Prof. Costell – Philosophy
May 1, 2015
PRAXIS PROJECT: Clear Thinking
1) List three examples from each week of a time you asked for clarity and then summarized what someone said. For each, give the date, describe the situation (who was involved), what they said or wrote that was unclear, what their clarification was (or,if it was written, how you interpreted it based on the principle of charity), and how they reacted when you summarized.
4/21- My best friend, Siera, was talking to me about how she thought her boyfriend, Nick, was cheating on her. What she said that was unclear was “He never actually cheated, he just strayed from me.” When she said the word strayed, I figured she meant that he got distant and didn’t like being around her as much. When I asked her to clarify, she told me that she meant her boyfriend went to talk to other girls and spent his time around them. I told her that I thought she meant that he just grew distant and didn’t like her anymore. Her reaction was calm and she understood how the misunderstanding came about. She continued to talk about how sad she was in the relationship
4/22- My dad and I were discussing the police brutality that’s been happening lately. My dad said, “they’ll shoot every dumbass with guns.” He clarified that police will shoot any person that has a gun that is threatening the officer. I summarized it as an officer is willing to shoot any person that threatens them that has a weapon. My dad said that’s exactly what he meant and was glad I understood correctly.
4/23- My friend Siera and I, which I have mentioned before, we’re planning on staying in this night to lay around and watch TV. She said “there’s nothing on TV.” Now, Siera is a girl that is addicted to TV shows and has seen every show on Netflix, not even kidding. She clarified that there weren’t any good shows playing. Knowing her, I wasn’t sure if nothing was the title of the TV show, or if she actually meant nothing good was playing. When I summarized it she laughed at my assumption because she knows that I was making a connection with the amount of TV she watches.
4/27- For my dad’s birthday dinner, my mom brought out a cake for the table. After we each had a slice, my dad said “I’ve never had a cake like that before!” Because he really didn’t say much while he was eating it, I wasn’t sure if he meant that it was good or bad. He further clarified that the chocolate frosting was the perfect flavor and the cake was very moist. I thought that he meant the cake didn’t taste good. He was rather astonished at my interpretation of what he said because he thought everyone loved the cake as well.
4/28- I was at my friend Taylor’s house and she has a Native American Wolf dog, a huge pain to take care of. She told me about how this one time they came back from a forest preserve and had to wash her dog. She said “I had to give my dog a bath covered in mud.” She clarified that the dog was covered in mud, and not her. I summarized it as if the dog came home very muddy from the forest preserve, but I thought at first that she meant she was really muddy. She thought my initial clarification was a little weird because she knows to not run in parts where the preserve is muddy, but her dog doesn’t.
4/29- My brother and his wife came over to my house after their trip to New York City. My brother mentioned how he went to the top of the Empire State Building and “saw a guy walking his dog with a telescope.” He clarified that he was the one using the telescope, instead of the man having a telescope in his hand. He reacted by laughing at my initial interpretation because he thought it was kind of random that a guy would be walking around with a telescope.
5/4- My good friend Nick drives a brand new Dodge pick-up truck and usually drives it near forests or open fields to enjoy the scenery. He was telling me stories about how many deer run near the roads all the time. He said “I always see deer in my truck.” I gave him the