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Alternative title:

The assumption of the rational legislator in the Polish jurisprudential debate: the starting point and its criticism

Subject and Keywords:

rational legislator   perfect legislator   empirical legislator   creation of law   interpretation of the law   text exegesis   legislative error


Tyt. tomu: Założenie racjonalnego prawodawcy w polskim porządku prawnym. Księga Jubileuszowa z okazji siedemdziesięciopięciolecia Wydziału Prawa, Administracji i Ekonomii Uniwersytetu Wrocławskiego


The concept of the rational legislator is considered one of the greatest achievements of Polish legal doctrine, and the assumption of rationality of the author of a legal text — as a specific feature of Polish legal culture. However, this concept is sometimes criticised for scientism and formalism, on which it bases its argumentation, and today — additionally — for blurring the boundaries of power between the political legislature (real legislator) and independent, apolitical judiciary (judge using the assumption of rational legislator). An additional political impetus for this discussion is currently being given by Polish disputes over judicial reform. In this text, I recall a historical discussion in jurisprudence that was provoked in 1973 by the work of a Poznań lawyer, philosopher and methodologist of science Leszek Nowak entitled “Legal Interpretation. Study of the methodology of jurisprudence.” In the theses of this work and the criticism it provoked at the time, I can see reasons for the argument — hidden behind the language of jurisprudential debate — which is also present in current Polish political disputes about the shape of the judiciary. This justifies the view that disputes over the independence of judges and the judiciary are disputes reaching the centre of Polish legal culture, its specificity expressed by the assumption of the legislator ’s rationality.

Place of publishing:



Wydawnictwo Uniwersytetu Wrocławskiego

Date issued:


Date copyrighted:


Resource Type:



ISSN 0137-1134   ISSN 0239-6661




PAd P 101660 II


pol   eng


Acta Universitatis Wratislaviensis, ISSN 0239-6661, No 3978. Przegląd Prawa i Administracji 2020, 120, cz. 1, s. 21-34

Is version of:

Czasopisma Naukowe w Sieci (CNS)

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