Unlike many critical-thinking books, there is a particular and efficacious focus on helping the reader write an argumentative essay. . . . The central goal of Workbook for Arguments is to assist one in becoming a critical thinker qua writer. Chapters 7 and 8 (nearly fifty pages) are devoted specifically to preparing the reader to produce an argumentative essay. For those of us who want to concentrate on the receiving aspects of critical thinking, the first six chapters and perhaps an appendix or two will do the job superbly. There are over sixty exercise sets, not one of which is frivolous. The model responses are typically excellent, some providing both weak and strong examples for answers, and the answers are often followed by commentary. Part 3 offers twelve critical-thinking activities, one per chapter and appendix. These activities are often set up for group work. The activities are relevant, helpful, and thoroughly presented. The expository clarity is as good as it gets, and this is true even when a light touch is used. A Workbook for Arguments is an excellent text, standing head and shoulders above both Boylan's Critical Inquiry and Browne and Keeley's Asking the Right Questions. A Workbook for Arguments is much larger than the other two books reviewed here, and it is actually less expensive than Critical Inquiry and Asking the Right Questions. --Chris Jackson, Philosophy and Religion Program, Mt. Hood Community College, in Teaching Philosophy
David R. Morrow is Assistant Professor of Philosophy at the University of Alabama at Birmingham.
Anthony Weston is Professor of Philosophy and Environmental Studies at Elon University.