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If Portia were a Mediator: An Inquiry into Justice In Mediation

Hyman, Jonathan M.
June 4, 2015

Source: (2002) Clinical Law Review. 9: 157.

The authors of this paper characterize mediation as being oriented toward justice, not as a flight from justice, as some might construe it. However, they assert, justice in mediation is different from justice in adjudication. Unlike a judge, jury, or arbitrator, a mediator does not have responsibility for determining an appropriate remedy or just distribution. The parties to the dispute have that responsibility. Rather, the mediator must attend to the process, help the parties recognize the legitimacy of different perspectives on justice, and work towards a resolution the fits with the parties’ views of a fair and acceptable outcome. On these bases, the authors explore justice issues in Shakespeare’s The Merchant of Venice, analyze resolutions in four different mediations, and consider the importance and relevance of all of this for law school education.


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