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Media & Jornalismo

versão impressa ISSN 1645-5681versão On-line ISSN 2183-5462


GOMES, Joaquim Cardoso. Recordings of censors’phone calls - a political issue of Marcelism. Media & Jornalismo [online]. 2019, vol.19, n.35, pp.37-50. ISSN 1645-5681.

Discovered a few days after the revolution of April 25 in the Oporto Censorship Commission/Prior Examination, recordings of phone calls from press censors were made known only by a daily newspaper, República, which considered them “precious recordings”, a single document in the Iberian dictatorships, however they remained practically unknown until they were put online by RTP Archive in 2017. In this article the content of the recordings is analysed, identifying the moment of its production between February and April of 1974, as well as the intervenients in the censorship commissions in Lisbon and Oporto. We followed the various moments of the tape recording since the routine of the censorship operation in February 1974 to the start of the Revolution on April 25, in which the recording impressively illustrates the last hours of a four decades old censorship apparatus. Focusing on the work of the Censorship Commission of Oporto and its political staff is the decision to install tape recorders in the Oporto (1970) and Coimbra (1971) Commissions, the need to control communication between the censorship and the newspapers, and communication between commissions in the three cities where the country’s main dailies were published. Magnetic recording thus appears in Marcelism as an additional mechanism of control at a time when the old model of prior censorship had difficulty responding to the new challenges of the press. In the case of Oporto the political position of the three historical newspapers in relation to the regime was characterised, especially in the post-war period, by a distance which, since the 1960’s, has led to a more rigorous scrutiny by censorship. The internal problems of the Oporto Commission, the differences in criteria between Lisbon and Oporto Commissions, and the risk of slips in the reading of galley proofs, especially in areas sensitive to the regime such as the colonial war, are also appreciated.

Palavras-chave : New State; marcelism; prior censorship; recordings; press.

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