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What Remains: Bringing America’s Missing Home from the Vietnam War

In What Remains, winner of the 2020 Victor Turner Prize for Ethnographic Writing, anthropologist Sarah Wagner explores the U.S. military’s efforts to account for its missing service members of the Vietnam War. She argues that advances in forensic science have changed the way the nation remembers the war’s Missing In Action, whereby the return of remains —“homecomings”—entwine the living with the dead in the project of national belonging enacted on local terms.

Date & Time

Monday
Nov. 30, 2020
4:00pm – 5:30pm ET

Location

Zoom Webinar
This event will be webcast live

What Remains: Bringing America’s Missing Home from the Vietnam War

Click here to register for the webinar. Space in the Zoom webinar is available on a first-come first-serve basis and fills up very quickly, if you are unable to join the session or receive an error message, you can still watch on this page or on the NHC's Facebook Page once the event begins.

In What Remains, winner of the 2020 Victor Turner Prize for Ethnographic Writing, anthropologist Sarah Wagner explores the U.S. military’s efforts to account for its missing service members of the Vietnam War. She argues that advances in forensic science have changed the way the nation remembers the war’s Missing In Action, whereby the return of remains —“homecomings”—entwine the living with the dead in the project of national belonging enacted on local terms.

Sarah Wagner is an Associate Professor of Anthropology at George Washington University. She is the author of To Know Where He Lies: DNA Technology and the Search for Srebrenica’s Missing (University of California Press, 2008), and co-author with Thomas Matyók of “Monumental Change: The Shifting Politics of Obligation at the Tomb of the Unknowns,” History & Memory (2018). Her research focuses on post-conflict societies, memory, national identity, and forensic science applied in the wake of war.

The Washington History Seminar is co-chaired by Eric Arnesen (George Washington University and the National History Center) and Christian Ostermann (Woodrow Wilson Center) and is organized jointly by the National History Center of the American Historical Association and the Woodrow Wilson Center's History and Public Policy Program. It meets weekly during the academic year. The seminar thanks its anonymous individual donors and institutional partners (the George Washington University History Department and the Lepage Center for History in the Public Interest) for their continued support.


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History and Public Policy Program

The History and Public Policy Program uses history to improve understanding of important global dynamics, trends in international relations, and American foreign policy.  Read more