Pedro Rújula Lopez

Populist monarchy? Absolute power and appeal to people in the Spanish restoration of Fernando VII

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Keywords: Monarchy; People; Populism; Ferdinando VII; Spain.

VII. This article aims to analyze the use of popular support made by Fernando VII throughout his reign. This essay will examine the populist strategy developed in 1814 during his return journey to Spain after his captivity in Valençay. Based on the enthusiasm caused by his return, the king drawn up a strategy of personal and direct dialogue with the people. Both in his words and in his rituals he eliminated the presence of intermediary bodies and institutions to present himself as a direct interlocutor and sole interpreter of the will of the people. Based on the popular support obtained by the monarchy, the king act in a populist way presenting himself as the embodiment of the will of the people. This attitude was not exceptional within his reign. Both in 1808, and in 1820, when his power was contested, he made appeal to the people as a source of legitimization of his political actions.

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