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我们为什么辩论?只是为了赢?

发布者: 千缘 | 发布时间: 2020-10-12 23:23| 查看数: 100| 评论数: 0|



My name is Dan Cohen, and I am academic, as he said.我叫丹·科恩,我是个学者,就像主持人介绍的。

And what that means is that I argue.这意味着我经常需要辩论。

It's an important part of my life, and I like to argue.这是我生命中的重要组成部分,同时我喜欢辩论。

And I'm not just an academic, I'm a philosopher, so I like to think that I'm actually pretty good at arguing.我不仅仅是个学者,我也是个哲学家,所以我觉得是实际上还是挺擅长辩论的。

But I also like to think a lot about arguing.但是我也经常思考有关辩论的问题。

And thinking about arguing, I've come across some puzzles, and one of the puzzles is that as I've been thinking about arguing over the years, and it's been decades now, I've gotten better at arguing, but the more that I argue and the better I get at arguing, the more that I lose.说起辩论,我曾有过一些困惑,而其中一个困惑是,我多年前开始考虑如何辩论,至今已有二十多年了,我也变得更善于辩论,但是越是辩论,我就能从中获取更多,同时也失去更多。

And that's a puzzle.这就是一个困惑。

And the other puzzle is that I'm actually okay with that.而另一个困惑就是我其实觉得这没什么大不了的。

Why is it that I'm okay with losing and why is it that I think that good arguers are actually better at losing?为什么我会觉得失去一些什么也无关紧要,为什么好的辩论者实际上更善于失去?

Well, there's some other puzzles.好了,其实我还有以下其他困惑。

One is, why do we argue? Who benefits from arguments?例如,我们为什么辩论?而谁又从辩论中获益?

And when I think about arguments now, I'm talking about, let's call them academic arguments or cognitive arguments, where something cognitive is at stake.需要指出的是当我谈及辩论时,我所指的,是所谓学术辩论亦或者认知辩论,就一些我们知之甚少的方面进行辩论。

Is this proposition true? Is this theory a good theory?例如我们的认知是否正确?这个理论是不是个好理论?

Is this a viable interpretation of the data or the text?对于某些数据或者文字这是不是一个很好的解释?

And so on. I'm not interested really in arguments about whose turn it is to do the dishes or who has to take out the garbage.以及很多其他的问题。我无心去争论今天该谁洗碗或者谁应该倒垃圾。

Yeah, we have those arguments too.当然,我们也会为那些问题争论。

I tend to win those arguments, because I know the tricks.我经常在那类争论争论中胜出,因为我知道一些技巧。

But those aren't the important arguments.当时那些辩论没有那么重要。

I'm interested in academic arguments today, and here are the things that puzzle me.我感兴趣的是那些学术性辩论,而接下来这是我感到困惑的事情。

First, what do good arguers win when they win an argument?首先,当人们赢得一场辩论的时候,作为一个优秀的辩论者,他从中学到了什么?

What do I win if I convince you that utilitarianism isn't really the right framework for thinking about ethical theories?如果我能说服你实用主义不能用来解释道德理论的话,我能从中获得什么呢?

So what do we win when we win an argument?所以我们到底可以从一场辩论中学到什么?

Even before that, what does it matter to me whether you have this idea that Kant's theory works or Mill's the right ethicist to follow?而且在此之前,你是追随康德还是密尔又有跟我什么关系呢?

It's no skin off my back whether you think functionalism is a viable theory of mind.无论你是否认为功能主义是一个可取的思维方式,都对我没有什么影响。

So why do we even try to argue?所以我们为什么会想去辩论?

Why do we try to convince other people to believe things that they don't want to believe?为什么我们要去说服别人相信那些他们不愿相信的事情?

And is that even a nice thing to do?我们到底应不应该这么做?

Is that a nice way to treat another human being, try and make them think something they don't want to think?用这种方式去对待他人,迫使他们去思考一些他们不想去思考的东西?

