Theoretical aspects of understanding of legal doctrine




legal doctrine, legal science, source of law, legal system, interpretation of the law


The conception of a «legal doctrine» is commonly used in Ukrainian jurisprudence. At the same time, in legal science there are significant differences on awareness of the legal nature of a legal doctrine, determination of its concept and characteristics, the disclosure of its relationship and interaction with legal science, which predetermines the importance and timeliness of this research. Actuality of the working out of the legal doctrine is closely connected with the problem of determination of its place and role in the development of domestic law, legal institutions.  

     So, the objectives of the study are to determine the role and significance of legal doctrine in the development of law. The article reveals the close links of legal doctrine with legal science, legal traditions and values. Separately, the classification of legal doctrines is developed and suggested in the paper. It is grounded, that legal doctrine is created, reproduced and developed primarily thanks to the intellectual and creative efforts of legal scholars, who focus on the study of law on the basis of formal dogmatic, historical and other methods, the development of techniques and methods for its interpretation and systematization, understanding of the accumulated legal experience and creation of «scientific picture» of the legal world on these grounds. This refers to legal knowledge represented in the generalized form: legal constructions, notions and categories, principles, legal ideas, concepts, etc. that shape the base of the legal doctrine, which in its turn has an objective form in terms of scientific works – monographs, scientific articles, reports, commentaries on legislation, etc. The provisions of the legal doctrine can be classified according to different criteria: by the source of its origin – personified (such as the «Radbruch Formula») and collective, which is communis opinio doctorum; according to the distribution in different legal order – recognized at the level of the national / supranational legal systems, legal families; by official recognition – sanctioned by public authorities and embodied in positive law and officially unrecognized. The legal doctrine in some way describes legal concepts, rules, principles and explains why they exist in society. This explanation can be historical, sociological, psychological, economic, etc. [the rule exists because it complies with traditions, social economic realities, moral principles of society] or it can rely on the internal logic of the law system structure. In the latter case, the validity of the legal norm is explained by the existence of another legal rule or legal principle, which brought it forth. At the same time, the legal doctrine is not a «photographic representation» of the current law. Describing law, carrying out its logical or economic analysis, lawyers find gaps in legislation, desuetude of the legal norms, their non-compliance with the principles of law, etc., and prove the need to establish / change / abolish legal rules.

Author Biography

Ігор Вікторович Семеніхін, Yaroslav Mudryi National Law University

PhD in Law, Teaching Assistant of The Department of Theory and Philosophy of Law


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How to Cite

Семеніхін, І. В. (2019). Theoretical aspects of understanding of legal doctrine. Problems of Legality, (145), 36–50.