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On-line version ISSN 1678-4588
LYNCH, Christian Edward Cyril. Monarchical political discourse and receptiveness to the concept of a moderating power in Brazil (1822-1824). Dados [online]. 2005, vol.48, n.3, pp. 611-653. ISSN 1678-4588. http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S0011-52582005000300006.
This article revisits the founding moment of Brazilian political institutions in order to highlight the penetration of French monarchical discourse among statesmen connected to the Brazilian Crown. The concept of a moderating power was thus mobilized strategically by these statesmen to safeguard the Crown's prerogatives from the growing interference of the 1823 Constitutional Congress. The objective was to justify the preeminence of the Prince over Parliament as representative of the nation's sovereignty. This justification introduced new semantic meanings into the concept, such as those of active neutrality, discretionarity, and centralization, which came to be identified with the state itself during the state-building process. The result was that the legal text allowed a monarchical reading of the Chief of State as an axis for government activity, but also another, ultraliberal reading in which he appeared merely as arbiter of the Constitutional system.
Keywords : Constitutionalism; French monarchical discourse; state-building; Constitutional monarchy; moderating power; neutrality; centralization; discretionarity.