Religious Scope of the Portuguese Expasion. - 2nd semester


To know and understand the religious dimension of the overseas Portuguese Expansion (15th-17th centuries).
To develop a comparative perspective between the overseas expansion of Christianity and the other proselytizing movements of the great universalist religions.
To distinguish the cultural and religious heterogeneity of the different geographies covered by the Portuguese expansion and understand the different responses in the evangelizing process.
To develop the skills necessary for critical analysis of historical documentation.

General characterization





Responsible teacher

Docente a definir


Weekly - 3 letivas + 1 tutorial

Total - Available soon

Teaching language




Luís Filipe Thomaz, “Descobrimentos e Evangelização, da Cruzada à Missão Pacífica”, in Congresso Internacional de História – Missionação Portuguesa e Encontro de Culturas – Actas, 4 vols., Braga, 1992 vol. I, pp. 81-129.

Isabel dos Guimarães de Sá, “Estruturas Eclesiásticas e Ação Religiosa” in Francisco Bethencourt e Diogo Ramada Curto (Dir.), A Expansão Marítima Portuguesa, 1400-1800, Lisboa, Edições 70, 2010, pp. 265-292.

João Paulo Oliveira e Costa, “A Diáspora Missionária” in João Francisco Marques e António Camões Gouveia (coord.), História Religiosa de Portugal, vol. II, Lisboa, Círculo de Leitores / Centro de Estudos de História Religiosa, 2000, pp. 255-313

Teaching method

Teaching is provided in an asynchronous e-learning regime, supported by the use of the Moodle platform. The course is based on reading critical bibliography and listening to podcasts prepared specifically for the course. Teaching is based on collaborative learning, through the individual reading of bibliographic texts and their critical analysis in peer forums.

Evaluation method

The final evaluation results from the student´s participation in the forums on the moodle platform (30%), writing a review (20%) and writing an individual final work, using historical documentation (50%).

Subject matter

In the curricula unit the following topics will be presented and discussed:
The roots of the religious scope of the Portuguese Expansion;
The novelty of the Portuguese Expansion in the processes of religious proselytism;
The ecclesiastical organization in the Portuguese Empire.
The different receptions of Christianity in the spaces of the Portuguese Expansion;
Agents, processes and consequences of the mission.


Programs where the course is taught: