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negative and positive criticism

Topic: negative and positive criticism


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I am presenting information from various online sources about negative and positive criticism. All these sources are comprehensive enough about the various aspects of positive and negative criticism and you can chose any of these.

Positive Criticism:

The notion of positive criticism is a rather odd one. If one agrees with an author, then why bother. Why stand up and say: "ME TOO." Why not just point to the other's work and stay out of it?

Certainly the notion of what I'll call the "me too" notion is not critical thinking. Repeating someone else's notion and "signing on" as it were, is not much of an activity of critical thought.

However, a very common occurrence is this: one will find oneself generally in agreement with the work of another, but not completely. One might agree with the general argument (NOTE: not just the thesis, but the argument), but hold that the author missed another very powerful and useful argument. Or, one is in general agreement with an argument of another, but thinks one or another of the arguments could be done just a bit better; more powerfully or clearer or whatever.

A second sort of situation is that one is in complete agreement with the argument of another, but can anticipate precisely what the likely criticism of others is going to be. Thus to anticipate this most likely criticism and answer it is a service to the argument itself.

We are left with two general categories of tasks for the positive critic and three different strategies to follow. Let me spell these out a bit more clearly.

First situation: One is in general and overwhelming agreement with the ARUGMENT (not just the thesis) of another, but not fully. One wants the argument to work and believes one can offer positive criticisms which will make the argument even stronger.

In this case there are two major tasks that might be done:

It may be the case that in an otherwise nearly flawless argument, the author seems to have ignored an important or powerful reason or consideration which would strengthen the case without in any way detracting from the argument already given. Thus the critic adds the missing reason or consideration. There are all sorts of variations on this theme, where the addition of the new material might even require a bit of ...

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I am presenting information from various online sources about negative and positive criticism.