• Cover image of PLCS 30/31. Picture of a doorway in a stucco wall with a water view. PLCS 30/31 (2017)

    Transnational Africas: Visual, Material and Sonic Cultures of Lusophone Africa

    Editors – Christopher Larkosh, Mario Pereira & Memory Holloway

    The scholarly articles and interview that comprise this double issue examine African visual, material and sonic culture by way of a broad corpus of examples from both within and beyond the uncertain boundaries of Lusophone Africa. Together, they reiterate the urgent need for a sustained transnational scholarly approach to Africa that allows for a shift in focus toward modes of cultural production in which written, spoken or recorded language is not the principal or sole medium of communication. This special issue is thus dedicated to advancing a more complex and inclusive model of Luso-Afro-Brazilian cultural studies: one that encourages a renewed conversation on the possibilities of cross-border paradigms of identity and alterity emanating from the visual arts, music, performance, material objects, and other common places.

  • PLCS 29 (2016)

    The Eighteenth Century
    Guest Editor - Bruno Carvalho (Princeton University)

    Challenging notions of the Portuguese-speaking world as merely "backwards" or obscurantist during the eighteenth century, this issue explores how the circulation of Enlightenment-era discourse engendered creative appropriations, and unsettling compromises between divergent worldviews. The issue showcases the vibrant and diverse scholarship on the period in Portuguese and Brazilian literary and cultural studies, placing the Lusophone world in transatlantic and hemispheric contexts, while shedding light on several of its specific dimensions.


  • PLCS 28 (2015)

    Fernando Pessoa as English Reader and Writer
    Guest Editors - Patricio Ferrari (Universidade de Lisboa) and Jerónimo Pizarro (University of the Andes)

    Now that Pessoa’s digitized private library is available online, the importance of English to Pessoa, particularly in his formative years, has become indisputable. The writings of English authors served as the bedrock from which his poetic sensibility emerged, developed, and soared. In fact, a significant number of Pessoa's writings both in English and in Portuguese (including those attributed to his heteronyms and to other literary personae) were significantly informed by these literary sources. Fernando Pessoa as English Reader and Writer provides ample evidence of his lifelong relationship with the English language.

  • PLCS 27 (2015)

    The South Atlantic, Past and Present
    Guest Editor - Luiz Felipe de Alencastro (Université de Paris--Sorbonne and São Paulo School of Economics-FGV)

    From 1550 until 1850 most of Brazil and Angola formed a system sustained by the slave trade and inter-colonial traffic that complemented, albeit often contradictorily, exchanges between these regions and Portugal. Merchants, militiamen, royal servants and missionaries fostered relations between Portuguese enclaves on either side of the ocean. However, these exchanges were interrupted by the end of the Brazilian slave trade in 1850. Nevertheless, after the independence of the Lusophone nations in Africa, direct communications and relationships were reestablished between the two sides of the Atlantic. In the meantime, Brazil had become the nation with the largest population of people of African descent outside of Africa. Today, an economic, linguistic and cultural network again connects different countries and peoples within the South Atlantic, and new geopolitical extensions have appeared with the creation in 2003 of IBSA (India, Brazil and South Africa Forum). This latest volume of Portuguese Literary & Cultural Studies explores the historical, geopolitical and cultural aspects of the South Atlantic, past and present.

  • PLCS 26 (2014)

    Literary Histories in Portuguese
    Editor - João Cezar de Castro Rocha (Universidade do Estado do Rio de Janeiro)

    In the past few decades, the discipline of literary history has been the subject of intense discussion, from David Perkins's provocative question Is Literary History Possible? to the debates generated by a series of thought-provoking volumes dedicated to the writing of innovative national literary histories, published by Harvard University Press—namely, A New History of French Literature (1989), A New History of German Literature (2005), and A New Literary History of America (2009). This latest volume of Portuguese Literary & Cultural Studies reflects on the problem of literary history in the Lusophone world, with an emphasis on theories of literary history and of literary history and empire.

  • PLCS 25 (2013)

    Lusophonia and its Futures
    Editor - João Cezar de Castro Rocha (Universidade do Estado do Rio de Janeiro)

    Lusofonia and Its Futures is a richly textured collection of essays on the Lusophone (Portuguese-speaking) world, comprised of over 230 million people in eight countries on four continents. The notion of Lusofonia encompasses the cultural identities generated by Portuguese speakers with shared as well as divergent histories. This volume presents a nuanced and critical study of the concept and history of Lusofonia from a variety of theoretical approaches.

