This law and society reader taps a rich and diverse literature to compare and contrast the legal experience of many different cultures and nations. Drawing on a variety of methodological approaches, the selections allow students to evaluate whether there are general patterns that explain how legal systems work (or fail to work) and how these patterns relate to the structural and cultural facts of society. Every country, of course, has its own legal system, and no two systems are the same.
But in teaching law and society, texts have focused nearly exclusively on American readings to the neglect of comparative and international work. This reader fills an obvious gap. It recognizes that law is increasingly global and cross-national, and shows how law relates to society in different times and places, the world over.