Title: Constitutional reform: reflections from the principle of equality between men and women in the framework of the 1978 Spanish Constitution

Authors: María L. Valvidares Suárez

Addresses: Área de Derecho Constitucional, Departamento de Derecho Público, Universidad de Oviedo, Campus de El Cristo, s/n. 33006 – Oviedo (Asturias), Spain

Abstract: This article considers the relationship between the principle of equality between men and women and the power of constitutional reform. It starts from the 'original sin' of the modern constitutional state which, despite its pretensions of equality and universality, excluded women from being citizens. The analysis moves to the current Spanish Constitution, bringing a gender perspective to a review of women's participation during the 1977 'Constituent Assemblies' as well as the main questions that, according to legal scholarship, should be addressed in a hypothetical reform of our constitution. Finally, it examines the extent to which the principle of equality, currently enshrined in the democratic principle, is construed as a possible limit to constitutional reform.

Keywords: constitutional reform; constitutional amendment; Spanish Constitution; democratic principle; gender equality; rights of women; equality and non-discrimination; equal representation; democratic parity; descriptive representation of woman; substantive representation of women.

DOI: 10.1504/IJHRCS.2021.113756

International Journal of Human Rights and Constitutional Studies, 2021 Vol.8 No.1/2, pp.49 - 64

Received: 28 Apr 2020
Accepted: 12 May 2020

Published online: 12 Mar 2021 *

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