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  • Author or Editor: Csaba Varga x
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Does the legal system have a structure (according to sources and branches of law, general and special parts of codes, principles, rules and exceptions in regulation, etc.), or structuring is taken into it from the outside? And providing that it is taken, whoever is taking it? For neither principles, nor rules are given in themselves, separated from each other in a way classified in terms of the law's taxonomic systemicity as bearing their own separate meaning. All this can be but the result of a constitutive act. Based upon legal doctrines, it is judicial practice that builds different propositions into either principles or rules. Or, it is not logic itself that labels anything as a structuring element identified as either principle or rule but we, who ponder the mode of how to construct a sequence of distinction, deduction and justification conclusive enough to convince those controlling the issue we propose in the procedural hierarchy. Therefore the structuring features in law are construed and construing, constructed and constructing at the same time, for they do not and cannot exist in and by themselves at all.

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A scale of globalisation is witnessed in the present case study as exemplified by (1) the transformation of the role of precedents; (2) the multicultural and multifactorial search for a common solution instead of any law-based administration of justice; (3) dissolving definition by and conclusion from the law in the name of a legal socio-positivist approach; accompanied with (4) some new prerogatives acquired by courts through a) unfolding statutory provisions through principles in judicial actualisation, (b) constitutionalisation of issues, as well as c) the Supreme Court imposing upon the nation as its supreme moral authority. In both cases, the main point is to re-consider the law's normative material in a way somewhat released from nationally positivated self-restriction when searching for a kind of trans-national cultural community. By gradually eliminating the law's substantivity, legal self-identity is mostly preserved in a rather procedural sense.

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Nations of Central and Eastern Europe in the near past have all faced the same dilemma: how can they manage international encouragement to adopt atlantic patterns in promise of ready-made routes with immediate success, in a way also promoting the paths of organic development, relying on own resources and potentialities that can only be gained from tradition? Or, otherwise speaking, is it feasible at all to rush forward by rapidly learning all the responses others elaborated elsewhere at a past time? Or are they expected themselves to become Sisyphus bearing his own way, at the price of suffering and bitter disillusionment? The question was not raised by each country individually in the region as not much time was left for pondering in the rapid drift of events. Anyhow, cost-free solutions adopted from without may easily lead to adverse results, far away from expectations for the time being. The principles of free market, democracy and parliamentarism-with rule of law and human rights in the background-are usually believed to offer a kind of panacea curing the basic ills in the contemporary world. Generalised experience notwithstanding, social science has to be given the chance to record-if found so-that the same staff may not work at some places where it has just recently been transplanted as it is used to work amidst its natural surrounding in the western hemisphera, not with the same cost/benefit ratio at the least. For that reason, scholarship in Central and Eastern Europe is growingly aware of the fact that what it can provide is by far not marginal feedback but the very first testing and teasing proof on social embeddedness of some ideas and ideals, deservedly fundamental for the atlantic world. Realistically speaking, not even western social development is separable from the economic reserves of the development actually run. Or, operation of any societal complexity requires resources in both social organisation and material production.

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Since the waning of the world concept offered by classical physics, law is seen as embodied less by material objects any longer than in a specific way of thinking. Consequently, the normativist perspective of legal positivism is also getting replaced by the comprehension of law in context of culture and tradition.In its own context, any of the terms of 'system', 'family' or 'culture' can be applied independently from each other but it is to be noted that 'tradition' is at the same time both a part and a given path of culture. In legal thought, concrete and generalising (abstract) ways of thinking are equally recoursed to, just as types which search for a solution either in the case's terms in its entirety or in the exclusive bounds of the given normative conceptual framework. It is only Western law that has become differentiated out of the rest, when individualism advanced and thinking in term of subjective rights grew into a dominant pattern, contrasted to our primitive (albeit surviving) approach to law which also expects, in addition to external conformity, the realisation of the law's internal ethos based on own initiative. English law, however, has revealed its face only gradually, as it has factual decisions made through an only-processually-arranged laic (jury) process while it has bound the declaration of what the law is to such facts of the cases among which no logical relationship can be established. In Civil Law, the treatment of adjudication as argumentation, and in Common Law, as practical reasoning, led the judicial process into a sphere only smoothly controllable by logic. Jewish and Islamic laws accept contradictory arguments from the outset. As to Indian and Far-Eastern cultures, they reject even the underlying questionto be raised. This way, in legal problem-solving the assessment of the merits of the caseandthe recourse to a reductive procedure can complement one another on the basis of some compromise. Institutionalisation itself is, as it channels the legal problem-solving to givenpaths, a function of a previously formed idea of order, of a given mentality. Our legaltheorising today is built mostly separatedly either on the classification and interpretation of facts or on the re-conventionalisation of the philosophical generalisation of concepts, with little interaction between the two types of approaches and research attitudes. Therefore, in order to encourage debate and commensurability, it is important that notions of law, at least tacitly assumed to substantiate their choices of subject, are clarified.

