Making Democratic Citizens in Spain: Civil Society and the by P. Radcliff

By P. Radcliff

A desirable learn of the contribution of normal women and men to Spain's democratic transition of the Seventies. Radcliff argues that individuals in neighbourhood and different institutions experimented with new practices of civic participation that placed strain at the authoritarian country and made the development blocks of a destiny democratic citizenship

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Extra info for Making Democratic Citizens in Spain: Civil Society and the Popular Origins of the Transition, 1960-78

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The project was always open to multiple interpretations, as the government technical adviser who commented on the proposal immediately recognized. He was disturbed, first of all, by the decentralization of authority implied in the project, since the new associations would not be subject to general state law, but only to Movimiento oversight. Furthermore, they were to be encouraged to oversee municipal authorities’ management of their responsibilities, which would undermine state authority, he warned.

Introduction 11 toward such an end. In order to frame such a set of constituent practices, I have drawn on recent theories of citizenship that emphasize its empowering grass-roots potential. 37 Thus, the status bestowed by new sets of rights forms the “passive” axis of citizenship, while the ways individuals come together in civil society, in demanding new rights or in performing existing ones, form the “active” axis of citizenship. 39 Within this dynamic process, the active face of citizenship provides a language of agency and empowerment that links abstract concepts to ordinary lives and everyday practices.

Although amas de casa are associated with the private sphere, especially in Francoist Spain, these associations explicitly sought to pull women out of that sphere and turn them into collective advocates for the family economy. The chapter also examines the discourse of the “independent” homemaker associations, which were coopted by dissidents searching for legal channels for their activism. Despite the dramatic ideological differences, there was significant overlap in the ways both types of homemaker associations created a framework in which the ama de casa/citizen could be both imagined and nurtured.

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