Workable Peace: Managing Conflict in the Middle East

PON Books
January 2008

Workable Peace is an innovative high school humanities curriculum and professional development project for secondary school classrooms.  Using new teaching materials and strategies, Workable Peace integrates the study of intergroup conflict and the development of critical thinking, problem-solving, and perspective-taking skills into social studies and humanities content.  It gives teachers academically rigorous tools for teaching the major themes and key events of history in ways that enliven the imagination, awaken moral reasoning, and impart social and civic skills that students can use throughout their lives.

Managing Conflict in the Middle East explores the long history of conflict between Zionist and Arabs in the Middle East.  Students are introduced to Zionist and Arab perspectives regarding Jewish immigration to Palestine in the late 1930s.  The Hebron role play, set in 1998, focuses on issues of land, security, and boreders in the West Bank city of Hebron.  To discuss these issues, an EU mediator convenes negotations with representatives of the Israeli and Palestinian governments, the Israeli military and Palestinian police (who share responsibility for keeping peace in the city), and the Jewish settlers and militant Muslims who have been clashing in Hebron.