Well, my answer is going to make reference to three models for arguments.好了,为了回答这个问题,让我们来参照三种不同的辩论方式。

The first model, let's call this the dialectical model, is that we think of arguments as war, and you know what that's like.第一种模式,让我们称之为辩证模式,这种模式的辩论更想是打仗,相信你们都经历过。

There's a lot of screaming and shouting and winning and losing, and that's not really a very helpful model for arguing but it's a pretty common and entrenched model for arguing.经常充满了尖叫和大喊,而且伴有胜负,这对于辩论来说不是一个很有帮助的方式,却也是相当常见且”侵略性“的方式。

But there's a second model for arguing: arguments as proofs.这里还有第二种辩论的模式:论证式。

Think of a mathematician's argument.想想数学家的辩论。

Here's my argument. Does it work? Is it any good?这是我的辩论方式。它有用吗?有什么优点吗?

Are the premises warranted? Are the inferences valid?我们论证时的前提是正确的吗?我们的推论有效吗?

Does the conclusion follow from the premises?我们的结论是否由前提推导出来?

No opposition, no adversariality, not necessarily any arguing in the adversarial sense.没有对立,没有敌意,辩论并非必须在一个敌对意识下进行。

But there's a third model to keep in mind that I think is going to be very helpful, and that is arguments as performances, arguments as being in front of an audience.但是我们还应该注意到其实还有第三种方式,我认为它非常有效,它就是表演式辩论,如同在观众面前辩论。

We can think of a politician trying to present a position, trying to convince the audience of something.我们可以想想一个政客想要竞选一个职位,或尝试去让他的观众接受他的政见。

But there's another twist on this model that I really think is important, namely that when we argue before an audience, sometimes the audience has a more participatory role in the argument, that is, arguments are also audiences in front of juries who make a judgment and decide the case.但是我认为对这个模式的一个曲解有必要指出,亦即当我们在观众面前辩论时,有些时候观众在辩论中起了更重要的参与作用,我们的如同面对了一群陪审团,他们判断是非,裁定诉案。

Let's call this the rhetorical model, where you have to tailor your argument to the audience at hand.让我们称之为修辞模式,这种模式下你就要像裁缝一样为观众量身定制一场辩论。

You know, presenting a sound, well-argued, tight argument in English before a francophone audience just isn't going to work.你要一场听上去激烈讨论,严谨论证的英语辩论,而听众是一群法国人,那就是白费力气。

So we have these models -- argument as war, argument as proof, and argument as performance.你看我们有这么多辩论模式--战争式辩论,论证式辩论,表演式辩论。

Of those three, the argument as war is the dominant one.在这三种模式中,战争式辩论占了主导。

It dominates how we talk about arguments, it dominates how we think about arguments, and because of that, it shapes how we argue, our actual conduct in arguments.

它使每当我们提起辩论,就是这种模式。这种模式基本代表了我们对辩论的理解,也因此,它影响了我们辩论的方式,我们在辩论时的表现。

Now, when we talk about arguments, yeah, we talk in a very militaristic language.如今当我们谈起辩论,我们就会进入一种军国主义的论调。

We want strong arguments, arguments that have a lot of punch, arguments that are right on target.我们需要具有攻击性的辩论,辩论时就如同给对手的脸上来上几拳,最好每个论点都直击要害。

We want to have our defenses up and our strategies all in order.我们想把自己武装起来,组织好策略去应对。

We want killer arguments.我们想要击败对手。

That's the kind of argument we want.那就是我们想要的辩论。

It is the dominant way of thinking about arguments.这就是一种主流的辩论观。

When I'm talking about arguments, that's probably what you thought of, the adversarial model.当我说到辩论的时候,很可能你马上想到的就是敌对模式。

But the war metaphor, the war paradigm or model for thinking about arguments, has, I think, deforming effects on how we argue.战争模式这个比方,或者说是对辩论模式的认知,在我看来正在削弱我们的辩论。

