I originally became interested in the law and society nature of this research project through a law school and then graduate political science educational background. This led me to consider courts in a number of settings, including the popular tribunals in Cuba. Before going to Chile, I wrote a lengthy paper comparing local court institutions in tribal, peasant, urban U.S. and Cuban settings. As that paper was being completed, Allende had been elected and proposals for neighborhood courts were in the air. This coincided with the above interests and with the urban political and Latin American foci I had in graduate school.
Preface -- Introduction -- 1. Popular Origins of Neighborhood Courts -- 2. Barriers to Courts and Attempted Reforms -- 3. Political Perceptions of the Neighborhood Courts -- 4. Operation of the Local Professional Courts -- 5. Formation of People's Neighborhood Courts -- 6. Development of People's Neighborhood Courts -- 7. The Interaction Between Courts, Strategy and Goals, and Residents -- Appendix on Methodology -- Notes -- Bibliography.