This special issue of Studies in Law, Politics, and Society examines how law understands the past. Topics covered include the use of legal language to dehumanize slaves in the eighteenth century, the use of history by lawyers and judges to justify existing law or make changes to the law during the
nineteenth and twentieth centuries, a study of deportation in the context of the evolution of civil rights and civil liberties in the United States, and a re-examination of the significance of the Supreme Court decision Muller v Oregon in 1908. Through its valuable contribution to our understanding
of the relationship between law and history, this special issue is essential reading for legal scholars worldwide.