© 2016

Sociology in Portugal: A Short History


Part of the Sociology Transformed book series (SOTR)

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-vi
  2. Filipe Carreira da Silva
    Pages 1-13
  3. Filipe Carreira da Silva
    Pages 14-23
  4. Filipe Carreira da Silva
    Pages 24-34
  5. Filipe Carreira da Silva
    Pages 35-46
  6. Filipe Carreira da Silva
    Pages 47-60
  7. Filipe Carreira da Silva
    Pages 61-75
  8. Back Matter
    Pages 79-95

About this book


Sociology in Portugal provides the first English-language account of the history of sociology in Portugal from 1945 to the present day. Banned by the fascist regime until 1974, the institutionalization of sociology as an academic discipline came relatively late. Understanding academic disciplines as institutionalized struggles over meaning, Filipe Carreira da Silva gives a genealogy of sociology in Portugal from its origins in the political-administrative interstices of a dictatorship, through the 'cyclopean moment' of the political revolution of April 1974, which brought about its swift institutionalization and subsequent consolidation in the new democratic regime, to the challenges posed by internationalization since the 1990s. Attempts to define Portugal itself, he demonstrates, have been at the heart of these struggles. Analyzing agents, institutions, contexts, instruments and ideas, Carreira da Silva shows in fascinating detail how the sociological understanding of Portugal evolved from that of a developing society in the 1960s, to that of a modernizing European social formation in the 1980s, to the post-colonial or post-imperial Portugal of today.


Sociology Portugal history of Sociology Institution Nation sociology

Authors and affiliations

  1. 1.University of LisbonPortugal
  2. 2.Selwyn CollegeCambridgeUK

About the authors

Filipe Carreira da Silva is Research Fellow at the Institute of Social Sciences, University of Lisbon, Portugal. He is also a Fellow of Selwyn College, University of Cambridge, UK. He has held visiting positions at Harvard, Chicago and Yale. In 2010, his book Mead and Modernity was awarded the ASA's Distinguished Book Award.

Bibliographic information


"Portuguese sociology has emerged as one of the most interesting in Europe. Filipe Carreira da Silva analyses this remarkable development in a broad context of international intellectual as well as national socio-political history, out of the twilight of a semi-fascist regime, through the latter's revolutionary overthrow, and the country's successful entry into the EU, up to its grappling with the 2008- crisis. In its combination of perceptive intellectual history, empirical discipline development, and interviews with key Portuguese scholars, it is an exemplary work." - Göran Therborn, University of Cambridge, UK

"In this fascinating contribution to Palgrave's series on national histories of sociology, Filipe Carreira da Silva presents a short, illuminating and elegant account of the discipline's trajectory in Portugal. Da Silva frames his history with theoretical sophistication, and readers are treated to a book that is as wide-ranging as it is meticulous. Banned till 1974, sociology in Portugal struggled to become viable. Da Silva tells that story with finesse, tracing sociology's emergence from dictatorship to the internationally oriented discipline it is today. Everyone interested in the paths of European sociology, and not just sociology in Portugal, will profit from this book." - Peter Baehr, Lingnan University, Hong Kong