Whether polemic helps to establish truth?
Polemic are a dispute at discussion, clarification of some problems, questions (Ojegov`s dictionary) .
A what you know about polemic as a research method?
I prepared the report on the subject " for a seminar recently; Polemic as method of research of control systems “. Chose such subject because most it was interesting to learn why researchers need such method as dispute. It turned out that in researches of control systems (in my case) and in general socially - economic processes categorically it is impossible to do without polemic.
For a start we will be defined that I understand as polemic. In the textbook of E. M. Korotkov on which I am based, given such definition: polemic is the reasoned discussion in group of researchers of problems and ways of their decision. It is necessary not to defend the opinion and to analyse hypotheses from the different points of view and to try to come to the most exact and full understanding of a question.
Polemic allows to turn assumptions into beliefs, helping to find additional arguments, to perfect formulations, to strengthen positions and thoughts, to concretize recommendations, to strengthen proofs. But positive sides of polemic only then will be effective for researchers when they follow certain rules.
1. Aspiration to understand the opponent in his motives, a position, arguments.
2. To avoid absolute denial of correctness of opinions, being skeptical about them and analytically, but it is benevolent.
3. To have the accurate purpose of polemic and to carry out it in questions, statements, arguments.
4. To estimate conclusions, offers, thoughts, but not their author. To be respectful to the opponent.
5. In expression of the position to aspire in the maximum degree to the clearness, argumentativeness, concreteness and clarity.
6. To define concepts which express thoughts and on which proofs are under construction.
7. By means of questions to specify positions, to motivate additional arguments.
8. To avoid operating by opinion of authorities and officials.
9. In research polemic it is impossible to establish truth by opinion of the majority, vote.
All these rules can be consolidated to the following thought: polemic is effective only when not debaters, but the researchers regarding as of paramount importance not personal interests, but aspiration to get to the truth participate in it.
Very often discussion of problems rolls down to “ to common sense “ to the proof desirable, but not objective. The researcher has to operate with concepts of probability and prove probability degree. One more possible danger - discussion on “ to vicious circle “. It is very important to seize that opportunity when polemic turns into conversation of deafs. It completely depends on researchers.
Recently more and more popular are methods of collective discussion. To take at least the growing popularity “ brainstorming “. However polemic pursues a bit different aims. She places emphasis on discussion of problems and already stated ideas. Not for nothing say that in dispute the truth is born. But not any dispute happens prolific. The result of polemic depends not on the fact of discussion, and on researchers and their readiness for constructive dialogue.
Let all your disputes will be only useful and constructive!