Society And Law Essay Question

Law in Society Award

The United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit is currently hosting its own essay contest. Please see here for more information.

The Virginia State Bar's Law In Society Award has been discontinued. Thank you for your interest and participation over the last 25 years.

For 25 years, the Law in Society competition was sponsored by the Virginia State Bar and its Litigation Section and Communications Committee, in cooperation with the Virginia State Department of Education, to increase awareness and appreciation of our legal system among high school students. The criterion for the competition was an essay in response to a hypothetical on a predetermined topic of trending legal interest. Awards were given to students whose essays best demonstrated a superior understanding of the role and value of our legal system in our everyday lives. 

For a list of prior winners through 2009, please see here.

Updated: Mar 07, 2018

customs, traditions and also values that are inherit from their ancestors


. The laws were notcodified and made by informal procedures, therefore were not considered as written laws.Secondly, the differences of the former and current legal systems are based on thestructures. The judicial systems or the courts currently are more formalize and systematiccompared to the former legal system. There is level of hierarchy in court and there are clear guidelines on the responsibilities and power of judges. Moreover, the legal systems are not onlycompromise laws and judiciary but it also involves the government and the authority thatgoverns the state. Therefore, the governmental system or executive are also one part of legalsystem. The current governmental systems are more systematic and formal. The leaders areelected by the people through election under what is called as democracy. This is differencefrom the former system where before this, there were no systematic judicial system and themembers of the government were choosen by the leader. The leadership in former governmental system was inherited through bloodline or family


.The next difference that can be seen is the legal actors within the systems. Legal actors aremostly people that involve directly with the laws such as lawyers and judge


. Before this, thereare no specific roles on these legal actors. There were no formal judges or lawyers. The judgesusually were the leaders of the tribe. Nowadays, the judges are formally appointed based ontheir experiences and credibility in the legal aspects.Lastly, the fourth category is the enforcement of laws. Enforcement is an important part inlegal system as it making sure that the people obeys and follows the laws made by authorities.In the current legal system, there are many formal agencies created to enforce laws. Theseformal agencies did not exist before as it was not important by the leaders during that periods.

2. Are these differences parallel with the changes in society?

Law and society are very connected. Since the laws are made to control and at the sametime to provide benefits for the society, therefore laws must be flexible towards the changes


Husin, Iza. (2007). "The Pursuit of Perak Regalia: Islam, Law and the Politics of Authority in ColonialState".

Law and Social Inquiry 



He, Weifang. "The Judicial System and Governance in Traditional China".

The Rule of Law: Perspective from the Pacific Rim.

pp. 93.


"Comparative Legal Systems".

Encyclopedia of Law & Society: American and Global Perspective 

(2007). pp 226.

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