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Dispute Resolution, Alternative

Across the common law world during the last two decades of the twentieth century, a shared, distinctive feature has been a growing rhetoric in support of “settlement” over the whole spectrum of civil and criminal dispute institutions. Quickly realized in widespread projects of institutional design, this transformation followed upon a long period during which, as the nation-state solidified, courts had acquired an apparently secure dominance as authoritative agents of thirdparty decision and lawyers had successfully presented themselves as indispensable partisan advisers and champions in the pursuit of adversarial litigation. Yet over an astonishingly short period, the traditional identities of “court” and “lawyer” came into question, and the “mediator” reemerged as a major if ill-defined figure. Much of the action associated with this seismic shift advanced ...

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