Talk:Republic/Archive 7

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This article concentrates on the several forms of government that have been applied to real states and countries that have been termed republic, for all other uses see: republic (disambiguation)

In a broad definition a republic is a state or country that is led by people that don't found their political power on any principle beyond the control of the people living in that state or country.

This definition encompasses most of the specific definitions that are (or were) used to characterize republics, but leaves much of the striking differences between states/countries that can in some way be called republics unexplained: the first section of this article gives an overview of these distinctions that characterise different types of non-fictional republics.

The second section of the article gives a short profile of some of the most influential republics, by way of illustration to the more comprehensive (but less detailed) List of republics.

There is a third section about the history of how people came to think about several forms of government as republics. This section is a summary of what is in the republicanism article.

Characteristics of republics

Heads of state

In most modern republics the head of state is termed president. In republics that are also democracies the head of state is appointed as the result of an election. This election can be indirect: a council of some sort is elected by the people, and this council elects the head of state. In these kinds of republics the usual term for a president is in the range of four to six years. In some countries the constitution limits the number of terms a same person can be elected as president.

If the head of state of a republic is at the same time the head of government, this is called a presidential system (example: United States). In Semi-presidential systems the head of state is not the same person as the head of government, who in that case is usually termed prime minister. Depending on the rules for appointing the president and the leader of the government, it is for some countries not excluded that the president and the prime minister have opposing political convictions: in France, when the members of the ruling cabinet and the president come from opposing political factions, this is called cohabitation.

In some countries, like Switzerland and San Marino, the head of state is not a single person but a committee (council) of several persons materialising that office. The Roman Republic had two consuls, appointed for a year by the senate, where during the year of their consulship each consul would in turn be head of state during a month, thus alternating the office of consul maior (the consul in power) and of consul suffectus (not-ruling consul, however with some supervision on the work of the consul maior) for their joint term.

Republics can be led by a head of state that has many traits of a monarch: not only do some republics install a president for life, and invest such president with powers beyond what is usual in a representative democracy, examples like the post-1970 Syrian Arab Republic show that such presidency can apparently be made hereditary. Until today historians disagree when the Roman Republic turned into Imperial Rome: the reason is that the first Emperors were given their head of state-like powers gradually, in a government system that in appearence did not differ from the Roman Republic[1].

Similarly, if taking the broad definition of republic above ("a republic is a state or country that is led by people that don't found their political power on any principle beyond the control of the people living in that state or country"), countries usually qualified as monarchies can have many traits of a republic in terms of form of government: the political power of monarchs can be non-existant, while limited to a "ceremonial" function, and/or the "control of the people" can be excerced thus literally that they appear to have the power to have their monarch replaced by another one[2].

The often assumed "mutual exclusiveness" of monarchies and republics as forms of government[3] is thus not to be taken too litterally, and largely depends on circumstances:

  • Autocrats might try to give themselves a democratic tenure by calling themselves president (or princeps senatu in the case of Ancient Rome), and the form of government of their country "republic", instead of using a monarchy-related terminology[4].
  • For full-fledged representative democracies ultimately it does mostly not make all that much difference whether the head of state is a monarch or a president, neither whether these countries call themselves monarchy or republic: other factors, for instance stance on religious matters (see next section), can often make a greater distinguishing mark when comparing the forms of government of actual states and countries.

For this reason, in political science the several definitions of "republic", which in such context invariably indicate an "ideal" form of government, do not always exclude monarchy: the evolution of such definitions of "republic" in a context of political philosophy is treated in republicanism. However, such theoretical approaches appear to have had no real influence on the everyday use (that is: apart from a scholar or "insider" context) of the terminology regarding republics and monarchies[5].

The least that can be said is that Anti-Monarchism, this is the opposition to monarchy as such, played no equal role in the creation and/or management of republics. For some republics, not choosing a monarch as head of state, could as well be a practical rather than an ideological consideration, for example while there was no candidate-monarch readily available[6]. However, for the states created during or shortly after the enlightenment the choice was always deliberate: republics created in that period inevitably had anti-monarchial characteristics: for the United States the opposition to the British Monarchy played an important role, as did the overthrow of the French Monarchy in the creation of the first French Republic. By the time of the creation of the Fifth Republic in that country "anti-monarchist" tendencies were barely felt: the relations of that country to other countries made no distinctions whether these other countries were "monarchies" or not.

Role of religion

[7]Before several Reformation movements established themselves in Europe, changes in the religious landscape rarely had any relation to the form of government adopted by a country. For instance the transition from polytheism to Christianity in Ancient Rome maybe had brought new rulers, but no change in the idea that monarchy was the obvious way to rule a country. Similarly, late Middle Age republics, like Venice, emerged without questioning the religious standards set by the Roman Catholic church.

This would change, for instance, by the cuius regio, eius religio from the Treaty of Augsburg (1555): this treaty, applicable in the Holy Roman Empire and affecting the numerous (city-)states of Germany, ordained citizens to follow the religion of their ruler, whatever Christian religion that ruler chose - apart from Calvinism (which remained forbidden by the same treaty). In France the king abolished the relative tolerance towards non-Catholic religions resulting from the Edict of Nantes (1598), by the Edict of Fontainebleau (1685). In the United Kingdom and in Spain the respective monarchs had each established their favourite brand of Christianism, so that by the time of the Enlightenment in Europe (including the depending colonies) there was not a single absolute monarchy that tolerated another religion than the official one of the state.

Republics reducing state religion impact

An important reason why people could choose their society to be organised as a republic is the prospect of staying free of state religion: in this approach living under a monarch is seen as more easily inducing a uniform religion. All great monarchies had their state religion, in the case of pharaos and some emperors this could even lead to a religion where the monarch (or his dynasty) were endowed with a god-like status (see for example imperial cult). On a different scale kingdoms can be entangled in a specific flavour of religion: Catholicism in Belgium, Church of England in the United Kingdom, Orthodoxy in Tzaristic Russia and many more examples.

In absence of a monarchy, there can be no monarch pushing towards a single religion. As this had been the general perception by the time of the Enlightenment, it is not so surprising that republics were at that time seen as the preferable form of state organisation, if one wanted to avoid the downsides of living under a too influential state religion:

  • United States: the Founding Fathers, seeing that no single religion would do for all americans, certainly not the religion of the country they wanted to cut themselves loose from, adopted the principle of free choice of religion for all citizens[8].
  • Besides being anti-monarchial, the French Revolution, leading to the first French Republic, was at least as much anti-religious, and led to the confiscation, pillage and/or destruction of many abbeys, beguinages, churches and other religious buildings and/or communities[9]. Up to the Fifth Republic, laïcité can be seen to have a much more profound meaning in republican France than in its neigbouring countries ruled as a monarchy[10].

Several states that called themselves republics have been fiercely anti-religious. This is particularily true for communist republics like the (former) Soviet Republics, North Vietnam, North Korea, China,... probably lack of religion is one of the only factors that approached these republics to (some) western types of republics apart from the name and their anti-monarchism (so not so surprising that France was one of the West European countries that was often closest to many communist regimes[11]). On the other hand in these communist countries Marxist and/or Stalinist and/or Maoist (etc.) doctrines can be seen to be at least as determining as a state religion.

