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Fundamental Works of Constitutional Law

Translated into Arabic


Homogenous People – on the Postulates of Homogeneity and Integration

Gertrude Lübbe-Wolff

The concept of integration plays an essential role in German state theory. In her article Homogenous People – on the Postulates of Homogeneity and Integration, Prof. Gertrude Lübbe-Wolff addresses the question of whether the homogeneity of a population is a precondition for the establishment of a democratic state. Her article examines this question and its significance for integration policies.

Democracy as a Constitutional Principle

E.-W. Böckenförde

Article 20 paragraph 1 GG (Basic Law) constitutes democracy as the form of state and government for the Federal Republic of Germany. Democracy is the manifestation of the sovereignty of the people, it is therefore linked to the latter by Article 20 paragraph 2 GG. A sovereign people takes the decisions that concern itself, but in order to be functional, state authority is formed by representation.

Human Dignity as the Foundation of the State Community

Peter Häberle

“Human dignity shall be inviolable.” Article 1 Section 1 (1) places human dignity at the very beginning of the German constitution (Basic Law / GG). It is the benchmark for all state decisions and actions, as all state authority is obliged to respect and protect human dignity. However, the notion of human dignity is not specified by the Basic Law. A more detailed examination of its substance and value is therefore indispensable for understanding its impact on the German constitutional system.

Origin and Change of the Constitution

Dieter Grimm

Constitutions provide the fundament and framework of states, their claim to legitimacy and the exercise of power. A constitution regulates the institution as well as the organisational structure and determines how and by whom state authority is exercised. It also organizes the relationship between state and society and the rights of individual citizens. How did the constitutional idea develop and what lessons can be drawn from its history for the 21st century?

The Fundamental Right as a Right of Defence and a State Duty to Protect

Josef Isensee

Fundamental rights are probably the most elemental aspect of the German constitution and an expression of its liberal design. Reflecting this importance, they stand at the very beginning of the constitution. However, the fundamental rights have different functions. An examination of these functions is necessary in order to understand their necessity and the system of fundamental rights in German constitutional law.

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About this series

Supporting Comparative Constitutional Law


In the last twenty years, especially as a consequence of the popular uprisings in the region in 2011, the institutions charged with constitutional review in the countries of the Middle East and North Africa – be it Constitutional Courts, Constitutional Councils, Supreme Courts or High Tribunals - are being reformed (e.g. Tunisia, Morocco, Jordan). Some, already earlier too, have been established for the first time (e.g. Bahrain in 2002, Iraq in 2004 or Saudi Arabia in 2009), some have been attributed new competences, and new procedures have been introduced, thus indicating a rising awareness for the importance of constitutional review as an instrument for judicial oversight. With constitution-building processes and reform of constitutional courts ongoing, comparative constitutional law has become a topic on the rise.


Over the past half century, the German post-war constitutional state has gained respect internationally. At the basis of its economic, political and social development lies its constitutional system. The German Federal Constitutional Court has played a fundamental role since in the country’s efforts to establish a stable, balanced system of government, and in upholding the constitution, its principles and the individual rights vested in it. Within more than 70 years of jurisdiction it has continuously done so by applying, interpreting and developing the constitutional framework of Germany.


This - in 2019 - initiated series of the Rule of Law Programme Middle East & North Africa strives to present constitutional concepts that have been of fundamental relevance to the (positive) development of the German constitutional state. In order to meet a growing interest of young Arab speaking scholars from the region in comparative constitutional law, the Rule of Law Programme Middle East & North Africa has decided to complement this endeavour by publishing a series of selected works on German constitutional law in Arabic translation. The works translated into Arabic and published in this series invite to explore, compare and debate existing concepts and solutions that were developed to address certain questions.


Beirut, 2019; by Anja Schoeller-Schletter (edited in 2023)

Philipp Bremer

Portrait von Philipp Bremer

Head of the Rule of Law Program Middle East and North Africa +961 1 385 094 | +961 1 395 094