POL S 363 A: Law In Society

Meeting Time: 
TTh 9:00am - 10:20am
Location: 
CDH 109
SLN: 
18645
Joint Sections: 
LSJ 363 A

Syllabus Description:

What is law? Why do we follow its dictates and where does it legitimacy come from? How does it impact social, political, and economic relationships? Broadly, this course will consider various ways that law organizes contemporary social life. More specifically, we will consider how law shapes and enables social interaction and disputing; how law constructs differences among people and their actions; and how law mediates and enforces power relationships. Particular attention will be given to three sets of relationships: 1) between legal discourse and legal practice; 2) between legal rights, social identity, and community; and 3) between law and violence. Our inquiries will examine official legal institutions (courts) and actors (judges, police, lawyers, etc.), but the class will emphasize how law works as a complex array of norms, symbols, discourses, and practices that infuse and shape all aspects of social life. In short, we are all legal actors as well as legal subjects. Case materials will focus on the United States but also draw on comparative and global perspectives.

Additional Details:

What is law? Why do we follow its dictates and where does it legitimacy come from? How does it impact social, political, and economic relationships? Broadly, this course will consider various ways that law organizes contemporary social life. More specifically, we will consider how law shapes and enables social interaction and disputing; how law constructs differences among people and their actions; and how law mediates and enforces power relationships. Particular attention will be given to three sets of relationships: 1) between legal discourse and legal practice; 2) between legal rights, social identity, and community; and 3) between law and violence. Our inquiries will examine official legal institutions (courts) and actors (judges, police, lawyers, etc.), but the class will emphasize how law works as a complex array of norms, symbols, discourses, and practices that infuse and shape all aspects of social life. In short, we are all legal actors as well as legal subjects. Case materials will focus on the United States but also draw on comparative and global perspectives.

Catalog Description: 
Inquiry into how law matters in social practice. Examines general theories of law, the workings of legal institutions, and the character of legally constituted practices and relationships in diverse terrains of social life. Instructor: McCann. Offered: jointly with LSJ 363.
Department Requirements: 
American Politics Field
GE Requirements: 
Individuals and Societies (I&S)
Credits: 
5.0
Status: 
Active
Last updated: 
January 10, 2018 - 9:36pm