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The Portuguese Communist Party: Perestroika and its Aftermath

  • Maria Teresa Patrício
  • Alan David Stoleroff

Abstract

Until very recently the Portuguese Communist Party (PCP) appeared to be a bastion of communist orthodoxy modelled along Soviet lines. Indeed, as the only Western European communist party that had been a protagonist in a revolutionary struggle for power (1974–75) since the post-war recuperation of liberal democracy, the ideology and behaviour of the PCP still manifested characteristics that could fairly be labelled ‘Stalinist’. In the early 1980’s the PCP perceived itself as a revolutionary party and it conserved its unity through the effective operation of democratic centralism as it had been learned in the struggle against dictatorship. However, with the advent of glasnost and perestroika in the USSR, cracks became visible in the windows of the ‘party with glass walls’.1 Individual communist dissidents began to challenge the PCP’s enduring orthodoxy. With the overthrow of the East European ‘socialist’ regimes these fissures deepened and organised groups began to advocate the renovation of the party. The Portuguese Communist Party nevertheless disassociated itself from the crisis of communism and reaffirmed its Marxist-Leninist principles.

Keywords

Communist Party Central Committee Socialist Party Socialist Regime Minority Government 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

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Notes

  1. 1.
    Alvaro Cunhal, O Partido com paredes de vidro (Lisbon: Edicões Avante!, 1985).Google Scholar
  2. 3.
    PCP, XII Congresso PCP: Com o PCP por uma Democracia Avancada no Limiar do Seculo XXI (Lisbon: Edicões Avante!, 1989).Google Scholar
  3. 4.
    ‘Such a project requires a mixed economic organisation not dominated by the monopolies, with sectors of diversified property supported by the State and with its own dynamics, namely, an integrated and modernised State Enterprise Sector, playing a determinant role in the development of the productive forces; a private sector constituted by enterprises of varying dimension with significant support to the small and medium enterprises; collective units of production and cooperatives of the Agrarian Reform; production cooperatives, self-managed enterprises and family farms.’ Cunhal, in ibid., p. 43.Google Scholar
  4. 5.
    PCP, XII Congresso (1988), p. 29.Google Scholar
  5. 6.
    See Diário de Notícias, 17 November 1989, and Expresso, 17 February 1990.Google Scholar
  6. 8.
    Diário de Notícias, 2 January 1990.Google Scholar
  7. 9.
    See ‘10 notas sobre o INES’, Avante!, 1 February 1990.Google Scholar
  8. 10.
    Cunhal’s speech in Lisbon on the 69th anniversary of the PCP, Avante!, 13 March 1990.Google Scholar
  9. 11.
    Theses, PCP, 1990, pp. 9–10.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Palgrave Macmillan, a division of Macmillan Publishers Limited 1994

Authors and Affiliations

  • Maria Teresa Patrício
  • Alan David Stoleroff

There are no affiliations available

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