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Second, the ones that will stand out will be the very best ones and the very worst ones. Only the most compelling one or two arguments should be developed.
He isn’t trying to rewrite the whole discipline, he’s criticising just one paper.
But he wants us to know why this matters: we’re going to look at a tiny piece in a big puzzle, but Hare has the whole puzzle in mind, and expects us to as well.
Third, including many different arguments will result in spreading yourself too thinly.
It is far better to cover less ground in greater depth than to range further afield in a superficial manner. In order to produce a good philosophy paper, it is first necessary to think very carefully and clearly about your topic.
For better or for worse, your paper is all that is available. The responsibility for ensuring the accurate communication of ideas falls on the shoulders. Can he or she read your entire paper through without getting stuck on a single sentence? In general terms, do not be content simply to get your paper out of your hands. Clear writing reflects clear thinking; and that, after all, is what you are really trying to show.
You must say exactly what you mean and in a way that minimizes the chances of being misunderstood. There is no such thing as a piece of good philosophical writing that is unclear, ungrammatical, or unintelligible. A poor writing style militates against both of these. It does not present the latest findings of tests or experiments. Above all, it means that there must be a specific point that you are trying to establish - something that you are trying to convince the reader to accept - together with grounds or justification for its acceptance.And it does not present your personal feelings or impressions. Before you start to write your paper, you should be able to state exactly what it is that you are trying to show. It simply will not do to have a rough idea of what you want to establish.In a recent article, ‘How to derive ‘ought’ from ‘is’, Professor J. Searle attempts a feat which many before him have thought to perform.Quine’s paper is a bomb-shell, Hare’s paper is going to be like a technician fine-tuning a complicated piece of machinery.Good writing is the product of proper training, much practice, and hard work.The following remarks, though they will not guarantee a top quality paper, should help you determine where best to direct your efforts.I offer first some general comments on philosophical writing, and then some specific "do"s and "don't"s.One of the first points to be clear about is that a philosophical essay is quite different from an essay in most other subjects.Like most important philosophical questions, this one has reached the stage at which its discussion is bound to proceed piecemeal, in terms of particular examples, arguments and counter-arguments.This article is intended as a contribution to one such controversy.