This volume consists of outstanding essays by contemporary scholars and specialists on classic writings in law and society. This second edition expands the previous volume by adding additional statements. Included are commentaries on Edward A. Ross's Social Control: A Survey of the Foundations of Order, Karl N. Llewellyn's Jurisprudence: Realism in Theory and Practice, Jerome Frank's Law and the Modern Mind, Leon Petrazycki's Law and Morality, and Karl Renner's The Institutions of Private Law and their Social Functions.
The goal of Classic Writings in Law and Society is to acquaint a new generation of students with classic writings by diverse social and legal scholars—ranging from Henry Sumner Maine, Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr., and Hans Kelsen to Eugen Ehrlich, Nicholas S. Timasheff, and Richard Quinney. This work continues to demonstrate their contemporary theoretical relevance. Accordingly, each chapter speaks of the scholars' work in general, how the particular book under consideration fits into that corpus, and how the book is assessed in a present day context. These essays have a clear relation to the "classic" tradition in sociolegal thought.
Reading the classics is useful in gaining a better understanding and appreciation of the essential foundation for a post-classic approach in law and social inquiry—an approach that can be found in such orientations as critical legal studies, chaos theory in law, and legal semiotics. Classic Writings in Law and Society includes commentaries that consider early writings that set the standard for the social scientific approach in examining issues of law and punishment, social control, joint stock companies, business firms and nation-states in the study of law and society.