Jane Teresa Perez


Miami, Florida


B.A. in Political Science & History, Magna Cum Laude at the University of Florida


Homophobia & Heterosexism, Misogyny & Racism, Intersectionality, Democracy & Progress, Revolutions, Global Governance


As a second-generation Cuban, I have always had an interest in revolutions-- the causes and the consequences. But it wasn't until my own Junior Fellowship opportunity with Dr. Saskia van Wees on global governance that I realized I could begin my own research on these issues at an undergraduate level. At the time, I was inspired by the autobiography of Reinaldo Arenas, "Before Night Falls," that addressed the challenges of queer Cubans who did not conform to the communist regime and especially those who tried to speak out against the dictatorship. While there was research done on homophobia in Cuba, I realized the fellow former revolutionary country of Grenada also had an issue of homophobia but without any academic research being done on the issue. It was then that I decided to dive into the history and politics of the island in order to find the root of homophobia and anti-LGBTQ legislation in a country that was once progressive and now a democracy. After I finished my undergraduate thesis, I knew I wanted to expand my thesis across the Caribbean and Latin America in order to find solutions to the rampant homophobia that persists in the 21st century.