Erica Caple James

Professor of Medical Anthropology and Urban Studies

Erica James is the Professor of Medical Anthropology and Urban Studies. Her work is focused on violence and trauma; philanthropy, humanitarianism, and charity; human rights, democratization, and postconflict transition processes; race, gender, and culture; and religion and healing. Erica's first book, Democratic Insecurities: Violence, Trauma, and Intervention in Haiti (University of California Press 2010), documents the psychosocial experience of Haitian torture survivors targeted during the 1991-94 coup period and analyzes the politics of humanitarian assistance in "post-conflict" nations making the transition to democracy. Her second major book project, Wounds of Charity: Haitian Immigrants and Corporate Catholicism in Boston, analyzes the "biopolitics of charity" at a "faith-based" organization serving Haitian immigrants and refugees that is funded through Catholic Charities. The project was supported by funding from the NIH Health Disparities Research Program. Her third project, Governing Gifts: Law, Risk, and the "War on Terror", continues this focus on the politics of charity by tracing the impact of U.S. anti-terrorism financing laws and practices on both faith-based and secular NGOs in the United States.