Eristic, from the ancient Greek word eris meaning "wrangle" or "strife", often refers to a type of argument where the participants fight and quarrel without any reasonable goal.

The aim usually is to win the argument and/or to engage in a conflict for the sole purpose of wasting time through arguments, not to potentially discover a true or probable answer to any specific question or topic. Eristic is arguing for the sake of conflict as opposed to the seeking of conflict resolution.[1]

Plato often contrasted this type of argument with the dialectical method and other more reasonable and logical methods (e.g., at Republic 454a). In the dialogue Euthydemus, Plato satirizes eristic.