Date Approved


Degree Type

Open Access Senior Honors Thesis

Department or School

Political Science

First Advisor

Dr. Richard Stahler-Sholk

Second Advisor

Jeffrey Bernstein


The relationship that Cuba has with the United States and global markets is shifting. This project will address the changing mindset of Cuban society in regards to the global markets and internal changes that have already drastically affected the island and will continue to do so. The structure of employment in Cuba has changed, allowing the private and self-employed sectors to grow, while attracting fewer and fewer state employees. Additional analysis of the changing economic system in Cuba shows the increase in foreign investment, both by states and private corporations. This increase affects both national sovereignty and the role of the Cuban state in enterprise, while its environmental and social impacts remain to be evaluated. I will investigate the values of Cuban society, which once tended to focus on social and economic rights, such as free, quality healthcare and education, and has since shifted to prioritize the tourist industry, foreign investment, and economic growth. I hypothesize that the increased engagement with global markets has the potential to bring explicit inequalities back into Cuban society, working in opposition to the founding ideals of the Cuban Revolution. This project will analyze how society will address and/or intervene against the inequality coming from the opening of the Cuban economic system to global markets.