If you are in the negative, say the opposite of all of these things • This house would vote Republican • This house would legalise Euthanasia • This house would abolish all forms of taxation • This house would criminalize adultery • This house supports the use of force against Syria. HOW TO SAY STUFF GOOD • Potentially the most important • Always a rough divide between what you say and how you say it • Usually comes down to what you say • Be clear • Be slow • Be convincing • • • • • • • • • Facts Analysis Reasoning Arguments Develop points Rebut other points Use examples Don’t just make unqualified assertions Back up what you say SAY SOMETHING GOOD • Combination of what you say and how you say it • • • • • • • • Largely covered already Make sure you FULFILL YOUR ROLE Do all of the things I said you should do PLUS Have points Have a structure Have numbers Have a clear introduction Have a clear conclusion • • • • • • • • • • Say all the things I told you to say PLUS Speak clearly Speak slowly Look up Don’t read off paper Look around (don’t creepily stare at the adjudicator) Speak loudly (or at least command attention) Be engaging Don’t walk around Don’t gesticulate like a crazy person • All the things you do with your body detract from your persuasiveness as a speaker • Make sure that you are engaging and interesting and BE CONFIDENT IF ONLY IT WAS THIS EASY… • • • • • • • That isn’t meant to be a joke – literally debate well Fulfill your role better than the other team does Respond to all their arguments Be consistent down your team line Reiterate points that the other team hasn’t responded to Make points stronger if they have been responded to Tell the adjudicator why your understanding/conception of reality is more convincing than the other teams • Persuade the adjudicator that you are correct and the other team is wrong • Adhere to the team line • Be clear • Be confident THE BLACK HOLE OF DEBATING • THEY ARE NOT • • • • • • • • • A chat A chance for you to make a point you forgot about A chance for you to heckle the other team An opportunity to crack a joke A mini-debate within a debate A conversation about something unrelated to debating An angry yelling session A make or break element of debating A time-filler when you run out of things to say • You will not lose a debate because of POIs • But it is a way to be exceptionally more convincing than the other team AND a way to emphasise key aspects of the debate when the other team is trying to pull the debate onto their terms. • • • • • • • • • Ask a question in the POI Call out ‘Point of Information’ or ‘On that point’ Stand up Put your hand out WAIT TO BE ACCEPTED Sit down if declined If standing for more than 30 seconds, ask again Be polite and respectful Don’t give more than one every 20 seconds • • • • • • Don’t leave the opposition hanging Accept or decline as soon as possible Accept at least two in your speech Don’t accept more than two Actually answer the question Tell the adjudicator why it is wrong or doesn’t prove anything • Start off with ‘wouldn’t you agree…?’ • ‘But isn’t it the case that…?’ • ‘What would you say to …?’ • They are your arguments phrased as questions in such a way that the person speaking has to DIRECTLY ENGAGE with a key plank of your case • It is a way to make your main points continue to seem relevant throughout the debate, and to hammer home when the other team doesn’t have an adequate answer to your argument. KEY THINGS TO TAKE AWAY FROM THIS • • • • • • • Have points Have structure Have an argument Have something your team STANDS FOR Collaborate in the prep room FIND THE PRINCIPLE Debate about that. • Tips for the prep room • Practice at identifying the principle in debates. • • • • • • • • • • THW criminalise Holocaust denial THW criminalise abortion THS animal testing TH would legalise necrophilia THW eat meat THW abolish religious schools THW abolish all forms of censorship THW invade and capture Joseph Kony THW abolish the permanent seat on the UNSC THW allow judges to be elected.