History study guide- essay - 1 Discuss the long short term...

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1.Discuss the long & short term causes of the spanish civil warLong TermWeakness of Govt- Spain had been a constitutional monarchy. Two main parties with no real difference between them: Conservatives and Liberals. Elections were decided by corruption.At a very superficial level there was political stability but beneath it social instability. Elections changed nothing so the population was forced into violent opposition to the system.Role of Spanish Army- The army had a powerful political position. Seen as the protector of the state -> right and duty to intervene in politics if a crisis occurred. Intervention in 1936 leadto civil war. The army was unpopular with the people -> reputation for being brutality, expensiveand had proved ineffective when it lost the Spanish Empire (19th century). Upper & middle classes defended interestsRole of Church- Catholic Church was rich and powerful in Spain. It used its power to support social, political and economic conservatism. Rich people funded the church so the church was inclined to defend the rights and status of the upper class (resentment among the poor).Economic causes:Agriculture- The difficult situation of the agricultural workers was a key factor in the discontent that led to civil war. Spain was mainly an agricultural economy. Did not provide sufficient food and work was seasonal -> fundamental problem. Big difference in rich and poor. Land was mainly owned in estates by the 'Grandees' who dominated the political system.Economic causes: Rioting & Disorder- Rioting and disorder often broke out in the countryside. The Civil Guard were to repress any disorder -> could lead to resentful peasants. Catholic Agrarian Federation exploited the peasants conservatism by supporting them in return
for their rejection of socialist ideas.Economic causes:Industrially- Need for modernization and reform. Expansion was limited by poverty. Workers in the town faced law wages and general poor living standards -> ledto growth of trade unionism, but they failed to help. No local means of improving their situation

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