Cause/Effect and Causal Chain

Cause/Effect and Causal Chain

Cause/Effect and Causal Chain [ CauseEffect.pptx]

For further study Read: Chapter 9, pp.179-198, Strategies for Analytical Writing: Cause and Effect, Strategies for Successful Writing. 5. Chapter 2.3, pp. 109-114, Cause and effect,

Academic Writing: A handbook for International students. 3. See also: Grammar & Composition Claims of cause and effect

Claims of cause and effect: These claims argue that one person, thing, or event caused another thing or event to occur. - What are the causes or series of causes for a particular effect? - What effect(s) will result from

specific causes? What are the causes or series of causes for a particular effect? History: What were the causes of the Seven Day War between Israel and

Egypt? Political Science: What are the reasons why Trump won the 2016 election? Causal Chain This is a complex problem because ultimate causes are immediate causes to

the successive cause. i.e., causal chain i.e., An ultimate cause may be, at any point on the continuum, either an ultimate cause, an immediate cause, or an effect. Causal arguments frequently appear as part

of other arguments Three Categories 1. State cause then examine effects. Effect B Cause A leads to Effect C

Effect D Category 2 2. State the effect then trace back to its causes. Effect D

results from Cause A Cause B Cause C Category 3 3. Arguments are in a straight causal chain.

Cause A leads to Cause B leads to Cause C leads to Effect D Yuval Harari, Sapiens: A brief history of humankind. Toronto, McClelland, 2014. 143 What effect(s) will result from

specific causes? Sociology: Predict the effect(s) that changes in Social Security could have on seniors? The popularity of SUVs in America has caused pollution to increase. Economics: How will the deregulation of

the stock market affect the middle class? Relationship of trust and credit as it affects growth Yuval Harari, Sapiens: A brief history of humankind. Toronto, McClelland, 2014. 309.

Exercise 1 Suggest five sample questions from your major that would require a cause/effect answer. These questions may be required for the weekly assignment.

Types of Causes 1. Immediate Causes - closest to the effect and most apparent 2. Ultimate Causes - Somewhat removed, somewhat hidden Example #1

1. Computer salesman prepared extensively to meet with a client (ultimate) 2. Impressed the client (ultimate) 3. Made very large sale (immediate) 4. Given a promotion (effect)

Example #2 List the possible causes of an upset stomach. Possible answers 1. overeating, 2. flu, 3. allergy (intolerance),

4. spoiled food, 5. nerves, 6. pregnancy, 7. (and many more) Some or all may operate at the same time. Example #3

List the possible effects of higher energy costs. Results of high energy costs

Higher profits for utility companies Fewer sales of appliances Higher prices for other products Higher wages for the workers Development of alternate sources

(competition) Successful Causal Analysis Requires: 1. Sound reasoning 2. Objectivity (free from bias) 3. Willingness to admit other possible causes/

effects 4. Careful development of essay organization Caution One event immediately preceding another does not necessarily cause that event. (superstition) Example:

Every time I see a black cat something bad happens. Today I saw a black cat and I know that something bad will happen. Cause/effect analysis is especially useful in writing about social, economic or political events or problems, as the next

paragraphs illustrate. In the first example, the author looks at the causes of Japanese collectivism (which he elsewhere contrasts with American individualism). Exercise 2

Identify and state what each sentence is doing in the following paragraph. Analyse each sentence to ascertain what each is doing. Handout

(1)The shinkansen or "bullet train" speeds across the rural areas of Japan giving a quick view of cluster after cluster of farmhouses surrounded by rice paddies. (2)This particular pattern did not develop purely by chance, but as a consequence of the technology peculiar to the growing of rice, the staple of the Japanese diet. (3)The growing of rice requires the construction and maintenance of an irrigation system,

something that takes many hands to build. (4)More importantly, the planting and the harvesting of rice can only be done efficiently with the cooperation of twenty or more people. (5)The "bottom line" is that a single family working alone cannot produce enough rice to survive, but a dozen families working together can produce a surplus. (6)Thus the Japanese have had to develop the capacity to work together in harmony, no

Ouchi, Theory Z: How American Business Can Meet matter what the forces of (William disagreement or social disintegration, the Japanese Challenge) in order to survive. In sentences 1, 2, and 6 Ouchi specifies

an effect: the Japanese live close together and work in harmony. The middle sentences explain the conditions that caused this effect: the Japanese depend heavily on rice, and growing rice demands collective effort.

Exercise 3 The following paragraph is a good example of the difference between immediate and ultimate causes. List the links that are used in this and all model paragraphs. How many did you find?

The depression was precipitated by the stock market crash in October 1929, but the actual cause of the crash was the collapse of an unhealthy economy. While the ability of the manufacturing industry to produce consumer goods had increased rapidly, mass purchasing power had remained

relatively static. Most labourers, farmers, and whitecollar workers, therefore, could not afford to buy the automobiles and refrigerators turned out by factories in the 1920s, because their incomes were too low. At the same time, the federal government increased the problem through economic policies that tended to encourage the very rich to over-save.

The depression was precipitated by the stock market crash in October 1929, but the actual cause of the crash was the collapse of an unhealthy economy. While the ability of the manufacturing industry to produce consumer goods had increased rapidly, mass purchasing power had remained relatively static. Most labourers, farmers, and whitecollar workers, therefore, could not afford to buy the

automobiles and refrigerators turned out by factories in the 1920s, because their incomes were too low. At the same time, the federal government increased the problem through economic policies that tended to encourage the very rich to over-save. Discuss, criticize, the soundness of the

reasoning processes in the following sentences. Test to see that there is no possible cause that might have been omitted. 1. The rain always bothers my arthritis. My fingers and ankles ache today because of the rain.

2. I have an allergy to peanuts that causes my throat to swell. I have just eaten a peanut butter sandwich and expect to suffocate soon. 3. Wars are caused by hunger and poverty. These are characteristic of Third World countries, and we shall have war there soon. 4. My love affair with Gladys broke up because she

was jealous of me. Gertrude is jealous and we will breakup soon. Assignment Due Next Week Write a 4 to 5 paragraph essay in which you answer one of the cause/effects questions which you created in Exercise No. 1 above. OR

Go to A list of 40 possible topics here. OR Write about any topic of your choice. Remember.

Correlation does not mean causation! (You should enjoy these!) Beware the Bunny Blame the Pirates

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