The pastoral ideal in Portugal: from literature to touristic practices

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review


This contribution deals with two forms of pastoralism in Portugal, the ‘imaginative and complex’, and the ‘popular and sentimental’, in the terms espoused by Leo Marx. Drawing on fictional literature analysis and long-term research about the most popular tourist accommodation sector in rural Portugal, it sheds light on the persistence of the pastoral ideal in Portuguese culture, while arguing that Tourism in Rural Areas reflects and facilitates the middle-class appropriation of and active involvement in a practice associated with a sentimental form of pastoralism. It does so by providing two forms of
‘traditional’ rural dwelling – one that is noble, the other peasant – to urbanites who do not have a second home or a family home in the countryside. Landscape, social relations and authenticity are three key elements used by tourists to build an idyllic image of the rural.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationShaping Rural Areas in Europe
Subtitle of host publicationPerceptions and Outcomes on the Present and the Future
EditorsLuís Silva, Elisabete Figueiredo
Place of PublicationDordrecht
Number of pages13
ISBN (Electronic)978-94-007-6796-6
ISBN (Print)978-94-007-6795-9
Publication statusPublished - 17 Jun 2013


  • Pastoralism
  • Fictional literature
  • Tourism demand
  • Rural idyll
  • Tourism in Rural Areas
  • Portugal


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