Exploring the ‘Legal’ in Socio-Legal Studies

  • David Cowan
  • Daniel Wincott

Part of the Palgrave Macmillan Socio-Legal Studies book series (PSLS)

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xi
  2. Exploring the ‘Legal’

    1. David Cowan, Daniel Wincott
      Pages 1-31
  3. Methodological Issues

  4. Case Studies

  5. Back Matter
    Pages 265-274

About this book


Socio-legal studies have had an ambivalent relationship with the 'legal' – one of its defining aspects, but at the same time one that the discipline has sought to transcend or even leave behind. While socio-legal studies benefit hugely from the insights, methods and theories of other social science and humanity disciplines, the contributions to Exploring the 'Legal' in Socio-Legal Studies illustrate the value of a focus on the 'legal'.

The chapters in this book combine traditional legal materials and analyses with other ways of engaging empirically with the 'legal'. They illustrate the rich potential of the 'legal' as a site both for theoretical and methodological reflection and for case study analysis.

Taken as a whole, this volume demonstrates that methodological discussion is most helpful when rooted in empirical cases, and that the best case studies also help us to develop our methodologies. Bringing methodology and empirical analysis together offers an opportunity to reflect on socio-legal studies and develop the discipline in productive new directions.


law legal studies understanding legal

Editors and affiliations

  • David Cowan
    • 1
  • Daniel Wincott
    • 2
  1. 1.University of Bristol Law SchoolUK
  2. 2.Cardiff Law SchoolCardiff UniversityUK

Bibliographic information

  • DOI
  • Copyright Information The Editor(s) (if applicable) and The Author(s) 2016
  • Publisher Name Palgrave Macmillan, London
  • eBook Packages Social Sciences
  • Print ISBN 978-1-349-56054-7
  • Online ISBN 978-1-137-34437-3
  • Buy this book on publisher's site