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I personally live in an area where few kritiks are used so my understanding is limited. Also remember that these are just very basic descriptions to give you an idea. For more in-depth debate theory it would be recommended you try another site. The Kritik aka the kritique or critique, was started in the late 80’s as a form of attack that attempts to attack not the policy but the ideology or philosophy that it is based on. Kritiks attack the assumptions that are made in debate. To be valid in a debate the kritik must be shown relevant to the debate and it must be understandable(though rarely is to people new to kritiks). The kritik can be introduced by either team but more often than not the negative team brings it into play.If you would like to see an example Click Here. Below will describe the 5 basic forms a kritik can take.

Priori Kritiks

This simply states that the other team made some terrible mistake (ex. Making evidence up) and that the judge should punish them by making them lose.

Value Prioritization

This is where you tell the judge that your values outweigh the other teams.

Foundation Kritiks

These arguments attempt to broaden the scope of the weighing process by examining assumptions made in the other team’s systems and positions. If a team is unable to defend the assumptions shown to be associated with what they’re planning, then questions of bad assumptions elsewhere.


These type of kritiks are philosophical examinations of the thought processes traditionally used in weighing. Kritiks of realism, normativity, theocentrism, etc, are all attempts to cause a judge to reflect on traditional ways of thinking, with the goal of hopefully convincing the judge to reject the procedure of thinking that the other team used therefore rejecting their argument.


This last type of kritik also examines the underlying nature of assumptions, but results in lobbying to the judge in favor of rejecting weighing processes since there inherent limitations on our ability to understand the full nature of assumptions. So in the end the judge is asked to look at the weighing procedure and conclude that the effort is completely futile.

Here are some general answers used against kritiks.

  • Wrong debate - we are here to debate over policies not philosophies.
  • Kritik premisies are arbitrary - The negative evidence does not show that we use the idoelogy being kritiked. That part of the link is necessary since their authors did not know about our specific plan we proposed in this debate. Therefore we do not fall under the kritik.
  • Kritiks offer no comparison - Even if the kritik is won, there is no policy enacted by the neg. Thus status quo harms unfortunately still exist and are left to continue to exist.
  • No Conclusions - We will never come to a conclusion on such complicated philosophical terms during this debate round. We can not possibly find the true root of all these problems and stop them in years let alone a 1 ˝ hours.
  • Kritiks cannot be weighed - Due to the philosophical nature there is no way to weigh this kritik. Philosophical preferences vary from person to person.
  • We learn nothing - They negative team pulls debate away from the resolution, decreasing research on the topic. The whole point of debate as a class is for learning.
  • No other alternative provided - Since the Neg offers no alternative you have to look at our case. By presenting the 1AC we offer a new policy. You must look at either our case which solves the harms or the status quo, which the kritik will still exist.
  • No Real Impacts - If you vote negative the only thing that will change is that more people will use kritiks. It has no real world impact.
  • Kritik is solvent - Simply reading the kritik the negative team has raised conciousness and there is no need for giving them the ballot.
  • The kritik gives unfair advantage - The kritik can be used on any case therefore they do not need to do any researching while the affirmative team must stop researching policy and start researching any philosophy with an ism.