Movimiento Nacional - Francoist "families"

Francoist "families"

Since single-party rule was enforced in Francoist Spain, the only way of pluralism consisted in internal "families" (Familias del Regimen, i.e., different groups of pressure) competing together inside the National Movement. These included the Catholic "family" (which brought the Roman Catholic Church's support and the national Catholicism ideology), the monarchist "family" (or conservative right, composed of many former members of the Spanish Confederation of the Autonomous Right), the traditionalist "family" (issued from Carlism), the military tendency (figures close to Franco himself, including the so-called africanistas) and the Azules themselves or national syndicalists, who controlled the bureaucracy of the so-called Movement: Falange, Sindicato and many others organizations, such as the veterans' national grouping (Agrupación Nacional de Excombatientes), the women's section (Sección Femenina), etc.

Franco held his power by balancing these internal rivalries, cautious not to show any favoritism to any of them nor compromise himself too much to anyone. Thus, all were united by a common interest, the continuation of Franco's defense of traditional Spanish society. The relative plurality of Francoism, inside the official frame of the Movimiento Nacional, has compelled historians such as Juan Linz to classify Francoism as an authoritarian, rather than totalitarian, political system.

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