Republics highlighting state religion impact

Some countries or states prefer or preferred to organise themselves as a republic, precisely because it allows them to inscribe a more or less obligatory state religion in their constitution: islamic republics generally take this approach, but the same is also true (in varying degrees) for example for Israel, for the protestant republic that originated in the Netherlands in the renaissance[12], for the Catholic Irish Republic, among others. In this case the advantage that is sought is that no broad-thinking monarch could push his citizens towards a less strict application of religious prescriptions (like for instance the Millet system had done in the Ottoman Empire[13]) or change to another religion altogether (like the swapping of religions under the Henry VIII/Edward VI/Bloody Mary/Elizabeth I succession of monarchs in England). Such approach of an ideal republic based on a consolidated religious foundation played an important role for example in the overthrow of the regime of the Shah in Iran, to be replaced by a republic with influential religious leaders (in this case called ayatollahs).

Concepts of democracy

Republics are often associated with democracy, which seems natural if one acknowledges the meaning of the expression where the word "republic" derives from (see: res publica). This association between "republic" and "democracy" is however far from a general understanding, even if acknowledging that there are several forms of democracy. This paragraph tries to give an outline of which concepts of democracy are associated with which types of republics.

As a preliminary remark it should be noted that the concept of "one equal vote per adult" did not become a genereral accepted principle in democracies until around the middle of the 20th century: before that in all democracies the valour of ones vote (or the right to be able to vote) depended on financial situation and/or sex. Many forms of government in previous times termed "democracy", including for instance the Athenian democracy, would, when transplanted to the early 21st century be experienced as plutocracy or a more or less broad oligarchy.

In a Western approach, warned by the possible dangers and unpracticality of direct democracy described since antiquity, there was a convergence towards representative democracy, for republics as well as monarchies, from the Enlightenment on. A direct democracy instrument like referendums is still basicly mistrusted in many of the countries that adopted representative democracy. Nonetheless, some republics like Switzerland have a great deal of direct democracy in their state organisation, with usually several issues put before the people by referendum every year.

Marxism inspired to state organisations that, at the height of the cold war, had barely more than a few external appearances in common with Western types of democracies. That is, notwithstanding that ideologically Marxism and communism sought to empower proletarians. A communist republic like Castro's Cuba has many popular comittees to draw citizens into political activity on a very basic level, without much of a far reaching political power resulting from that. This angle to democracy is sometimes termed Basic democracy, but that is a very mixed bag notion: often something in between of direct democracy and grassroots democracy is intended, but connotations may vary[14].

Some of the hardcore totalitarism lived on in the East, even after the iron curtain had vanished in Europe. Sometimes the full name of such republics can be deceptive: having "people's" or "democratic" etc in the name of a country can, in some cases bear no relation with the concepts of democracy (neither "representative" nor "direct") that grew in the West. It also should be clear that many of these "Eastern" type of republics fall outside a definition of a republic that supposes control over who is in power by the people at large – unless it is accepted that the preference the people displays for their leader is in all cases authentic.

Influence of republicanism

Main article: Republicanism

Like Anti-monarchism and religious differences, republicanism played no equal role in the emergence of the many actual republics. Up to the republics that originated in the late middle ages, even if, from what we know about them, they also can be qualified "republics" in a modern understanding of the word, establishing the kind and amount of "republicanism" that led to their emergence is often limited to educated guesswork, based on sources that are generally recognised to be partly ficticious reconstruction[15].

The important politico-philosophical writings of Antiquity that survived the middle ages rarely had any influence on the emergence or strenghtening of republics in the time they were written. When Plato wrote his Republic, Athenian democracy had already been established, and was not influenced by the treatise (if it had, it would have become less republican in a modern understanding). Plato's own experiment with his political principles in Syracuse were a failure. Cicero's De re publica, far from being able to redirect the Roman state to reinforce its republican form of governement, rather reads as a prelude to the Imperial form of government that indeed emerged soon after Cicero's death.

The emergence of the Renaissance, on the other hand, was marked by the adoption of many of these writings from Antiquity, which led to a more or less coherent view, retroactively termed "classical republicanism". Differences however remained regarding which kind of "mix" in a mixed government type of ideal state would be the most inherently republican. For those republics that emerged after the publication of the Renaissance philosophies regarding republics, like the United Provinces in the Netherlands, it is not always all that clear what role exactly was played by republicanism - among a host of other reasons - that led to the choice for "republic" as form of state ("other reasons" indicated elsewhere in this article: e.g., not finding a suitable candidate as monarch; anti-Catholicism; a middle class striving for political influence).

The Enlightenment had brought a new generation of political thinkers, showing that, among other things, political philosophy was in the process of refocussing to political science. This time the influence of the political thinkers, like Locke, on the emergence of republics in America and France soon thereafter was unmistakable: Separation of powers, Separation of church and state, etc were introduced with a certain degree of success in the new republics, along the lines of the major political thinkers of the day.

In fact, the Enlightenment had set the standard for republics (as in many cases for many monarchies) in the next century. The next major shift in political thinking was pushed forward by Karl Marx, by the end of the 19th century. Here again the formation of republics along the line of the new political philosophies had not to wait too long after emergence of the philosophies: from the early 20th century on communist type of republics were set up (communist monarchies were at least by name excluded), many of them successful for about a century - but in increasing tension with the republics that were more direct heirs of the ideas of the Enlightenment.

In the second half of 20th century the political dimension of the Islam[16] knew a new impuls, leading to several Islamic republics. As far as "Enlightenment" and "communist" principles were sometimes up to a limited level incorporated in these republics, such principles were always subject to principles laid down in the Qur'an. While, however, there is no apparent reason why sharia and related concepts of islamic political thought should emerge in a republican form of government, the strife for islamic republics is generally not qualified as a form of "republicanism".

Economical factors

The ancient concept of res publica, when applied to politics, had always implied that citizens on one level or another took part in governing the state: at least citizens were not indifferent to decisions taken by those in charge, and could engage in political debate. A line of thought followed often by historians[17] is that citizens, under normal circumstances, would only become politically active if they had spare time above and beyond the daily effort for mere survival. In other words, enough of a wealthy middle class (that did not get its political influence from a monarch as nobility did) is often seen as one of the preconditions to establish a republican form of government. In this reasoning neither the cities of the Hanseatic League, nor late 19th century Catalonia, nor the Netherlands during their Golden Age emerging in the form of a republic comes as a surprise, all of them at the top of their wealth through commerce and societies with an influential and rich middle class.

Here also the different nature of republics inspired by Marxism becomes apparent: Karl Marx theorised that the government of a state should be based on the proletarians, that is on those whose political opinions never had been asked before, even less had been considered to really matter when designing a state organisation. There was a problem Marxist/Communist types of republics had to solve: most proletarians were lacking interest and/or experience in designing a state organisation, even if acquainted with Das Kapital or Engels' writings. While the practical political involvement of proletarians on the level of an entire country hardly ever materialised, these communist republics were more often than not organised in a very top-down structure.

