Levitt's Comparative Law Index_ Comparative Legal Systems Class_ Quiz 1B

Levitt's Comparative Law Index_ Comparative Legal Systems Class_ Quiz 1B

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Unformatted text preview: Levitt's Comparative Law Index: Comparative Legal Systems Class: Quiz 1 1/19/09 10:03 AM Welcome to Levitt's Comparative Law Links Page: Comparative Legal Systems Class NOTES ON THE SOCIALIST LEGAL SYSTEM This system was in force from 1945 to 1989 in Eastern zones of Germany. Learned writers in the field of comparative law are in disagreement concerning the issue of whether the system of law to be found in Socialist countries should be categorized as a subsystem of Civil Law or an entirely distinct legal tradition. What are the major features of the Socialist legal system which are similar to the Civil Law System ? (consider degree of codification and criminal procedure) What are the features of the Socialist legal system which fundamentally distinguish it from the Civil Law tradition ? a. the leading role of the Communist Party b. Command economy What do Marxists believe is the fundamental connection between the legal system and the organization of the economic structures in society ? Consider the first line of the Communist Manifesto: "The history of all hitherto existing society is the history of class struggles." Consider what Lenin has to say in The State. What does Mary Glendon mean when she refers to the Socialist Legal System, (page 274) as being "Pseudo- Religious." What is the "social goal" of the law (page 275) ? ACTIVITIES WHICH WERE LABELED 'CRIMINAL' IN THE FORMER SOVIET UNION AND GERMAN DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC - BUT WERE REGARDED AS 'LEGAL' IN THE WEST POLITICAL OFFENSES AGAINST THE STATE What type of political activities in a Socialist state are considered punishable ? Would one be punished for expressing his views at a pub in the United States, Great Britain ? Just before students get all carried away with quick judgments concerning how oppressive a Socialist system is please remember: a. After "Glasnost" in the Soviet Union- dissenting political opinions were tolerated to a greater extent b. In the 1950's persons in the United States lost their jobs in the McCarthy era if they expressed the "wrong" political opinion publicly. c. In what significant ways did the courts of East Germany and Nazi Germany differ in their handling of political speech which threatened communal order? ECONOMIC CRIMES What types of activities , which are done daily in the West, are considered criminal and punishable in Socialist legal systems? http://www.nova.edu/~levitts/comlaw/week2.html Page 1 of 3 Levitt's Comparative Law Index: Comparative Legal Systems Class: Quiz 1 1/19/09 10:03 AM Why is speculation a crime ? How does this relate to Marxist theories of economics, law and society ? RESTRICTED MOBILITY Why did border guards in the German Democratic Republic, the Soviet Union, Czechoslovakia shoot persons attempting to leave illegally ? How does this compare with Western beliefs about the mobility of the citizen? NO CONSTITUTIONAL REVIEW OF LEGISLATION At the top of page 301, Glendon says: "The difference between a socialist judge and a common law judge is that, unlike the latter, the socialist judge cannot invoke the principle of equity or of natural justice, to set aside an applicable (and readily ascertainable) statutory law." If judges cannot set aside laws because they are unconstitutional, what does that tell you about the power of the judiciary in a Socialist legal system ? Glendon says: (page 299) "Neither in theory nor in practice is the socialist court regarded as a co - equal branch of the socialist government. Enhancement Film: "The Trial of Tamara Russo" (We may have some time to see this later) Popular movies concerning the Russian Revolution and the Socialist Legal Order 1. Nicholas and Alexandra (DK258 M3 1991 v.1 and v.2) 2. Dr. Zhivago (Einstein: PG3476.P27 D63 1998) 3. Reds (Einstein: PN1997 .R43 1999) 4. Stalin(Einstein: DK268.S8 S82 1992) 5. The Unbearable Lightness of Being 6. The Cold War: Volume 6: Reds 7. The Cold War: Volume 7: After Stalin (Einstein:E183.8.S65 C65 1998) 8. Burnt by the Sun 9. When Father Was Away on Business 10. East- West (Also known under French title: "Est- Ouest") Other materials possible The Soviet Legal System , pp. 18- 25 Criminal Code of the RSFSR , pp. 182- 187,204- 207,222- 225, 254- 268 Justice In Moscow , pp. 16- 46,54- 57,74- 85,188- 199 Comparative Law in a Nutshell , first edition pp.316- 320. (legal education) What types of subjects are taught in the law schools of Socialist nations - which one would hardly ever find taught in the West? http://www.nova.edu/~levitts/comlaw/week2.html Page 2 of 3 Levitt's Comparative Law Index: Comparative Legal Systems Class: Quiz 1 1/19/09 10:03 AM Andrew Zimbalist et. al.,Comparing Economic Systems , Chapter 6, "The Operation of Central Planning", pp. 175- 201. Twentieth- Century European History i. Russian Revolution pp 53- 58 ii. War Communism pp. 109- 121 iii. Stalinist Russia pp. 246- 272 Web Materials Communist Manifesto of 1848 from Avalon Project: Introduction Communist Manifesto of 1848 from the Avalon Project: Part I The Communist Manifesto of 1848 from the Avalon Project: Part II The Fundamental Law of Land Socialization, February 19, 1918 Chronology of Russian History: The Soviet Period from Bucknell University Constitution of the People's Republic of China Human Rights in China Organization Current Situation in China (Human Rights) University of Maryland, School of Law, Chinalaw Web Chinese Law Resources on the Internet Lawyers' Committee for Human Rights, China and Hon Kong: A New Approach to Human Rights Constitution of the Union of Soviet Socialists Republics Library of Congress's Documents from the Soviet Archives including: i. The Gulag ii. Collectivization and Industrialization iii. Internal Workings of the Soviet System Return To Comparative Law Home Page > Comments to: Stephen Ross Levitt Updated: June 30, 2000 Copyright Stephen Ross Levitt http://www.nova.edu/~levitts/comlaw/week2.html Page 3 of 3 ...
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