Episode 8- The Junta, the Cortes and the Local

Episode 8 with Charles Nicholas Saenz

When the French invaded Spain in 1808 and imprisoned the royal family, the country was thrown into chaos, with local councils, or juntas, taking governance into their own hands.  Charles Nicholas Saenz discusses how these groups sought to establish supremacy, authority and legitimacy in this unprecedented situation.  Even as their elite memberships sought to prevent revolution from spreading to Spain, they created new governing structures that could never be erased.  They unwittingly brought Spain into the modern period while making the local an indelible force in Spanish political culture.

The Episode

The Guest

Charles Nicholas Saenz is Assistant Professor of History at Adams State University in Alamosa, Colorado where he teaches courses on world civilization, European and Latin American history, and Latino studies. Nick is a specialist in late eighteenth and early nineteenth century Spanish political culture. He holds an BA from the University of Chicago and a Ph.D. from the University of California, San Diego (UCSD). During 2009-2010, Nick was a J. William Fulbright Scholar based in Seville, Spain. His research has received additional funding support from the Social Science Research Council, the Spanish Ministry of Culture, and the UCSD Institute for International, Comparative, and Area Studies.

Suggested Reading

  • Adelman, Jeremy. Sovereignty and Revolution in the Iberian Atlantic. Princeton: Princeton University Press, 2006.
  • Campese Gallego, Fernando J. La representación del común en el Ayuntamiento de Sevilla (1766-1808). Sevilla: Universidad de Sevilla, 2005.
  • Eastman, Scott. Preaching Spanish Nationalism across the Hispanic Atlantic 1759-1823. Baton Rouge: Louisiana State University Press, 2012.
  • Esdaile, Charles J. Outpost of Empire: The Napoleonic Occupation of Andalusia, 1810-1812. Norman: University of Oklahoma Press, 2012.
  • Fraser, Ronald. Napoleon’s Cursed War: Popular Resistance in the Spanish War of Independence, 1808-1814. London: Verso, 2008.
  • Herr, Richard. “The Constitution of 1812 and the Spanish Road to Parliamentary Monarchy,” in Revolution and the Meanings of Freedom in the Nineteenth Century, edited by Isser Woloch, 65-102. Stanford: Stanford University Press, 1996. 65-102.
  • Moreno Alonso, Manuel. La Junta Suprema de Sevilla. Sevilla: Alfar, 2001.
  • Portillo Valdés, José María. Revolución de nación: Orígenes de la cultura constituciónal en España, 1780-1812. Madrid: Centro de Estudios Políticos y Constitucionales, 2000.
  • Saenz, Charles Nicholas. “Slaves to Tyrants: Social Ordering, Nationhood, and the Spanish Constitution of 1812.” Bulletin for Spanish and Portuguese Historical Studies 37. 2 (2012): article 4.

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