Aggregations of states

When a country or state is organised on several levels (that is: several states that are "associated" in a "superstructure", or a country is split in sub-states with a relative form of independency) several models exist:

  • Both over-arching structure and sub-states take the form of a republic (Example: United States)
  • The over-arching structure is a republic, while the sub-states are not necessarily (Example: European Union);
  • The over-arching structure is not a republic, while the sub-states can be (Example: Holy Roman Empire, after the emergence of republics, like those of the Hanseatic League, within its realm)

Sub-national republics

In general being a republic also implies sovereignty as for the state to be ruled by the people it cannot be controlled by a foreign power. There are important exceptions to this. Republics in the Soviet Union were member states which had to meet three criteria to be named republics, 1) Be on the periphery of the Soviet Union so as to be able to take advantage of their theoretical right to secede, 2) be economically strong enough to be self sufficient upon secession, And 3) Be named after at least one million people of the ethnic group which should make up the majority population of said republic. Republics were originally created by Stalin and continue to be created even today in Russia. Russia itself is not a republic but a federation.

States of the United States are required, like the federal government, to be republican in form, with final authority resting with the people. This was required because the states were intended to create and enforce most domestic laws, with the exception of areas delegated to the federal government and prohibited to the states. The founding fathers of the country intended most domestic laws to be handled by the states, although, over time, the federal government has gained more and more influence over domestic law. Requiring the states to be a republic in form was also seen as protecting the citizens' rights and preventing a state from becoming a dictatorship or monarchy.

Supra-national republics

Sovereign countries can decide to hand in a limited part of their sovereignity to a supra-national organisation. The most famous example of this, since the second half of the 20th century, is the emergence of the European Union, which models its organisation as a republic. That it would be a republic in a strict sense can be debated while the European Union is not a "country" in a strict sense. Being a republic is no part of the admission criteria for the member states[18]. Although the largest political family of EU parlementaries has a Christian denomination, the European constitution establishes its form of government as secular[19].

Examples of republics

Since the French Revolution the overthrow of monarchies has become common place and the vast majority of countries are today republics of some form. There are only a few dozen kingdoms, dominions, emirates, or principalities remaining. The republics of today have little in common besides not being monarchies of some form. Countries that call themselves republics include nations as diverse as North Korea, Iran, Togo, and the United States. Most states in the world consider themselves to be some sort of republic. Of those that are not monarchies only the Libyan Arab Jamahiriya, State of the Vatican City, the State of Israel, the Union of Myanmar and Russian Federation reject the label republic. Israel and Russia, and even Myanmar and Libya, would meet many definitions of the term republic, however.

Currently there is a very large number of republics in the world. A republican form of government can be combined with many different kinds of economy and democracy. Some examples for certain forms of republic are:

See also: List of Republics

Republics in political science

A different interpretation of republic has arisen among certain political scientists. To them a republic is the rule by many and by laws while a princedom is the arbitrary rule by one. By this definition despotic states are not republics while, according to some such as Kant, constitutional monarchies can be. Kant also argues that a pure democracy is not a republic as the unrestricted rule of the majority is also a form of despotism.

This meaning has its origin in a more literal reading of the Roman res publica, literaly "of the public" and thus see true republics as those rulled based on popular soveriegnty. This usage can be found in many Renaissance and Enlightenment authors. Many thought that it was the only way to run a republic and thus the idea of republics as rulled popular sovereingty and republics as non-monarchies were conflated during this period.

This idea of republic mostly died out in the nineteenth century, but it was revived by a revisionist school in the 1960s and 1970s by a number of scholars. The most important was J.G.A. Pocock who traced the development of a republican ideology from Ancient Greece to the American Revolution. See republicanism for a full discussion of the history and evolution of this ideology. This meaning of republic has become especially popular since the 1980s as republican ideas are very much in vogue. The idea of the republic that developed in this period looked to classical republicanism and thus many see a true republic as not only being free from despotism but also embracing notions such as liberty, mixed government and most importantly civic virtue.

Renaissance republics

The first states to embrace these ideas were those of Renaissance Italy. They saw themselves as the heirs of Classical Antiquity, but the ideology of civic humanism they developed was original. While for many centuries the Florentine and Venetian Republics have been seen as proto-democracies, in recent years most scholars have come to see them as oligarchies dominated by the commercial elite. In these early republics the vast majority of the population fared little better then they had in the monarchies.

Renaissance Republicans also had a constrained view of which states could become republics. The need for high levels of civic participation and input was seen to necessitate a small and homogeneous state. Thus from Ancient Greece through Renaissance Italy and the states of the Hanseatic League it was only city states that were republics. Only one medium sized state became a republic, the United Provinces, and it quickly became a momonarchyn all but name. Writers asserted that a larger state or empire necessitated some form of monarchy. Thus even those Renaissance authors that spoke highly of republics were rarely critical of monarchies as they considered them necessary. While Machiavelli's Discourses on Livy is the period's key work on republics he also wrote The Prince on how to best run a monarchy.

The post-revolutionary republics

This changed dramatically in the late eighteenth century when two large states became republics. First the United States and the France this proved that it was possible to govern even the largest nations on republican principles.

Exactly which states were republics is open to debate. To most of the major modern scholars of republicanism only the governments soon after the French and American revolutions were republics as by the nineteenth century liberalism was dominant throughout the west.

In the United States the voting rights were only given to a limited franchise with only the House of Representatives directly elected by the people. The national good was placed ahead of individualism and the theory of mixed government led to the system of checks and balances. Historians are divided over when this republican period came to an end. Gordon S. Wood sees republicanism being overwhelmed by liberalism by 1787. Those who followed J.G.A. Pocock saw it ending several decades later with republicanism still paramount in the Madison and even Jackson eras.

In France republican theories played the central role in the French Revolution and after the fall of the monarchy the revolutionaries established republic. This was relatively short lived. While ofofficiallyhe First French Republic lasted from 1792 to 1804 few consider the early years of The Terror to have been republican in any real sense and once Napoleon came to power the republic continued in name only. Biancamaria Fontana calls the middle section of actual republican rule from 1794 to 1799 the Thermidorian Republic. The republicans rejected direct dedemocracybebelievingt had contributed to the Jacobin excesses. Instead a far more indirect form of democracy was introduced with the creation of the Directory. The Directory soon failed and was replaced by the ththeoreticallyepublican rule of the Consulate and even the pretense of republicanism was abandoned with the creation of the First French Empire.

In the revolutionary era a number of other states became republics, in the classical republican sense, such as the Repubblica Partenopea in Naples and the Helvetic Republic in Switzerland. Most of these short lived republics were quickly destroyed during the turmoil of the Napoleonic Wars.

While republicanism as anti-monarchism continued to be an important force in France the ideology of republicanism mostly disappeared. By 1830 ideas of universal suffrage and property rights were at the core of the revolutionary movements and the later republics can be seen as far more liberal than republican.

Around the world the view of the ideal republic built up by Aristotle, Polybius, Machiavelli and Kant was challenged by new philosophies. In the eighteenth century the most important challenger was liberalism, which eventually displaced republicanism in the English speaking world, later other ideas such as socialism, communism, and anarchism would reject republicanism.

Modern republics

Exactly which modern states are republics in the political science sense is open to debate. The modern advocates of republicanism such as Philip Pettit, Cass Sunstein, and Michael Sandel see a sharp divide between liberal states and republics. To them a republic hews closely to the ideals of classical republicanism and they see no states in the world today as truly being republics.

