Institute of Archaeology


Jose Julian Garay-Vazquez

Jose Julian Garay-Vazquez

"From the earth to the plate": An archaeobotanical approach to cross-cultural interactions, adaptation strategies, and subsistence variations in the Longue Duré among pre-Colombian societies in Puerto Rico through the study of subsistence remains.

Julian Garay Vazquez portrait

Email: jose.vazquez.16@ucl.ac.uk
Section: Archaeological Sciences




"From the earth to the plate": Towards a more detailed understanding of Pan-Caribbean botanical culinary traditions an archaeobotanical investigation of macro botanical assemblages from pre-Colombian sites in Puerto Rico in the Longue Duré.

Archaeobotanical data from neotropical locations is scarce due to notions of poor preservation. More so, in locations where the past peoples' subsistence consisted on tuber crops which are scarcely identified from the archaeological record. My research focuses on the study of human-plant dynamics of pre-Columbian Puerto Rico through the analysis of archaeobotanical assemblages. The questions that guides this project fall within the themes of pathways to agriculture, foodways, and, use of indigenous knowledge to inform food sustainability initiatives. Preliminary results have shown that preservation of macro botanical remains is conditioned by a combination of recovery methods and sedimentary environment. Archaeobotanical remains of tuber fragments and, meal preparations have been noted and analysis is underway. Currently, materials from 10 archaeological sites spanning approximately 5,000 years are being accessed and future endeavours of fieldwork are underway.


    • B.A. Anthropology with emphasis in Archaeology, University of Puerto Rico, Río Piedras campus, Puerto Rico. 2015
    • MSc Environmental Archaeology, UCL 2017

    Garay-Vazquez, Jose J. (2019) The history of archaeobotanical research in Puerto Rico and notions of poor preservation of macro-remains. Presented at the Society for American Archaeology. Albuquerque, New Mexico.

    Garay-Vazquez, Jose J. (2018) "Tell me what you are eating, and I tell you who are you": An analysis of differences in Elite and Non-Elite Food Consumption in Gamo Society During Historical Times (Ethiopian south west Highlands). Presented at the Society for American Archaeology. Washington D.C., Maryland.

    Garay-Vazquez, Jose J.; Rivera-Collazo, Isabel C. (2016) Subsistence and the resilience of coastal habitats in the Longue durée. Presented at the Society for American Archaeology. Orlando, Florida.

    Garay-Vazquez, Jose J. (2015) Into the mind of an undergrad: personal experience, training and

    archaeology. Presented at the Society for American Archaeology. San Francisco, California.

    Garay-Vazquez, Jose J. (2014) Descubriendo Nuestras Raíces y Ciudadano Científico [Unearthing our roots and Citizens science]. Presented in the 3r. Congreso Universitario de Antropología, Sociología, e Historia: Miradas Holísticas del Contexto Social. The University of Puerto Rico, Río Piedras campus.

    Garay-Vazquez, Jose J. (2014) La Arqueología: Investigación, Impacto y Conservación Ambiental

    [Archaeology: Research, Impact and Environmental Conservation]. presented in the 2do. Congreso de Áreas Naturales Protegidas. The Conservatorio de Música de Puerto Rico: Sala Jesús Maria Sanromá.