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Arguing has a bit of a bad rap in modern society, being seen as divisive and a source of conflict. When most people hear the word, they think of heated rows where voices are raised, accusations and names are thrown back and forth like missiles, no satisfactory conclusion is reached, and the parties arguing end up angry, hurt, further apart, and more dogmatically entrenched in their positions than before. This reputation isn't deserved - arguing is just another aspect of communication, one that allows an exchange of ideas and for issues to be resolved in order for things to move forward.
This book is going to teach you how to overcome the obstacles that stand between you and succeeding in convincing others to your way of thinking. It will take a look at what arguing actually is in order to gain a better understanding of how to do it well and efficiently, tackle the prickly issue of just how ethical it is to persuade someone, and look at the different ways in which we fail in our arguments, both in winning and occasionally in reaching a decent resolution without devolving into fighting. It will also take an extensive look at logic, particularly how it is applied to construct valid and compelling arguments, and finally closes with 10 tips that will help you win your arguments.
The section on logic takes up over half the book - logic is the cornerstone of a convincing argument, after all. This isn't a stuffy book that will give you dense theory with no connection to real life, though: Each entry includes a personal and professional example that you are likely to come across in real life. Along with the positive uses of logic, some ways in which the techniques discussed can be used in a dishonest way that takes advantage of how the human brain works are also included. There is a brief discussion of the ethics of using these techniques, but ultimately the power is given to you, the listener.
“Arguments: How to persuade others to your way of thinking” is a conversational primer tool written by Tom Miles and narrated by Sean Householder. The book provides one with concepts, ideas, techniques, and reasons for how to turn a discussion (sometimes heated) to your way of thinking. The author did a decent job of covering the subject matter at a high-level in this rather brief piece of work; 57pages or 1hr 26min of audio. He covered basic definitions, pitfalls, methods, and tips helping you to have the upper-hand in any argument. This is not a book of how to manipulate or control others, instead it gives assistance by pointing out how to strengthen one’s arguments.
While initially listening to the book I struggled with the use of the word “argument” as my personal definition says it is only a heated or angry exchange between people having differing views. I tried to comprehend how this information would help during a very negative situation, but the author does gives some good tips no matter how argument level or type. One definition of the word “argument” says it is “…the aim of persuading other that an action or idea is right or wrong”. In many ways I would have preferred the book to be titled differently, but that is only my opinion based on my context of the word. All the advice given in the book is applicable to general conversations, debates, or any other means of communication. Using the word argument in the title seems to limit the intended target audience.
With that out of the way, let me get into some of the finer points of the book. The author makes some very salient points up front that should not be missed. First is that an Argument is not simply a battle to see who wins and who does not. The second is that an argument is not the same thing as a fight. That is not to say that an argument cannot turn into a heated discussion, but by leveraging the suggestions in this book, I would hope such a situation would be quickly diffused before escalating to that level. An argument also need to have a person’s conviction and ethical reasoning behind it; one should not argue just for argument sake. There needs to be a reason one should desire to change another’s point of view and often this is because of their passion for a subject matter.
As with any other form of communication, the author reiterates basic communication skills also important during an argument. Communication skills and etiquette such as: listening to the others, seeing things from the other person’s perspective, utilizing humor, ensure tone of voice, and most importantly observing non-verbal body language. The author raises the importance of third-party information (reports, data, stats, etc.) along with bringing in expert witnesses when in an argument. Such items bring extra weight and credibility to one’s position. A very striking point made by the author was when he quoted another that said, “silence is the hallmark of a thinker.” Quiet can be a very powerful means of communication with others and you should use this to your advantage.
Most arguments, as pointed out by the author, can be won by being ethical, having discretion, using sound logic, keeping in mind context, and not being afraid to change your position based on the information provided by the other party. All of these combined will provide you with the upper edge of nearly any argument.
Regarding the narration of the book, Sean Householder did an exceptional job with this book. His voice was pleasant to listen to and the speed of the recording was well-paced. The audio itself was clean, clear, and lacked any noticeable audio artifacts such as background noise, swallows, etc. Because this was a non-fiction business-centric text, it is difficult to rate the narrator on character quality and other areas often reserved for fiction books. Reviewing some of his other works on Audible, I see he averages four and five stars for performance. Although I would have preferred to have more inflection in his voice, this is simply a personal opinion. The narration was not dull or monotone. When the book was complete, I could have continued listening to his voice.
