Universiteit Leiden

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Introducing: Maria Pereira Bastião

Maria started as a team-member in one of dr. Catia Antunes' research projects in December 2014 as Early Stage Researcher of the Marie Curie – ITN Project ForSEAdiscovery on ‘Portuguese forest resources and timber supply in the Early Modern period’.

Construction processes

Originally I am from Ílhavo in the center-north coast of Portugal. As a student I have lived in Lisbon for several years. 

For my MA dissertation entitled  Between the Island and the mainland: construction processes of the coast opposite Mozambique Island (c. 1763 - 1802), I studied the construction processes of the mainland opposite Mozambique Island in a context of population growth, intensification of the slave trade, strengthening of the agricultural activity and, in general, of its affirmation as the capital of the Captaincy of Mozambique. 

Firstly, I assessed the role played by trade and agriculture in the territorialization of Portuguese colonization and the resistance opposed by African populations to this territorialization. Secondly, I discussed the form under which these lands were incorporated into the Portuguese Monarchy, as well as the legal regime that framed their possession and ownership and the protagonists of these processes. This research was part of the FCT project  Lands Over Seas: Property Rights in the Early Modern Portuguese Empire (ISCTE-IUL) where I worked as a research fellow between 2011 and 2013. 

As a research fellow I also worked in two other projects:  Represent and Act. Mozambique and the Portuguese in the Old Regime (IICT), from January to November 2009, and  Lower nobility and ‘nobreza da terra’ in the formation of the Empire: the Atlantic archipelago (IICT), between 2009 and 2011. 

After my Master’s (while still in Lisbon) I studied during a year in the Inter-university Doctoral Programme in History (PhD scholarship funded by Fundação para a Ciência e Tecnologia) obtainaing an Advanced Studies Diploma. I did an undergraduate degree in History at the Universidade Nova de Lisboa (2009) and a master’s degree in Modern History and History of the Discoveries at the same University (2013).



I moved to Leiden in December 2014. At Leiden University I am a team-member of one of Catia Antunes’ ongoing projects, ForSEAdiscovery. Our contribution to the overall project will be an assessment of the intra-European wood trade from an entrepreneurial point of view, with specific emphasis on the wood trade, trade networks, shipping, insurance and entrepreneurial risk management surrounding the wood business.  

Besides topics related to trade networks, my broader research interests include the history of early-modern empires, particularly the history of the Portuguese Empire, and the history of Mozambique (1500-1900). 

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