Biblioteca – Espaço Por Timor Lisbon, 17 & 18 May 2012

Timor Leste has received growing attention from Portuguese scholars since the referendum of 1999. At Portuguese universities, a number of humanities’ and social sciences’ works were produced in the course of the last ten years, including many Master and PhD theses. Many of these, however, have not been published, and thus they have little or no impact beyond academic circles. On the occasion of celebrating 10 years of Timor Leste’s restauration of Independence, the conference Timor Leste: 10 anos de estudos e teses. Reflectir e devolver (Timor Leste: 10 years of studies and theses. Reflecting and giving back) was held in Lisbon on 17 and 18 May 2012, with the purpose of bringing Portuguese academic research about Timor Leste into dialogue with the wider community.

VIEW here the VÍDEO with all the conference presentations and discussions online. We thank MemoriaMedia for support in making this vídeo available.

DOWNLOAD the conference program here.

admin On Setembro - 25 - 2012


Anthropology, Events, História


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Exploring Colonial Anthropologies

  • The presence of the Portuguese in Timor, a small island at the end of the Lesser Sunda Islands chain, dates from the mid-sixteenth century. For the next 250 years, Portuguese Catholic missionaries, soldiers, traders, officials, governors, scientists, and military became regular company of the Timorese populations. First based in Lifau (Oecusse), and since 1769 based in Dilly, the Portuguese claimed sovereignty and exercised colonial government over the Eastern half of the island. Today’s nation Republic of Timor-Leste, went by the name of ‘Portuguese Timor’, a colonial province of Portugal, until the Indonesian occupation in 1975. Throughout this long colonial period a great and rich variety of published and unpublished documents was produced by colonial agents.

    From manuscript letters to administrative reports, travelogues, journal articles, or book-length texts, the Portuguese colonial archives offer an abundant field of important material about the past and present of the bodies, languages, and cultures of Timor-Leste peoples. It is this varied and complex colonial material on the history and anthropology of Timor that this research project aims at revealing, exploring, and critically analyze.

    In engaging with these archives, we are concerned not just with how they illuminate former anthropological understandings and colonial encounters between Indigenous and Europeans; we also aim at exploring how they shape current understandings and might help the creation of a post-colonial moment for the history and anthropology of Timor-Leste.

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