11 Tex. Int'l L. J. 113 (1976)
The 1972 Socialist Constitution of North Korea

handle is hein.journals/tilj11 and id is 123 raw text is: The 1972 Socialist Constitution of

North Korea
CHIN Kim* and
TIMOTHY G. KEARLEY**
The new constitution of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea
(D.P.R.K.), announced October 30, 1972, and ratified December 27,
1972,1 combines socialism and nationalism to produce a document of funda-
mental law and propaganda that is unusual, even compared to the constitu-
tions of other Marxian socialist states. This article describes the major pro-
visions of North Korea's 1972 Constitution2 and compares them to North
Korea's original basic law and to other Marxist constitutions.3 The analysis
emphasizes the unique features of -the new constitution with special attention
being given to the D.P.R.K.'s system of justice. Although the article does
not generally discuss informal practices that alter the meaning of official ex-
pressions of state policy, the discussion is not purely academic. While the
writers lack the kind of political data required to draw a complete picture
of the true meaning of the documents in question, the surface messages
conveyed are significant in their own right. An analysis of the 1972 North
Korean Constitution on its own terms provides foreign observers with infor-
mation helpful both in understanding North Korea's actions and in predicting
its future behavior. Moreover, the authors hope that this investigation will
give some insights into the framework of Marxist justice systems.
* A.B., Florida Southern College; LL.B., Korea University; M.C.L., George Wash-
ington University; M.S., Columbia University; LL.M., J.S.D., Yale University. Profes-
sor of Law and Library Administration, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.
** B.A.; J.D. candidate, University of Illinois.
1. CoNSTTrrTON (Democratic People's Republic of Korea, 1972) [hereinafter
cited as CoNsTnruoN (D.P.R.K., 1972)]. The text of the Constitution may be found
in 2 J. KOREAN AFF. 45-46 (1973) and in Seymour, The Korean People's Republic, 6
CONSTITUTIONS OF TiE CouNTnus OF Tim WORLD (Blaustein and Flanz, eds., 1973).
2. CONSTIruTION (D.P.R.K., 1948, Amended 1962).
3. The notions of a Marxist Constitution and Marxian socialist state are found
in J. HAzAAR, CoMMuNrSTS AND THEIm Law (1969). It is beyond the scope of this
paper to exhaustively categorize the various elements of Marxian socialist constitutions,
but reference will be made herein to the typical Marxist constitution on the basis of
some characteristics held in common by a majority of them. A sampling of the consti-
tutions of several Marxist states, some of which are their nation's original basic law and
others of which are relatively new documents, will be employed for this comparative pur-
pose.

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