HAR is pleased to announce one of the latest releases from BEROSE International Encyclopaedia of the Histories of Anthropology: two articles in English and Portuguese, respectively, that overview the history – and the historiography – of Portuguese anthropology.

Almeida, Sónia Vespeira de & Rita Cachado, 2023. “Beyond the “Carnation Revolution”: An Overview of Contemporary Histories of Portuguese Anthropology,” in BEROSE International Encyclopaedia of the Histories of Anthropology, Paris. 

URL BEROSE: article3078.html

Saraiva, Clara, 2023. “Histórias e Memórias da Antropologia Portuguesa,” in BEROSE International Encyclopaedia of the Histories of Anthropology, Paris. 

URL BEROSE: article2906.html

The history of anthropology in Portugal began to be systematized after the 1974 “Carnation Revolution,” which put an end to the longest fascist-type dictatorship in Europe. In the first paper, Almeida and Cachado look at how the history of Portuguese anthropology has been studied. Historical perspectives on Portuguese anthropology before the revolution tend to emphasize the connections between anthropologists’ work and the dictatorship project, while the work of anthropologists after the revolution is viewed as being more in tune with international or cosmopolitan anthropologies. An attentive reading of this literature shows that there were more than two historically distinctive ways of practicing anthropology. The article explores both the history and the historiography of the discipline in Portugal, highlighting some of the fundamental contributions that have been made to understand and contextualize this peculiar anthropological tradition within and beyond old nation- and empire-building motives. On the one hand, the main ideas and discussions contained in that bibliography – mostly written in Portuguese – are analyzed and synthesized, while on the other hand suggesting possible paths which the historiography of anthropology in Portugal could take in the future. 

In the second article entitled “Histories and Memories of Portuguese Anthropology,” Saraiva reviews some of the major publications on the history of Portuguese anthropology and adds a more personal perspective related to the author’s path from her training in Lisbon and the United States to her presidency of the Portuguese Anthropological Association (APA) – including her close association with key figures in the recent history of Portuguese anthropology. The text underlines the continuities and ruptures that occurred at different moments and reveals the ambivalences of the discipline during the dictatorship of the Estado Novo, as well as the tensions or connections between the nation-building and empire-building projects. Along with the intellectual and political changes resulting from the “Carnation Revolution” of 1974, new forms of institutionalization emerged, both in the universe of academia and at the professional level with the creation of the APAin 1989. The text takes us to the summer of 2021, two years before the 50th anniversary of the death of Jorge Dias, a leading figure in modern Portuguese anthropology.

BEROSE: contributions / website /