Kai Wasson

Anthropological studies of rightwing activists groups in Japan and the United States

Research Focus:

I explore the politics of victimhood and redress relating to unresolved legacies from the Asia-Pacific War. Motivated by an interest in reconciliation, I am currently focusing on comfort women monuments being built across the United States and the political engagements among redress and anti-redress activists to understand the perceived stakes of historical debates and to consider whether reconciliation is a goal people are striving toward.

Academic History

B.A. Anthropology and Asian Studies, State University of New York (SUNY) at Buffalo

Honors Thesis: “Veneration and Vitriol: American Empire and the Conundrum of Yasukuni Shrine”


  • Dr. Sabine Fruhstuck
  • Dr. Ann-elise Lewallen
  • Dr. Kate McDonald

Teaching Experience

  • Fall 2015: JAPAN 63: Sociology of Japan, Silke Werth
  • Winter 2016: EALCS 4A: East Asian Traditions: Pre-Modern, Dr. Xiaorong Li and Dr. Katherine Saltzman-Li
  • Spring 2016: EALCS 114: Environment and Power in Japan, Dr. anne-elise lewallen


  • 2013: “The Power of Invisibility: American Empire in the Conundrum of Yasukuni Shrine.” The Princeton Journal of East Asian Studies, vol. 5 (Fall 2013): 171-204.