John Dunn, and others, take a different view seeing the liberal bourgeois republic as just as a valid form of republic as the classical one. By this definition all that states that make up once was what called the Free World are republics. Writing in 1994 Dunn argues that the "modern constitutional republic stands virtually unchallenged as the sole surviving candidate for a model of legitimate political authority." Republicanism has thus triumphed over the other more recent ideologies.

References and notes

  1. ^ Tacitus, Ann. I,1-15.
  2. ^ Example: Leopold III of Belgium replaced by Baudouin in 1951 under popular pressure.
  3. ^ See for example the opening chapter of Machiavelli's The Prince.
  4. ^ For instance Mobutu Sésé Seko is generally considered such "autocrat" that tried to give an appearance of "republican democracy" to his style of government, for instance by allowing something that was generally regarded a sockpuppet opposition.
  5. ^ References where in everyday language countries with a king or emperor as head of state are termed republic have not been encountered.
  6. ^ For instance the United Provinces: after the Oath of Abjuration (1581) the Duke of Anjou and later the Earl of Leicester were asked to rule the Netherlands. After these candidates had declined the office, the Republic was only established in 1588.
  7. ^ This section draws from, among others, Geschiedenis der nieuwe tijden by J. Warichez and L. Brounts, 1946, Standaard Boekhandel (Antwerp/Brussels/Ghent/Louvain) and Cultuurgetijden (history books for secondary school in 6 volumes), Dr. J. A. Van Houtte et. al., several editions and reprints in 1960ies through 1970ies, Van In (Lier).
  8. ^ Note however that individual states of the US could have a state religion.
  9. ^ see also Republicanism and religion
  10. ^ Example: French law on secularity and conspicuous religious symbols in schools - a similar law was tentatively debated in Belgium, but deemed incompatible with the less profoundly secularized Belgian state.
  11. ^ For instance, at the height of the cold war France played a leading role in the European diplomacy with countries behind the iron curtain.
  12. ^ After the Duke of Anjou and the Earl of Leicester had declined the offer to become ruler of the Seven Provinces (see note above), William I of Orange had been the obvious choice for king: the volume Nieuwe tijden from the Cultuurgetijden series as mentioned in a previous note, elaborates on p. 63-65 (supported by a quote of the contemporary Pontus Payen) that William of Orange was perceived as too lenient towards Catholicism to be acceptable as king for the protestants.
  13. ^ Although in Turkey the ensuing republic would become relatively tolerant towards other religions, the straight multicultural approach of the Millet system, that had allowed Christians and Jews to form state-in-state like communities, would remain unparallelled.
  14. ^ For instance in Pakistan the expression "basic democracy" is tied to the epoch of the military dictature.
  15. ^ For example, what is known about the origins of the Roman Republic is based on works by Polybius, Livy, Plutarch, and others, all of which wrote at least some centuries after the emergence of that Republic — without exception all these authors have historical exactitude issues, including relative uncertainty over the year when the Roman Republic would have emerged.
  16. ^ That Islam would have a more intrinsic political dimension than most other religions is argued, among others, by Afshin Ellian ([20]) in his book Brieven van een Pers (Meulenhoff - ISBN 9029075228)
  17. ^ For instance, Historia series of history books, chief editor prof. dr. M. Dierickx sj, published by De Nederlandse Boekhandel (Antwerpen/Amsterdam) in several editions from 1955 to the late 1970ies studies these links between the presence of a wealthy middle class and the republics that emerged throughout history.
  18. ^ see for example Title IX and Title I in the text for a constitution for Europe
  19. ^ After some fierce debate it was decided that the 2005 version of the Constitution proposal would not make any reference to the "Christian" roots (among other communal values) of Europe, see Art. I,2 of the European Constitution proposal.

[[category:Forms of government]] [[bg:Република]] [[ca:República]] [[cs:Republika]] [[de:Republik]] [[eo:Respubliko]] [[es:República]] [[fr:République]] [[is:Lýðveldi]] [[ja:共和制]] [[ko:공화제]] [[la:Res Publica]] [[nds:Republiek]] [[nl:republiek]] [[pl:Republika]] [[pt:República]] [[simple:Republic]] [[sl:Republika]] [[sv:Republik]] [[he:רפובליקה]] [[zh:共和制]]

Comments section

Two Versions template

The merger of "republic" and "republicanism" proposed by SimonP (and as far as I can see only by him) hampers the natural development of the "republic" article, since all topics relating to "republic" and only "tangentially" to "republicanism" are in that case thrown out.

So, semi-protected, together with republicanism.

My stance is that the articles should be split. Not that the present version of "republic" is all that perfect, but it appears working on it is impossible without this split stabilising.

--Francis Schonken 11:42, 19 Apr 2005 (UTC)

The difficulty is that you don't seem to realize that you are pushing a POV. Republic has different, but interelated definitions. However, it seems that almost everyone firmly believes that their definition is the correct one. You, for instance, have yet to present any evidence that "republics as non monarchies" is the only definition that deserves to be on the main republic page. - SimonP 15:21, Apr 19, 2005 (UTC)
See talk:republican for the outline of the new version. - SimonP 20:03, Apr 19, 2005 (UTC)
SimonP, you're hardly in a position to propose new outlines for the "republic" article, after what I've read on talk:republican to which you refer. Please concentrate on the republicanism article (or at least it's talk page, as long as the two versions template is on that page, which you have no right to remove unilaterally), because republicanism is the only republic-related article you appear to have any competence in (though heavily POVved, as far as I see your work).
That you have few knowledge about actual republics (which is the topic of the republic page) has been shown often enough. At the point you had to admit that some days ago, instead of doing so, you moved a section of the "republic" article to Republicanism and religion. --Francis Schonken 21:30, 19 Apr 2005 (UTC)

"Unclear Direction" section (Republics in Political Science)

indented comments are on the preceding paragraph --Francis Schonken 16:04, 20 Apr 2005 (UTC)

However, as well as being free from despotism the republics of political science (and/or of political philosophy) have a number of other elements in common such as popular sovereignty, civic virtue, liberty, and mixed government. For most of the early history of republics the meaning of a republic as a non-monarchy and as an ideology were indistinguishable. From Aristotle through to the philosophes these basic principles were seen as the only good way to organize a republic. See republicanism for a full discussion of the history and evolution of these intertwined, but often also differing ideologies.

contradictory, depends on the stance one takes in political science/political philosophy whether or not all "republics" are free of despotism, and have popular sovereignty, civic virtue, liberty and mixed government in common, see for instance Karl Popper's The Open Society and Its Enemies.
If the definition of republic is a state free of despotism then
No, Popper precisely argued that some of the "republics" of the "political theorists" were not free of despotism. This definition of "republic according to political theorists" is not reflected here.
contradictory, I don't think Aristotle, and many later philosophers, where all that strong on all points of "liberty" and "popular sovereignty", etc (depending on their stance)

This led to a constrained view of which states could become republics. The need for high levels of civic participation and input was seen to necessitate a small and homogeneous state. Thus from Ancient Greece through Renaissance Italy and the states of the Hanseatic League it was only city states that were republics. A larger state or empire necessitated some form of monarchy. Thus even those Renaissance authors that spoke highly of republics were rarely critical of monarchies as they considered them necessary. While Machiavelli's Discourses on Livy is the period's key work on republics he also wrote The Prince on how to best run a monarchy.

all of this discussed in republicanism - quite useless double

This changed dramatically in the late eighteenth century when two large states became republics (that is, several centuries after the Netherlands, at the time a world power, had started of as a republic, but for one reason or another less influential in this sense). First the United States and the France this proved that it was possible to govern even the largest nations on republican principles.

