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Scope Note

This guide is:

  • for faculty and students
  • for resources at University of Wisconsin - Madison Libraries
  • about Lusophone culture and literature
  • includes both print and electronic sources 
  • selective in nature and not intended to be a comprehensive list on the subject

Guide Created by...

This Subject Guide was created by Alyson Williams, Andrew Walsh and Paloma Celis Carbajal.  Special thanks to Professors Severino Albuquerque and Ellen Sapega for their input on this guide.


Lusophone is a word that means "Portuguese-Speaking."  Luso refers to a tribe of people present in the western part of the Iberian Peninsula, Lusitani, during the centuries preceding the Common era (1).

The word is applied to all countries where Portuguese is spoken.  The Lusophone countries are Portugal, Brazil, Angola, Cape Verde, Equatorial Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Mozambique, East Timor, Goa, and Macau.  This guide focuses on Brazil and Portugal, Lusophone Africa to a lesser extent, and Lusophone Asia even less.  The resources highlighted in this guide reflect the collection here at UW-Madison.

The most important manuscript map surviving from the early Age of Discovery, the Cantino World Map is named for Alberto Cantino, an Italian diplomatic agent in Lisbon who obtained it in 1502 for the Duke of Ferrara. It incorporates extensive new geographical information based on four series of voyages: Columbus to the Caribbean, Pedro Álvares Cabral to Brazil, Vasco de Gama followed by Cabral to eastern Africa and India, and the brothers Corte-Real to Greenland and Newfoundland. Except for Columbus, all had sailed under the Portuguese flag.  Map from Wikipedia Commons.


1.Simon J. Keay  "Lusitania"   The Oxford Classical Dictionary. Ed. Simon Hornblower and Anthony Spawforth. Oxford University Press 2009. Oxford Reference Online. Oxford University Press.  University of Wisconsin - Madison.  21 April 2010  <>

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