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Abstract

This article examines the attitude of the main political party of the Spanish right between 1933 and 1936 – the CEDA – towards democracy and political violence. It analyzes the rhetoric and behavior of the party during a critical period, and one which has hitherto been largely neglected: from the campaign for the national elections of 1933 to the fall of the following year, when three of the party’s members joined the government. The purpose of this study is to demonstrate the complexity and ambiguity of the accidentalist Catholic right’s discourse, applying a dynamic analysis which explores their discursive evolution without simplifying it. Moreover, in order to deepen our understanding of the CEDA’s role in and attitude towards political violence, this article includes a detailed study of both conservative political language and the behavior of the party’s members during the 1933 campaign. Finally, given its importance for this article’s central objective, an analysis also is put forward of the relationship between the anti-liberal corporatism of the CEDA and Fascism.

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