First it elevates tactics over substance.首先它使辩论的技巧凌驾与观点本身。

You can take a class in logic, argumentation.你可以去上关于逻辑与辩论的课程。

You learn all about the subterfuges that people use to try and win arguments, the false steps.你可以学到所有人们在辩论中可以使用的诡计,以力求去赢得一场辩论,多么愚蠢的方式啊。

It magnifies the us-versus-them aspect of it.这放大了辩论中我们与他们的对立关系。

It makes it adversarial. It's polarizing.这使辩论变得敌对。如同以偏振镜来看问题。

And the only foreseeable outcomes are triumph, glorious triumph, or abject, ignominious defeat.而唯一可预见的结果就是胜利,一场欢欣鼓舞的胜利,抑或是卑怯,可耻的失败。

I think those are deforming effects, and worst of all, it seems to prevent things like negotiation or deliberation or compromise or collaboration.我认为那是一种变形效果,最糟的是,这种变形使这种辩论本身看上去不是那么像谈判,审议或妥协,抑或者是一种协作。

Think about that one. Have you ever entered an argument thinking, "Let's see if we can hash something out rather than fight it out.在参加辩论的时候,你有没有想过,让我们看看能不能共同敲定一些事情,而非由一方说服另一方。

What can we work out together?"有什么是我们可以共同协作的?

And I think the argument-as-war metaphor inhibits those other kinds of resolutions to argumentation.我觉得辩论如战争的这个比喻已经盖过了其他的辩论形式。

And finally, this is really the worst thing, arguments don't seem to get us anywhere.最终,最糟糕的是,通过争论我们不会学到什么东西。

They're dead ends.这样的辩论就如同一个死胡同。

They are roundabouts or traffic jams or gridlock in conversation.交流中的环状公路交通阻塞或者一个僵局。

We don't get anywhere.我们停在原地,到不了任何其他地方。

Oh, and one more thing, and as an educator, this is the one that really bothers me:噢,其实还有一件事情,作为一个教育工作者,这里还有一个问题困扰了我很久:

If argument is war, then there's an implicit equation of learning with losing.如果辩论是场战争,那么这也隐含着学习等于失去的意思。

And let me explain what I mean.让我解释一下我的观点。

Suppose you and I have an argument.比如说,你和我进行了一场辩论。

You believe a proposition, P, and I don't.你主张观点,P,但是我不同意。

And I say, "Well why do you believe P?"然后我说,“好了,为什么你相信P”

And you give me your reasons.然后你给出了你的理由。

And I object and say, "Well, what about ...?"然后我反对并说,“好,那关于。。。?”

And you answer my objection.然后你回答我的反对。

And I have a question: "Well, what do you mean?然后我提问:“额,你的意思是?

How does it apply over here?" And you answer my question.那么在这个地方他如何解释?” 然后你又回答了我的问题。

Now, suppose at the end of the day, I've objected, I've questioned, I've raised all sorts of counter-considerations, and in every case you've responded to my satisfaction.现在,假设一天快结束了,我反对,我提问,我给出了所有反对问题,然后在所有的问题上你都让我满意了。

And so at the end of the day, I say, "You know what? I guess you're right. P."然后在一天快要结束的时候,我说,“你知道吗?我觉得在P这个观点上你没准是对的。”

So I have a new belief.所以我有了新的见解。

And it's not just any belief, but it's a well-articulated, examined, it's a battle-tested belief.但是这不仅仅是一个见解,而是一个阐述清楚的,经过验证的,同时也是经得起挑战的见解。

Great cognitive gain. Okay. Who won that argument?多好的结果啊。好了。那谁赢了这场辩论呢?

Well, the war metaphor seems to force us into saying you won, even though I'm the only one who made any cognitive gain.好了,将辩论作为战争的人们会强迫我们承认,提出见解那方赢了,即使我才是那个获得新见解的人。

What did you gain cognitively from convincing me?那么作为说服我的人,他在获得了什么新的见解吗?