  • PLCS 23/24 (2013)

    Economies of Relation: Money and Personalism in the Lusophone World
    Guest editor - Roger Sansi (Goldsmiths, University of London)

    "Money does not bring happiness." For Roberto Da Matta, in Carnivals, Rogues, and Heroes (1979), this saying embodies the ambivalence surrounding money in Brazil, a legacy of a Lusophone cultural tradition that privileges personal relationships over impersonal commodified exchange. This volume of Portuguese Literary & Cultural Studies questions this tradition from the perspective of different disciplines. Does money stand in contrast to personal relations? And, if so, is this really particular to Lusophone or, more widely, Latin cultures — as opposed to, say, Anglo-American cultures or Protestantism generally? This book will be of interest to scholars in anthropology, history, literary criticism and Luso-Brazilian studies.

  • PLCS 21/22 (2012)

    Garrett's Travels Revisited
    Guest Editor - Victor K. Mendes (UMass Dartmouth), Valéria M. Souza (UMass Dartmouth)

    In Travels in My Homeland (1846), Almeida Garrett — the most prominent figure of Portuguese Romanticism —narrates his 13-day trip to Santarém, wittily intermingling personal experiences with a sentimental novel. Influenced by Laurence Sterne's Sentimental Journey, Garrett's masterpiece paved the way for great writers like Eça de Queirós and Machado de Assis and helped foster modern Portuguese prose. The present essay collection, the first in English, supplies comparative contexts by leading scholars that illuminate topics such as narrative technique, gender relations, women and nationalism, literary hypertext, travel writing and visual culture, literature and music, and Romantic fiction and classical literature.

  • PLCS 19/20 (2011)

    Facts and Fictions of António Lobo Antunes
    Guest editor - Victor K. Mendes (UMass Dartmouth)

    António Lobo Antunes is Portugal's foremost living writer, who has been mentioned recurrently as a shortlisted candidate for the Nobel Prize of Literature. His novels are placed at the crossroads of European and African colonial and postcolonial experience, patriarchal and post-patriarchal family and social structures, often revealing tensions between modernist and postmodernist fiction. As his renowned American translator, Gregory Rabassa, has observed, Antunes's difficult but compelling style evokes that of Joyce by way of Proust, though it also displays the influence of William Faulkner and Louis-Ferdinand Céline. This collection presents for the first time in English the best literary criticism on Antunes of the past three decades, bringing together responses to his challenging novels that are both insightful and passionate.

  • PLCS 17/18 (2010)

    Parts of Asia
    Guest Editor - Cristiana Bastos (University of Lisbon)

    Portuguese Literary & Cultural Studies 17/18 is a compendium of knowledge about the regions of Asia that have been impacted by their contact with the Portuguese. Separate sections on Goa, Macau, East Timor, and other regions of Asia present the cutting edge in studies of these region. Experts in the field from the U.S., Portugal and beyond such as Cristiana Bastos, Timothy Walker, and Christopher Larkosh have created an essential contribution to the study of the Portuguese in Asia.

  • PLCS 15/16 (2006)

    Remembering Angola
    Guest Editor - Phillip Rothwell (Rutgers University, New Brunswick)

    Remembering Angola is a groundbreaking volume that brings together articles by leading scholars from around the world. From a range of disciplines, they reflect on the role Angolan culture has played in reformulating the torn fabric of a nation historically beset by strife and oppression. Thus, “re-membering” goes beyond recall, although many of the articles in the volume contemplate histories and memories — from those of the colonial war to those of post-independence exiles; from those of degredados to those of Angola’s leading literary voices; from those of Portuguese women who witnessed the horrors of Salazar’s policies in the jewel of the Portuguese imperial crown to those of a nineteenth-century journalist elite who laid the seeds of a national consciousness. The volume dialogues with a range of theoretical issues including the concept of voyaging through one’s own alterity as an Angolan antidote to Camões's appropriating voyage into the unknown; and an interrogation of Angola’s answers to Orientalism. It also includes a revealing interview (one of very few published in English) with the reclusive José Luandino Vieira, one of the Portuguese-speaking world’s literary titans, as well as original poetry by Angola’s leading female poet, Ana Paula Tavares.