Not explained why the example of the Netherlands republic would have been less influential. - the "largest nations" claim makes this quite contradictory

The discussion in which measure the rich bouquet of ideologies like republicanism(s), liberalism(s), socialism(s), communism(s) and anarchism(s) interacted is explained in the republicanism article

This is a reduction of a paragraph full of internal contradictions, for example, most communist countries must have had SOME ideology of republicanism, otherwise I don't see why they called themselves republics.

This led to several splits in the meaning of republic. Republic can refer to any state which is not a monarchy such as Iran, Togo, and North Korea. At the same time republic can also refer to any state that is governed in accordance with one of the many ideologies of republicanism. Thus France is a republic in both senses of the word. Australia is clearly not a republic in the non-monarchy sense, but can be referred to one in a political science context.

vaguish

Exactly which modern states are republics in this second sense is also open to debate. The modern advocates of republicanism such as Philip Pettit, Cass Sunstein, and Michael Sandel see a sharp divide between liberal states and republics. To them a republic hews closely to the ideals of classical republicanism and see no states in the world today truly being republics. John Dunn and others take a different view seeing the liberal bourgeois republic as just as valid a form of republic as those according to the models of classical republicanism.

"liberal bourgeois republic" is not defined - makes it questionable if there is any value in the John Dunn quote.

An NPOV article must acknowledge all the various definitions of republic. You have yet to advance any argument for why the non-monarchy definition of republic deserves to be on this page but the political science one does not.

Yes, precisely, but you fail to see several things:
  • The definition of republic I used is not exclusively non-monarchial, so I don't see why you over and again press me in a corner where I am not (by changing subtitles, and ultimately the definition itself). Such tactics are not appreciated, and make you seem not like a responsible sysop. Anyway, evidence of your irresponsive behaviour is abounding, I'm probably not going to be the one who collects it, but for anyone who wants won't have much trouble finding it.
  • I see that you fail to acknowledge that "republic" is defined in more than one way by political theorists: in fact your whole story is double and contradictory: in one part you write as if there's only one straight line of a continuous definition of republic "among political scientists", and continue that POV for several paragraphs, then when attempting to use that definition for discerning types of republics, it appears there are several, not "slightly related", but simply compeletely contradictory definitions of republic amongst political theorists. Then you add a sort of POV that only one (the one you define least) is "victorious". That is why I placed this section in "Unclear Direction". Unless clear "definitions" of the most usual views of republics among political scientists are possible, I don't see the use of this paragraph, nor where it is heading.
  • While all of this is obviously design-table political ideological talk, without clear indication where this has influenced the emergence of republics or determined the form of government of republics, its place is probably better in the "republicanism" article

While some of the information is duplicated on the republicanism page it is not I who decided that the pages needed to be split. When covering two so closely linked topics it is impossible to not have some duplication. (Your own split had far more).

Yes, but you convinced me it was better not to have such doubles, so it's up to you to convince me in the other direction now. Further, my split had more duplication because the work was not half finished yet at the time you reverted it. I still remember very clearly how you refused to cooperate on the "republicanism in America" section for a more suitable split.

- SimonP 19:51, Apr 20, 2005 (UTC)

And stop destroying my work, you have a whole article (republicanism) where you can live yourself to the fullest, plus, if you can succeed in making the text of the "republics in political science" section somewhat clearer and more readible, and less contradictory, probably half of the "republic" article soon too. I'd think it sad I had to call for emergency brake kind of procedures for you to stop destroying my work.
Further, this is not a conversation between "Francis" and "SimonP" alone - I think you should give others the time to react and comment on my and your work, you've been very unpolite in that sense, by not even leaving 24H before your next revert after I produced new text: please read it, let it sink in a bit, and react a bit less impulsive, that is, rather with a comment on the talk page than with an instant revert. --Francis Schonken 21:16, 20 Apr 2005 (UTC)
PS: I saw the "twoversions" template only works when "changing" the text of the article to a different version when applying the template. Your assertion that the template can only be used without changing the text appears bogus. That's probably why it's called "semi-protected", and not "protected". Again, I'd appreciated that you, as a sysop would behave a little less like an uncontrollable freak
Switching to a definition of republic that is not exclusively non-monarchial is just as much a problem as it ignores the definition of republic that is exclusively non-monarchial. Also you have erased considerable amounts of my work without giving others a chance to comment so your complaints are somewhat hypocritical. - SimonP 21:48, Apr 20, 2005 (UTC)

Two Versions again

As explained above "twoversions" template only works when introducing the alternate version at the same time. Discussions continue, as SimonP doesn't relent in turning back the split he so-called "accepted", which is "hypocritical". I didn't "destroy" any of his text, his accusations in that sense are even more hypocritical. As is usual, SimonP does not respond to concerns of others which is still more hypocritical. --Francis Schonken 22:05, 20 Apr 2005 (UTC)

