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Everyday Law in Russia$
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Kathryn Hendley

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9781501705243

Published to Cornell Scholarship Online: May 2017

DOI: 10.7591/cornell/9781501705243.001.0001

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Rethinking the Role of Law in Russia

Rethinking the Role of Law in Russia

Chapter:
(p.222) Conclusion Rethinking the Role of Law in Russia
Source:
Everyday Law in Russia
Author(s):

Kathryn Hendley

Publisher:
Cornell University Press
DOI:10.7591/cornell/9781501705243.003.0007

This book has investigated whether the existence of telephone law rendered law irrelevant for Russians in their everyday lives. It has shown that Russians are not as nihilistic as usually assumed, but neither are they free of skepticism when it comes to their legal system. Their attitudes and behavior vary depending on the situation. Their primary reservation about using the courts is not concern over telephone law, but dread of the inevitable red tape and emotional turmoil that accompany litigation. This concluding chapter returns to the theoretical dilemma of how we should conceptualize legal systems like that of Russia in which law can—but does not always—matter. In particular, it considers how a dualistic legal system, in which politicized law exists side by side with law that is enforced and obeyed based on its written terms, should be evaluated in terms of the rule of law. It argues that a rethinking of the very concept of the “rule of law” in Russia is needed.

Keywords:   telephone law, law, Russia, legal system, courts, litigation, rule of law

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