Centre for Law and Culture

St Mary's University, Twickenham

The cultural study of law is a growing area of research within legal studies. It is an approach to the study of law that brings rich insights from the humanities to bear upon the problems of law and justice. From the critical analysis of popular culture to the examination of presentations of ‘Justitia’ in the history of art; from the historical exploration of women in the legal profession to the deep philosophical engagement with human values; from critical discourse on the politics of law to the challenging of the textual presentation of law in our increasingly visual culture—the significance of culture to the study and development of law is profound.


Such culturally enriched work explores law from external and critical perspectives, placing it in wider contexts and examining its limits, critiquing its impact and role within human culture and understanding. Moving beyond doctrinal analysis and the general concerns of policy, engagement between law and culture enriches discourse with a level of insight that spans human history, creativity, and meaning. The cultural study of law breathes human value and living context into the legal doctrine; it brings law to life, and life to law.

The Centre for Law and Culture is a home for the cultural study of law. It is an interdisciplinary hub for research at the intersections of law, justice, and the humanities. It is a rallying point for culturally enriched legal research, and thereby engages legal study that spans topics and themes from across critical and cultural legal studies, incubating and promoting critical research that crosses and challenges traditional legal boundaries in a cultural context.

If you want to know more about or be involved in the work of the Centre, please visit the website or contact one of the Co-Directors.

  • Website
  • Co-directors: Judith Bourne and Thomas Giddens
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