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A kész szövegátvételben végződő joghatások kérdése globalizálódó korunkban egyre általánosodó jelenséggé válik, miközben tudományos feldolgozása alig tart ezzel lépést. Nemcsak fogalmi kerete, gyakorlati tapasztalatainak levonása, s így mögöttesen megbúvó törvényszerűségei és tanulságai levonása, eszményeinek megfogalmazása hiányzik, de még terminológiája is tisztázatlan. Recepció, octroi, jogexport, jogátvitel, jogkölcsönzés, jogátültetés, jogi segítségnyújtás; diszciplínaként pedig a jog és fejlődés, jog és modernizáció amerikai mozgalmai, a franciáknál pedig a fejlesztés joga - mindezek eltérő vonásokat eltérő nézőpontokból fogalmiasítanak. Kritikai áttekintésük és elemzésük (1. Terminusok) lehetőséget teremt elméleti alapok kidolgozására, a jogi mintaadás ontológiájának vázlatos megrajzolására (2. Technikalitás). A legfontosabb tanulság ebben a jogot szabályként azonosító szűkkeblű pozitivisztikus szemlélet meghaladása egy a jogban tételezés, jogértelmezési közeg, egy egész mögöttes jogi kultúra konglomerátumát láttató totalitás-szemlélet javára. Kétségtelen sikerek mellett ez erőteljes kudarcoktól kísért folyamatként érzékeli az elmúlt fél évszázad joghatásra irányuló törekvéseit (3. Kontrasztok a jogátvitelekben és megítélésükben). Figyelemmel a háttérben megbúvó érdekek makacs önérvényesítésére, sokat jelez már maga a kérdésfeltevés élessége is, hiszen társadalompolitikai magasságokba emelkedve egyre inkább a globalizáció természetére irányul. Nevezetesen, magunkból indulunk-e ki vajon, hogy saját hagyományunkat másokra erőltessük, avagy tudunk-e önzetlenül másokat csupán abban támogatni, hogy önmaguk fejlesztésének útját megleljék? Vagyis narcisztikusan önmagunkra ügyelő hataloméhségünket, avagy segíteni akarásunkat szolgálja-e érdeklődésünk? Végső soron melyik mintát választjuk hát a cirkuszi idomár akaratátviteli mutatványa és a kertésznek mindenkor másra figyelő alázata közül? Hiszen önáldozattal jár az előbbi kísértését elkerülni, ám csakis egy saját tapasztalatok tanulságaihoz visszavezető út lehet hosszú távon sikerre vezető. Mert végül úgyis a célzott rendszer kiválasztó erején múlik minden, miközben a nem-jogi környezet meghatározhatja a jog sorsát. Egy, a természet emberi kultiválásából vett hasonlattal élve, jobb hát lassan megtudni, hogy mit is akar a föld és élő környezete, és utána jöjjön csak a kertész.

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Megvilágítandó különbség áll fenn a jogi néprajz és a jogi antropológia között, továbbá az utóbbi és a jogi etnológia s a jogi pluralizmus, valamint a bennszülött jogok kutatása közt. Az első három tárgya alapjában a nem jogi diszciplínák jogi vonatkozásaiból__

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Szokásos megközelítések szerint fennállásukat az ‘emberi jogok’ az emberiség közös meggyőződésének köszönhetik. Ennek megfelelően jogosultságok ezek, amikről hisszük, hogy ember volta csupasz tényénél fogva minden emberhez bármiféle kormányzati közreműködés nélkül hozzátartoznak. Meghatározásai egyik pólusán az egyén áll, akit személyes minőségében alapvető jogosultságként ez eleve megillet, másik pólusán pedig az állam (kormányzat és politikai intézményrendszer), amelynek e fölött, ennek korlátozására nem lehet hatalma. Ilyen módon nem egy fennálló szabályozásban már lefektetett követelményrendszer merő aktualizálásáról vagy újrafogalmazásáról van szó, hanem arra irányuló igényről, hogy az akként meghirdetett várakozás hivatalosan elismertetve ennek megfelelő intézményes jogi védelmet nyerjen. Paradoxikusan szólva tehát az az ‘emberi jog’, ami éppen nem jog, s ekképpen nem része, következménye vagy vonatkoz(tat)ása bármiféle fennálló jognak. Vagyis pontosan azért ‘emberi jog’, mert még nem jog. Ilyen módon ez semmiféle normativitással — hatállyal, érvénnyel, bármiféle formális következmény-levonás, azaz tényleges szankcionálás lehetőségével — nem rendelkezik. Ami hatást pedig reálisan gyakorol, az annak hatása lesz, hogy fennállását, létét, relevanciáját hányan és hogyan, mekkora hangerővel és tömegbefolyással állítják. Ezért is nem véletlen a megnevezés: ‘emberi jog’. Hangzatos hívószó, mely jelentéstani elemzésben diszfemizmusnak nevezhető: olyan kifejezés, ami — ellentétben az eufemizmussal — kifejezett valójánál többet (nyelvészeti általánosságban: kellemesebbet, megragadóbbat vagy éppen ártóbbat, taszítóbbat) sugall magáról. Ebből viszont az következik, hogy mihelyst megvalósul, vagyis úgynevezett emberi jogból valóságos joggá válik, ‘emberi jog’-ként állított gyökere — múltja és minősége — rögvest elenyészik. Hiszen joggá válásával szerzett normativitása tételezettségből fog származni, függetlenül bármiféle előzménytől. A nyelvi aktus elmélete mára feltárta a minden emberi beszédmódot egyebek közt átható ideologikus célzatot: emberi kommunikációnkban nemcsak leírunk, s leírtat akként megnevezünk, de egyszersmind világképet alakítunk, melynek során egyszersmind cselekszünk, mert performatív aktusként valami e nélkül társadalmilag nem létezőt létezővé vagy megragadhatóvá teszünk. Az emberi jogi ideológia mára olyannyira világméretű cselekvési program lett, hogy a joggá tett ‘emberi jogi’ követelést is immár emberi joginak nevezzük.

