Does the Basque Country have a separate "political system"? This book seeks to answer this complicated question. The Basque Country forms a differentiated cultural community that shares customs, folklore, a way of life, a languageÑBasqueÑthat is among the oldest in Europe, and yet is divided between two international frontiersÐFrance and SpainÐand has major internal subdivisions, most notably between the Autonomous Community of the Basque Country (the provinces of Araba, Bizkaia and Gipuzkoa) and the Foral Community of Navarre. In France, the Basque provinces of Lapurdi, Lower Navarre and Zuberoa (Iparralde) have little or no administrative separation from the centralist regime, while HegoaldeÑthe Basque provinces on the southern side of the international frontierÑhas varying degrees of autonomous powers within the fitfully decentralizing Spanish state, but is split into two distinct subdivisions with different powers, relations to the central state, and historical development. An added layer of complexity is added by the supranational powers of the European Union and the Basque Country's place in it, as well as the historically important relations of the Basque Country to the members of its worldwide diaspora. And, finally, even within the various subdivisions there are important differences of opinion regarding fundamental questions such as the desire for independence or autonomy, the political violence that has marred the region, relations to national or central states, and a variety of other issues. Any attempt to impose order on this chaos is difficult, but the authors in this book try to respond to this question with a wealth of historical and political detail and insight.
This book was published with generous financial support from the Basque Government.
Introduction by Pedro Ibarra GŸell and Xabier Irujo Ametzaga | 1. Hegoalde and the Post-Franco Spanish State by Xabier Irujo Ametzaga | 2. Political Institutions in Hegoalde by Mikel Irujo Ametzaga | 3. Political Institutions and Mobilization in Iparralde by Igor Ahedo Gurrutxaga | 4. Fiscal Pacts in Hegoalde by Patxi Juaristi Larrinaga | 5. The European Union and a New Basque Economic Framework by Mikel Irujo Ametzaga | 6. The Autonomous Community of the Basque Country in the European Institutional Architecture by Igor Filibi | 7. The Foreign Policy of the Autonomous Community of the Basque Country by Mikel Irujo Ametzaga | 8. Education, Health, Housing and Security in Hegoalde by Adela Mesa and Ruth Aguilar | 9. Linguistic Policy in the Basque Country by I–igo Urrutia | 10. Political Parties and the Party System in Hegoalde by Asier Blas Mendoza | 11. Political Parties in Iparralde by Igor Ahedo Gurrutxaga | 12. ETA: Political Violence, Its Historical Evolution, and Conflict Resolution by Francisco Letamendia | 13. Political Culture in the Basque Country by Noemi Bergati–os | 14. Basque Social Movements: Euskara, Feminism, and Environmentalism by I–aki Barcena and Rafael Ajangiz | 15. Labor Unions and Employers in the Autonomous Community of the Basque Country by Francisco Letamendia and Jone Mart’nez Palacios | 16. Political Projects for the Future of Hegoalde by Pedro Ibarra GŸell and Xabier Irujo Ametzaga | Index | List of Contributors
Politics Series  From the 18th Century to present day, the Basque Politics Series looks at the unique political systems and history of the Basque Country from such differing perspectives as Idaho politician Pete T. Cenarrusa’s biography to the government-in-exile of Lehendakari Jose Antonio Agirre.