Sure, you got some pleasure out of it, maybe your ego stroked, maybe you get some professional status in the field.没错,你从中获得了一些愉悦,或许一些自我安慰,或许在你的领域里获得了一些专业声誉。

This guy's a good arguer.这家伙是个辩论好手。

But cognitively, now -- just from a cognitive point of view -- who was the winner?但是从认知角度而言,仅仅从认识的角度来看,谁是胜利者?

The war metaphor forces us into thinking that you're the winner and I lost, even though I gained.视辩论如战争的人们会强迫我们认为,你是胜者而我是败者,即使是我也有所得。

And there's something wrong with that picture.这个认识本身存在一些错误。

And that's the picture I really want to change if we can.同时我也想去改变这个认识。

So how can we find ways to make arguments yield something positive?所以我们如何去进行辩论,并使之有一些积极的影响呢?

What we need is new exit strategies for arguments.我们所需要的是一个新的方式来终止一场辩论。

But we're not going to have new exit strategies for arguments until we have new entry approaches to arguments.但是我们没有办法找到一个新的方式去终止辩论,除非我们可以找到一个新的方式去开始一场辩论。

We need to think of new kinds of arguments.我们需要一种新的辩论方式。

In order to do that, well, I don't know how to do that.为了找到这种新的方式,可是我不知道应该怎么做。

That's the bad news.这是个坏消息。

The argument-as-war metaphor is just, it's a monster.视辩论如战争的观点本身就如同是一个怪兽。

It's just taken up habitation in our mind, and there's no magic bullet that's going to kill it.这已经成为我们的思维定式了,而且也没有什么快速有效的办法可以解决它。

There's no magic wand that's going to make it disappear.我们没有办法就这样让他消失不见。

I don't have an answer.我不知道该怎么解决。

But I have some suggestions, and here's my suggestion.但是我确实有一些建议,这里是我的建议。

If we want to think of new kinds of arguments, what we need to do is think of new kinds of arguers.如果我想要创造一种崭新的辩论方式,那么我们需要的其实是新的辩论者。

So try this.所以尝试一下这个。

Think of all the roles that people play in arguments.想象一下人们在辩论中所扮演的角色。

There's the proponent and the opponent in an adversarial, dialectical argument.我需要支持者与反对者,才能进行一场意见相反的,辩证性的辩论。

There's the audience in rhetorical arguments.在修饰性辩论中,我们需要有观众。

There's the reasoner in arguments as proofs.在证明式论证中我们需要推理者。

All these different roles.所有这些不同角色。

Now, can you imagine an argument in which you are the arguer, but you're also in the audience watching yourself argue?现在,你可以想象在一场辩论中,你既是辩论者,也是观众看着你自己的表现?

Can you imagine yourself watching yourself argue, losing the argument, and yet still, at the end of the argument, say, "Wow, that was a good argument."你能想象你自己看着你自己辩论,在辩论中落败,却仍然在辩论结束后,觉得,“哦,这是一场不错的辩论。”

Can you do that? I think you can.你能做到吗?我觉得你能。

And I think, if you can imagine that kind of argument where the loser says to the winner and the audience and the jury can say, "Yeah, that was a good argument,"我觉得如果你可以想象一场辩论,败者可以对胜者,对观众以及裁判们说“噢,这是一场不错的辩论,”

then you have imagined a good argument.即使如此你也已经可以想象一场不错的辩论了。

And more than that, I think you've imagined a good arguer, an arguer that's worthy of the kind of arguer you should try to be.而且不仅如此,我想你已经可以想象到一个好的辩论者,一个你希望成为的辩论者。

Now, I lose a lot of arguments.现在,我输掉了很多辩论。

It takes practice to become a good arguer in the sense of being able to benefit from losing,要成为一个好的辩论者是需要练习的,尤其是从失败中汲取教训这一点。

but fortunately, I've had many, many colleagues who have been willing to step up and provide that practice for me.但是幸运的是,我有很多很多同事,他们愿意为我参与进来并和我一起练习成为好的辩论者。

Thank you.谢谢。


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