Cape Verde

  • Barry Turner
Part of the The Statesman’s Yearbook book series (SYBK)


During centuries of Portuguese rule the islands were gradually peopled with Portuguese, slaves from Africa and people of mixed African-European descent who formed the majority. While retaining some African culture, the Cape Verdians spoke Portuguese or the Portuguese-derived Crioulo (Creole) language and became Catholics. In 1956 nationalists from Cape Verde and Portuguese Guinea founded the Partido Africano da Independencia da Guiné e Cabo Verde (PAIGC). In the 1960s the PAIGC waged a successful guerrilla war. On 5 July 1975 Cape Verde became independent, ruled by the PAIGC, which was already the ruling party in the former Portuguese colony of Guinea-Bissau. But resentment at Cape Verdians’ privileged position in Guinea-Bissau led to the end of the ties between the two countries’ ruling parties. Although the PAIGC retained its name in Guinea-Bissau, in Jan. 1981 it was renamed the Partido Africano da Independencia do Cabo Verde (PAICV) in Cape Verde. The constitution of 1981 made the PAICV the sole legal party but in Sept. 1990 the National Assembly abolished its monopoly and free elections were permitted.


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Further Reading

  1. Foy, C., Cape Verde: Politics, Economics and Society. 1988Google Scholar
  2. Lobban, Richard, Historical Dictionary of the Republic of Cape Verde. 1995.—Cape Verde: Crioulo Colony to Independent Nation. 1998Google Scholar
  3. Meintel, D., Race, Culture, and Portuguese Colonialism in Cabo Verde. 1984Google Scholar
  4. National Statistical Office: Instituto Nacional de Estatistica, Praia.Google Scholar
  5. Website (Portuguese only):

Copyright information

© Palgrave Macmillan, a division of Macmillan Publishers Limited 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • Barry Turner

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