Facts may indeed be stubborn things, but they are also subject to the vicissitudes of time and nature’s forces.Our thinking about those facts, and their significance to us, is often refracted through the lenses of culture, cognition, and bias.It’s like looking at the entire world of disputes through the cardboard tube left over after the toilet paper’s been used up.
Many disputes that lend themselves well to mediation lie beyond the reach of the shadow of the courthouse.
But in a world where ever fewer people care about, or even understand the nature of, fiction, where readers and viewers demand facts and reality, outdated books of supposedly impartial information can be a useful reminder of just how slippery facts are — as unreliable as the most unreliable narrator.
Also pondering the phenomenon of the mutability of factual knowledge is Mesofacts, a web site devoted to facts that change slowly over time – whether the population of the world or the number of new elements added to the Periodic Table since you graduated from high school.
However, to have that approach become a matter of habit—or a rut—conditioned by the context in which the dispute is presented often precludes the use of other more creative strategies and techniques…“Legal mediation” is distinguished from other kinds of mediation, suggesting that those outside law could not understand the nature of conflicts that arise in the legal context and that conflicts that occur in the shadow of the court actions are predominantly legal.
How narrowly we perceive the range of mediatable disputes.