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Volume 14, Issue 3
  • ISSN: 1476-413X
  • E-ISSN: 1758-9509



This article proposes a critical analysis of recent interpretations made to the history of architecture and urban planning in the Portuguese colonial context in the twentieth century, particularly in the former African territories. More generally, it intends to explore how the internal history produced by specific fields of activity, such as architecture or urbanism, can reinforce the logic of a national and nationalized history. This effect is due partly to the fact that the legitimacy of these fields is largely dependent on the national identification in the context of activities that are internationalized. I will argue that the specific field of activity, while creating this internal discourse, can directly or indirectly produce representations of the nation, its history and its people on a larger scale, penetrating popular culture and influencing a shared common sense. In the case in question, the internal discourse on architectural and urbanistic works, on authors and styles, eventually reinforces an idealized and idyllic image of Portuguese colonialism.


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