When have I turned back the split? I am have added several thousand words of completely new content that you insist on deleting. Please read what I am submitting before you simply erase it. - SimonP 22:34, Apr 20, 2005 (UTC)
I read it, and worked on it, throwing out some of the redundancies or obvious errors. No reaction on my "truce" proposal (so I revert to the no-truce alternate version + "twoversions" template). You'll have to learn, even if you're a sysop, that you don't revert a semi-protection, unless consensus has been reached here on the talk page. At this point there is 50% of the opinions for one version, 50% of the opinions for the other version. So you're disrespecting wikipedia guidelines if removing the "twoversions" template at such point. So the "twoversions" template remains in place until one of us two gets convinced (which I think rather unlikely without other people getting involved here on the talk page, but one never knows). "twoversions" is ideal to attract more attention to this talk page. You have every opportunity to work on an alternate version here on the talk page, I'd be happy to cooperate and/or give comments without disrupting the text (whichever you prefer). --Francis Schonken 22:55, 20 Apr 2005 (UTC)
Please be clear there are no guidelines. Wikipedia:Non-admin protection is not policy. Moreover you have yet to raise any substantive criticisms of my new version so it is very difficult to discuss with you. - SimonP 23:05, Apr 20, 2005 (UTC)
Well, well, than we have only the text of the "twoversions" template itself, as I expected, which says not to revert before consensus on the talk page. That's how it works and how I am applying it. discussing with me is very easy - just quit the continuous reverts. and use the talk page for what it is intended. --Francis Schonken 23:12, 20 Apr 2005 (UTC)
Any user can crete a template, it does not make things policy. One thing that is official policy is "Do not protect a page you are involved in an edit dispute over."
I did not use the "pseudo-protected" template the "wikipedia:non-admin protection" page is about; I used the "twoversions" template that is in the "wikipedia style and howto" which is in the "wikipedia policies and guidelines", and applied all instructions I could find relating to that template. I don't see how "Do not protect a page you are involved in an edit dispute over." affects pseudo-protection with the "twoversions" template. It's only you who don't appear to be able to react with an acceptable level of decency.
You have again failed to make a single criticism of my sections. Please discuss before reverting again.
you didn't reply even to a tenth of my criticism above, I don't see why I should restate criticism that has not been replied to before the next revert.
As to the sections I am removing they in general say nothing about republics.
Well, than you'll have to stop removing till there is consensus. Again I would approve more people to give their opinion.
The section on democracy, for instance, covers nothing that actually deals with republics, it is essentially a summary of the democracy article.
On the contrary, it connects the essentials of the democracy article with the specific republic-related stuff.
The supra-national organization section also has little relevance, besides the obvious factoid that a state does not need to be a republic to join.
Well, I don't agree there: that the construction of the EU is in the form of a republic has maybe not crossed all people's minds. Most discussions I hear on radio and television are on whether or not it is/should be a "federation" or "confederation"; etc...
The part on religion is at best tangential and at worst original reasearch.
It's the part modern political ideologists often forget, but that is in basic history school books: religious tension proved often to spark of republics (I haven't counted, but maybe as much as that were sparked off by anti-monarchism and/or what you call "republicanism").
You have yet to cite a single secondary source for anything and your writing shows a basic ignorance of the large body of secondary literature on the subject.
Oops, trying an insult are you? My "basic ignorance" as you call it is not the problem. I would have liked to read an article explaining the basics of what a republic is, without having to write half of it myself, digging in history school books from secundary school - the fact they're in Dutch, and maybe even out of print for some time, makes it a bit more difficult to cite them as wikipedia sources. How are you progressing with the ISBN numbers of your references? You only appeared bent on removing the template as quick as you could (instead of having the politeness to put it in the appropriate place, if I placed it wrongly).
Please try and get a basic dictionary or encyclopedia of political science and look up republic. -
Your "political science" stuff gets boring, the more I read of it the more I am convinced it is of little help for people if they want to have some basic understanding of the concepts newsreaders and magazine authors appear to expect to be "understood" by their readers/listeners.
SimonP 23:16, Apr 20, 2005 (UTC)
--Francis Schonken 23:56, 20 Apr 2005 (UTC)
That you find the political science section "boring" is not a good reason. Perhaps you should look to a source other than your high school textbooks. It seems like they greatly simplify the issue and onyl present one viewpoint, which is quite common in school books but not so great for an encycloepdia. I don't see why you need the ISBN numbers to find books I cited. Simply look up the titles at your local university library. Moreover I did address your criticisms. The passages involved were wholly rewritten some time ago. - SimonP 00:07, Apr 21, 2005 (UTC)

Problems with the religion section

An important reason why people chose their society to be organised as a republic is the prospect of staying free of state religion: in this approach living under a monarch is seen as more easily inducing a uniform religion: all great monarchies had their state religion, in the case of pharaos and some emperors this could even lead to a religion where the monarch (or his dynasty) were endowed with a god-like status (see for example imperial cult).

This is unsourced speculation that is makes many false claimes. Many republics have had state religions and many monarchies have not. Objection to a state religion is only the cause of reppublicanism in a handful of countries.

On a different scale kingdoms can be entangled in a specific flavour of religion: Catholicism in Belgium, Church of England in the United Kingdom, Orthodoxy in Tzaristic Russia and many more examples.

What does "entangled in a specific flavour of religion" mean? How is this phrase relevent to republics? Why does it not mention any of the republics with a state religion?

In absence of a monarchy, there can be no monarch pushing towards a single religion: this advantage was exploited for instance by following republics, rooted in the Enlightenment:

In the absence of a monarchy there can be no monarch, I never knew.

United States: the Founding Fathers, seeing that no single religion would do for all americans, certainly not the religion of the country they wanted to cut themselves loose from, adopted the principle of free choice of religion for all citizens.

This section fails to acknowledged that several of the states set up state religions after the American Revolution

Besides being anti-monarchial, the French Revolution, leading to the first French Republic, was at least as much anti-religious, and led to the confiscation, pillage and/or destruction of many abbeys, beguinages, churches and other religious buildings and/or communities. Up to the Fifth Republic, laïcité can be seen to have a much more profound meaning in republican France than in its neigbouring countries ruled as a monarchy (example: French law on secularity and conspicuous religious symbols in schools - a similar law was tentatively debated in Belgium, but deemed incompatible with the less profoundly secularized Belgian state).

What does the reference to Belgium have to do with anything? This is not a monarchy/republic difference as no other republic has a system like Frances. Saying the French Republic was anti-religion is a bit of stretch at most it was anti-established religion and anti-clerical.

Several states that called themselves republics have been fiercely anti-religious. This is particularily true for communist republics like the (former) Soviet Republics, North Vietnam, North Korea, China,... probably lack of religion is one of the only factors that approached these republics to (some) western types of republics apart from the name and their anti-monarchism (so not so surprising that France was one of the West European countries that was closest to many communist regimes). On the other hand in these communist countries Marxist and/or Stalinist and/or Maoist (etc.) doctrines can be seen to be at least as determining as a state religion.

Linking France to the communists because they are both "anti-religion" is both false and heavily POV original research.

Some countries prefer to organise themselves as a republic, precisely because it allows them to inscribe a more or less obligatory state religion in their constitution: islamic republics generally take this approach, but the same is also true (in varying degrees) for example for Israel, for the protestant republic that originated in the Netherlands in the renaissance, for the Catholic Irish Republic, among others. In this case the advantage that is sought is that no broad-thinking monarch could push his citizens towards a less strict application of religious prescriptions, like for instance the Millet system had done in the Ottoman Empire. Such approach of an ideal republic based on a religious foundation played an important role for example in the overthrow of the regime of the Shah in Iran, to be replaced by a republic with influential religious leaders (in this case called ayatollahs).

Doesn't this section contradict all that was written above? Did Ireland and Israel really choose not to have a monarch because they would threaten orthodoxy? What republicans opposed the Millet system because it was not sufficiently religious? The Turkish republicans were extremely secular. - SimonP 00:18, Apr 21, 2005 (UTC)
If you are actually interested in republics and religion Antony Black has written a paper on Christianity and republicanism that is worth reading. - SimonP 00:22, Apr 21, 2005 (UTC)

Ok you 2, break it up! :-)

Ok whatever version is up there, it stays. You two go take a walk in the park and think for a minute, then come back. Both of you mean well and want to do something constructive. That way I can get a peaceful nights' sleep too, for once this week. :-) Kim Bruning 00:55, 21 Apr 2005 (UTC)

I dislike the current version immensely, but agree that the recent reverting is not helping anyone. This is a complicated issue, but any outside comments are much valued. - SimonP 01:14, Apr 21, 2005 (UTC)

Comments to the draft version above

  • (Issue topic:...):....

...

There are no more remarks since the "TwoVersions"-template was added to the main page last week; appears no support for the "other" version showed itself since last week, instead people work on the text on the main page - so unless there is still objection of some sort I'll remove the 2V template from the main page soon. --Francis Schonken 12:49, 28 Apr 2005 (UTC)

Gentlemen, this will never do

Let me attempt a more reasoned approach - nevertheless, I see the article, as it now stands, as severely defective; both sides have contributed to this, although unequally. Talk first; edit later.

