Religious Dimensions of the Portuguese Expansion


To know and understand the impact of religion on overseas Portuguese Expansion;
Develop a comparative perspective between the overseas expansion of Christianity and the proselytism of other 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 skills for critical analysis of sources.

General characterization





Responsible teacher

Ana Cantante Mota Fernandes Pinto


Weekly - Available soon

Total - 280

Teaching language



Available soon


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.
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.
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.

Teaching method

Teaching is provided through an asynchronous e-learning regime, supported by Moodle platform. The course is based on the reading of bibliography and the audio of videos. Teaching is based on collaborative learning, through the individual reading of bibliography texts and their critical analysis in peer forums. 

Evaluation method

Evaluation Methodologies - writing a paper, using historical documentation(50%), student's participation in the forums on the moodle platform(30%), writing of book review(20%)

Subject matter

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: