Mythical spaces in Coimbra, the student republics are houses that originated in the 14th century. These are houses where students from several universities live with their families. They gained fame and traditions of their own over the centuries. In the 1960s, when Europe abounded in student struggles and democratic reforms, the Republics of Coimbra took a leading role in national politics. They defended democracy as much as freedom. A republic stands out from the other student houses for its objective of, well beyond gaining mastery of any matter, learning “how to live", "how to do", and "how to say". This all amidst the bohemian life and the socializing that happens and inevitably awakens debate and reflection about more complex topics. In Coimbra, there are currently more than two dozen Republics in operation, with almost all of them grouped in the Council of Republics (CR), which meets at the request of any of the houses that compose it. The decision-making goes forward by unanimity. When setting up the republic, it is decided whether the republic accepts any kind of applications or only students from a specific university or college. There are republics that give preference to men, women or displaced persons. However, this is not mandatory for admission. After being accepted by vote, the new resident stays for some time for an entry experience, during which he or she is given the title of Commoner, Candidate, or others depending on the House. Later another vote is held to be eventually accepted as one of the Republic, that is, a permanent resident." The work I propose to do is about the oldest and most traditional republic (s) of Coimbra. To portray their cultural wealth and, above all, their daily lives and the way they live in the city of which they are a part. The objective is to identify the Republics that still exist in the City of Coimbra and what is most genuine about them. What is their role in the academic life of students in Coimbra and what will they represent for the student community. This work would be for an academic year, and documented in stages. The stories that happen inside. The socialization promoted by them. A real and dignified image from the inside out as if I were a resident student myself. It would be like living the student life. This project will be developed in several phases throughout a one year period. I will attempt to be a sort of resident, even if temporary. At the time of first year student enrollment, and also during exams, and academic festivities. Of interest will be the time of students’ enrollment in university as well as all their surroundings.
A ESTAÇÃO IMAGEM, com o apoio da Câmara Municipal de Coimbra, atribui uma bolsa anual destinada à realização de um projecto documental sobre a região. O trabalho é publicado em livro e divulgado através de uma exposição.