Reassessing the Portuguese Imperial Past

Scholarly Perspectives and Civic Engagement

  • Pedro Cardim Universidade NOVA de Lisboa
Keywords: Imperial history, heritage preservation, historical memory, racism


This article provides an overview of the advancements in discussions surrounding Portugal’s imperial history. It begins by introducing the scholarly developments of recent decades, both during and after Salazar’s dictatorship, highlighting their areas of focus and their impact on the perception of Portugal’s imperial past. The subsequent section explores a series of civic engagement initiatives that challenged the commemorations of the imperial past, specifically addressing recent public events and the resulting controversies. Finally, the concluding section reflects on the evolving and current understandings of the Portuguese Empire, while advocating for a more critical dialogue regarding Portugal’s history within academic circles and society as a whole.