Book cover for 'Constitutional Judiciary in a New Democracy'
Google Preview

Constitutional Judiciary in a New Democracy

The Hungarian Constitutional Court
Laszlo Solyom and Georg Brunner, Editors
With a Foreword by Justice Stephen G. Breyer
Describes the decisions of the most innovative of the new constitutional courts in post Soviet Central Europe


Two in-depth essays and a selection of twenty-seven of the most important decisions present the Hungarian Constitutional Court as one of the most important actors of the transition into democracy in a post-communist country.

How was it possible that a new Court established in 1990, in a country just released from forty years of Communist rule, was able to enforce a Constitution, maintain the rule of law, and protect the freedom of its citizens in a way comparable to the U.S. Supreme Court? This new Court has issued decisions on topics ranging from the establishment of democracy and a market economy—privatization, compensation for the nationalization of property, and retroactive criminal legislation—as well as such issues as the constitutionality of capital punishment, abortion, freedom of speech and the media, and the separation of powers.

U.S. Supreme Court Justice Stephen Breyer provides the foreword and introduces the two essays that begin the book. In the first essay, Georg Brunner explains how the Court was set up and what its procedures are. In the second, Lázszló Sólyom describes systematically the emergence of the case-law of the Court and its jurisprudence on constitutional rights and on the powers and procedures of the other branches of government. The models followed by the Court are outlined, and its contribution to global constitutionalism explored.

Lázszló Sólyom is President of the Constitutional Court of Hungary and Professor of Law, ELTE University of Budapest.

Georg Brunner is Professor of Law, University of Cologne, Germany.

Praise / Awards

  • "For those with an academic or professional interest in the work of the new constitutional courts of Central Europe, this book will be indispensable. . . . [T]aken overall this book stands nevertheless as the primary and most valuable source concerning the work of the Hungarian Constitutional Court presently available in English. It cannot be more highly recommended to scholars in law and political science with an interest not only in this Court but also in constitutional courts more generally."
    —Spencer Zifcak, La Trobe University, Melbourne, Australia, Law and Politics Book Review, August 2000

Product Details

  • 6 x 9.
  • 428pp.
  • 1 table.
Available for sale worldwide

  • Hardcover
  • 2000
  • Available
  • 978-0-472-10965-4

Add to Cart
  • $109.95 U.S.