Centralism Definition and Meaning

The doctrine of the centralists is centralism. This current of thought is linked to the political centralization or administration of a territory.

The notion of centralism, therefore, refers to a system of state organization in which government decisions come from a single center, without taking into account the different peoples they affect. This means that the central government is responsible for political decisions.

There are various types of centralism. However, among all of them, we could mention what has historically been called Sevillian centralism. It is a term with which it is intended to refer to the weight that was attributed both to the city of Seville and to its entire province with regard to political, administrative, social or cultural issues related to Andalusia and even to all of Spain.

Currently a reflection of this is that the city of Seville is the capital of the Andalusian autonomous community, where the most important regional bodies at the political level are located, such as the Junta de Andalucía.

Historically, we cannot ignore the fact that in Spain what was known as Bourbon centralism took place. In the eighteenth century is when the one that begins when a new dynasty, the Bourbons, arrives in the country and it is one of them, Felipe V, who assumes the throne.

From that moment, he will decide to bet on establishing his ideas regarding what the structure of the State would be. Specifically, it imposed centralizing measures such as the abolition of certain fueros, established an absolute monarchy, made changes in what was the territorial administration, created the Dispatch Secretariats and eliminated the Councils, with the exception of the Council of Castile.

In the same way, he adopted measures to unify the tax system and tried to establish the necessary actions so that the monarchy had a supreme power over all, including the Church.

It is possible to distinguish between pure centralism and deconcentrated centralism. Pure centralism is the model that bets on the administrative, political and territorial unit. In it, the central power dictates all the rules and manages the services related to the administration of the country. Pure centralism is justified on the basis of the need to maintain national unity and cohesion.

The centralism decentralized, meanwhile, is based on the transfer of ownership of a jurisdiction of an administrative organ to another organ of the government, but independent hierarchically.

Democratic centralism is known as the organization model of Marxist-Leninist parties, which combine centralism in decision-making with democracy to maximize effectiveness. Democratic centralism, in this sense, is opposed to the bureaucracy and the forms of organization of other Marxist parties.

The decisions of democratic centralism are discussed in organs of different hierarchies, where the debates circulate from the bottom up and vice versa. This means that, even if the decision is made in the higher hierarchy, the exchange of opinions allows the participation of the bases in power.


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