What Is Law?

Law is a system of rules that a society or government develops in order to deal with crime, business agreements and social relationships. It can also be used to refer to the people who work in this system.

Legal Realism

Proponents of legal realism argue that cases before courts present hard questions that judges must resolve by balancing the interests of the parties and ultimately drawing an arbitrary line on one side of the dispute. Judges are expected to draw this line based on their own political, economic and psychological inclinations.


Some jurisprudence schools treat law like math or science, which is why they use legal theories to logically deduce the rules that will govern the outcome of a case. While these approaches are useful, they often leave out important facets of a judicial decision and fail to account for the fact that judges are human.


Law entails the granting of legally recognized normative claims (claim-rights), privileges, powers, immunities and/or liabilities (immunity-rights). Claims determine what parties may or must do while privileges and powers determine what right-holders can or must do.

Rights are usually viewed as outcomes that give legal effect to the value that exclusive access, control over, security in, or integrity of particular “things” have for right-holders. While this view is common among various branches of law, it does not necessarily imply an affinity between rights in personam and rights in rem; although this may be the case for some right-holders.

Posted in: Gembing