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Brazil and Angola: From the decolonisation war to independence (1961-1975)

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posted on 2022-10-16, 22:07 authored by Icaro de Oliveira Rosa

The purpose of this thesis is to investigate how Brazil dealt with the decolonisation war in Angola (1961-1974) and examine the reasons for Brazil’s decision to recognise Angola’s independence in 1975. This thesis uses international history’s method and relies on primary and secondary sources to investigate its subjects.  This thesis is composed of four main chapters, each of them dealing with different aspects of the research. Chapter 1 comprises a literature review and it is subdivided into three parts. Part 1 describes the objectives and the existing literature regarding this period. Part 2 explains the international history’s method, its evolution and definitions. Part 3 deals with the research structure and explains how the international history’s method is employed.  Chapter 2 examines Jânio Quadros (1961-1961) and João Goulart’s (1961-1964) foreign policy and is also subdivided into three parts. Part 1 briefly describes the historical evolution of Angola’s and Brazil’s relationship until the 1960s. Part 2 deals with the definition of the Independent Foreign Policy, and how Brazil dealt with the African and decolonisation strategy. Part 3 addresses the country’s stance during this period.  Chapter 3 focusses on the period from the military coup in March 1964 until the end of Costa e Silva’s government in 1969. It is subdivided into two main parts. Part 1 concentrates on the country’s shift from an ambiguous stance to the backing of Portugal. Part 2 addresses Costa e Silva’s presidency and the maintenance of the country’s support to Lisbon.  Lastly, Chapter 4 concentrates on the period from 1969 until November 1975. It is also subdivided into two main parts. Part 1 cover Médici’s presidency and Brazil’s tacit support to Portugal. Part 2 concentrates on Geisel’s presidency and the shift of the country’s stance.  The results of these analyses reveal that from 1961 to 1964 Brazil took an ambiguous position towards Angolan decolonisation, and from 1964 until the last months of 1974 it supported Portugal’s claims over Angola. Ultimately, the research shows that because of strategic and economic interests, together with the political pressure from Africans and Arabs, that Brazil was pushed to support Angolan decolonisation and independence in November 1975.


Table of Contents

Chapter 1. Literature Review: Brazil and Angolan independence (1961–1975): an international history -- Chapter 2. Brazilian ambiguity towards Angola’s decolonisation (1961–1964) -- Chapter 3. The Military Dictatorship and the support of Portugal (1964-1969) -- Chapter 4. From the support of Portugal to Angola’s independence (1969-1975) -- Conclusion -- Bibliography


Submitted in fulfilment of the requirements for the degree of Master of Research

Awarding Institution

Macquarie University

Degree Type

Thesis MRes


Thesis (MRes), Macquarie University, Faculty of Arts, Department of Modern History, Politics and International Relations, 2021

Department, Centre or School

Department of Modern History, Politics and International Relations

Year of Award


Principal Supervisor

Noah Bassil


Copyright: The Author Copyright disclaimer:




Brazil Angola


78 pages

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