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Zachary La Rock

Graduate Student Affiliate


Zachary La Rock

Zachary La Rock is a Ph.D. candidate in history, anthropology, science, technology, and society (HASTS) at MIT. He studies the social and environmental repercussions of monocrop agriculture in southern Europe. His ethnographic research is based in Puglia, Italy, where he follows polyvalent efforts to mitigate Xylella fastidiosa, a pathogenic bacterium that has critically hampered Italian olive production. In this project, La Rock asks how agricultural technique, migrant labor, and supranational political economy are contested and re-tooled in the epidemic’s aftermath. In 2023-2024, this research is supported by a Dissertation Fieldwork Grant from the Wenner-Gren Foundation and the John Lyons Fellowship from MIT’s Office of Graduate Education.

La Rock completed an A.M. in social sciences at the University of Chicago. He has also been a visiting student at the University of Bologna and the University of Florence.


  • Ph.D. Candidate in History, Anthropology, Science, Technology and Society (HASTS), MIT
  • Graduate Student Affiliate, Minda de Gunzburg Center for European Studies, Harvard University