A guided visit to Museu do Aljube – Resistência e Liberdade

Wed, 29.05.2019

Learning about the violence and oppression of the Portuguese dictatorship

On the 29th of May, our Portuguese language school organized a guided visit to Museu do Aljube – Resistência e Liberdade.

Fortunately we had many students who replaced the beach for a captivating cultural event! We appreciated your choice, guys!

Indira Leão, our history teacher, accompanied us during the guided visit. Ana, a guide of the museum helped us to revive a black period of contemporary Portuguese history: the dictatorship. The Portuguese dictatorship was implemented in 1926. Years later, in 1932, António de Oliveira Salazar became the leader of the government. Salazar reinforced the censorship and created a political police named PIDE. The violence and oppression of the regime increased substantially.

Ana started to tell us that the word Aljube derives from the Arab and means prison. The building was built in the 16th century and belonged to the Catholic Church. During the 19th century until the establishment of the Portuguese dictatorship, it was used as a female prison, mainly for prostitutes. After 1926, it was turned into prison for political prisoners.

On the floor 0, we visited the temporary exhibition The Portuguese prison photo project. This exhibition provides a look at seven contemporary Portuguese prisons.

We went up to first floor dedicated to the opposition to Salazar’s regime. Here we could see how people lived in underground to be able to fight against the regime. They had to change their names, their identities.

The visit to the second floor was, probably, the most shocking of the entire visit. Ana told us about the tortures that PIDE made to the political prisoners. The torture of sleep was the most common.

After the event we went to an esplanade in Miradouro de Santa Luzia.

Below, you can take a look at our photos.


We’ll celebrate the freedom and resistance to the oppression

On the last 18th of May, we celebrated the International Museum Day with several activities organized by museums in Lisbon. Our Portuguese language school doesn’t want to stay behind these celebrations which are so important to disclose the national heritage. Hereupon, get ready for our guided visit to Museu do Aljube on the 29th of May.

Indira Leão, our history teacher will accompany us. The guided visit is completely free and will be given in Portuguese by a museum guide. The visit will have a duration of 1h30.

Our Portuguese language school chose this specific museum due to its importance in the Portuguese History. Aljube is an Arabic word that means jail, and this museum during the dictatorship was used as a jail. Unfortunately, there aren’t so many places that show us this black past of the Portuguese History. The Museu do Aljube is the only museum that show us the atrocities of the Portuguese dictatorship. That’s why we think it’s so important to visit it.

The guided visit will explore the days lived by the Portuguese people during the dictatorship (1926-1974). The media were censored, people with different ideas of the regime were arrested, tortured and killed, and women were submitted to the men’s authority. The purpose of the guided visit is to give voice to the victims of dictatorship and fight against the forgetfulness of this past.

After the guided visit, we’ll go to a nice esplanade to have fun together!

Don’t miss this unique opportunity to learn about the Portuguese history while improving your Portuguese language skills!

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