The Community of Portuguese Language Countries (CPLP) and the Luso-African identity


  • Joanna Mormul Jagiellonian University in Kraków



CPLP, Luso-Africa, Lusophony, Portuguese language, international cooperation, cultural identity


The article aims at searching for the correlation between the Luso-African identity, understood as a form of cultural identity based on the concept of Lusophony, and The Community of Portuguese Language Countries (CPLP), an international organisation that brings together countries whose official language is Portuguese. The CPLP is considered as an institutional emanation of the idea of Lusophony. However, for almost 25 years since its creation it still receives a lot of criticism. Despite the multiplicity of initiatives that it proposed, for a long time it seemed that the CPLP did not really move beyond the concept phase. Furthermore, until recently the organisation has focused mainly on cultural and political cooperation, leaving behind its enormous economic possibilities and provoking questions about an untapped potential of the CPLP. The paper attempts to reflect on the hypothesis that the limited capacities of the Community of Portuguese Language Countries regarding the African continent are, at least partially, related to the problem with Luso-African identity. The considerations presented in the article are based on the critical reading of the literature of the subject, qualitative analysis of the already existing data (official documents and the press, available statistics), as well as the author’s reflections drawn from observations, interviews and informal talks conducted during field research in Mozambique (2015) and Guinea-Bissau (2016), along with multiple study visits to Portugal (2011-2016), while realizing the research project devoted to the problem of state dysfunctionality in the Lusophone Africa.


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Author Biography

Joanna Mormul, Jagiellonian University in Kraków

Ph.D., is an assistant professor at the Institute of Political Science and International Relations of the Jagiellonian University in Kraków, Secretary of the Jagiellonian Research Center for African Studies. Her research interests focus on the problem of dysfunctional states, socio-political transformations in post-conflict societies, regional separatisms and civil society in developing countries. She has conducted field research in various Sub-Saharan and Northern African countries. Over the years 2014-2017 she realized her own research project devoted to state dysfunctionality in Lusophone Africa, financed by National Science Center (Narodowe Centrum Nauki), Poland.


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How to Cite

Mormul, Joanna. 2021. “The Community of Portuguese Language Countries (CPLP) and the Luso-African Identity”. Politeja 17 (5(68):191-213.




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