Jessica Nogueira Varela

Year of Enrollment: 

Jessica Nogueira Varela is an Afro-Brazilian doctoral candidate in Comparative Gender Studies at the Central European University. In 2024, Jessica co-organized a one-day international symposium titled “Memory, Resistance and Colonial Hierarchies of Belonging (A)cross the Atlantic,” Dr. Jana Schmidt at Bard College (NY) The symposium discussed memory making, trauma, and resistance amid legacies of colonialism, building from her dissertation project. Jessica recently discussed German colonialism and black Germans’ fight for full citizenship from 1988 until 1921 through an article published by the Heinrich Böll Stiftung Institution in Prague Jessica was the 2022/23 recipient of the Sedgwick-Miller research fellowship at Cornell University. In 2023, she published a chapter titled "Autobiographical Flesh: Understanding Western Notions of Humanity through the Life and selected writings of Una Marson (1905–1965)," part of the edited collection Transforming Identities in Contemporary Europe, an open-access publication by Routledge, edited by Elisabeth L. Engebretsen and Mia Liinason. Jessica's previously published chapter titled "On the Shore Autoethnography and Reflexivity from a Black Feminist and Decolonial Perspective" is part of the edited volume Investigating Cultures of Equality, edited by Dorota Golańska, Aleksandra M. Różalska, and Suzanne Clisby; published by Routledge in 2022. Jessica graduated with a Master of Arts in 2020. She was a scholarship recipient for GEMMA – Erasmus Mundus + Master’s Degree in Gender and Women’s studies, graduating from the Central European University (CEU) and the University of Łódź, in Poland. Jessica has a teaching and a bachelor’s degree in Social Sciences from the Federal University of Ceará in Brazil. Jessica presented her work on the Third “Transforming Identities” Workshop organized by the Center for Gender Studies at the University of Stavanger in 2020, and the Decolonised Futures Conference 2021 organized by the St. Mary’s University Twickenham London, the RINGS 8th Annual Conference: Decolonising Feminisms at the University of KwaZulu-Natal, in Durban, South Africa 2022, and the Taking the Mic Conference at the Royal Academy of Speech and Drama in 2022. Jessica’s main fields of interest are Black Feminism, Decolonial Theory, Critical Race Studies, and Migration Studies.

Jessica is currently facilitating a free and open-to-the-public online reading group focusing on black women's poetry titled "Poetry for the Political Imagination." For more information, please, see: