141 Revolutionary Legality in the USSR: 1928 -1930 Hiroshi Oda Associate Professor, The University of Tokyo, Faculty of Law Tokyo, Japan I The principle of legality about which the Soviet leadership and lawyers persis- tently speak has its origin in Tsarist Russia. Legality meant Gesetzmaessigkeit, i. e. conformity with law, as opposed to expediency (tselesoobraznost').' But apart from this formal meaning, legality was also used in connection with the German principle of Rechtsstaat. An encyclopedia published in 1893 stated that legality was the essence of the principle of Rechtsstaat.2 During the constitutional move- ment of the early 1900s, the establishment of legality in Russia was one of the important goals that Liberal Democrats struggled to achieve. This movement led to the organization of the Administrative Court.3 After the 1917 Revolution, the term "revolutionary legality" became common among the Bolsheviks. In 1933, this term was replaced by "socialist legality".' The existing research on legality, especially in the Soviet Union, tends to underestimate the discrepancy between revolutionary legality and socialist legal- ity.5 Some western researchers have realized this, but have failed to clarify the structural difference between these principles. In this article, the author intends to shed light upon the
Review of Socialist Law (in 1992 continued as Review of Central and East European Law) – Brill
Published: Jan 1, 1980
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