Contents: Introduction. Part I Charity and Poor Relief in Portugal at the Dawn of the Early Modern Period: The Organisation and Consolidation of Crown Authority: Social and political contexts; 'For the benefit of the body': hospital and health care reform; Epidemic control; The foundation of the misericordias; The organisation of the welfare services; The funding of poor relief. Part II Institutions as Social Actors Mediating between Society, the Authorities and Individuals: Poor relief in an institutional context; The movement to found confinement institutions; The population of female recolhimentos: 'wives, nuns and prostitutes'; Hospitals and their users; Prisons and misericordias; Conclusion; Manuscript sources; Printed sources; Bibliography; Index.
Laurinda Abreu is Professor of History at the University of Evora, Portugal. She is director of the University of Evora's Erasmus Mundus PhD, PhoenixJDP - Dynamics of Health and Welfare. She was the coordinator (2001-09) of the Phoenix TN - European Thematic Network on Health and Social Welfare Policy, and President (2011-13) of the European Association for the History of Medicine and Health. Her recent publications include a co-edited book with S. Sheard, (eds), Hospital Life: Theory and Practice from the Medieval to the Modern; and Pina Manique: um reformador no Portugal das Luzes.