This comprehensive study examines the development and changing characteristics of the judicial system and reform process over the past three decades in China. As the role of courts in society has increased so too has the amount of public complaints about the judiciary. At the same time, political control over the judiciary has retained its tight-grip. The shortcomings of the contemporary system, such as institutional deficiencies, shocking cases of injustice and cases of serious judicial corruption, are deemed quite appalling by an international audience. Using a combination of traditional modes of legal analysis, case studies, and empirical research, this study reflects upon the complex progress that China has made, and continues to make, towards the modernisation of its judicial system. Li offers a better understanding on how the judicial system has transformed and what challenges lay ahead for further enhancement. This book is unique in providing both the breadth of coverage and yet the substantive details of the most fundamental as well as controversial subjects concerning the operation of the courts in China.
"Yuwen Li, Professor of Chinese Law at Erasmus University in Rotterdam, focuses mainly on the laws on criminal and civil procedure and administrative litigation and on the work conditions of judges and lawyers. Among the problems she identifies are: limitation of the rights of defendants in court proceedings; the lack of public reporting of trials; restrictions on independent lawyers; political influence on judges by Communist Party officials through party organisations within or linked to the judicial system; the influence of Adjudication Committees, which can be decisive even when their members are not given full details of trials; and the financial dependence of the Courts on local governments."
Kenneth C. Walker,
There is no doctrine more effective than the rule of law in portraying the complex transformation of Chinese society from the rule of men towards the rule of law - a process inaugurated in post-Mao China which is continuing to advance legal reforms to the present day. In other parts of the world, striving for the rule of law is also evident: countries in transition face a similar mission, while the developed democratic countries are forced to tackle new challenges in retaining the high benchmark of the rule of law that has been established.
Research on the legal system in China and in comparison with other countries in the framework of the rule of law covers broad topics of public and private law, substantive law and procedural law, citizens’ rights and law enforcement by courts. Based on this broad understanding of the rule of law, the series presents international scholarly work on modern Chinese law including: comparative perspectives, interdisciplinary, and empirical studies.