  • PLCS 13/14 (2005)

    The Author as Plagiarist - The Case of Machado de Assis
    Guest editor - João Cezar de Castro Rocha (Universidade do Estado do Rio de Janeiro)

    An in-depth look at how Machado de Assis affirms his uniqueness through the role of a reflective reader who eventually becomes a self-reflective author, whose text is primarily the written memory of his private library. New readings of Machado’s work come to the fore when we discuss his legacy in a broader context. Therefore, we should emphasize the circumstances of an author who boldly experimented with literary genres, freely appropriated the literary tradition, developed an irreverent rapport with the reader through a series of experiments with the narrative voice, attributed to the act of reading a central role in the act of writing, and played with the process of rewriting the text as the text is being written through the act of ironically commenting on the process of composition. 

  • PLCS 12 (2004)

    The Other Nineteenth Century
    Guest editor - Kathryn Bishop-Sanchez (University of Wisconsin - Madison)

    The impetus for this volume, The Other Nineteenth Century, stems from the homonymous conference that was held at the University of Wisconsin-Madison in April 2005. Over twenty scholars from the United States and Portugal delivered papers, and expanded versions of nineteen of these studies, along with five other relevant articles, constitute the present volume of Portuguese Literary & Cultural Studies. The conference itself was designed to provide a forum to discuss works, authors and themes that are usually excluded from the repertoires of Lusophone literary and cultural history, and only seldom addressed in academic venues. Indeed, as the original conference presentations and the final published articles demonstrate, behind the more “canonized” nineteenth century lies another nineteenth century that has not always been duly recognized in literary and cultural histories.

  • PLCS 11 (2003)

    Vitorino Nemésio and the Azores
    Guest editor - Francisco Cota Fagundes (UMass Amherst)

    Equating Vitorino Nemésio to “Azoreanity,” universality, iridescence, confluence, and eroticism, draws inspiration from the content of the essays herein included and will not surprise anyone familiar with Nemésio’s non-posthumous works, with the possible exception of the very last of the lexemes, “eroticism.” Nemésio’s oeuvre, starting with the collections of short stories Paço do Milhafre (1924) and Mistério do Paço do Milhafre (1949), and extending to the poetical collections La Voyelle Promise (1935) and Festa Redonda (1950), to the novel Mau Tempo no Canal (1944) and the travelogue Corsário das Ilhas (1956), encompasses a range of subjects profoundly rooted in the Azorean archipelago. At the same time--and here, besides Mau Tempo no Canal, we must emphasize the poems of Nem Toda a Noite a Vida (1952) and O Verbo e a Morte (1959)--the thematic and formal scope of Nemésio’s oeuvre does in no way distance itself from the totality (and, to the extent that the word is valid, centrality) of Portugese culture and, as well, from the western Great Tradition of which it is an inextricable part.

  • PLCS 10 (2003)

    Reevaluating Mozambique
    Guest editor - Phillip Rothwell (Rutgers University, New Brunswick)

    Despite the critical tone of many of the articles in this collection, today's Mozambique has the potential to become a true success story, not as designated by the outside world, but as determined from within. The fact that critical voices are now raised, as much in the rich cultural output of the nation as in the structures of civil society, raises the possibility of a tangible improvement in the lives of ordinary Mozambicans, since every problem must be recognized before a solution can be reached. Chiziane's interrogation of patriarchal practice, Momplé's portrayal of corruption and abject poverty, Couto's depiction of senseless violence, refashion our image of Mozambique away from the utopian paradise-in-the-making that it never was towards a more profound questioning of the problems that this very young nation faces.

  • PLCS 9 (2003)

    Post-Imperial Camões
    Guest editor - João R. Figueiredo (Universidade de Lisboa)

    It has been more difficult to steal Camões from this critic [Faria e Sousa] than to steal him from the Portuguese. The former is not necessarily a goal in itself (though, again fortunately, it is not up to me to read the minds of all Camões scholars). The latter is most desirable. Hence the importance of a colloquium on post-imperial Camões, in English and in America. It is fitting to recall that, ironically, Faria e Sousa’s commentaries were written in Spanish and published in Spain, when Portugal was under Spanish rule. It is not a question of now showing Portugal (or its surrogate, the Portuguese language at its most sublime) to the world, as politicians would say, no matter the ideology they profess, but of allowing Camões to be stolen from the Portuguese.

