The cartography of law departments – descriptions at different scales

An author in Historically Speaking, Vol. 8, May/June 2007 at 15, wrestling with notions of complexity in history (See my post of Jan. 1, 2007 for a related comment.), offers the metaphor of maps. “Just as mapping can be carried out at many scales from the local to the global, so historical encounters … may be mapped at every scale from the micro to the macro.”

Analogously, those who write about law departments, those from a different perspective who prepare “maps” of that conceptual terrain, can treat the subject from the most mundane to the most magnificent. The scale can be inches to an idea for a treatment that is miles and miles wide. Each level fits into the overall picture and no view is more privileged than another. Each perspective and intellectual grid coordinate should be fit for a certain purpose. “At every cartographic scale something is lost even as something is gained” (See my post of Aug. 10, 2007on tiny topics.).

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