Teotónio de Souza

Teotónio R. de Souza (born 18 February 1947) is a Goan historian and the founder-director of the Goa-based Xavier Centre of Historical Research, at Alto Porvorim. Based in Portugal since 1995, Souza was Head and Chair,Department of History in the Universidade Lusófona de Humanidades e Tecnologias from 1999-2014. He has been a fellow of the Portuguese Academy of History since 1983, and of the Sociedade de Geografia de Lisboa since 2000.

Early background

Of Goan Catholic origin, Souza was born in the village of Moirá in the Bardez taluka of Goa. He belongs to the fifth vangodd (clan) of the village and is the 12th generation descendant of Shantappa Kamat, a Goud Saraswat Brahmin who became Diogo de Souza after his conversion to Christianity in 1618.

Souza was educated mostly in Goa during Portuguese colonial rule. He belonged to the Goa Jesuits for twenty-six years, and was a professed member of that religious order when he opted to leave with dispensation from the Holy See in 1995. He recovered Portuguese nationality in 1995 and was granted Overseas Citizenship of India (OCI) by the Government of India in 2007.

Historical career

Souza has written his PhD thesis, published as Medieval Goa (Delhi, Concept Publ. Co., 1979;First Portuguese edition: Lisboa, Ed. Estampa, 1994; 2nd updated English edition: Panaji, Goa 1556 + Broadway Book Centre, 2009) challenges the view that Portuguese rule in South Asia resulted in a period of golden rule in Goa in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. Sees “Golden Goa” as an expression popularised by art historians with reference to baroque church architecture of the early centuries of the Portuguese rule. He is the author and editor of many books and research papers. His partial memoirs are penned in a book titled Goa To Me (New Delhi, Concept,1994). A firm believer in the power of web since early 70s and defender of digitalization of historical sources, he founded in partnership with the Goan free-lance journalist Frederick Noronha the Goa-Research-Net in 1997 , initially in Goanet server, and since 2005 on Yahoogroups. It has also a popular Facebook version, but also an elite version since May 2017 at Mendeley’s

On completion of 60 years, Souza was felicitated with a festschrift edited by C.J. Borges, S.J. and M. N. Pearson, Metahistory: History questioning History, Lisboa, Nova Vega, 2007, pp. 606 containing personal tributes and 43 research papers contributed by historians and social scientists from the world over. The Lusophone University of Lisbon awarded him its Gold Medal of Merit on the same occasion in recognition of his research, teaching, and critical appreciation and promotion of Lusophony.

Teotónio de Souza continues to publish in Portuguese and in English on his favourite area of research related to colonial and post-colonial themes, with particular reference to Portuguese in Asia. His authority in this field has at times been hijacked by unseemly elements and without his knowledge or approval. Such is the case of an article entitled “The Goa Inquisition”, attributing its authorship to Dr. T.R. de Souza, on a website entitled Christianaggression, run seemingly by a US-based Hindu fundamentalist outfit. The article appeared there in 2005 and has not been removed despite protestations by Dr. T. R. de Souza, denouncing it as cyber-crime and as a case of stolen identity. The article has since been cited by other communal sites and even in the widely consulted Wikipedia Goa Inquisition. Its authorities have been requested to rectify the situation and remove the citation to the spurious source. Discussion on this abusive utilization with communal agenda can be consulted at the archive of Goanet forum in 2008.

Since November 2008, Teotónio R. de Souza has been a regular forthnightly columnist to the Goan daily HERALD with  which seeks to link Goa and Portugal, past and present. Since early 2012, he has written forthnightly OpEd columns for The Goan on Saturday , recently transformed into The Goan Everyday. He also writes to the Goan Observer . Many of his writings may be consulted online and at the, the online scientific repository of the Universidade Lusófona de Humanidades e Tecnologias, Lisboa.

Academic and research activities

Teotónio de Souza has retired from October 2014 as Cathedratic professor of the Universidade Lusófona de Humanidades e Tecnologias, after representing since 1996 the interests of History teaching and research on the Scientific and Pedagogic Councils of the Faculty of Social and Human Sciences, Education and Administration of the Universidade Lusófona as ex-officio member. While acting as coordinator / Director of the [MA and M.Phil courses in History], guided M.Phil and Ph.D research in Political Science and Diplomatic Relations, and directed a line of research related to «Colonial and Post-Colonial Societies and Memories» of CPES (Centro de Pesquisa e Estudos Sociais) of the Faculty of Social and Human Sciences, Universidade Lusófona, Lisboa.

He was Director-Editor of the Journal of ACSEL (Associação dos Cientistas Sociais do Espaço Lusófono) [CAMPUS SOCIAL] and continued to help as Chief-Editor of the Journal FLUXOS E RISCOS – Revista de Estudos Sociais, that published the research findings of CPES (Centre for Social Research and Studies). He was Member too of the Editorial Board of the Journal of Immigrant & Refugee Studies

His latest publication, entitled GOA: OUTGROWING POSTCOLONIALISM – Historical Explorations (1961-2014) is a cultural-historical analysis of the evolution of Goa since its Liberation till date. The book was published in 2014 through CreateSpace platform of Amazon as Goa outgrowing Post colonialism. (Source)

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