This article explores some aspects of the historical development of the studies of popular culture in Portugal. It uses as its counterpoint the Brazilian case, where a similar tradition gave rise to the discipline of Folklore, which remained distinct from Anthropology. In Portugal, despite its folklorist beginnings, the interest on popular cultures was able to expand to other domains, such as ... [Show full abstract] folk art, material culture, or the social organization of peasant communities. Such a process was accompanied by a disciplinary definition of the study of popular cultures as belonging to the fields of Ethnography, Ethnology and Cultural Anthropology. Thus defined, the study of popular cultures was not only important in the processes of institutionalization of Anthropology in Portugal, but has also had an impact on more recent developments in Portuguese Anthropology.