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The core of codification is invariably the idea of a system in the law's composition and structuring, doctrinal reflection and conceptual building up, including judicial reference to codal definitions as well. Or, codification is (1) an exclusive body of law (2) implementing unity in its regulatory field (3) with logical coherence and consequentiality. The dream of a common European codification penetrates into the very heart of the law, presupposing the unification of all the intellectuality and underlying approach that has ever distinguished Civil Law and Common Law. The more the advancement of the European unification progresses, the more inverse the assessment of European codification becomes, making us its past trends, values and regulatory techniques reconsidered. That is, as if we on the Continent had not so much become statal national units unified by a sequence of national laws but, being too conceited of our most promising collective heritage within the transitory phase of an infantile disorder, became rather fragmented in national isolation from one another, which now comes eventually to a final end.

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Theory and Practice in Law

On the Magical Roleof Legal Technique

Acta Juridica Hungarica
Author: Csaba Varga

Lawis characterised by a fundamental gap between its social embeddedness and theapparently formal automatism it operates, which gap is basically bridged by thelaw's ultimate practicality under the guise of its mere logicity. This seemingcontradiction is resolved by judicial decisions as responsible and responsivepractical actions which are to result from the necessary conceptualtransformation(s) of the law's wording in the course of its officialapplication, which does involve a necessary jump in logical derivation. This isto say that on final analysis and inpractical terms, law is what gets actualised through the actual uses of it. Black-box effect such as this is helped by thevariety-and owing to the magical transforming effects-of legal techniques.Eventually, it is legal culture that provides a medium in which legaltechniques can at all be selected and used. On a conceptual plane, one of thefilters is offered by legal dogmatics. This very complex includes dialectics aswell, for there is no motion without counter-motion, therefore, it is notrealistic to pursue any human ambition without some safety valves inserted. Or,regarding, e.g., law, no homo­genisationis feasible without some re-heterogenisation at the same time. Paradoxicallyspeaking, while modern formal legal development went in the direction tomechanise the judge, the realisation was also made that law had ever been tooserious an undertaking to be just left alone to the logification by someimpersonally formalistic apparatus. Therefore, simultaneously with the veryfirst act of formalisation, law has ever built in its scheme the possibility ofde-formalisation as well.

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Comparative legal cultures?

Renewal by transforming into a genuine discipline

Acta Juridica Hungarica
Author: Csaba Varga

‘Comparative law’ was born to challenge national self-centredness at the turn of the 19th to 20th centuries, without transcending—notwithstanding its admission of social and cultural-historical approaches in the study of law—the perspectives of rule-positivism. ‘Comparative legal cultures’ attempts at explaining the prevailing cultural and traditional diversity that has generated, among others, western law with its modern formalism and the alternative ways of reaching social order in other cultures. By its focus upon the underlying culture and, thereby, also upon the hermeneutic understanding of legal phenomena, the latter is expected to offer growingly adequate responses to timely questions such as the universalisability of law and human rights, the convergence of the continental Civil Law and the British Common Law, or the development and future of the legal set-up in the Central and Eastern European region.The interest of the comparative study of legal cultures is thus one in the history of ideas, dedicated to human problem-solving as the cultural response of people to external challenges. For the description of living complexes in terms of mere rules can result at most in ‘thin description’ with the exclusion of ‘thick description’, the more so as rules (just as concepts) are only the consequences of a kind of possible representation, therefore, relying exclusively upon them may contribute to dissolving even prevailing interrelations, atomising organic components as fragmented into detached elements. Or, institutional thinking not-withstanding, not even the subject’s formalism can serve as a ground for restricting human completeness and integrity, cultural diversity, as well as responsibility to be taken for these.

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