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About the Book

Law for Society: Nature, Functions, and Limits

Kevin M. Clermont, Cornell University
Robert A. Hillman, Cornell University
Sheri Lynn Johnson, Cornell University
Robert S. Summers, Cornell University

2010. 644 pages. ISBN: 978-0-7355-6853-2. 
With Teacher's Manual and this website including PowerPoint slides.


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About the Book

Law for Society: Nature, Functions, and Limits presents an illuminating conceptual framework by examining the five basic legal instruments with which the law addresses societal problems and responds to change in society.  A distinguished and inspired author team breaks down the concept of "law" to reveal its the nature, its problem-solving functions, and the limits on what the law can accomplish.

Law for Society: Nature, Functions, and Limits features:

  • systematic coverage of how the law
      remedies grievances
      punishes wrongs
      administers the regulatory state
      confers public benefits
      facilitates private arrangements
  • detailed descriptions of how the five instruments of law are used to promote safety and equality
  • high-interest key cases and seminal legal writings that highlight the nature of the legal process and legal reasoning
  • a consistent social theme that provides context and insight
  • a General Introduction that sketches the meaning of law and methods of studying it
  • a flexible organization that supports comparative analysis and a variety of teaching goals
  • the Constitution of the United States, for convenient reference, is in the appendix
  • an attractive two-color page design
  • generous teaching support with a detailed Teacher's Manual and PowerPoint slides

As a primary text for any Introduction to Law course or as secondary reading for Political Science, Criminal Justice, or general studies courses, Law for Society: Nature, Functions, and Limits offers an accessible introduction that deepens students' understanding of what the law is, how it works, and what it can and cannot do to remedy the ills and further the goals of society.

Preface / Sample Chapters