Adjudication a public and formal method of conflict resolution that involves the use of the courts

Arbitration a method of conflict resolution in which disputants agree beforehand to the intervention of a neutral third party and to the finality of this party’s decision

Avoidance the sufficient limiting of a relationship with other disputants so that the dispute no longer remains salient

Feuding a state of recurring hostilities between families or groups, instigated by a desire to avenge an offense (insult, injury, death, or deprivation of some sort) against a member of the group

Justiciability the idea that a conflict is in fact a legal issue for which potential court involvement is appropriate


Lumping it inaction in reaction to a dispute

Mediation a common dispute resolution method that involves a neutral and noncoercive third party

Negotiation a two-party arrangement in which disputants try to persuade one another, establish a common ground for discussion, and feel their way by a process of give-and-take toward a settlement

One-shotters litigants who have only occasional recourse to the courts

Repeat players litigants who are engaged in many similar litigations over time

Standing that idea that individuals should be able to bring lawsuits only if their personal legal rights have been violated

Jerold A. Auerbach, Justice without Law? New York: Oxford University Press, 1983. An exceptional review of nonjudicial methods of dispute resolution in U.S. history.

Alexia Georgakopoulos (ed.), The Mediation Handbook: Research, Theory and Practice. New York: Routledge, 2017. An excellent collection of articles on many aspects of mediation for disputes characterizing contemporary times.

Richard J. Lazarus. The Making of Environmental Law. Chicago, IL: University of Chicago Press, 2004. An informative history of the growth of environmental litigation since the 1970s.

Laura Nader (ed.), Law in Culture and Society. Berkeley, CA: University of California Press, 1969. A highly influential collection of articles on dispute resolution in the traditional societies studied by anthropologists.

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