July 20, 2015

The Decreta of Leon as Representation of a Parliamentary System

Esther Seijas Villadangos, Universidad de León, has published The Decreta of Leon (Spain) of 1188 as the Birthplace of Parliamentarism: An Historical Review from a Time of Crisis as UCD Working Papers in Law, Criminology & Socio-Legal Studies Research Paper No. 08/2015. Here is the abstract.
The recognition of The Decreta of León of 1188 as the “oldest documentary manifestation of the European parliamentary system” by UNESCO on 19th June 2013 and its inclusion in the International Memory of the World Register is the starting point of this paper. The explanation argues through a dialectic methodology. Thesis: England first developed the idea of representative government and parliamentary institutions. Antithesis: the Decreta of Leon 1188 predates any historical reference to parliamentary representation. Synthesis: the citizen attendance, the procedure and the content of the Decreta of Leon 1188, supported by the recognition of UNESCO proves that Leon is the “cradle of parliamentarism”. This historical review stimulates a reflection about the present situation of parliamentary democracy and, mainly, its crisis. The need of a citizen re-engagement with processes political, especially in the amendment of constitutions through constitutional conventions should be our reference. What are the main lessons from history today?
Download the article from SSRN at the link.

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