The Amherst College Law Review (ACLR) was born out of the desire to foster undergraduate scholarship in the field of law in the liberal arts. For decades, a number of well-known colleges and universities have published journals of this type. The ACLR stands alone among these journals, however, for its unique approach to the study of law. In keeping with the more general aims of the Amherst College Department of Law, Jurisprudence, and Social Thought, the mission of the ACLR is to bring the best traditions of the contemporary humanities to bear on the most difficult and urgent juridical problems of our time.
Everyday life has become saturated with the inventions of modern science and technology. The increasingly global and often unequal flow of culture, capital, commodities and populations across national and cultural boundaries have altered the ways in which we connect across those boundaries. The changes and crises that emerge from reactions to our changed world have fundamentally altered the basic concepts with which we approach law and politics. From the worldwide recognition of human rights and the dismaying consistency of human rights abuses to the constant depiction of law in diverse traditions of popular culture, literature, and film, the relationships human societies have with the formation and implementation of law have changed.
We are faced with a host of new, troubling, and intriguing questions about law that cannot be fully posed, much less answered, within the narrow horizons of conventional legal training or the traditional social sciences. As students of law and the humanities, it is our responsibility to pose these questions and to strive to answer them with the nuance, clarity, and rigor that are the marks of the very best of the liberal arts tradition.