Portugal 1918-1926 Portugal 1939-1945

Portugal, 1926-1939

In 1926 a coup d'etat launched the begin of the dictatorship of JOSE OSCAR FRAGOSO CARMONA who was to rule until 1951.
Portugal, still largely agricultural; for the impoverished rural population, emigration (mostly to Brazil) had always been an option. The post-war economic crisis did not have a great effect on Portugal, as there were no war damages and the country had little industry. During the democratic years, emigration continued.
Sidonio Pais pursued a policy of economic austerity, as opposed to the liberal printing of money during the late republic. The Great Depression of the early 1930es hit Portugal severely. One answer to the problems was to focus more on the country's long neglected African possessions, predominantly Angola and Mocambique. Portugal remained neutral when Spain fought it's Civil War (1936-1939); most of the Spanish lands just across the Portuguese border were held by Franco's nationalists.
Since 1932, ANTONIO DE OLIVEIRA SALAZAR was prime minister and the dominant political figure. The dictatorship was, by opponents, characterized as fascist : Portugal had introduced concentration camps and forced labour, thus mobilizing the unemployed in infrastructure projects. Political opponents had been persecuted and maltreated.

Library of Congress, Country Studies : Portugal
History of Portugal by Dark Angel
REFERENCE David Birmingham, A Concise History of Portugal, Cambridge Concise Histories, 1993, 210 pp.
Article : Portugal, in : Statesman's Yearbook 1928 pp.1217-1224, 1929 pp.1195-1207, 1932 pp.1212-1226, 1937 pp.1243-1258 [G]
Article : Portugal, in : Americana Annual 1927 pp.700-702, 1928 pp.643-644, 1930 pp.631-632, 1931 pp.620-622, 1932 pp.589-590, 1933 pp.625-626, 1934 pp.476-477, 1935 pp.576-577, 1936 pp.594-595, 1937 pp.582-583, 1938 pp.569-571, 1939 pp.631-632 [G]
Article : Portugal, in : New International Year Book 1928 pp.616-617, 1930 pp.640-642, 1932 pp.681-683, 1933 pp.678-679, 1934 pp.585-586, 1935 pp.600-601, 1938 pp.614-616, 1939 pp.633-635 [G]
Article : Portugal, in : New Standard Encyclopedia Year Book 1932 p.441, 1933 pp.434-435, 1934 pp.446-447, 1935 pp.443-444, 1936 pp.414-415, 1937 pp.417-418, 1938 pp.420-422, 1939 pp.442-443 [G]

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First posted in 2000, last revised on August 23rd 2007

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