Disclaimer: This book was provided to the reviewer at no charge by the author, narrator, and/or publisher in exchange for posting a non-bias review.
What was one of the most memorable moments of Arguments: How to Persuade Others to Your Way of Thinking?
I was expecting to simply learn better ways to convince people I'm right. But, this book goes way deeper than that. The author reminds us that it's important to know why you are arguing in the first place. We're not just trying to win. We want to convince people of the truth.
Any additional comments?
“I was voluntarily provided this free review copy audiobook by the author, narrator, or publisher.”
great narration and great tips. I was voluntarily provided this free review copy audiobook by the author, narrator, or publisher.
Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?
Yes, it made for a great listen that contributed to self-development. I enjoyed the narration and concepts discussed in the book.
Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?
It took me multiple sittings to gain from the concepts in the story.
Any additional comments?
"This review copy audiobook was provided by the author, narrator, or publisher at no cost."
it had helpful information and techniques. I will try my new knowledge on my husband. lol narrator spoke well and the book was short and straight forward.
This audiobook was given by the author, narrator, or publisher at no cost in exchange for an unbiased review via Audiobook Boom
Any additional comments?
<br/>This was an informative book that had an interesting take on making the most <br/><br/>out of an argument. <br/><br/>It also covered reasons why people argued and how to do it effectively.<br/><br/>I don't think arguing is bad per se and I partially agree with the author about how <br/><br/>arguing allows an exchange of ideas to resolve issues.<br/><br/>Overall, this book was interesting. <br/><br/><br/>Sean Householder did well with the narration.<br/><br/>Note:<br/>"This audio book was provided by the author, narrator, or publisher at no cost in exchange for an unbiased review."<br/><br/>
Full disclosure: I received this book for free in exchange for providing an honest review.
This is a good introductory overview for people who are interested in debate (both formal and casual). It is an ethics-friendly guide that discusses both substantive and dramatic aspects in a fairly clear and straightforward manner. There is nothing groundbreaking to be found, and some of the logical explanations move quickly, because it is meant as just an overview, but all in all a nice introduction or refresher.
This book was very helpful with lots of good information on how to deal with arguments. I was surprised at how much info was packed into such a short audiobook. It contains tips, tricks and basic communication skills to help resolve disputes.
The narrator did a really good job. Very pleasant to listen to.
This audiobook was provided by the author, narrator, or publisher at no cost in exchange for an unbiased review.
Up front, the author clarifies the meaning of 'argument' that it is not the perhaps implied adversarial, almost fighting confrontation the current connotation seems to be. Yet in his basic rules of argument he leaves off the first and most important [Socratic] rule...Agree on meaning of terms. "Depends on what your definition of is is" Otherwise you may be arguing over different things with your counter party.
Also leaves off one of the best ways to improve your presentation, persuasion and communications skills, check out and join a Toastmasters Club.
Yet, the book is however a nice overview of logic, persuasion and verbal/body skills necessary. I must confess that I was listening to this book in the thick of the US Presidential debate/election season and found myself filtering the authors material based on what I see in that process.
The narrator did an excellent job of professionally, appropriately delivering the material. He was what I could call professionally engaging in his style and would be delighted to listen to additional titles he brings to audio.
I was provided a complimentary review copy of this book in return for a candid review.
I can't really think of a single group of people that wouldn't benefit from reading this book. Everyone from students, professionals, public speakers, politicians, and spouses can learn a thing or two from this book. It's also short enough to listen to while driving to work, while doing chores, or during your lunch break.
As the narrator did, I must caution the listener on not using the suggestions and information in the book for malicious or unethical reasons. There is always that kind of danger when writing a book like this, even if the information is minimal.
At the very least, you will come out of this listen with a better understanding on how to craft a logical argument.
The narrator also did a great job with reading and relaying the material.
5 stars all-around for this book!
I received a free copy of this audiobook from the author, publisher, or narrator in exchange for an unbiased review. I was NOT required to write a positive review and this reflects my honest opinion of the work.
10 of 31 people found this review helpful