Lili Milanes

llmi224's picture
  • Anthropology
  • Latin American, Caribbean, and Latino Studies
  • Social Theory
Research Interests:

Bachelor's of Science in Anthropology from the University of Central Florida


As a child of Cuban immigrant families, born and raised in Florida I have been surrounded by immigrant communities throughout most of my life. I have always been drawn to the field of health, and after more inquiry of the various health profession options, I learned about medical anthropology. I knew I wanted to work and learn from communities and local residents, to combat the health inequities people face. This opportunity was made possible in 2012 when I moved to Lexington and began my doctoral studies at the University of Kentucky. In 2015 upon completing coursework requirements I moved to Chicago to conduct my community engaged dissertation research, where I remain today. Community-engaged approaches to health, research and teaching drive my future work with people who are often forgotten or left without a seat at the table. 


My interest in health inequalities that disproportionately affect marginalized communities is synthesized by my dissertation topic. My dissertation research, with Latin@ Chicagoans, focuses on the ways residents navigate and engage health in the face of chronic conditions (especially diabetes, hypertension, and hyperlipidemia). As a medical anthropologist, it is especially important to be able to translate cross-cultural aspects of health. By paying attention to cultural specifics we can gain a better awareness of the day-to-day reality people face, and as a result, better understand what these realities mean for their overall health. These various narratives of health can shed light on how we as researchers can improve the way we treat conditions throughout the world.  My focus on the growing Latin@ community and the impending epidemic of metabolic syndrome is an effort to improve the national and international dialogue on healthcare. 

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