Musichenko O. Intelligibility of the criminal law

Українська версія

Thesis for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

State registration number


Applicant for


  • 081 - Право. Право


Specialized Academic Board

ДФ 41.086.012

National University «Odessa Law Academy»


The dissertation is devoted to a comprehensive study of the intelligibility of the criminal law as its qualitative property and means of its ensuring, resulting in a number of proposals and recommendations for improving the content and form of the Criminal Code of Ukraine are formulated. In the first section devoted to the historical and doctrinal principles of the study of the intelligibility of the criminal law it is established that the study of the law requirements, including criminal law, takes its origins in the works of ancient European thinkers-lawyers. In the paper attention is paid the importance of the works of philosophers, lawyers, theorists of criminal law who dealt with hermeneutics, in particular the hermeneutics of criminal law, one of which is a complex philosophical category of intelligibility. The normative acts that contained criminal law norms and operated on the territory of modern Ukraine were analyzed, which made it possible to trace the development of legal techniques and identify the directions used by the compilers for a clear statement of criminal law norms. The second section is devoted to a detailed description of the concept of intelligibility of the criminal law. It is determined that one of the indisputable conditions for the effectiveness of a legal norm is its quality, the criteria of which are in the general social and special legal planes. It is established that intelligibility belongs to the qualitative special legal properties of the criminal law, it is the component of legal certainty, and refers to the applied (technical and legal) properties of the criminal law. It was found that the concept of intelligibility in science and practice, in particular international, is interpreted from different doctrinal positions. First, intelligibility is seen as a component of the principle (general principle) of legal certainty, which is the element of the rule of law principle. Secondly, intelligibility is considered within the problems of legal technique. Third, the concept of intelligibility is reduced to the necessary qualitative property of the law. A definition is formulated: intelligibility of criminal law is a qualitative property of criminal law, which is the maximum proximity of the legislator's content of the criminal law, formalized with the help of legal techniques, to the internal interpretation of the text of subjects of criminal legal relations, as well as those entities that are potential participants. The third section directly analyzes the means of ensuring the intelligibility of the criminal law. It is established that the components of the legislative technique of criminal law are specific, they can be divided into internal and external, but the latter (language and structuring of criminal law) affect the intelligibility of criminal law as its qualitative property. The following principles of external legislative technique of criminal law are defined and analyzed, which concern both language means and structuring of criminal law: of adequate expression of legal material in criminal law; of economical use of language constructions of the criminal law; of availability of criminal law. The division of the vocabulary of the criminal law into groups: common vocabulary, legal terminology, specialized non-legal terminology, allowed to formulate rules of word usage for each of these groups, aimed at ensuring such a qualitative property of the criminal law as its intelligibility. It is proved that, in addition to vocabulary, the grammar of the Ukrainian language significantly affects the intelligibility of the criminal law. The omission of the peculiarities of word formation or the rules of combining words into phrases and sentences without taking into account the functional purpose of the criminal law leads to misrepresentation of the legislative will content. A number of rules have been formulated taking into account the influence of specific morphological categories on the understanding of the text of the criminal law. It is established that the syntactic organization of the text directly affects the perception of the text, and hence the further clarification of its content. The analysis of certain syntactic structures of the CCU made it possible to formulate the rules of syntactic organization of a sentence. It is proved that syntactic constructions, using not only punctuation, but also prepositions, conjunctions, used in the sanctions of articles, can not be arbitrary, because they allow to adequately interpret the prescription for the law enforcer, so they must be the same type and submit the rules defined in practice. A study of the structure of the CCU showed that it is a complete integral text unit, which has its own specific textual features. The analysis of the text processing of qualified / especially qualified structures allowed to identify problems that arise in practice and are related to the understanding and subsequent classification of crimes.


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