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Welcome to the Law and Society Review Blog

The current editors of Law and Society Review have started this blog with the goal of facilitating broader dissemination of socio-legal research. We hope that this blog allows us to discuss scholarship and teaching issues that may not make it to academic journals quickly.  We invite everyone to contribute; we ask all authors to summarize their recent articles.
The new blog will also allow us to discuss the changing research environment.  We’d like to hear more people contribute to pressing conversations around research and publishing.  Many of us already have these conversations among smaller groups of scholars. A blog will allow a larger conversation with more participants and, we hope, a greater diversity of views.   


The questions to weigh in on are many.  Professional associations and funding agencies occasion talk about the press for data access in both Europe and North America.  What do you think about this issue, in every dimension from ethical to epistemological to administrative? What do we think about the use of Amazon Mechanical Turk as a research tool? How do ethical practices translate to obligations cross-nationally? What are ethical dilemmas in research resulting from  the increasing availability of records on the internet? What do we do with what we know about the production of records by state agencies, including police, when big data analytics often do not rely on that knowledge?
We live in the midst of information overload, and the wish to cut through the noise allows elites to make simple false statements, repeating them over and over and possibly promoting significant policy changes.  We do not know whether a blog making information more accessible will help counter ‘alternative facts.’  We do know we want to make the forum available.


Please send all proposed contributions to lsr@vt.edu  Guidelines are on the ‘Guidelines’ tab.


We would like to thank Wiley and the Law and Society Association for their encouragement, Danielle McClellan for her help, and Emily Flores (VT MPA, 2016) and Anne Zobell (Ph.D. Student, VT) for setting up the website and maintaining it.

Popular posts from this blog

How to Tell When to Send Your Paper into a Journal

By Susan Sterett and Paul Collins

A group of faculty and graduate students in the Five College Seminar in Legal Studies in Western Massachusetts talked on a beautiful Friday afternoon about submitting a manuscript to a journal, something that feels so scary to some people they won’t do it. Other people send things in readily, and have tricks to manage any difficulties. If you don’t send it in, you won’t get it in the conversations you want to be part of. The academic conversation will be the worse for it. Still, how do you know? Especially because we are often the harshest judges of our work. Here are some alternatives the group came up with:
When an advisor, or colleague, or coauthor says it’s time;When you have gathered feedback on your work at a conference or working group and revised;When you’ve checked that it fits with the structure and format of articles in the journal you want to send it to, and it engages issues the journal engages;When you can’t stand to look at it any…

Towards Intersectional and Interdisciplinary Approaches to LGBTQ Politics

By: Marla Brettschneider, University of New Hampshire Susan Burgess, Ohio University and Cricket Keating, University of Washington 


Teaching a course on LGBTQ politics?  Want to think together about teaching resources and strategies?  You’ve got every reason to check out our new edited collection, and our teaching collective.
The advance of civil rights for LGBTQ people is one of the most significant sociolegal changes that has taken place in the last two decades. Sociolegal work must grapple with the shifting landscape of LGBTQ rights and inclusion. An intersectional framework that addresses identities as co-created best illuminates changes. Developed over the past two decades primarily by feminists of color, this approach underscores the analytic importance of systems of power such as race, sexuality, gender, class, amongst others, and the importance of building movements that address such interconnections.
Social media have enlivened movements for sociolegal change. Some have lauded …

Sociolegal Studies, Disaster, Climate Change

By Susan Sterett
 The devastation in Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands, Houston and Florida, the hurricanes, the fires in California, the fires in British Columbia, are not visible enough in sociolegal scholarship, to our loss. Students and others find the overlap of humanitarian assistance, weather events, and climate change compelling; they also lose. Anthropologists who work internationally have pointed out the difficult governance in humanitarian assistance outside the United States: what is the life that is saved? What are the tools essential to saving lives? What kind of governing does lifesaving justify? How do the NGOs who contract governing in disaster, including in disastrous states, bring law? Humanitarian assistance is where many young people want to be, and it looks like where the help is. It’s often militarized, and governs in exception. Often left unacknowledged is the role of law. Yet people and organizations bring law in catastrophe and humanitarian gove…