Law and Society: An Introduction / Edition 1

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Law and Society is written to be highly accessible to the average undergraduate student. This multidisciplinary text draws on the work of anthropologists, historians, law professors, political scientists, psychologists, and sociologists to clearly outline how law is an essential social institution that shapes society, while also being shaped by it.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780131946606
  • Publisher: Taylor & Francis
  • Publication date: 2/21/2008
  • Series: MySearchLab Series 15% off Series
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 352
  • Sales rank: 211,512
  • Product dimensions: 5.90 (w) x 8.90 (h) x 0.70 (d)

Meet the Author

Steven E. Barkan is professor of sociology at the University of Maine, where he has taught since 1979. His teaching and research interests include criminology, sociology of law, and social movements. He is the 2008-2009 president of the Society for the Study of Social Problems and had previously served as a member of the SSSP Board of Directors, as chair of its Law and Society Division and Editorial and Publications Committee, and as an advisory editor of its journal,Social Problems. He has served on the student paper award committees of the Crime, Law, and Deviance and Sociology of Law sections of the American Sociological Association. Professor Barkan has written many journal articles dealing with topics such as racial prejudice and death penalty attitudes, views on police brutality, political trials, and feminist activism. These articles have appeared in the American Sociological Review, Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion, Journal of Crime and Justice, Journal of Research in Crime and Delinquency, Justice Quarterly, Social Forces, Social Problems, Sociological Forum, Sociological Inquiry, and other journals. For Prentice Hall, he is the author of Criminology: A Sociological Understanding, 4/e and of Law and Society: An Introduction (both coming out in early 2008).

Professor Barkan welcomes comments from students and faculty about these books. They may email him at or send regular mail to: Department of Sociology, 5728 Fernald Hall, University of Maine, Orono, Maine 04469—5728.

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Table of Contents





Chapter 1: The Social Nature and Significance of Law

Chapter 2: Understanding Law and Society

Chapter 3: Families and Types of Law

Chapter 4: Law and Dispute Processing

Chapter 5: Law and Social Control

Chapter 6: Law and Social Change

Chapter 7: Law and Inequality

Chapter 8: The Legal Profession

Chapter 9: Courts and Juries


*Each chapter ends with Summary and Key Terms

Chapter 1: The Social Nature and Significance of Law

The Significance of Law for Society and for Ourselves

The Study of Law and Society

Law and Justice

The Plan of the Book

Chapter 2: Understanding Law and Society

What is Law?

Explanations of Law

Chapter 3: Families and Types of Law

Families of Law

Types of Law in the United States

Special Topics

Chapter 4: Law and Dispute Processing

The Disputing Process

Explaining Dispute Processing Decisions

Dispute Processing in the United States

Chapter 5: Law and Social Control

Law, Deterrence, and Incapacitation

Special Topics in Law and Social Control

Law, Morality, and Consensual Crime

Chapter 6: Law and Social Change

The Impact of Social Change on Law: Law as Dependent Variable

The Impact of Law on Social Change: Law as Independent Variable

Law and Social Movements

Chapter 7: Law and Inequality

Law and Inequality in the American Past

Race and Ethnicity

Contemporary Evidence

Race and Ethnicity

Chapter 8: The Legal Profession

Images and Perceptions of Lawyers

History of the Legal Profession

The U.S. Legal Profession Today

Law School and Legal Education

Chapter 9: Courts and Juries

Criminal Courts in the United States

The Jury in Democratic Society

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