photographJosé Machado Pais (Lisbon): Professionalizing the creative energy of youth

organised by the Centre for Portuguese Language - Camões Institute

Location: Old Library Building, Beehive 2.20
Time/Date: 14th November 2011, 16:00 - 17:30

On 14th November 2011, Professor José Machado Pais,  senior researcher at the Social Sciences Institute of the University of Lisbon and specialist in youth cultures, is visiting the School of Modern Lanuages.

In the morning, he is going to speak on "Expresiones Culturales Juveniles" in the Youth Cultures seminar by Patricia Oliart.

In the afternoon, he will give a talk in English "Professionalizing the creative energy of youth" which is open to everybody: 4-5.30pm Research Beehive -:  Organisation: Centre for Portuguese Language - Camões Institute


In many youth cultures, so often misunderstood, we find the flow of a creative energy. Following a number of young artists seeking a professional outlet for their creativity led us to question the balance between personal realization and economic survival, through a case study based on a sample of young comic strip artists. What we found was that creativity, prized and cultivated as an expression of subjectivity, moves sideways from the domain of vocation to that of profession. The difficulties experienced by certain young people in finding work in their chosen field was no obstacle to the sideways motion, typical of artistic production, building unsuspected bridges between vocation and profession, even when they eventually left the former behind. It is this oblique motion that allows young people to professionalize their creativity and to import creativity into their profession, in a scenario dominated by values of autonomy, improvisation, expertise, expressivity, experimentation and playfulness. 

About the speaker 

Professor José Machado Pais graduated with a degree in Economics in 1977 and gained his PhD in Sociology at the Lisbon University Institute in 1991. He is Senior Researcher at the Institute of Social Sciences (University of Lisbon) and teaches at the Lisbon University Institute. He has been Visiting Professor at several universities in South America and Europe. He was Coordinator of the Portuguese Youth Watch-Scheme (1987-2009) and Director of the Observatory of Cultural Activities (2007-9). He was also Editor of 'Análise Social' and Director of 'Imprensa de Ciências Sociais'.  In 2003 he was awarded the Gulbenkian Science Prize. He is currently Deputy Director of the Institute of Social Sciences. Having lead a number of projects in the fields of culture, everyday life, youth, religion, sexuality, social structures, social theories and methodologies, he recently produced a documentary on the Fado de Quissamã (Brazil) entitled "Fado is the best..." He has published more than 20 books in Portugal, Brazil and Spain 

Published: 21st September 2011