Plurinationality, plurinational, or plurinationalism is defined as the coexistence of two or more sealed or preserved national groups within a polity[1] (an organized community or body of peoples[2]). In plurinationalism, the idea of nationality is plural, meaning there are many nationals within an organized community or body of peoples. Derived from this concept, a plurinational state is the existence of multiple political communities and constitutional asymmetry. The usage of plurinationality assists in avoiding the division of societies within a state or country. Furthermore, a plurinational democracy recognizes the multiple demoi (common people or populace)[3] within a polity.[1] Reportedly the term has its origin in the Indigenous political movement in Bolivia where it was first heard of in the early 1980s.[4] As of 2022 Bolivia and Ecuador are constitutionally defined as plurinational states.[5]

Plurinational states are similar to multinational states, but are particularly often advocated for by indigenous peoples.[6]

Plurinationalism in Chile

In Chile constitutional plurinationalism has been a topic of debate. Plurinationalism was not a concept in the constitutional reforms proposed by Michelle Bachelet's second government (2014–2018), yet the proposed reforms included recognition of Chile's indigenous peoples.[7] The 2022 proposed Political Constitution of the Republic of Chile defined Chile as "plurinational", however this proposal was rejected by a large margin in September 2022.[4][8] Prior to the dismissal of the proposed constitution the issue of pluranationalism was noted by polls and El País as particularly divisive in Chile.[9] The creation of a "plurinational region" in southern Chile has been proposed by some scholars and activists as a solution to the Mapuche conflict.[10]

Plurinationalism has been criticized by José Rodríguez Elizondo as being used to advance Bolivian claims against Chile for sovereign access to the Pacific Ocean.[11]

See also


  1. ^ a b Keating, Michael. Plurinational Democracy in a Post-Sovereign Order Archived 2015-09-24 at the Wayback Machine, Queen's Papers on Europeanisation No 1/2002
  2. ^ polity,
  3. ^ demos,
  4. ^ a b Burns, Nick (2022-08-29). "Chile Could Become "Plurinational." What Does That Mean?". Americas Quarterly. Retrieved 2022-09-03.
  5. ^ Lankes, Ana (2022-09-02). "The Contentious Vote in Chile That Could Transform Indigenous Rights". The New York Times. Retrieved 2022-09-24.
  6. ^ Tremblay, Arjun; Gagnon, Alain-G. (2023-01-03). "Multinational, multicultural, intercultural, and plurinational federalism". Teaching Federalism. Edward Elgar Publishing. p. 141–153. doi:10.4337/9781800885325.00021. ISBN 978-1-80088-532-5.
  7. ^ Soto Martínez, Víctor (2019-11-29). Análisis comparativo entre la Constitución vigente y el proyecto de reforma constitucional de Michelle Bachelet (Report) (in Spanish). Vol. 155–19. Library of Congress of Chile.
  8. ^ Vanessa Buschschlüter. "Chile constitution: Voters overwhelmingly reject radical change". BBC News. Retrieved 5 September 2022.
  9. ^ Montes, Rocío (2022-08-31). "El debate sobre el reconocimiento del "Estado plurinacional" divide a los chilenos". El País (in Spanish). Retrieved 2022-09-24.
  10. ^ Marimán, José; Valenzuela, Esteban (2015). "El nuevo ciclo de movilización mapuche en Chile: la emergencia de la CAM y el proyecto autonomista para una región plurinacional" [The new cycle of mapuche mobilization in Chile: the emergence of the CAM and the project for a plurinational autonomy region]. Araucaria. Revista Iberoamericana de Filosofía, Política y Humanidades (in Spanish) (34): 279–301.
  11. ^ Bruna, Roberto (2022-07-18). "Diplomático José Rodríguez Elizondo teme que la plurinacionalidad sea funcional a la estrategia marítima boliviana". El Mostrador (in Spanish). Retrieved 2022-09-21.

Further reading