The Problem of Legal Understanding in Modern Society: Administrative Aspect

: pp. 83 - 95
Lviv Polytechnic National University, Ukraine

The relevance of the problem study of legal understanding shall be determined by a combination of ideological, social and political factors, including the urgent need to comprehend legal understanding as the most important regulator of social relations, as well as the need for a critical rethinking of traditional concepts of legal understanding. Therefore, a clear idea of what law is, how it is understood and correctly interpreted within different cultural and legal traditions, what features it acquires within different legal systems shall be important for determining the development prospects. The issues of legal understanding shall be related to the constant fact as any person at each stage of his/her individual and social development discovers new aspects in law, new qualities, as well as its correlation with other phenomena and spheres of society. Legal understanding has not only significant cognitive and theoretical value and significance, but practical as well, because it is extremely important for the legislators to take into account the dominance of optimal types of legal understanding in society in their law-making activities.

Recent research and publications analysis. The most significant research in the field of study of legal understanding shall include the works by M. А. Damirli, V. V. Dudchenko, A. А. Kozlovskyi, M. I. Koziubra, O. V. Zaychuk, S. I. Maksymov, Yu. M. Oborotov, N. M. Onishchenko, M. P. Orzikh, P. M. Rabinovych, M. V. Savchyn, O. F. Skakun, S. O. Kharytonov, K. O. Shelestov et. al., as these scholars made an important contribution to the formation of the Ukrainian concept of legal understanding.

Highlighting previously unsettled parts of the general problem. Clarification of the main approaches to the notion and concepts of legal understanding, the establishment of its main characteristics and functions, the definition of criteria for its typology and problematic issues of the formation of legal understanding in modern Ukrainian society.

Paper main body. It has been established that, depending on the subject of law formation, the concept of natural, as well as normative, and sociological legal understanding shall be distinguished. Such a distribution shall bear witness to the dialectical nature  of law development, which includes abstractly general (natural and legal), as well as specific (positive) aspects. It has been researched that law is still too complex and multifaceted phenomenon to be within the framework of only one specific approach, therefore, the main task of modern Ukrainian legal science and studies shall be to find ways to form a new, integral type of legal understanding, arising from the interaction of all schools and trends in modern legal science (both Western and Eastern).

It has been developed that law is a phenomenon closely related to a specific being, it functions in the depths of life, moves in time, and changes therewith. Despite the fact that such values as the ideals of justice, freedom, equality are embodied in law, their content also undergoes changes over time, as new connections, manifestations, facets, dimensions appear that require their in-depth understanding. A number of factors, namely religious, civilizational, moral, international, national are also developing, changing and influencing legal understanding. It is not worth hoping that someday the discussions on legal understanding will end, and we will be able to receive a single correct answer what the essence of law is.

Author’s interpretations of the concept of “legal understanding” are given, in particular, those of P. Rabinovych, T. Dudash, Yu. Shemshuchenko, H. Lukianova. In general, legal understanding shall be defined as a scientific category that reflects not only the process, but also the result of a purposeful mental activity of a person and covers the knowledge of law, its assessment and attitude towards it as a holistic social phenomenon.

Types, levels, peculiarities, functions of legal understanding shall be analysed.

Today, the dominant legal understanding is actively developing, which determines the understanding of a certain content of law that is emerging in society as the most influential and widespread, based on its knowledge and perception, as well as its assessment, which designates the nature of various legal systems functioning. Understanding and perception of legal norms is always subjective, because each individual, faced with the law, sees it in his/her own way, then subsequently general ideas are determined through the means of communication, on the basis of which general idea and general legal understanding, dominating in a certain society, are formed.

Conclusions of the research  and prospects for further studies. Thus, legal understanding shall be a scientific category that is associated with scientific knowledge and understanding of law. It is manifested in the reflection of human mental activity and is aimed at the knowledge of law and legal reality, its assessment and attitude towards it as a social phenomenon and a fundamental value of the modern civilizational world. A number of factors, namely civilizational, international, national and others influence legal understanding. Therefore, it is simply impossible to achieve the only correct answer to what the law is. Consequently, the problem of legal understanding in modern society remains relevant and requires further scientific development and understanding.

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