Media Representations of September 11

Overview

The terrorist attacks on September 11th were unique and unprecedented in many ways, but the day will stand in our memories particularly because of our ability to watch the spectacle unfold. The blazing towers crumbling into dust, black smoke rising from the Pentagon, the unrecognizable remains of a fourth airplane in a quiet Pennsylvania field—these images, while disturbing and surreal, provide an important vehicle for interdisciplinary dialogue within media studies, showing us how horrific national disasters are...

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Overview

The terrorist attacks on September 11th were unique and unprecedented in many ways, but the day will stand in our memories particularly because of our ability to watch the spectacle unfold. The blazing towers crumbling into dust, black smoke rising from the Pentagon, the unrecognizable remains of a fourth airplane in a quiet Pennsylvania field—these images, while disturbing and surreal, provide an important vehicle for interdisciplinary dialogue within media studies, showing us how horrific national disasters are depicted in various media. Each contributor to this volume offers a fresh, engaging perspective on how the media transformed the 9/11 crisis into an ideological tour de force, examining why certain readings of these events were preferred, and discussing the significance of those preferred meanings.

Yet the contributors do not limit themselves to such standard news mediums such as newspapers and television. This anthology also covers comic books, songs, advertising, Web sites, and other non-traditional media outlets. Using a wide range of interdisciplinary approaches, contributors explore such topics as the amount of time dedicated to coverage, how the attacks were presented in the United States and abroad, how conflicting viewpoints were addressed, and how various artistic outlets dealt with the tragedy. Offering a unique approach to a topic of enduring interest and importance, this volume casts a new light on considerations of that day.

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Product Details

Meet the Author

STEVEN CHERMAK is Associate Professor in the Department of Criminal Justice at Indiana University. He is the author of Victims in the News: Crime and the American News Media (1995) and Searching for a Demon: The Media's Construction of the Militia Movement (2002).

FRANKIE Y. BAILEY is Associate Professor in the School of Criminal Justice, State University of New York, Albany. She is the author of Out of the Woodpile: Black Characters in Crime and Detective Fiction (Greenwood, 1991) and co-author of "Law Never Here": A Social History of African American Responses to Crime and Justice (Praeger, 1999).

MICHELLE BROWN is Assistant Professor in the Department of Sociology and Anthropology at Ohio University.

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Table of Contents

Series foreword
Ch. 1 Introduction 1
Pt. I Theoretical overview 15
Ch. 2 Holy war in the media : images of Jihad 17
Ch. 3 Between enemies and traitors : black press coverage of September 11 and the predicaments of national "others" 29
Ch. 4 Commodifying September 11 : advertising, myth, and hegemony 47
Ch. 5 Rituals of trauma : how the media fabricated September 11 67
Pt. II News texts and cultural resonance 83
Ch. 6 "America under attack" : CNN's verbal and visual framing of September 11 85
Ch. 7 Internet news representations of September 11 : archival impulse in the age of information 103
Ch. 8 Reporting, remembering, and reconstructing September 11, 2001 117
Ch. 9 Creating memories : exploring how narratives help define the memorialization of tragedy 135
Pt. III Popular narratives 159
Ch. 10 Step aside, superman ... this is a job for [captain] America! comic books and superheroes post September 11 161
Ch. 11 Of heroes and superheroes 175
Ch. 12 Narrative reconstruction at ground zero 187
Ch. 13 Agony and art : the songs of September 11 201
Notes 221
Index 251
About the contributors 255
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