Carmen Laguer Diaz
Assistant Professor, Anthropology
Please call me: Carmen, Dr./Prof. Laguer Díaz (or any combination of the previous). My pronouns are she/her & ella.
Where I came from: I was born and raised on the island of Puerto Rico, in the Caribbean. It was there that I discovered my love for the past, and the dirt. It was also there that I realized I wanted to learn why people behaved the way that they do. So, when it was time to decide what I wanted to do for the rest of my life anthropology was the obvious choice.
I graduated from the University of Puerto Rico with a BA in Anthropology, and from the University of Florida with a MA and PhD in Anthropology (specialization in Archaeology and a certificate in Latin American Studies).
Where I am: Currently, I am co-director of the Proyecto Arqueológico del Suroeste (PASO), in which we do archaeological fieldwork for the Fish and Wildlife Service and the Departamento de Recursos Naturales in southwest Puerto Rico to understand human interaction with the environment. Part of the project consists of archival and oral histories as well as specifically looking at human reaction to natural events, such as droughts and hurricanes. Alongside the Samuel Proctor Oral History Project, I have compiled a variety of oral histories of Puerto Ricans displaced by Hurricane Maria in Florida, as well as Puerto Ricans who remained on the island.
Interests: In addition to anthropology, my interests include coffee, sci-fi and space operas: Farscape, Star Wars, Star Trek, Battlestar Galactica, Stargate (no, aliens did not build the pyramids), as well as Doctor Who. To quote The Offspring “music soothes even the savage beasts”, and chances are that if I am not listening to music, I am singing (badly).
Talk to me about: Anything related to the class, anthropology, archaeology, being black Latine/x, Zora Neale Hurston, intersectionality, feminist theory, queer theory, identity theory, critical race theory, why am I so into theories, why are people weird, PC gaming, music and sci-fi. I am new to California, and very excited to learn about people’s go-to places and things to do!
Carmen Laguer Díaz, Ph.D., RPA
she, her, ella