Writing About Law

Law shapes politics, economics and history in many ways and serves as a mediator of relations between people. It embodies moral values and social norms, sets standards of behavior, protects individual rights, provides a sense of security and fairness, promotes innovation and creativity, and serves as a source of inspiration and academic inquiry for legal historians, philosophers, economists, sociologists and lawyers.

There are two general types of law: the law of nations (international law), which applies to all states, and the law of the land, which is specific to each state or territory. International law includes such issues as human rights, trade, crime and justice, while domestic law deals with issues such as property, contracts and criminal justice. In addition, there are some areas of law that are both public and private. These include property, tort and contracts. The most important areas of law are the constitution, which defines the rights and duties of citizens; the executive branch, through decrees and regulations; and the judicial branch, through courts and precedent.

Most legal systems are based on the law of nations, but there is still considerable variation in the nature of laws and their application across jurisdictions. This is because law is both a product of culture and a vehicle for social change. The law may be created by a collective legislature, producing statutes; or it may be established by individual judges through their decisions and case law, as is the case in common law jurisdictions. Religious law, such as Sharia law in Islam, has also been influential in some societies.

The legal profession is diverse and consists of those who advise clients on legal matters, those who are involved in the adjudication of disputes, or those who write legal articles for publication. Legal education is intensive and often takes a long time to complete. Many lawyers are self-employed, although others work in corporations, the government, academia and other fields.

Writing an article in the field of law requires a thorough understanding of the subject matter, as well as a certain amount of research to ensure that all relevant facts are included and that the author’s own feelings are not reflected in the work. An excellent legal article will be clear, concise, and objective. It will also be free of bias. This is particularly important if it appears in a journal that is read by a broad range of people, including scholars and members of the judiciary. In addition to the general-interest law review, most schools have a specialty journal that publishes works on particular aspects of the law. These are available on a number of online databases, such as HeinOnline and LexisNexis. Some also have their own websites.