O caso das aldeias serranas-importância e limites destas unidades sociais e patrimoniais na sustentabilidade do território

  1. dos Santos Batista, Ana Paula
Supervised by:
  1. José Manuel dos Santos Custódio Pedreirinho Director
  2. María Teresa Pérez Cano Director

Defence university: Universidad de Sevilla

Fecha de defensa: 16 June 2017

  1. Eduardo Mosquera Adell Chair
  2. José Manuel Aladro Prieto Secretary
  3. Rafael Merinero-Rodríguez Committee member
  4. Carlos Jesús Rosa Jiménez Committee member
  5. Ana María Tavares Ferreira Martins Committee member

Type: Thesis

Teseo: 466128 DIALNET lock_openIdus editor


During the second half of the 20th century, Portugal witnessed a deep transformation of a social structure based on very isolated rural communities that, faced with a great emigration, almost disappeared in many cases. In this context, as an attempt to intervene in these weakened rural spaces multiple economic incentives specifically aimed at tourism emerged after the 1990s, a consequence of the new instruments resulting from European integration. Such initiatives laid the foundation of Programs such as the Historical Villages of Portugal, the Wine-Producing Villages of Douro and the Schist Villages. The present study aims to reflect on the “discovery” of this built heritage, focusing more specifically on the Schist Villages, located in the central region of Portugal (Beira Interior), as an instrument and a resource for the development of these territories. The strategy followed by these programs leads us to probe the way tourism is related with society, with special emphasis on the fields of Sociology, Anthropology, and Philosophy. Furthermore, this study seeks to frame and contextualize these physical and social structures from a geographic, economic, and social perspective in order to better understand the specificities of these territories, as well as their patrimonialization. As we assume that valuing places and their culture might be a way to take action in depressed socioeconomic contexts, the question is whether this heritage has been acquiring a rhetorical and folkloric dimension, frequently staged under the pretext of a development strategy, promoting singularity symbols (stemming from a society that certainly no longer exists), as mere scenic, gastronomic and architectural attractions. Another question is whether tourism per se is capable of inverting the current state of depopulation and abandonment of rural areas. It is essential to understand whether or not these projects are sustainable, and to what extent. What will happen to these villages without the community funding that has been channeled to them? What is the actual importance and capability of these social and heritage units in the sustainability of the territory?