International Conference Portuguese Prisoners of War in the Twentieth Century
Abstr. due: 30.09.2017
Dates: 16.04.18 — 17.04.18
Organizing comittee e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
Organizers: Institute of Contemporary History of the Universidade Nova de Lisboa
Throughout the 20th century thousands of military and paramilitary Portuguese were made prisoners in the course of combat operations. Some experienced long months of captivity and had to endure all sorts of hardships: a poor diet, diseases, abuses, forced labour, isolation and abandonment. Many of them perished in prisoner’s camps due to illness, injuries that did not heal, suicide attempts or assassination by their warders. Some never returned to their homelands, either voluntarily of for having been prevented from doing so. Of others yet, we are still ignorant of their whereabouts.
The experience of these military and paramilitary as POW is still insufficiently studied and constitutes a lacuna in Portuguese historiography. Stimulated by the centenary of the Great War (1914-1918), and with the goal of encouraging new probes into this topic, this international conference hopes to be a space of interdisciplinary discussion in which the issues associated to the detention of military and paramilitary Portuguese in the context of armed conflict will be analysed. It is expected that papers will deal not only with conflicts in which the Portuguese armed forces were directly involved, such as the Great War and the wars of empire and decolonization (or even the particular case of Timor between 1941-45), but also those in which Portuguese nationals were engaged in military or paramilitary units of foreign armies (such as the case of he Spanish Civil War of 1936-39).
The organising committee invites researchers to submit their paper proposals considering the following thematic lines (non-exclusive):
- - The context of detention;
- The conditions of captivity (discipline, diet, medical assistance, forced labour, episodes of violence and death, relation with captor forces and POWs of other nationalities, etc.);
- Political and diplomatic contacts related with POWs;
- Support efforts from civil society organisations and international bodies;
- Liberation and return to the homeland;
- Memories of captivity (diaries, art objects, songs, drawings, photographs, etc.).