May 28, 2020

Immersed in Guyana

Professor Laura Mentore takes students on the trip of a lifetime.

Radio Show Features UMW Anthropology Professor

Jason James, associate professor of anthropology at the University of Mary Washington, discusses the cultural struggles that persist in post-Nazi Germany during an interview scheduled to air on the “With Good Reason” public radio program. The show, “After the Berlin Wall Came Down,” will air beginning Saturday, Dec. 1.

Jason James

The program will focus on James’ argument that “there are still divisions within German culture – between the ‘good’ former West Germans and the ‘bad’ former East Germans – and that both sides struggle with a problematic past that includes Nazi and Fascist associations.”

James is an expert in nationalism, ethnic identity, Germany and East Germany, heritage preservation movements, tourism and collective memory and commemoration of the past.

James earned master’s and doctoral degrees in anthropology from the University of California, San Diego, after receiving a bachelor’s in philosophy and political science from Boston University. His two years of dissertation research in eastern Germany focused on the symbolic and political dimensions of conflicts over urban redevelopment and historic preservation.

“With Good Reason” airs weekly in Fredericksburg on Sundays from 1-2 p.m. on Radio IQ 88.3 Digital. To listen from outside of the Fredericksburg area, a complete list of air times and links to corresponding radio stations can be found at

“With Good Reason” is the only statewide public radio program in Virginia. It hosts scholars from Virginia’s public colleges and universities who discuss the latest in research, pressing social issues and the curious and whimsical. “With Good Reason” is produced for the Virginia Higher Education Broadcasting Consortium by the Virginia Foundation for the Humanities and is broadcast in partnership with public radio stations in Virginia and Washington, D.C.

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News release prepared by: Charlotte Rodina

Jason James Publishes Book on Eastern Germany

Palgrave-Macmillan recently published “Preservation and National Belonging in Eastern Germany: Heritage Fetishism and Redeeming Germanness,” by Jason James, associate professor of anthropology.  The book explores the ways in which everyday citizens grapple with a difficult past through heritage.  It seeks to shed new light on the everyday politics of heritage and memory by highlighting the dynamics of longing, fantasy, fetishism, and local performance.

Eric Bonds Publishes Research Article

Eric Bonds

Eric Bonds, assistant professor of sociology and anthropology, recently published an article, entitled “Indirect Violence and Legitimation: Torture, Surrogacy, and the U.S. War on Terror” in the journal Societies Without Borders: Human Rights and the Social Sciences.  The article uses data from the Wikileaks “Iraq War Logs” to document the extent of torture practiced by the Iraqi state during the years of the U.S. occupation.  In the article, Bonds argues that the U.S. shares responsibility for this torture, despite official efforts to create distance from this violence and deflect blame.  The article can be downloaded at:

A Bigger Impact

The night before graduation, Laura Allan got a life-changing phone call. Allan, a 2012 UMW graduate, had been accepted to the competitive DC Teaching Fellows program. Less than one month later, she arrived in Washington, D.C., to start an intensive eight-week training session. DC Teaching Fellows, a partnership between District of Columbia Public Schools and [...]