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The Politics of Consolation – Memory and the Meaning of September 11 | Oxford Scholarship Online
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The Politics of Consolation: Memory and the Meaning of September 11

Christina Simko

Abstract

What meaning can be found in calamity and suffering? This question is in some sense perennial, reverberating through the canons of theology, philosophy, and literature. Today, this book reveals, it is also a significant part of American political leadership. Faced with uncertainty, shock, or despair, Americans frequently look to political leaders for symbolic and existential guidance, for narratives that bring meaning to the confrontation with suffering, loss, and finitude. Politicians, in turn, increasingly recognize consolation as a cultural expectation, and they often work hard to fulfill i ... More

Keywords: September 11, consolation, commemoration, political leadership, suffering, World Trade Center

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2015 Print ISBN-13: 9780199381784
Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: August 2015 DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199381784.001.0001

Authors

Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Christina Simko, author
Dietrich School of Arts and Sciences Postdoctoral Fellow, University of Pittsburgh