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PostPosted: Fri Aug 19, 2016 4:18 am 
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Joined: Fri Aug 19, 2016 2:22 am
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I recently moved from R6 to R2, and while I was commenting to an alumni on the almost to the point of contradicting theory (specifically neg. theory), between what the instructors (from different regions) had said at each camp. She mentioned she noticed a difference as well in those regards, which made me wonder if other debaters found this to be the case as well, and if there was specific differences in theory/speaking style that you have seen as a trend from other regions.

Are there regional differences or are they all very similar if not the same?

Would love to hear your thoughts--

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PostPosted: Fri Aug 19, 2016 5:44 pm 
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Location: I'm not lost! I'm locationally challenged. -John M. Ford
Tons of differences, but they're not necessarily all that important or contradictory--they mostly just differ in what they emphasize. Negatives are the focus of a lot of these differences... There's one set of camps here down south which advocates more of a philosophical opposition to the aff, involving running criteria every round. There are a lot of minor side effects to that: for instance, more people are more adverse to topical CPs than they were 5 years ago before these camps got popular.

As for speaking style, the south tends to focus a lot more on politeness, the north tends to be more okay with a more matter-of-fact tone.

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PostPosted: Sun Aug 21, 2016 3:21 pm 
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As far as LD goes, I have noticed that many other regions had a very strong emphasis on always winning the value, having listed applications that you debate formally throughout the round, all with the concept that you win or lose on this basis. Whereas R4 tends towards more of an abstract resolution-based theory of LD, and those other conventions are more likely to be considered accessory.

To the best of my knowledge, this shift in R4 occurred primarily during the idealsim/pragmatism year. That year literally every one of the top debaters I can recall attended the same debate camp and came away with some similar analysis on "how" to think about LD. There was a lot of disagreement between "old school" and "new school" debaters at the time.

I'm not really sure where other specific regions fall on this - I'm sure there are plenty of other distinctions and differences - I just remember that at national opens or at nationals noticing that other regions approached LD more formally (always win the value and the applications) and less abstract (logical arguments about the resolution).


....and of course all of what everyone is saying here is a generalization. If you are judged by someone from a different part of the country, it's good to think through what different expectations they may have. But I would advise thinking up some questions to help you know how they individually think about the issues, instead of relying on a stereotype of how they "ought" to think based on where they are from.

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Caleb Smith
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Cog Debate

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PostPosted: Tue Aug 23, 2016 5:17 am 
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Southern judges love John Adams quotes. 100%.
If you have a judge from the south, quote John Adams - you will win. 100%.

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PostPosted: Tue Aug 23, 2016 6:58 pm 
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Thank you guys for all responding! : )

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