The Law and Society Review, recently established by UCSB Law and Society Program Chair Eve Darian-Smith as the nation’s first online publication for undergraduate law and society majors, began taking submissions Monday.
The review, to be published annually, is currently accepting undergraduate submissions in the form of research papers, book reviews, predictive pieces, essays about legal issues in Santa Barbara, political cartoons and photo essays. The journal will accept submissions from any major on campus before the May 15 deadline and the website, www.lawso.edu/project/review, will be up by late May.
Darian-Smith said students involved in law and society programs often have difficulty finding a great deal of information directed towards undergraduates. Though numerous graduate journals are published nationwide, only one undergraduate review is sporadically published for law and society majors from Amherst College.
The journal provides a stepping stone for those undergraduates who have never had their work published, Darian-Smith said.
“We hope it will really bring about confidence in their own research,” she said. “I’m just so pleased that the students are energized and motivated. So many students never would have thought they could be published and now we have some who are really saying ‘Wow, I actually have something worthwhile to say.'”
After developing the idea, Darian-Smith sent e-mails throughout the Law and Society Program, spoke to various classes, and tabled on campus to ask for student participation. She created a team that would become the staff of the Law and Society Review after reviewing submissions from interested undergraduates. Currently, there are two co-chief editors, junior Sarah Cramer and senior Monica Fawzy, aided by an editorial board of eleven law and society undergraduate students.
“We’re trying to be as professional as possible with the review so it can really become an asset to those interested in being published, as well as those who find it online,” Cramer said.
The staff of the Law and Society Review – not to be confused with the graduate Law & Society Review – hopes it will highlight the outstanding work of undergraduates in the area of law and society and offer prizes for the top four paper submissions. The first-place winner will receive $300, the second place winner will receive $100, and two third place winners will receive $50 each.
“This will be a resource for anyone,” Fawzy said. “People will see how law really encompasses almost everything in our lives. Many assume it’s all policemen and courtrooms but this will show work from students involved in history, sociology, economics, global studies and other areas that all interact with law and society.”
Though some funding has come from local legal offices, the offices of Vice Chancellor for Research France Cordova and Dean of the Social Sciences division Edward Donnerstein, as well as the Shoreline Preservation Fund, allotted the majority of the funds.
Those interested in submitting work to the Law and Society Review can find more information outside the Law and Society Review office at 1829 Ellison Hall, or by e-mail at UCSBLawsoReview@hotmail.com.