Exploring tourist and filmmaking practices through Portuguese non-fiction film: from the early travelogue to the tourism promotional film (1910-1980)

Research group: Practices and Politics of Culture


Cinema | Tourism | Portugal | Practices | Non-fiction

Funding Institution

Fundação para a Ciência e Tecnologia (FCT)



Start date


End date





The project explores tourist and filmmaking practices through Portuguese non-fiction film. It engages a collection of films held by the Portuguese Film Museum (Cinemateca Portuguesa - Museu do Cinema) that has received little scholarly attention, mostly due to the fiction bias that has dominated Portuguese film historiography and to the lack of interest, in general, of the social sciences in audiovisual archives. This rather vast and heterogeneous collection comprises all types of travel films and sponsored films, amateur, semi-amateur and professional. The key questions addressed are: what can early travel films and tourism promotional films tell us about the development of tourist practices in Portugal between the early cinema period and the late 1970s? And what part did the filmmaking practices play in this process? All in all, the project endorses an understanding of film as social practice, but is also aware of film's specificities, which cannot be subsumed under other social domains (not least tourism).