Washington Law Review


The shift in 1947 from a political to a legal (or justiciable) constitution of Anglo-American design meant also a shift from professors to the courts as the authoritative expounders of the Constitution, though of course the leading critics and synthesizers are still the scholars. Soon followed, for the first time, a body of Supreme Court decisions which became the detailed sources of constitutional law, presaging adoption throughout the legal profession of a new juristic method in the public law field using scholarly theories where appropriate but rooted in case analysis. These changes in professional roles, sources and methods have caused a new emphasis on American constitutional studies and perhaps some dilution of the prior preferences for continental European theories. But these transitions have not taken place without some groping for direction, and it is the purpose of this introduction to outline briefly some of the postwar developments. Emphasis is placed on the functioning of Japanese judicial review, not its substantive results.

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