The article deals with social control and law understood as a means of social control. Having defined the concept of social control, which is very close to the English term 'control', meaning power, controlling and checking behaviour of a group members, the attention is paid to the main means of social control. A universal means of social control is understood to be socialisation. In the area of law it is legal socialisation, which is linked to the establishment of legal consciousness. The whole area of social control can be seen as a relation between an individual and society, the extent of the respect towards a given social order on one side and the extent of power - the enforcement of norms of behaviour on the other side. Social control is a way, which society uses to influence the behaviour of members of society, or a given social group. Law is only one of possible ways of social control, used in particular when other forms are inefficient or inaccessible. Facing the increase of crime, terrorism and violence in the world, feared loss of trust and limitations to the quality of life, discussions are being held about the need to intensify control. The main trends of post-modern control include high tech controlling rituals as parts of everyday life. The article also describes the policies of social control and law as tools of social control. It explains the importance and changes of social control in a traditional, modern and post-modern society. An attention is also paid to changes in the area of social control, to the transition from panopticon to synopticon, from a literary analogy of Orwell's '1984' to Huxley's 'End of Civilization' and Kawka's 'Trial' as an additional source of inspiration.
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