Bristol Festival of Ideas: How Can Arguments Bring Us Together?

Bristol Festival of Ideas: How Can Arguments Bring Us Together?


The journalist and consultant Ian Leslie argues that most of us never learn how to air our differences in a way that leads to progress.

Insight and empathy spring from the clash of different perspectives. In a world where it’s easier than ever for people to share their opinions, we should be reaping the benefits of diverse views. Instead, we too often find ourselves mired in hostility or – worse – avoiding disagreement altogether.

What is the secret of happy relationships? How do companies build collaborative cultures? What lies behind some of the greatest scientific and creative breakthroughs? The surprising answer is: conflict.

Leslie draws on lessons from experts in tough conversations: interrogators, hostage negotiators, divorce mediators, diplomats and addiction counsellors. He tells inspiring stories of productive disagreements, from the invention of the aeroplane to the success of the Rolling Stones, and combines them with insights from the science of human communication.

We all need to learn to disagree better, whether at the level of society, workplace or home.

In conversation with Margaret Heffernan.

6.00pm - 6.45pm

£0 - £8

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