History of Portuguese Anthropology


This course has three main objectives:
1)To give the historical panorama of the construction and evolution of anthropology in Portugal, since the beginning of the discipline, and mainly from the end of the 19th century onwards, which coincides with the moment of its systematization, until the present days.
2)To look at the different authors, along the several time periods. To analyze the work of the main Portuguese ethnographers and their connections with anthropological theories and international fellow academics.
3)To explore some of the themes treated in the recent Portuguese ethnography, through the reading and discussion of texts and the use of audiovisual materials.

General characterization





Responsible teacher

Sónia Sofia de Sousa Alves Ferreira


Weekly - 4

Total - 168

Teaching language



Available soon


• BRAGA, Teófilo 1985 O Povo Português nos seus costumes, crenças e tradições, Vol. I , Lisboa. D. Quixote.
• COELHO, A. 1993 Obra Etnográfica. Vol I. Lisboa.D. Quixote.
• DIAS, J. 1990 (1950) “Os elementos fundamentais da cultura portuguesa”, Estudos de Antropologia, vol. I, Lisboa, IN-Casa da Moeda.
• DIAS, Jorge 1990 (1954) “Algumas considerações acerca da estrutura social do povo português”, Estudos de Antropologia, vol. I, Lisboa,
IN-Casa da Moeda.
• DIAS, J. 1990 (1960) “Tentâmen de fixação das grandes áreas culturais portuguesas”, Estudos de Antropologia, vol. I, Lisboa, IN-Casa da Moeda
• LEAL, J. 2000 Etnografias Portuguesas. Cultura popular e identidade Nacional, Lisboa, Dom Quixote.
• LEAL, J. 2006 Antropologia em Portugal. Mestres, Percursos, Transições, Lisboa, Livros Horizonte.
• PEIXOTO, A. Rocha 1990 Etnografia Portuguesa. Lisboa. Dom Quixote.
• VASCONCELOS, José Leite de 1996 Signum Salomonis . A figa. A barba em Portugal. Lisboa. Dom Quixote.

Teaching method

*lectures (by the professor)
*debates for the analysis of themes presented in the lectures
*oral presentation of texts selected by the students, organized in working groups (2 persons), followed by debate
*viewing of audio-visual materials

Evaluation method

Available soon

Subject matter

1) Introductory notes: unity and diversity of the country
2) Popular culture and national identity -C. Pedroso, T. Braga, A. Coelho, R. Peixoto, J. Leite de Vasconcelos. Objectives, theories and methodologies.
3) The work of C.Pedroso and T.Braga. The comparative ethnography of J. Leite de Vasconcelos. Contrasted images of the fok: A. Coelho, R.Peixoto. Popular art: J. Vasconcelos and V. Correia.
4) The anthropology of nation-building and of empire building. Jorge Dias and his team. Anthropological theory and national identity.
5) From national identity to monographs. J.Dias and J.Cutileiro: “pastoral” and “counter pastoral”. Foreigners in Portugal.
6) Traditional architecture and Portuguese anthropology.
7) Religion, society and national identity.The notion of popular religiosity in different epochs and authors. Feasts and pilgrimages.
8) Anthropologists and Portuguese ethnography in the 20th century and the new millennium.
9) Images of a country: the ethnographic documentary


Programs where the course is taught: