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Lecture Series

Spring 2017 Lecture Series

José Miguel Sardica April 27, 2017 - The Saab Center for Portuguese Studies and the History Department announce a lecture,  “Revolutions and Political Instability in Portugal in the 19th and 20th Centuries”, by José Miguel Sardica, Ph.D., of the Catholic University of Portugal, on Thursday, April 27, 2017 at O’Leary Library, Room 300A, South Campus at 12:30 p.m. Parking in Wilder lot, across from 61 Wilder Street.  

This lecture examines the many revolutions in 19th- and early 20th-century Portugal, advancing reasons as to why this political instability was so prevalent in this time period. The intensity of Portuguese revolutionary activity will be compared with the wider situation around Europe. Historical roots or general causes will be explored to explain the frequency of Portuguese revolutionarism, from the impact of French invasions in the early 19th century to the consolidation of power in the New State dictatorship of Salazar in the 1930s, the latter having led to the so-called Carnation Revolution of 1974 that ushered in a vibrant democratic republic.

Fall 2016 Lecture Series

December 2, 2016-  The Saab Center for Portuguese Studies and the History Department hosted a lecture, “Encompassing the Globe: Views from Angola and Brazil (1580-1640),” by Prof. Diogo Ramada Curto of the Universidade Nova de Lisboa, on Friday, December 2 at 11:00 a.m. in O’Leary Library, Room 222, UMass Lowell South Campus.  

September 29, 2016- Lecture: “Portuguese Fado: Two Hundred Years of a Musical Genre,” by Rui Vieira Nery, Ph.D., director of the Portuguese Language and Culture Program at the Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation. The lecture took place Thursday, September 29 at 5 p.m. in the Perry Atrium of the Saab Emerging Technologies and Innovation Center, 39 Plymouth St. (Parking available in North Garage and Riverside Lots, with the entrance on Sparks St.) 

April 21, 2016 - Portuguese History Panel: "The Wrath of God in Portuguese History, " April 21, 2016 

March 29, 2016 - Lecture: Associate press correspondent in Rio, March 29, 2016 

U.S. Ambassador to Portugal, the Honorable Robert A. Sherman, gave a public, free lecture on US- Portugal relations on Tuesday, Feb. 23 at noon in Moloney Hall, University Crossing (220 Pawtucket Street, Lowell). The talk was sponsored by the College of Fine Arts, Humanities, and Social Sciences, the Saab Center for Portuguese Studies, and the International Relations Club.

Ambassador Sherman, who hails from Boston, Massachusetts, has prioritized 21st century economic diplomacy, including bilateral investing. He led a delegation of Portuguese investors and businesses to the SelectUSA Summit in Washington and has also taken American investors to Portugal, to understand the high quality of Portuguese innovation and entrepreneurship.

Ambassador Sherman and his wife Kim Sawyer, an entrepreneur and lawyer, have launched Connect to Success, the Embassy’s flagship initiative in women’s entrepreneurship, which is composed of a corporate mentorship program, an MBA/Masters Consulting program, and free practical business workshops.

In an increasingly interdependent world, containing complex threats and challenges, the Ambassador has pursued President Obama’s agenda of “smart” leadership, looking to increase ways in which the United States and Portugal, along with other allies, can leverage their capabilities on issues of international security. In Portugal, his focus has been on strengthening engagement in areas such as maritime security in West Africa, cybersecurity, narcoterrorism and NATO.

Ambassador Sherman holds a B.A. in Political Science from the University of Rochester and a J.D. from Boston University School of Law. He was a founding member of the Boston office of Greenburg Traurig, a large international law firm.

November 13, 2015 - Lowell, Mass

The UMass Lowell Saab Center for Portuguese Studies and Departments of Sociology and Political Science hosted a lecture, “Revisiting Donald Taft’s Two Portuguese Communities in New England: Academic Sociology, the Racialization of Labor, and the 1924 Immigration Act,” by Cristiana Bastos, Ph.D. of the Institute of Social Sciences at the University of Lisbon. The lecture is scheduled for Friday, November 13, 2015 at noon in the Dean's Conference Room, College of Fine Arts, Humanities, and Social Sciences Building, 820 Broadway Street. Parking in Wilder Lot, at the corner of Broadway and Wilder Streets.

Donald Taft’s 1923 book Two Portuguese Communities in New England caused much anger and protest among New England’s Portuguese communities at the time. This lecture discussed how and why an obscure academic dissertation became infamous to the point of gathering thousands of people in public demonstrations that demanded a scientific response to the author’s claims. Taft had investigated the possible social causes for the high rates of infant mortality in Fall River, Massachusetts, and Portsmouth, Rhode Island. He used state-of-the-art quantitative and qualitative research methods and outlined a number of possible social, cultural, economic and environmental variables related to the poor health indicator. And yet his introduction and conclusion indulged in racialist comments about the Portuguese, serving nutritious social science wrapped in stale racist prejudice. The clash between author and communities helps us access a complex historical moment when the early efforts of promoting the scientific study of society coexisted with the pseudoscience of race in a tense political context regarding immigration.

Bastos (Ph.D CUNY, 1996) is an anthropologist and a permanent researcher at the Institute of Social Sciences, University of Lisbon. She has taught in different graduate programs in Portugal, Brazil, and the United States, including at Brown and the University of Massachusetts. Her interests lie at the intersections of society, knowledge and power, and most of her work—which recently addressed Portuguese colonialism through its health institutions—is at the confluence of anthropology, history and science studies. She is the author of Global Responses to AIDS: Science in Emergency (Indiana University Press, 1999) and a number of articles on topics of colonialism, medicine and displacement in Análise Social, Etnográfica, História Ciências Saúde-Manguinhos, Journal of Romance Studies, Journal of Southern African Studies, International Migration, Bulletin of the History of Medicine, Horizontes Antropológicos, and Anuário Antropológico. Recent edited volumes include “Parts of Asia” (special issue of Portuguese Literary and Cultural Studies, 2010), A Circulação do Conhecimento: Medicina, Redes e Impérios (Imprensa de Ciências Sociais, 2013) and Healing Holidays: Itinerant Patients, Therapeutic Locales and the Quest for Health (Routledge, 2015).

Ana valdez

Four Spring Lectures -Prof. Ana Valdez, the inaugural Luso-American Foundation Visiting Professor in Portuguese Studies in the UMass Lowell History Department, offered four free lectures on the history of the Portuguese “Age of Discovery,” in March and April 2015.

March 31, 2015 - Lowell, Mass. The UMass Lowell Saab Center for Portuguese Studies, in partnership with the History Department, hosted a lecture, “Empire, Religion, and Utopia in the Early Modern Portuguese World”, by Dr. Ana Valdez, Luso-American Foundation Visiting Professor in Portuguese Studies in the UMass Lowell History Department. 

David JacksonOctober 2, 2014 – Lowell, Mass. The UMass Lowell Saab Center for Portuguese Studies, hosted a lecture, “A New Hybrid Word: Crossing Cultures with the Portuguese in Asia, Africa, and the Americas," by Kenneth David Jackson, Ph.D. of Yale University. "Crossing Cultures" presents a perspective on the Portuguese world, which, after the epic voyage of Vasco da Gama, set in motion the modern forms of encounter between peoples and cultures in founding moments of a hybrid, global world. The lecture explored diverse examples of Portuguese contacts from Brazil to Japan.