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|This book introduces the essentials of law and legal systems in a lively, accessible, and stimulating manner. It includes jargon-free explanations of legal terms and concepts, and court procedures and judgements. It also explains the workings of the legal system, and how it unifies a vast framework as widespread as the punishment of crime, the enforcement of contracts, and the protection of personal freedoms. The book explores not only the state of law today, but looks at its history, and also its future, as globalization and rapid advances in technology place increasing strain on our current legal system. |
Further, it looks beyond domestic law to examine how international law is used to settle disputes between states, punish malevolent dictators, and create a better world.
Law underlies our society - it protects our rights, imposes duties on each of us, and establishes a framework for the conduct of almost every social, political, and economic activity. The punishment of crime, compensation of the injured, and the enforcement of contracts are merely some of the tasks of a modern legal system. It also strives to achieve justice, promote freedom, and protect our security.
The result is a system that, while it touches all of our daily lives, is properly understood by only a few, with its impenetrable jargon, obsolete procedures, and interminable stream of Byzantine statutes and judgments of the courts.
This clear, jargon-free Very Short Introduction aims to redress that balance, as it introduces the essentials of law and legal systems in a lively, accessible, and stimulating manner. Explaining the main concepts, terms, and processes of the legal system, it focuses on the Western tradition (the common law and the civil law), but also includes discussions of other legal systems, such as customary law and Islamic law. And it looks to the future too, as globalization and rapid advances in technology place increasing strain on our current legal system.
1: Law's roots
2: Law's branches
3: Law and morality
6: The future of the law
Legal sources: A very short explanation
References, Cases Discussed, and Further Reading