The common acceptation of Republic is, as the OED[21] says: a state in which the supreme power rests in the people and their elected representatives or officers, as opposed to one governed by a king or similar ruler; a commonwealth. Now also applied loosely to any state which claims this designation. (Its use for the state, the common weal in general, is obsolete - although a section should be given to it.)

^ the on-line edition, not the first appearance of the letter R.

The political scientists of the article have a private understanding of the term, with which they wish to supplant the common one. I fear that this is an example of the destructive interactions of Politics and the English Language.

First French Republic

One instance of this perversion of common usage is the denial that France was a Republic from September 1792. She claimed to be; her enemies united against her as one; and she was led by people that [did]n't found their power status [sic] on any principle beyond the control of the people of France. They notoriously supported liberty, mixed government[22] and civic virtue. - so much so that they made civic virtue and positive liberty questionable to some to this day.

^ see the Constitution of the Year II1793 and the projected constitution of the Year II, never actually written Septentrionalis 17:30, 2 May 2005 (UTC)

note by Francis Schonken 10:24, 2 May 2005 (UTC): I'm not sure what the writer intended by "[did]n't" in the bolded semi-quote above. Is his intention to demonstrate that according to the "founding of power status" definition France in the National Convention epoch was a republic, or does he want to indidicate it wasn't according to that definition. In my view, when the Bastille was attacked by the people, the king (with power status founded on a principle beyond the control of the people) was thrown out; as of 21/22 September 1792 a republican government, based on voting by the people, was installed. That the "Montanards" soon after used military force (another principle from which to derive "power status" beyond the ultimate control of the people as a whole) can hardly be seen to be contributing to a more "republican' form of government: the Montagnards, according to the common reading of history, installed a "terror regime" by 1793. Formally the Montagnards did not abolish the "republican" form of government, but I don't think anyone would disagree it was only "republic" for those on the "Montagnard" side. Where's the problem?
The use of [did]n't indicates a change from the exact text of Republic, which had don't. The National Convention based their authority (better than power status) on their election by the people of France; the Committee of Public Safety on delegation from the Convention. They were a republic according to the present text of Republic; more so than the Directory.
Maybe "political power" is closer to what I intended with "power status". Where's the problem with the "present text of Republic" explaining that the First French Republic is considered a Republic? --Francis Schonken 08:06, 3 May 2005 (UTC)
They governed absolutely and oppressively? Yes. This does make them not a Republic; it makes them an oppressive and tyrannical Republic. As the article notes, there have been such before and since. Septentrionalis 17:30, 2 May 2005 (UTC)
Unclear sentence: "This does make them not a Republic; it makes them an oppressive and tyrannical Republic." Please explain. IMHO distinctions can be made between "oppressive and tyrannical" republics and other types of republics, but if a REPUBLIC is "oppressive and tyrannical", this still indicates it is generally called a REPUBLIC. And I'm interested in why it is still called a republic, notwithstanding it is described as "oppressive and tyrannical"; also I'm interested in giving a brief indication where is the difference between such republic and the principles it is based upon.--Francis Schonken 08:06, 3 May 2005 (UTC)
Typo: read "This does not make them not a Republic; it makes them an oppressive and tyrannical Republic." I trust this is clearer. Septentrionalis 00:21, 5 May 2005 (UTC)
I agree, and I see I was responding to an outdated text Septentrionalis 00:21, 5 May 2005 (UTC)


I should add that of course France had a state religion between the passage of the Civil Constitution of the Clergy and the Concordat of 1801 - paid, regulated, and given exclusive privileges by the state. (Whether it was a success, as a religion or as a state institution, is another question.) Arguably she had two in the spring of 1794.

note by Francis Schonken 10:24, 2 May 2005 (UTC): Please re-read history books & related wikipedia articles, e.g. Civil Constitution of the Clergy (1790) says "It is often erroneously stated that this law confiscated the Church's French land holdings or banned monastic vows: that had already been accomplished by earlier legislation. It did, however, complete the destruction of the monastic orders, legislating out of existence "all regular and secular chapters for either sex, abbacies and priorships, both regular and in commendam, for either sex", etc." - To "complete the destruction" of the infrastructure of a former state religion, can hardly be interpreted as "having a state religion"; and even if it is interpreted thus: the overview article about republic needn't go in that detail: French revolution had a strong anti-religious IMPETUS at the outset; That anti-religious IMPETUS, was later bent towards anti-clericalism; and later even the anti-clericalism was sort of appeased. But that doesn't lessen the anti-religious IMPETUS at the outset, which also remained undercurrent to many of the later views the French developed regarding religion. Where's the problem?
In 1790, the Kingdom of France abolished the monasteries; an action consented to by both Louis XVI and the National Assembly. The Kingdom still had a state religion - it continued to pay the regular clergy, and continued to give them a monopoly of religious ritual. Was this religious was well-run? was it schismatic? or heretical? are again separate questions. The First Republic inherited this state religion, and continued to run it for most of its existence. It was a state religion being run by an anti-clerical state; but so (often) is Israel's. Septentrionalis 17:30, 2 May 2005 (UTC)
An essential characteristic of "state religion" as far as I know is its ability to fortify the authority of those in power.
The only essential characteristic of state religion is that it is controlled by the state. Any state religion, so defined, will fortify those in power, human nature being what it is. Are you denying that Constitutionél clergy supported the Republic? This support was limited, I grant; but so was their power to support anything.
Which clergy is paid is hardly an indication (they can as well be paid to keep shut on the political level). Sorry to use Belgium as an example again (because I know that best): Belgium has always been described as a Catholic kingdom: on the "day of the dynasty" (15 November) the Royal household assists to a Catholic "Te Deum" service. The clergy that are on the pay-roll of the state in Belgium are, apart from a majority of Catholic priests, also Jew and Protestant clergy, not to forget Islamic clergy (note that this paying of all these variety of clergy is done in Belgium on the base of a law that is older than the country: it is one of these Napoleontic laws left untouched when Belgium established the kingdom in 1830). The French Civil Constitution of the Clergy was much about taking away from the King the ability to secure his position by protection of the Catholic church. The King consented because of the pressure resulting from the ongoing French Revolution. After this vestige had gone, deposing the King was only a small step away. So that Civil Constitution of the Clergy indeed derobed France from a "state religion", leaving the state with low-level religious functionaries, i.e. without importance whether they were Catholic or whatever, what was important was that they no longer played a role w.r.t. the state authority (so Catholicism stopped functioning as a "state religion"). In other words: the law meant that political influence was taken away from the clergy. The French revolutionaries wanted to go ahead regardless of traditional religious support to the state. --Francis Schonken 08:06, 3 May 2005 (UTC)
Here is an exact parallel: Henry VIII of England and his Parliament abolished all the monasteries of England in 1536 and 1539. Do you contend that the Church of England was not Henry's state religion thereafter? Better not tell him that! Septentrionalis 17:30, 2 May 2005 (UTC)
If I remember well Henry VIII abolished monasteries (which would have been Catholic in those days) and the like as part of his strategy towards establishing the Church of England where (a Christian) religion would be made subject to a king (and not depending from the religious authority of a Pope in Rome). Henry VIII's state religion was not the Catholic church of which he closed the monasteries. (Note also that Church of England as the formal construction more or less transmitted to our days was more Elisabeth I's doing - after the Bloody Mary intermezzo - than Henry VIII's) Indeed there is a parallel: both Henry VIII and the French "Civil Constitution of the Clergy" made steps in a process of throwing out the Catholic state religion. Closing down monasteries was part of the strategy in both cases. In the first case this led to a new state religion (Church of England); in the second it led to "Laïcité"[23]. Explaining why, notwithstanding the parallels in the strategy, the outcome was so different, is done by reffering to the anti-religious undercurrent/impetus in the French case. This is not my invention (in other words: references abound). The only importance of all this w.r.t. the Republic article lies IMHO in the fact that it appears easier to establish Laïcité (or other forms of non-religiously founded states) in a Republic type of state, because of not needing to take account of the then generally established cuius regio, eius religio (or similar principles), which was of course very much present in the Henry VIII - Queen Mary - Elisabeth I (etc..) type of monarchies. This historical generalisation, can of course also be extensively referenced by historians who analysed in this sense. --Francis Schonken 08:06, 3 May 2005 (UTC)

