Law, to any lay man is the rules and regulations, conducts, obligations which is laid out by government of a country and is meant to be obliged to by the citizens. Although there are different Law definitions by scholars which include :
John Austin, he opine ” it’s a set of command set by a superior being to inferior beings and enforced by sanctions.”
Hans Kelson, he also opine that “Law is a system of norms” he further said ” a law is valid if it has been created by a higher norm within the legal order.
Society in its simplest, is defined as the association of human being. This follows the generalised idea that everyone in one way or the other must belong to a society I.e association, corporation, organisation, labour, force and so on. The assumption that one has belong to any of this makes one in a society already, other than a state (country), so, it’s best assumably said that all different associations in a state are society.
There is of course different intersections of Law and Society, and for one to understand what this fully meant, we have to represent the intersection between Law and Society. Law and society then represent the intersection between the development of society, practice of organisations, norms and the roles and functions of law and legal institutions. Parsons in 1962 observed that “law is a generalised mechanism for regulating behaviour in the several subsystems of the society”, this definition has shown the relationship that exist between Law and society in that the many subsystems of the society is put to be regulated by the law, then what are the subsystems? This is the polity of the society itself I.e the structural organisation and how law is governing its entirety.
Law and society studies and address the mutual relationship between law and society with different actors, institutions, and processes. Law is crafted and implemented through societal processes. Law is futher understood to have constitute social institution such as polity, family, corporation and individual.
Law and society grew out of sociology and there are of course many sociological references which include sociology of Law by Mathien Deflem. One can also deduce that the general study of Law and society grew out of opinions of scholars from many disciplines such as Anthropology, Jurisprudence, linguistic, cultural studies, history, philosophy, sociology and po-science.
Essence of Law to Society on Social Institutions
1. Regulate human association : Law has its primary function to regulate the conducts of humans because, not cushioning humans, they are by nature wayward and liable of following the wrong course or embrace the wrong path. Law is created and crafted to then regulate human association which is the society, society in this context could include schools, church, organisation, corporation, company and so on. The proper placement of Law serves as what regulate human association from wrong conduct.
2. To cushion development : with proper placement of law in any society, it can actually cushion development. it help positive development because, without law in a society, there is of course the high stand that such society might develop to the negative sphere of itself, and that of course is not going to be alright. Law then serves as a means to cushion development in the society starting from its (such organisation) structural head to even the least staffs and all other departments of such organisations (society).
3. Portray a good outlook on such society : Law beautify the face of a society. When regulations are put in place to cushion the conduct of human, humans tends to be in conscious with whatever regulation that is, because, human by nature fears punishment or sanctions even though they’d prefer to taunt the law. The fact that there is a proper sanction put in place, organisation, company, religion houses and all social institutes become oblige to abide by the policy of such society, this of course creates disciplinary measures through which other outsiders of a society sees and believes such organisations or society is good in the country.
4. Affirmates the interest of members : with proper placement of law in any society, such societies is being regulated, controlled, instructed by a body of conduct, this of course will affirmative the interest of the member, because the society they opt in to is as peaceful as it is regulated by body of conduct called law. This is that the interest of any member of the society can be reach if it
5. Serve as social control : Law serves as a means of social control, this is that any society joined whatsoever must have rules and regulations governing it. Social control may loosely be described as the control of social behaviour, that is, behaviour that affect others. The term “social control” is a technique coined out of sociologists. It was first used by one of the fathers of American sociology, Edward A. Ross, to refer to certain regulative institutions which function to ensure that individuals behaviour is in conformity with group demands- supernatural beliefs, Ceremonies, public opinion, moral, art, education, law etc.
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