[Extract] The Republic of Korea (hereinafter 'Korea') has undergone rapid legal and social change since the end of Japanese rule in 1945. The Korean system of government has been relatively stable since the adoption of the current Constitution in 1987, but the legal system continues to adapt in response to social and cultural change. This backdrop makes Korea a fascinating case study for the interplay of legal, social and cultural forces in a post-colonial context. The essays in Law and Society in Korea,' edited by Hyunah Yang, draw out these connections in a range of interesting ways. The reviewers of an edited collection often face a difficult choice. Any attempt to cover all the essays in the volume, particularly where they deal with diverse subject areas, is bound to sacrifice depth for breadth. We have therefore chosen to focus in this article on three essays that draw out particularly clearly the complex interaction between legal and social norms highlighted above. We will begin by briefly summarising the chapters that comprise the volume, before examining our three chosen essays in greater detail. We will then conclude with some overarching reflections on the challenges and rewards of sociolegal study in a context like contemporary Korea.
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|Published - 2013