The Law is a Causeway: Metaphor and the Rule of Law in Russia
This essay is a chapter in J.R. Silkenat et al. (eds.), The Legal Doctrines of the Rule of Law and the Legal State (Rechtsstaat), Ius Gentium: Comparative Perspectives on Law and Justice 38 (2014).
22 Pages Posted: 17 Aug 2014 Last revised: 6 Nov 2014
Date Written: December 18, 2013
The chapter explores how a metaphor for the rule of law created by the playwright Robert Bolt captures the difficulty that Russia has experienced in its self-proclaimed pursuit of a rule-of-law state: "The law is not a 'light' for you or any man to see by; the law is not an instrument of any kind. The law is a causeway upon which, so long as he keeps to it, a citizen may walk safely." In Russia, the failure to build a rule-of-law state has been, among other things, a failure to create what this metaphor describes as the essence of that concept. The essay concludes with a case study taken from the author's experience as an expert invited to submit a report to the Russian President's Council on the Development of Civil Society and Human Rights.
Keywords: Rule of Law, Russia, Khodorkovsky, Metaphor, Robert Bolt
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