Belgian Monarchy & Belgian Unity

18 August, 2010

The conclusions of Ramon Arango’s book about the Belgian royal question may summarize the whole work of TOUDI and République about this issue. Arango wrote in 1961 :

« Why had the major antagonists reached such an impasse by midsummer of 1950 ? The answer to this question , the reader should recall, has ben suggested in Chapter I. A modern constitutional monarch is the embodiment of historical unity and national self-identification, but he functions successfully in this capacity only if there already exists a tradtion common to each of his subjects and if the people, of which he is the reflection, are whole and able to be mirorred in a single, undistorted image. The monarch, in other words, is the result, not the cause of homogeneity and consensus. The question of consensus is at the center of the royal question. For the average Belgian, the affair focused all the other issues over which there was a lack of harmony in Belgian society – the ethnic, linguistic, religious, and economic problems discussed in earlier chapters. »

(*) Ramon Arango, Leopold III and the Belgian Royal Question, The John Hopkins Press, Baltimore, 1961, pp. 212-213.