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Class and Virtue: Fallacies and Arguments - Essay Example

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The essay "Class and Virtue: Fallacies and Arguments" describes that after reading the article titled Class and Virtue from the book Signs of Life in the USA, one could recognize the problems and issues of stereotyping among individuals from different levels of social classes. …
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Class and Virtue: Fallacies and Arguments
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Class and Virtue: Fallacies and Arguments

Download file to see previous pages... One of the first fallacies to be found in the article would be called the stereotype fallacy. This fallacy is committed when someone associates a certain quirk or trait of an individual from his or her ethnic or racial background. For example, the people West Virginia region of the United States have been merely understood throughout much of American history merely as mountain miners who are hardy, rural and socially backwards. An excerpt from sociologist Jack Weber’s book, Yesterday’s People, is a perfect example of biased research. In Weber’s book, he coined the term, “mountain man” to collectively define people living in Appalachia, which states that “The second-generation mountaineer, however, cannot experience this break with the old culture of his parents, since he may still live enmeshed in the traditional patterns that have molded his ancestors” (qtd. in Sole). The fact is that there is more to West Virginians or the North Americans living around the Appalachian Mountains than just being miners. “Ronald Lewis, history professor at West Virginia University, said that people from Central West Virginia generally expect well-mannered people to give each other space out of respect” (Sole, “West Virginians Say They Know The Media’s Formula For Portraying West Virginians: Hillbillies”). The problem of stereotyping has the tendency of disregarding the character and traits individuals or groups that really have nothing to do with their ethnic or racial backgrounds. Another fallacy that could be found is that of non sequitur. This fallacy is made when a conclusion does not follow or connect with the premise statement. The article Class and Virtue shows this fallacy by assuming that appearance of higher class makes an individual more virtuous.  As said by Parenti in his essay, “Virtue is visually measured by one's approximation to proper class appearances” (406).  The problem here is that people judge based on one’s appearance and financial capacity.  The belief that people from the upper class are more decent and well mannered than those uneducated people who grew up from the slums is a fallacy. Also, humans are born with a functioning brain, so a Caucasian is not always more intellectual than an African.  ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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