Picture the scene. You’re in the zone, having a discussion you feel strongly about. Perhaps it’s your position on climate change, or your (justified) preference for dogs over cats. You deliver a passionate, beautifully constructed argument. And then you hear it: “Okay, but just playing devil’s advocate here. . .” Of all the ways people use rhetoric, the position of devil’s advocate must be among the most frustrating. It is a title assumed by those who want to advance an argument they are unwilling to endorse outright. In theory, this can be a good thing: Our position in a debate should be decided by facts, rather than the reverse. Thus, someone with little or no personal investment in their own argument may be able to provide valuable insight. This story is from Kinfolk Issue Forty-Four Buy Now Related Stories Arts & Culture Issue 50 Close Knit Close Knit: Meet the weavers keeping traditional Egyptian tapestrymaking alive. Arts & Culture Issue 50 The Old Gays Inside a Californian TikTok “content house” of a very different stripe. Arts & Culture Issue 50 New Roots The Palestinian art and agriculture collective sowing seeds of community. Arts & Culture Issue 50 Angela Trimbur An all-out tour de force. Arts & Culture Issue 50 Peace & Quiet In the UK, a centuries-old Quaker meeting house encourages quiet reflection. Arts & Culture Issue 50 Free Wheelers On the road with London’s Velociposse Cycling Club.