Making Family Law

A Socio-Legal Account of Legislative Process in England and Wales, 1985-2010

By Mavis Maclean, Jacek Kurczewski

The legislative process is complex, encompassing a variety of aims and outcomes. Some norms and rules are embodied in law because citizens are simply expected by the government to follow them. Others are there for entirely different reasons. A legislator may wish to send messages about what constitutes desirable behavior, or to demonstrate government's ability to deal with a local and short term issue, or to distract the electorate from other crises. Law is often, though not always, designed as a means to an end. Taking a sociological and empirically-based approach, this book offers a rare insight into the real processes by which law makers attempt to influence (or fail to influence) human behavior. For the UK, this account of the legislative process in Westminster rests on observations and discussions with key players, from the standpoint of an academic adviser on research to the department responsible for family law making. Documenting the little understood processes which occur in Whitehall - and in particular how ministers, advisers, and officials work together - the book reveals a quite different picture from that of the rational law maker imagined in textbooks.

132 pages

Publication Date: 6/30/2011
Format: Cloth
ISBN: 9781849462273