By Howard J. Wiarda
Spain and Portugal have lately followed European-style democratic and political platforms. but their trend of old improvement is specific and, in lots of respects, their political structures nonetheless mirror special positive aspects. during this provocative textual content Wiard and Mott examine the specified good points of Spanish background: the Catholic culture, seven centuries of Moorish rule, the Christian Reconquest, and the detailed nature of Spanish feudalism and nationalism. development on those foundations, the authors learn Spanish and Portuguese glossy heritage, the regimes of Franco and Salazar, and the hot transitions to democracy. Successive chapters take care of category constitution and curiosity teams, political events and elections, the constitution of the kingdom and state-society kin, nearby politics, and styles of public policy.While changing into extra eu socially, culturally, and politically, those Iberian political structures convey additionally a few impressive continuities with the prior, together with notions of natural democracy, neocorporatism, and tensions among regionalism and centralism, democracy and authoritarianism, and religiousity and secularism. scholars and students concerned with ecu politics, comparative politics, Iberian experiences, and transitions to democracy will locate this an available and provocative research.
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Additional info for Catholic Roots and Democratic Flowers: Political Systems in Spain and Portugal
It should come as no surprise that members of the Spanish elite would welcome Napoleonic rule. The afrancesados welcomed a return of Bourbon social planning and economic engineering. Like the Bourbons before him, Joseph Bonaparte proclaimed the dissolution of religious houses. While that may have ingratiated him with the afrancesados, the Spanish citizenry reacted quite differently. Loyalty to the Catholic Church became once again the identifying characteristic of a good Spaniard. The move against the religious houses provoked nationalist fervor and armed resistance.
The rule of Charles II (1661–1700) is recognized as a veritable disaster for Spain. Unable to resist outside influences, he was constantly manipulated by his advisers. Without the strength of leadership at the top, the entire system almost gave way. What had begun as a effective, zealous, albeit intolerant, dynasty, ended up as a universal symbol for political decadence. The Hapsburgs were replaced in the eighteenth century by the Bourbons, a royal family from France. The Bourbons embodied all that was modern, progressive, and European about France, but they were not particularly concerned with the traditions of the peninsula.
In their authoritarian, organic, corporatist, and top-down structures, they were also very much in the tradition of these earlier monarchs. The difference is, by the mid-twentieth century, Spain and Portugal had changed greatly since these earlier times, so it is worth questioning if the type of regimes erected by Franco and Salazar was still appropriate in this modern context or if they would only be reconstituted by repression and violence. ” In fact, the Franco and Salazar regimes were much more complex than such 40 Catholic Roots and Democratic Flowers simple labels imply—and more important.