Regina Pozzi

Suffrage and «capacité». A survey on a recurrent category in the French political debate (1815-1848)

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The aim of this article is to examine the debate that took place in France on the category of «capacité» applied to election laws before 1848. It is particularly focused on doctrinaire liberalism and on Guizot, who was the leading figure of this political current. The Author argues that the category of «capacité», according to which the requisite for suffrage was individual worship and not census, didn't become a subject matter of legislation not so much for the growing social blindness of the July Monarchy as for the difficulty to find some shared defining criteria.


  • capacité
  • suffrage
  • doctrinaire liberalism
  • July Monarchy


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