Politics and Society in Contemporary Spain From Zapatero to Rajoy

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  • Format: Hardcover
  • Copyright: 2013-06-19
  • Publisher: Palgrave Macmillan
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Politics and Society in Contemporary Spain offers a comprehensive and nuanced analysis of Spain today. Focusing on the second term of Socialist Prime Minister José Luis Rodríguez Zapatero, the dramatic defeat of the Socialists in the 2011 elections and the alternation of power to the conservative Popular Party, it underscores Spain's deep economic and political crisis. The contributors analyze Spain's political parties, parliamentary dynamics, territorial politics, economy and labor market. Additionally, they examine the relationship between the government and the labor unions, the 'indignant' protest movement, and the Catholic Church, as well as policy developments related to gender equality and the welfare state.

Author Biography

Bonnie N. Field holds a PhD in Political Science from the University of California, Santa Barbara, USA and is Associate Professor of Global Studies at Bentley University, Massachusetts, USA. She is an Affiliate of the Minda de Gunzburg Center for European Studies at Harvard University. She has been a Faculty Fellow at the University of California, Irvine, Visiting Fellow at UCI's Center for the Study of Democracy, and Fulbright Senior Researcher in Spain. Her publications focus on regime democratization, political parties and political institutions in Spain and Latin America. She is editor of Spain's 'Second Transition'? The Socialist Government of José Luis Rodríguez Zapatero (2011) and Democracy and Institutional Development: Spain in Comparative Theoretical Perspective (with Kerstin Hamann, 2008).


Alfonso Botti is Full Professor of Contemporary History in the College of Letters and Philosophy at the University of Modena and Reggio Emilia, Italy. Co-director of the journal Spagna contemporanea, he is also on the scientific boards of several Spanish and Italian journals. His research trajectory is centered on the history of Catholicism, of the Church and of nationalisms in Spain. Most recently, he published La questione basca (B. Mondadori, Milan, 2003), Storia della Spagna democratica. Da Franco a Zapatero (B. Mondadori, Milan, 2006) with C. Adagio, Cielo y dinero (Alianza, Madrid, 2008) and edited Le patrie degli spagnoli (B. Mondadori, Milan, 2007), L'Ultimo franchismo (Rubbettino, Soveria Mannelli, 2009) with M. Guderzo, Clero e guerre spagnole, 1808-1936 (Rubbettino, Soveria Mannelli, 2011) and Luigi Sturzo e gli amici spagnoli, Carteggi 1924-1951 (Rubbettino, Soveria Mannelli, 2012).

Table of Contents

Introduction; Alfonso Botti and Bonnie N. Field
1. The Long Adiós: The End of the Zapatero Era; Anna Bosco
2. Mariano Rajoy and the Popular Party: From Opposition to Government; Alfonso Botti
3. Governing Spain in Tough Times and in Minority: The Limits of Shifting Alliances; Bonnie N. Field
4. The State of Autonomies between the Economic Crisis and Enduring Nationalist Tensions; César Colino
5. Economic Reforms and the Labor Market: Zapatero's Endless Period in the Wilderness; Oscar Molina and Alejandro Godino
6. The Relationship between Unions and Zapatero's Government: From Social Pacts to General Strike; Kerstin Hamann
7. Youth Protests and the End of the Zapatero Government; Carmelo Adagio
8. The Spanish Catholic Church and the Zapatero Government; Mireno Berrettini
9. Gender Equality Policy-Making in Spain (2008-11); Celia Valiente
Conclusion - Bonnie N. Field and Alfonso Botti

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