Lisa M. Johnson

Lisa M. Johnson

Assistant Professor-in-Residence; Undergraduate Coordinator

WRI-A 126


Lisa Johnson is an anthropological archaeologist with a research focus on the archaeology of the Maya region. Her geographic focus is Mexico and Central America. She has carried out fieldwork in Belize and is currently part of a multi-university, international collaborative research project working at the Classic Maya city and UNESCO world heritage site, Palenque, Mexico. She has broad research interests exploring the lives and experiences of ancient Maya communities. She has researched topics such as the materiality of ritual, interrogating the unique relationships humans forge with materials and the material world in ritualized contexts. She includes a multi-disciplinary approach which integrates the material sciences alongside geoarchaeology in order to recover material traces of human-material entanglements in ritual. She has co-edited a book, Materializing Ritual Practices and published in Journal of Latin American Antiquity and Estudios de Cultura Maya on the topic. More recently, she has begun research investigating the diversity of city life in an ancient Maya city. Currently, she and her collaborators are conducting a large-scale neighborhood study of Palenque which integrates the diverse analytical specialties of the team with the goal of understanding the historical processes to the emergence of diverse urban forms and experiences in Mesoamerica.


Ph.D University of California, Berkeley (2018)

Research Interests

Materiality, Ritual, Archaeological Sciences, Archaeological Method and Theory, Archaeological Illustration, Micromorphology, Lithics, Central America and Mexico