Art and Law: Civilization’s Dynamic Duo

Jeff B. Cohen
Great art often questions and challenges the status quo with an eye toward justice and empathy for the human experience.

Great art often questions and challenges the status quo with an eye toward justice and empathy for the human experience.

Koya79 via GettyImages

You go down there looking for justice, that’s what you find: just us.

—Richard Pryor

I love art, and I love the law. I think they are the twin pillars of civilization. They depend upon each other. They help each other—like Bonnie and Clyde. But hopefully, they don’t die at the end.

Law frees us up to focus on intellectual exploration, creating, and building. Because it’s illegal for your neighbor to murder you in your sleep, you can dream about the book you want to write instead of spending nights sitting up in a machine gun turret on top of your roof.

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