Monday, July 09, 2007

Summary and assessment of Craig-Jesseph

This is the summary of the 1997 Craig-Jesseph debate that we will be seeing in PHI 101. It has a link to the print-out of a previous debate between the two participants that was held the previous year at North Carolina State.

8 comments:

Frank Walton said...

I heard that Dr. Craig said this was one of the toughest debates he had. In your opinion who did you think won?

Victor Reppert said...

Bill always comes across more smooth and polished in all his debates, so style points always go to him. The atheists Lowder and Lippard both thought it was a tie, but to me I think Craig narrowly won. Craig actually dropped his religious experience argument because he ran out of time, and I didn't think he was strong on the argument from evil. But I liked Craig better on all the other arguments. I'm a theist though, of course. Jesseph often puts students off because he talks so fast. But that is partly due to his policy debating background from college.

Debates are valuable pedogogically for getting a lot of the pros and cons of theism out on the table. Their weakness is that the issues are usually not pursued far enough to really show who has a good case and who doesn't/

Hallq said...

Debates are valuable pedogogically for getting a lot of the pros and cons of theism out on the table. Their weakness is that the issues are usually not pursued far enough to really show who has a good case and who doesn't.

I really cringe at the syle that's often used in these debates. Craig as a rule uses five arguments, which I've always thought is too much, but he's not the worst offender: when Lowder debated Phil Fernandes, they Lowder had 8 arguments and Fernandes had 6! These debates would work so much better if the participants would limit themselves to 3 or, at most, 4 arguments.

Victor Reppert said...

Chris, I agree. I think this goes back to college-style debating, where you win as much on "points dropped" as on the legitimacy of argumentation. I think that is why my response to the Carrier-Wanchick debate a few months back made everyone unhappy.

Jason said...

Didn't make _me_ unhappy. {g}

But then, I'm one of those people who think a debate (per se) should be restricted to _one_ topic. (And I don't mean one really broad topic.)

Hallq said...

Yes... the debates I've read and seen on the resurrection of Jesus work much better.

Jason said...

{wry g} Even _that_ topic is far too broad for a debate, as far as I'm concerned.

Hallq said...

By the way, Victor, thanks for posting a fresh link to this. I'd seen it before, but there were some things I missed (like the quote from Geisler at the end-that was a treat!)