Global revolutions in the words expressed by Paul VI to the UN General Assembly: how the pontiff’s concerns and appeals were reinterpreted and retransmitted in translated news reports

Activity: Talk or presentationOral presentation


In October 1965, Pope Paul VI made History as the very first Catholic pontiff visiting the United Nations headquarters, in New York. In light of the Second Vatican Council, gathered at the time in Rome, he manifested both his and the Council’s concerns about the global revolutions that were shaping the world - namely, the wars of independence happening in Africa, the development of nuclear weapons by the two superpowers US and URSS, the civil rights movements, the dichotomy between the developed and the undeveloped world, among many others.
The paper aimed at illustrating how that event was portrayed by the Portuguese press to a readership with a strong Catholic tradition, yet subjected at the time to press censorship measures imposed by António de Oliveira Salazar’s regime. In particular, it tried to identify differences between the Pope’s official speech and the news articles published in the press, hoping to disclose what kind of ideological influence would have been more determinant: the frames settled by the State (thus, a political ideology) or the journalists' perspective about the Pope's official visit and arguments (a social and cultural ideology)? To such a goal, a distinction was established between Portuguese newspapers pro and against the regime. Ultimately, it was an historical work that wished to contribute to a clarification of whether the politics of Estado Novo helped (or not) promoting the ideals that were emerging from the Second Council through the press or, on the contrary, the conservativeness of the Portuguese regime led censors to prevent such new approaches of the Church from being spread among the masses.
Period4 Mar 2019
Event titleEuropean Academy of Religion 2019
Event typeConference
LocationBologna, ItalyShow on map


  • Popes & Revolutions
  • Pope Paul VI
  • Second Vatican Council
  • Estado Novo
  • Diário de Notícias
  • Diário de Lisboa
  • O Primeiro de Janeiro
  • Novidades
  • Press censorship