Stories and workshops to get you arguing with your family, friends, and community. And that’s a good thing!
In our increasingly polarized world, how can you engage with people who think very differently from you? And what can you learn from these often charged conversations?
Stories for the Sake of Argument features 24 short stories specially designed to get your family and friends arguing about some of the thorniest issues facing Israel and the Jewish world today.
Each story tackles a different issue, sets up a powerful clash of values, and leaves you with an unresolved dilemma to discuss. The guiding questions accompanying the stories invite you to let go of binary thinking and discover a more nuanced way to connect and communicate.
Through this groundbreaking book, you’ll:
Develop the tools to talk with people with whom you disagree
Explore and grapple with other viewpoints and voices
Deepen your understanding of yourself, others, and Israel
Whatever stage of life you’re at, Stories for the Sake of Argument will invigorate the way you think and talk about Israel.
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"This book represents the creative handicraft of two master educators, who use the format of stories and the processing of narratives to help shape more dignified, enduring, respectful and meaningful conversations across differences. This book calls for interactive wrestling and deep engagement. Stories for the Sake of Argument has an important place in homes, classrooms, boardrooms and libraries world-over."
Dr. Erica Brown,
Author and Yeshiva University’s Director of Sacks-Herenstein Center for Values and Leadership
One of the biggest challenges in education is apathy among learners.
Many educators tend to stay clear of divisive issues so as not to cause unwanted conflict. But whether we like it or not, the topics of greatest interest today are also the most contentious.
That's where For the Sake of Argument comes in. We lean into the arguments that arise when complexities are addressed rather than shying away from them.
We’re a new, non-partisan, educational initiative founded and directed by Abi Dauber Sterne and Robbie Gringras, with generous support from the Jim Joseph Foundation.
By harnessing the energy and passion contained in healthy arguments, we seek to create deep educational engagement.
In our first year, and in our first book, we have chosen to focus on Israel. We’ve delved into the myriad disagreements that exist within Jewish educational and communal settings concerning Israel’s history, policies, and government.
What began as Stories for the Sake of Argument has evolved into a broader project with a significant impact.
So far, we've piloted the stories and trained over 1,800 education professionals on how to lead arguments in educational settings. We’re now continuing to train educators while researching, developing, and fine-tuning our pedagogical approach and resources.
We'll be sharing our latest insights, resources, and findings with you as we go along. Stay in the loop by signing up for our monthly newsletter below.
“Today’s society shies away from disagreement, but Jewish tradition strongly encourages it as a way of reaching understanding, if not consensus,”
Liven up your inbox with our latest research, reflections, and resources.
Step into the eye-opening, thought-provoking, and bridge-building world of healthy arguments. We offer a range of workshops that help you communicate across differences while deepening your understanding of Israel. In the process, you’ll also learn more about yourself and the people around you.
Interested in holding an argument circle for your group, organization, school, or community? Our skilled facilitators run vibrant argument circles tailored to your needs, using the stories as inspiration. These circles can be held online or in person.
An interactive 90-minute workshop where you'll discover our latest educational tools and frameworks. Using fun and quirky short stories from Stories for the Sake of Argument, we'll delve into the complexities of Israel and learn how to tackle thorny subjects like the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, religion and State, and the place of refugees in our homeland.
A 4-part series to help you master the art of engaging with contentious issues. Designed for educators and community professionals, this series provides the materials, tools, and training you need to harness the power of healthy arguments in your practice of Israel and Jewish education.
In a culture where Israel is screamed about but rarely discussed, where online disagreements are as passionate as they are shallow, and where we silo rather than address our differences, Healthy Arguments are in great demand. We’ll work closely with you to integrate Stories for the Sake of Argument and its approach into your curriculum.
While Will Storr targets novelists and other writers to help them construct better stories, Abi read this book as presenting a metaphor for understanding why each of us believes what we believe, and why we fight against what we don’t believe.
Robbie reflects on the development of the social self in the age of social media.
Introducing a new series of blog posts in which we share what we've been reading as we develop a pedagogy of argument. Our first installment focuses on "Conflicted: How Productive Disagreements Lead to Better Outcomes" by Ian Leslie.
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“From family tensions to communal and national schisms, Stories for the Sake of Argument offers a wise blueprint for navigating one of the great challenges of our time: how to conduct passionate but respectful disagreements. At a time when democracies are unraveling and fellow citizens increasingly perceive each other as enemies, this book is a gift.”
Yossi Klein Halevi,
Senior fellow, Shalom Hartman Institute, author, Letters to My Palestinian Neighbor