1st Edition

Mediation & Popular Culture

By Jennifer Schulz Copyright 2020
    148 Pages
    by Routledge

    148 Pages
    by Routledge

    This book examines mediation topics such as impartiality, self-determination and fair outcomes through popular culture lenses. Popular television shows and award-winning films are used as illustrative examples to illuminate under-represented mediation topics such as feelings and expert intuition, conflicts of interest and repeat business, and deception and caucusing. The author also employs research from Australia, Belgium, Canada, China, Denmark, France, Germany, Greece, India, Israel, Japan, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Singapore, South Africa, Spain, the United Kingdom and the United States of America to demonstrate that real and reel mediation may have more in common than we think. How mediation is imagined in popular culture, compared to how professors teach it and how mediators practise it, provides important affective, ethical, legal, personal and pedagogical insights relevant for mediators, lawyers, professors and students, and may even help develop mediator identity.

    List of figures


    1 Mediation & popular culture

    2 Impartiality, self-determination and fair outcomes

    3 Feelings and expert intuition

    4 Conflicts of interest and repeat business

    5 Deception and caucusing

    6 Popular culture and mediator identity



    Jennifer L. Schulz is Professor in the Faculty of Law, University of Manitoba, Canada, and Fellow of the Winkler Institute for Dispute Resolution, Osgoode Hall Law School, Toronto. She is the author of many articles and chapters on mediation and co-editor of A Transnational Study of Law & Justice on TV (2016) and Ethnicity, Gender, and Diversity: Law and Justice on TV (2018). Dr. Schulz has won four teaching awards, a national ADR service award, and is a federal and international research grant recipient. She has been a visiting scholar at the University of Cambridge; Birkbeck, University of London; the University of Toronto; and a research fellow at the Program on Negotiation at Harvard University.

    In Mediation and Popular Culture, Jennifer L. Schulz weaves together insights from how mediation is portrayed in TV and movies, prodigious research on mediation practice, ethics, and theory, and a discussion of the practical choices that mediators face every day of their working lives. The result is an enjoyable, thought provoking, creative and very useful discussion of the defining characteristics of mediation. For mediators who want to understand the gap between what the public expects of us and what we actually deliver, this is essential reading.
    Bernie Mayer, Ph.D., Professor of Conflict Studies, Negotiation and Conflict Resolution (NCR) Program, Creighton University. Author of The Conflict Paradox and The Dynamics of Conflict.

    Dr. Schulz has written an interesting and impressive book. Mediation & Popular Culture brings together theory, practice, gender insights and popular culture in order to highlight the differences between how we imagine mediation and how it is actually practiced. I highly recommend it.
    Deborah M. Kolb, Ph.D.. Deloitte Ellen Gabriel Professor for Women in Leadership (Emerita); Co-founder of the Ford Foundation funded Center for Gender in Organizations at Simmons College School of Management; and Co-Director of the Negotiations in the Workplace Project at the Program on Negotiation at Harvard Law School

    Mediation & Popular Culture provides a valuable lens to understand messages about mediation sent to the general public, which can affect how disputants react to mediation in real life. Analyzing films and television programs, empirical and other scholarly literature, and her own experience as a mediator, Jennifer L. Schulz shows that both the popular media and the espoused theory of the mediation field distort the reality of mediation. In doing so, she presents a thoughtful, interesting and more realistic portrait of mediation as it actually is practiced.
    John Lande, Isidor Loeb Professor Emeritus, University of Missouri School of Law