Abstract.The article analyzes the national legal identity and its influence on the formation of a modern constitutional state. The author of the article focuses on the constitutional processes and their features in the countries of democratic transit, in particular Ukraine. It is emphasized that the process of constitutional transformation in these countries is intertwined with the search for an identity that has undergone a crisis since the collapse of the USSR and the rejection of the further application of Soviet ideology. The key thesis of this study is that national legal identity can and should become a primary condition for the effective functioning of the modern constitutional state, its role is especially important at the initial stage of state formation. It combines the established traditions and culture of the people with the universal values of constitutionalism and is aimed at forming a political nation. It is noted that the role of the cultural factor in this process is one of the key ones. The stronger the sense of cultural unity, the stronger and deeper the awareness of identity within the nation, and vice versa – the weakness of the unifying cultural element or its absence leads to the weakness of the nation and its decline. However, it is concluded that a political nation is formed not only on ethnocultural but also legal identity. A political nation is a historically formed community of people with a high level of political organization and legal culture. It is a society of law – conscious citizens that rejects any intolerance of the "Other," including racial intolerance. The modern nation-state is an ethno-political entity that functions effectively due to the legal identity of both the individual and society as a whole. National - legal identity implies a valuable legal self-determination, which is recognized by all interested members of the community and is the result of a high level of collective legal awareness. The author understands the national legal identity as a state of public legal consciousness constructed from the following coherent elements: 1) Relation to the past, which finds its expression through the constitutional tradition ("history forms identity"). 2) Current political legal and social disposition ("modernity forms identity"). 3) Goals and intentions to build a legitimate law and order ("the future shapes identity"). In this context, national legal identity is a state of self-determination of the nation as a full-fledged subject of law, based on the legal tradition, state-building reality and civilization perspective. The article emphasizes that the restoration of historical justice significantly affects the legal identity of the people, their sense of national dignity, which in turn affects the further prospects of democratic transformation of society, its formation as a holistic society capable of compromises and achievements, tolerant of "Other" Communities. Ultimately, it depends on which model of constitutional regulation - liberal or paternalistic, will be applied in the process of further state formation. The actualization of national legal identity at the present stage is the sovereignty of the people (nation), which finds its formal expression through the sovereignty of the state. The national constitutional state is the optimal form of the expression of people's sovereignty. However, the existence of such a state is not possible without a sense of patriotism and national dignity, which are closely interrelated. They presuppose love for one's country, respect for its symbols and a willingness to defend it in case of danger. The author believes that the future of the Ukrainian political nation is directly related to European identity and the values of constitutionalism, among which personal freedom and dignity, people's sovereignty and minority rights, political pluralism, independence of the judiciary and the legitimacy of public power in general play a key role. National dignity and constitutional patriotism are becoming the basic elements of national legal identity and they should be the basis of modern legal ideology of the Ukrainian state.
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