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New book is a fitting tribute to first Head of Law School

Law in motion -  book cover

The Law School has published a book of essays, ‘Law in Motion: 50 Years of Legal Change’, celebrating The Open University’s 50th birthday. It is dedicated to the late Professor Gary Slapper, the first Head of the OU Law School, whose vision of opening up the law continues to animate the Law School in 2021.

United around the theme of social justice, these discussions by the OU’s legal academics examine controversial issues which have posed challenges for law and society. Each chapter takes a critical look at the development of an area of law over the first 50 years of the OU’s existence.

Published just prior to the festive break, it is well timed as this week sees the 50th anniversary of the launch of the first OU courses with the first ‘Open Forum’ programme shown on BBC2 on 3 January 1971.


Much has changed and is changing as we write. These discussions are designed to illuminate our understanding of law, legal learning, and what it means to practise law in the 21st century. They will open a window on the law, to deepen our understanding of how law and lawyers have changed, or should change, to accommodate the pressures of living in the 21st century.

Dr Lisa Claydon, Dr Caroline Derry and Dr Marjan Ajevski
Book editors

In the spirit of The Open University, a blog has previously been created which is ‘open to people, places, methods and ideas’ as per the OU’s mission statement. You can download individual chapters or the book here for free and you are invited to comment and start a discussion.