What are the culture norms in Portugal?


Portuguese culture has been strongly influenced by the dominance of the Catholic Church and traditional Christian values.

This influence is still reflected in modern Portuguese society. The Portuguese people are traditional and conservative. They do not easily accept innovation and radical changes, both in the community and in the family.

Life in Portugal revolves around the family and even in the 21st century, some traditions and lifestyles remain unchanged, especially in rural areas. Portugal has a rich historical past and traces from Roman, Christian, Moorish and Gothic times can be found throughout the country. Their culture is a very interesting but also versatile culture.

The Portuguese are very proud of the culture of the Fado and the folk dances. Beautiful monuments built in typical Portuguese manuel style, religion, bullfighting and cultural cities complete this.

In Portugal, the family is the basis of the social structure. Individuals derive a social network and help from the family. For the Portuguese, family loyalty comes down to other social relationships, even to business.

Over the last few decades, Portugal has become less strict and informal with their etiquette and rules, but general courtesy schemes are still being used.

A higher class and / or educated women still have the title Dona, often linked to a given name such as in "Dona Anastasia".

In less formal environments, men who know each other will hug and women will greet each other with a kiss on both cheeks. Strangers generally greet each other with a handshake. Urban Portuguese of the middle and upper classes dress quite formally and there is a strong sense of decency about appropriate public clothing.

written by ILBE staff

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