The Judicial System: A Reference Handbook provides an authoritative and accessible one-stop resource for understanding the U.S. judicial system and its place in the fabric of American government and society.The American judicial system plays a central role in setting and enforcing the legal rules under which the people of the United States live. U.S. courts and laws, though, are complex and often criticized for bias and other alleged shortcomings, The U.S. Supreme Court has emerged as a particular focal point of political partisanship and controversy, both in terms of the legal decisions it hands down and the makeup of its membership. Like other books in the Contemporary World Issues series, this volume comprises seven chapters. Chapter 1 presents the origins, development, and current characteristics of the American judicial system. Chapter 2 discusses problems and controversies orbiting around the U.S. justice system today. Chapter 3 features a wide-ranging collection of essays that examine and illuminate various aspects of the judicial system. Chapter 4 profiles influential organizations and people related to the justice system, and Chapter 5 offers relevant data and documents about U.S. courts. Chapter 6 is composed of an annotated list of important resources, while Chapter 7 offers a useful chronology of events.