A Study on Genders and Debating Roles on Uses of Defense Attack Strategies

  • 陳 玫君

Student thesis: Master's Thesis


In debate the debaters use different strategies to achieve defense and attack goals Previous studies focused on specific linguistic features as in Lin (2014) and strategy use as in Jin (2000) and Mets?m?ki (2012) These studies did not consider the dynamic interaction of strategies in the debate process The current study scrutinizes the influences of variables including debating roles genders winning or losing a debate and debating stages on strategy uses as well as how the debaters use the macro- and micro-strategies in the debating process The data were collected from six major college-level debate contests in Taiwan broadcasted on YouTube The participants were 20 male and 20 female college students from 10 universities in Taiwan The data were qualitatively and quantitatively analyzed in terms of the defense attack strategy repertoire and the classification of debating stages Defense attack strategy repertoire includes five macro-strategies: knowledge construction management persuasion dominance and challenge The debating stages include the peripheral stages (divided into initiation and closure) and the main stage The findings are summarized in terms of variable analysis and strategy use in interactions Analyses on the variables of debating roles gender debating stages and the winning and defeated groups show different levels of influence on the debaters’ macro-strategy uses In terms of micro-strategy uses the debating roles play a more powerful factor than the gender in both the winning and defeated groups and the debating stages The shift of politeness level in the debating stages may explain the differences in the debaters’ strategy uses In the aspect of the debaters’ strategy uses in interactions only rare micro-strategies were exclusively used by the questioners The debaters chiefly used the management strategy to begin and terminate the procedure in the peripheral stages In the main stage most of the strategies were utilized by the debaters by both the questioner and rebutter groups and in both genders to achieve consensus mutual understanding and defense attack purposes Preferences of strategy use are displayed by gender and roles to reveal the debaters’ communication styles Except for knowledge construction which occurred highly frequently across all variables the frequency of the strategies can be used as the criteria to classify the debaters’ communication styles The debaters’ communication styles may be explained by individual habitual tendency of speaking personalities and contexts The participants’ uses of interruption compared to Lin’s classification (2013) indicate that the macro- and micro- defense attack strategies can better describe the complexities of interruption in a debate contest The findings have contributions to future discourse research on debate and the training of young debaters Distinct conflict management in debate and everyday conversation highlight the nature of the debate The debaters in different roles and genders understand how to strategically use the defense attack strategies in process The defense attack strategy can be applied in constructing a guideline of strategy uses for young debaters and for debate instructors in designing a training program
Date of Award2014 Aug 2
Original languageEnglish
SupervisorShin-Mei Kao (Supervisor)

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