S-Space College of Law/Law School (법과대학/대학원) The Law Research Institute (법학연구소) Journal of Korean Law Journal of Korean Law Volume 13 Number 1/2 (2013/2014)
The Codifications and Legal Institutions of the Joseon Dynasty
- Jung, Geung Sik
- Issue Date
- BK 21 law
- Journal of Korean Law, Vol.13 No.1, pp. 175-212
- Korean Traditional Law; Codification; Process of Legislation; Family System; Inheritance; Succession of House-Head; Litigation in the Traditional Korean Society; Legal Books
- It was presented in the International Conference “The Spirit of Korean Law: The Identity and Evolution of Korean Law and the Legal System”, at Lyon France, April. 11-12, 2013.
- The purpose of this article is to introduce a general summary of the Korean traditional law to foreign scholars. This is done by first examining different codifications, legal books and various cases, while also focusing on its legislating process and the ideological foundation behind it. The family system of Joseon originally contained distinctive features of gender equality, as can be proved by the equal distribution of inheritance between both genders. But this changed to a male-centered system in the late 19th century, due to the reception of Neo-Confucianism and the Zhu Xi`s Family Rituals in the late 14th century. This paper examines its transformation process in a social-historical perspective. Litigations were frequent in Joseon society, and the government tried but failed in restraining excessive law suits. In the civilian sector, various legal books dealing with litigation were created and distributed among the people, while a specialized group, consisted of those resembling an attorney, continued to exist till the modern era in spite of a strong prohibition from the government.