(expanding to full width) Laïcité is a concept of the Third Republic, not the First. The First Republic combined traditional French Gallicanism with fixed hostility to all privileges for all bodies (lay or religious) less than the Nation, One and Indivisible. These two policies explain 90% of what happened (Rioting is not state action.)Septentrionalis 00:21, 5 May 2005 (UTC)

^ Understood: several "republics", and two "empire" periods later; similarly as in UK Church of England was only fully established several rulers (e.g. Catholic in Bloody Mary's case) and epochs (e.g. "The Protectorate") later. Indeed the later concept of "laïcité" was as "intangible" in the First republic as the later organisation of the "Church of England" was when Henry VIII started to close down monasteries. The argument regards where it eventually led to, and how much of that was logical development seen the different positions re. religion at the outset.

The next step is to examine the present text here, section by section. So unless you feel particularly drawn to reply to the above, it can wait; until it comes up in the text. (Also removing the two-versions tag, since the distinction between versions has been almost entirely lost.) Septentrionalis 00:21, 5 May 2005 (UTC)

I only added a footnote now re. the Church of England/Laïcité parallel/divergence.
Indeed the way you propose is probably best now. Anyhow I thank you for the useful interaction, which led us sometimes quite far from what should end up in the "republic" article, but is IMHO very interesting background info. There are indeed still many replies I could give now, but I feel confident enough to work on the article draft text above again.
I'm about to add a new section above in the first section of the "new article text draft": re. "economic factors" playing a role as precondition to republican form of government (also something often developed in the history books I have at my disposition). I'm sure I won't get this "right" from the first attempt either, but as many historians seem to be convinced it played a role I think we should coerce to get this straight. Feel free to interact!
--Francis Schonken 13:20, 5 May 2005 (UTC)

State Religions in America

The discussion has been driven to ideological extremes. The mere facts lie between these two statements:

United States: the Founding Fathers, seeing that no single religion would do for all americans, certainly not the religion of the country they wanted to cut themselves loose from, adopted the principle of free choice of religion for all citizens.

But Connecticut maintained a state religion until 1818; any state could have done so until 1868. But they did not.

This section fails to acknowledged that several of the states set up state religions after the American Revolution

I trust set up does not mean created, where it had not existed before, which would be simply false. If it is intended to mean preserved, the facts are more complicated.

Several of the Colonies had no state religion before the Revolution; it was expressly forbidden in Pennsylvania. The Church of England, as an American state church, generally collapsed at the Revolution; the clergy were mostly Tories, practising non-resistance to George III. Its privilieges were not formally abolished until after the war, but they were abolished.

Massachusetts adopted its [24] in 1780, which provided as follows:

Article II. It is the right as well as the duty of all men in society, publicly, and at stated seasons to worship the Supreme Being, the great Creator and Preserver of the universe. And no subject shall be hurt, molested, or restrained, in his person, liberty, or estate, for worshipping God in the manner and season most agreeable to the dictates of his own conscience; or for his religious profession or sentiments; provided he doth not disturb the public peace, or obstruct others in their religious worship. [See Amendments, Arts. XLVI and XLVIII.]
Article III. [As the happiness of a people, and the good order and preservation of civil government, essentially depend upon piety, religion and morality; and as these cannot be generally diffused through a community, but by the institution of the public worship of God, and of public instructions in piety, religion and morality: Therefore, to promote their happiness and to secure the good order and preservation of their government, the people of this commonwealth have a right to invest their legislature with power to authorize and require, and the legislature shall, from time to time, authorize and require, the several towns, parishes, precincts, and other bodies politic, or religious societies, to make suitable provision, at their own expense, for the institution of the public worship of God, and for the support and maintenance of public Protestant teachers of piety, religion and morality, in all cases where such provision shall not be made voluntarily.
And the people of this commonwealth have also a right to, and do, invest their legislature with authority to enjoin upon all the subjects an attendance upon the instructions of the public teachers aforesaid, at stated times and seasons, if there be any on whose instructions they can conscientiously and conveniently attend.
Provided, notwithstanding, that the several towns, parishes, precincts, and other bodies politic, or religious societies, shall, at all times, have the exclusive right of electing their public teachers, and of contracting with them for their support and maintenance.
And all moneys paid by the subject to the support of public worship, and of the public teachers aforesaid, shall, if he require it, be uniformly applied to the support of the public teacher or teachers of his own religious sect or denomination, provided there be any on whose instructions he attends; otherwise it may be paid towards the support of the teacher or teachers of the parish or precinct in which the said moneys are raised.
Any every denomination of Christians, demeaning themselves peaceably, and as good subjects of the commonwealth, shall be equally under the protection of the law: and no subordination of any one sect or denomination to another shall ever be established by law.]

This is not a state religion; although it is an Establishment in the American sense of the word. Several colonies did likewise. No state religion, other than Connecticut's, existed later than 1790.


Even the Massachusetts system, which Patrick Henry had advocated in Virginia, was found to be oppressive in practice. It put the official lists of Quakers and Episcopalians in the care of the town selectmen, usually Congregationalists, and harassment did occur. It became:

Article XI. "As the public worship of God and instructions in piety, religion and morality, promote the happiness and prosperity of a people and the security of a republican government; -- therefore, the several religious societies of this commonwealth, whether corporate or unincorporate, at any meeting legally warned and holden for that purpose, shall ever have the right to elect their pastors or religious teachers, to contract with them for their support, to raise money for erecting and repairing houses for public worship, for the maintenance of religious instruction, and for the payment of necessary expenses: and all persons belonging to any religious society shall be taken and held to be members, until they shall file with the clerk of such society, a written notice, declaring the dissolution of their membership, and thenceforth shall not be liable for any grant or contract which may be thereafter made, or entered into by such society: -- and all religious sects and denominations, demeaning themselves peaceably, and as good citizens of the commonwealth, shall be equally under the protection of the law; and no subordination of any one sect or denomination to another shall ever be established by law."


(General histories date this 1833, but the right date may be 1821.)

Appreciation

I am sorry I cannot speak more kindly of your labors.

I remain Septentrionalis 17:07, 28 Apr 2005 (UTC)