Poli 211 Lecture Notes
November 5 2012
Hence, what does this case tell us about the supply and demand for law in Russia?
1.) Demand for law in Russia does exist and is not missing
2.) Law courts are not uniformly the instruments of rich people or oligarchs
3.) Some aspects of soviet legal tradition are not as bad as people thought
4.) Great threat to law comes from the state, with its tendency to be above the law
5.) The need to focus not just on the making of laws but also on their application
Acceptance and practice of rule of law, rather than rule by law
Why do we study China?
A.) Underwent a revolution: A communist regime: Also helps us understand the
potential for a peaceful transformation in a self governing society
B.) How does it differ from Russia?
o Similarity and differences
C.) Transformation of the systems: The history of political development that goes back
several millennia: puzzles
Importance of Elite: why elite turned to communism
Communism gave people meaning to their lives beyond what traditions offered them
Chinese could no longer meet the demands of the people by the 1920’s
o Can communism succeed in bringing democracy to China when it did not
succeed in the Soviet Union?
The soviet union collapsed with tis political institutions
But in china, the communist is the principle agent of change
The Chinese have learned from the soviets and did not give up authority
How to account for the stagnation and the collapse of the state by the end of the 19
o 1.) China is one of the most populace countries in the world, and four times as
big as the U.S.
o 2.) Rapid economic growth
o 3.) Positions of China is dramatically changing in the world, to a far advanced
country in manufacturing and development
History of a unified country despite diverse languages
Faced with the paradox of how to explain Chinese early development and later
o How these two are related:
1.) Early centralization (200 years A.D.) was marked by great cultural
development, rise of domestic and conquest
Chinese was ahead of Europe in astronomy, mathematics, and time
Confucius influenced empiric leaders
Mixed blessings: it is still the importance of meritocracy but also the
importance of a hierarchal role and obedience to authority Confucius helped to develop the Chinese civil service and the emphasis
on exams and educated leaders
The idea of a professional civil service based on competitive exams was