Assertion: statement of opinion presented as truth Personalization: assuming that, since some members of a group exhibit certain qualities, all members Of the group must do so. Assumption: something taken for granted; a “truth” which is never proved. Assumptions about Others are Often a part Of our belief systems. “And so a quiet, respectable, humble Negro Who had the unmitigated temerity o ‘feel sorry for a white woman has had to put his word against two white people’s. Deed not remind you of their appearance and conduct on the stand.. You saw them for yourselves. The witnesses for the state, with the exception of the sheriff of Macomb County, have presented themselves to you gentlemen, to this court, in the cynical confidence that their testimony would not be doubted, confident that you gentlemen would go along with them on the assumption–the evil assumption that all Negroes lie, that all Negroes are basically immoral beings, hat all Negro men are not to be trusted around our women, an assumption one associates with minds of their caliber.
Which, gentlemen, we know is in itself a lie as black as Tom Robinsons skin, a lie I do not have to point out to you. You know the truth, and the truth is this: some Negroes lie, some Negroes are immoral, some Negro men are not to be trusted around women–black or white. But this is a truth that applies to the human race and to no particular race of men. There is onto person in this courtroom who has never told a lie, who has ever done an immoral thing, and there is no man living who has never looked upon a woman without desire. *With what fact does Tactics begin his argument? *What is Tactics’ rhetorical purpose? In Other words, What understanding and attitude does he want the jury to reach? How does Tactics use assertions, assumptions and parameterizations to achieve his rhetorical purpose? 1. Underline all assertions the speaker makes. Be sure these underlined sections represent HIS opinion(s) stated as a truth. (One assertion is underlined for you. Choose what you consider to be the most significant assertion and write it below.
Be sure you can justify your choice. 2. Underline the assumptions ?note that Tactics clarifies the Ell’s assumptions. Note also that he makes an assumption about the jury. Be sure to underline this assumption. Write down one assumption and explain how this assumption becomes part Of Tactics’ argument. 3. Underline the personalization (often, assumptions are also parameterizations. ) Explain how Tactics shows this personalization to be false.