What Is Law?


Law is a set of rules created by the state which forms a framework to ensure a peaceful society. If the laws are broken, sanctions can be imposed.

The legal system covers many areas, from criminal law to civil law and from contract law to medical jurisprudence. It is a rich source of scholarly study and has many implications for the economy, politics, history and culture of societies. The law is also a source of controversy, with arguments over whether it should be morally right or wrong and the nature of justice.

While it is difficult to give a precise definition of law, there are certain principles which can be identified. One principle is that the law must be based on a set of objective facts which can be tested in court, and not on subjective beliefs or intuitions. Another principle is that the law must be interpreted in a way that is consistent with other laws and principles of justice, such as fairness and equality. A third principle is that the law must be enforceable by mechanisms which are clear and transparent, so that there is an adequate level of public accountability. Max Weber reshaped thinking on this issue, arguing that modern military, policing and bureaucratic power over ordinary citizens’ daily lives poses special problems for accountability which older writers such as Locke or Montesquieu did not foresee.

There are many different ways of defining law, and different countries have their own systems of law. Some have a central legislative body that codifies laws, while others use a common law system that relies on a historical succession of legal decisions made by judges. There are also a variety of different fields of law, from property law to family law.

It is possible to create a career as a lawyer, a judge or even just a legal administrator by studying law at university and then working for a large corporation or local council. This is becoming increasingly popular, particularly in Britain where the job market has been flooded with graduates from universities across the country.

In addition to careers in the legal profession, there are a number of jobs in government and other organisations that deal with issues relating to law. These include legal research, policy and advocacy, lobbying and consultancy, amongst others.

There are also a number of organisations that are dedicated to the reform of the law, including campaign groups and think tanks. Some of these focus on specific topics, such as human rights or land reform. Others have a more general focus and aim to promote a particular view of the law. Articles in this category may therefore be more technical and could take a stand on controversial changes to legislation. They are also more likely to include footnotes and other citations in order to demonstrate their authority and seriousness. This is particularly true of articles that are published in the field of legal reform.