  • PLCS 8 (2003)

    Cape Verde: Language, Literature, & Music
    Guest editor - Ana Mafalda Leite (Universidade de Lisboa)

    The present volume has brought together the contributions of scholars of different nationalities who have dedicated themselves to a study of the literatures in the Portuguese language, as well as those who work in other areas such as Linguistics or Comparative Literature but who have in recent years researched and published works on Cape Verdean literature. These include not only Cape Verdeans but also scholars writing from Brazil, Portugal, the United States, the United Kingdom and Galicia in Spain.

  • PLCS 7 (2001)

    A Repertoire of Contemporary Portuguese Poetry
    Guest editor - Victor K. Mendes (UMass Dartmouth)

    The first section of A Repertoire of Contemporary Portuguese Poetry encompasses nine poets as critically read by a younger generation of critics. Starting with authors publishing since 1961 and ending with those who debuted in the 1980s, such as Vasco Garça Moura, António Franco Alexandre, João Miguel Fernandes Jorge, Nuno Júdice, Fernando Pinto do Amaral and Adília Lopes, this is a relatively cautious sequence, in the sense that it leaves for another opportunity poets with more recent publishing careers, some of them already highly acclaimed, like the winner of 2008 Poetry Prize awarded by the Portuguese Association of Writers, Ana Luísa Amaral. In the second section of this volume, among other articles and reviews, the two major figures of Portuguese Poetry, Luís de Camões and Fernando Pessoa, are revisited. 

  • PLCS 6 (2001)

    On Saramago
    Guest editor - Anna Klobucka (University of Georgia)

    For many decades, José Saramago has been a staunch defender of the role of literature to both serve and be perceived as public discourse. When, in October 1998, he became the first Portuguese-language author to be awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature, his conviction was supported by the assurance that, at any rate, this particular writer’s literary discourse was guaranteed to be widely (and globally) publicized. If, as Wlad Godzich has claimed, the severely limited possibility of public discourse in the contemporary world is compensated by the ever-multiplying variety of ways to publicize discourses (“Workshop”), Saramago has taken full advantage of the opportunities offered in this respect by the Nobel prize as probably the most effective institutionalized instrument of publicity that high literary discourse which is produced worldwide has at its annual disposal. His international visibility greatly amplified, Saramago could be seen in the last two years shuttling the globe and making globally publicized statements on behalf of the many political causes that have attracted his attention and support.

  • PLCS 4/5 (2000)

    Brazil 2001: A Revisionary History of Brazilian Literature and Culture
    Guest editor - João Cezar de Castro Rocha (Universidade do Estado do Rio de Janeiro)

    In one of his most intriguing poems, Carlos Drummond de Andrade provides inspiration for this current volume of Portuguese Literary & Cultural Studies - Brazil 2001: A Revisionary History of Brazilian Literature and Culture. The poem, called “Hino Nacional,” is a paradoxical reconstruction of variegated efforts aimed at the building of the nation. In the final lines of the poem, however, it is “Brazil” - as an impossible Kantian thing-in-itself - that emerges and refuses all attempts to grasp its essence:

    Brazil does not want us! It is sick and tired of us!
    Our Brazil is in the afterworld. This is not Brazil.
    There is no Brazil. By any chance, are there Brazilians?

  • PLCS 3 (1999)

    Pessoa's Alberto Caeiro
    Editor - Victor J. Mendes (UMass Dartmouth)

    This issue of Portugues Literary & Cultural Studies offers the most recent criticism of Alberto Caeiro's poetry and influence. It is the first time that at this level an entire critical volume has been devoted to the Master of Fernando Pessoa's heteronyms. This work undercuts the well-established habit of publishing a book on that constructed unity called Pessoa, whatever Pessoa means, and it probably does not mean anything.

  • PLCS 2 (1999)

    Lídia Jorge in other words/por outras palavras
    Guest editor - Cláudia Pazos Alonso (Oxford University)

    The present volume features an array of essays on some of Lídia Jorge’s best-known fiction. Special attention is devoted here to A Costa dos Murmúrios, undoubtedly her most celebrated novel at home and abroad. The importance of its central theme–a personal recollection of colonial wartime in Mozambique that engages in dialogue with the highly fictionalized account featured at the outset of the book–would amply suffice to justify the interest it has elicited. But the original treatment which Lídia Jorge affords to her chosen theme enables her to problematize a wide range of issues close to the heart of modern readers (be they Portuguese or not), including personal and collective identity, memory, history, language, and representation itself.

  • PLCS 1 (1998)

    Editors - Victor J. Mendes (UMass Dartmouth), Paulo de Medeiros (University of Utrecht) and José N. Ornelas (UMass Amherst)

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