At the risk of gross oversimplification, one can identify the following strategic positions:
(A) Practitioners: In this position are all the people who provide services to individuals and institutions who must orient their behaviour toward the law, providing information about the likely outcome of relationships, deals and conflicts that are legally regulated.
(B) Law Appliers: These are the positions officially consecrated for making authoritative interpretations of legal norms in concrete situations. It includes not only judges but also arbitrators and administrative officials, among others.
(D) Educators: Someone has to socialize entrants, bind the field together and encode its structural constraints. While primary socialization is the responsibility of the schools in almost all legal fields, socialization is a continuing process and workplace influences are often as important as educational ones.
(E) Moral Regulators: Legal professions all have systems that police behaviour and ensure conformity of actors: These include formal mechanisms like accrediting bodies, disciplinary boards, promulgators of legal ethics; as well as workplace influences, informal social networks and the like.
(ii) Stakes. ...
(iii) Capitals. The players in the legal field deploy various forms of capital. These include economic capital, cultural or informational capital (educational credentials, technical knowledge) and social capital (status acquired both outside and inside the field).
The main role players in legal professions in England are barristers and solicitors. Academic requirements for qualifications as a barrister now include a degree - though not necessarily a law degree. Traditionally barristers went to the university but commonly studied some subject other than law. In recent decades however, and especially since the Second World War, a law degree has increasingly become the normal mode of entry to the bar. Over eighty percent of those who enter the bar now possess a law degree. Those who do not obtain a law degree must garner one of the limited number of places in one of the courses run by the universities that give instruction for the Common Professional Examination (CPE) - a one year basic law course after the degree course. Limits on student places for those courses are a restriction on entry not controlled by the profession. In 1975, the bar made a degree a prerequisite for entry, except for a special (and tiny) category of mature entrants. This was the first effective entry barrier to the bar. Students must obtain a satisfactory pass in each core' subject as well as overall. The vocational course for the practicing bar is run exclusively by the Inns of Court School of Law in London. This course is a prerequisite for practice at the English Bar not only in England, but also as an English barrister in any Member State of the European Community. (Those who intend to qualify as barristers, but not practice, may select a different