Argument Ninja: Critical Thinking as a Martial Art
About This Show
The Argument Ninja podcast is dedicated to helping you improve your skills at rational persuasion. Let philosopher Kevin deLaplante introduce you to a unique approach to critical thinking, inspired by martial arts training principles, that combines logic and argumentation with the latest research on the psychology of persuasion and belief.
Most Recent Episode
023 - The Argument Ninja Difference
I’m not the only one talking about the failings of traditional schooling. I’m not the only academic talking about developing online courses for the public that they can’t find anywhere else. I’m not even the only one using the language of martial arts in this context. (e.g. Jordan Peterson, Thaddeus Russell, Mixed Mental Arts ....)
But I realize that even among my audience, it may not be clear how the Argument Ninja Academy is supposed to stand out -- how it’s different from what I’m seeing in these other projects.
In this episode I want to talk about these differences. I want to talk about what makes the Argument Ninja Academy special.
There are three areas that I can point to.
The first is the martial arts inspiration for this project. It goes way deeper than just borrowing the language of belt levels.
The second is a unique approach to teaching and learning critical thinking and persuasion skills.
And the third is the instructional design of the project, and the team I’m assembling to help make this a reality. The skill set they bring to the Argument Ninja Academy is powerful.
We’re going to talk about all of this today on the podcast. Specifically, I’m going to talk about
- what it means to be a martial art
- the difference between bujutsu and budo, the Japanese terms for martial art and martial path, or martial way, respectively.
- the martial context of critical thinking, and why this language isn’t just metaphorical
- my own relationship to the martial arts, and the original inspiration for the Argument Ninja Academy
- what teaching and learning look like, when you focus on skill development rather than rote learning
- what I’ve learned from my team partners about thinking clearly and thinking big.