Abstract. The rule of law should be understood as part of the culture of democracy which requires a distribution of power between a periodically elected legislature and executive and an independent, but publicly accountable, judiciary in charge of a more slowly changing legal doctrine. The rule of law is also essential for the protection of individuals in fast changing pluralistic societies. In both its aspects the doctrine is a product of a particular historical culture, and requires a culture of legality, and not merely the introduction of a few legal rules, for its proper functioning.