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Law and Society

Laws are among the key mechanisms through which human societies regulate themselves. Throughout history, socio-legal institutions have been key to efforts to produce social order, develop economies and improve people’s lives. Law and Society is the study of how legal and social systems are interconnected, how people live and how law is woven into communities. You will gain an understanding of what happens when legal innovations and institutions succeed and when they fail. In the Law and Society program you will learn how law and legal systems affect various aspects of life. The program offers students opportunities to consider and compare legal systems in North America, other parts of the world, and internationally. Although not a “pre-law” program, Law and Society will introduce you to legal, political, philosophical and sociological concepts. You will become familiar with a variety of sources of law and socio-legal policy including statutes, the decisions of courts and administrative tribunals, public policy and advocacy documents, public and governmental debates, and statistical and analytical research. Students will also study the fundamental tensions and principles in Canadian jurisprudential traditions and examine Canadian political and legal history. 

Offered through the department of Sociology, Law and Society draws on many other fields of study, including Law, Anthropology, Economics, History, Business Management, Philosophy, Political Science and Sociology. The interdisciplinary program will give you strong critical and theoretical skills as well as a broad appreciation of socio-legal movements. It emphasizes research and reasoning, inviting you to investigate and reconsider your own beliefs and experiences and to search out, analyze and write about complex legal and social concepts and issues. Law and Society will prepare you to become an engaged and active citizen in local, national and international spheres. 

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