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seminars > spring 2013 schedule > seminar: Literature & Culture of 9/11


Honors Seminars Spring 2013

Literature & Culture of 9/11

HON 296 Sec:002  
3 hours  
GER Cat:
Interdisciplinary Perspectives; Humanities (Literature); Global Knowledge  
1500 - 1615  
Winston 00002  
Dr. James S. Mulholland
Assistant Professor of English
Restrictions: N/A  

Many claimed that "everything changed" after the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001. Does American literature and culture reflect this change? How have authors and artists represented and responded to those attacks and their aftermath? To answer these questions, we will create a broad vista on the years since the attacks. We will analyze novels, poetry, graphic narratives, memoirs, music, films, television, advertising, and civic memorials to situate the events of that day in context. We will use recent studies in literary criticism, philosophy, and history to develop a theoretical framework for our investigation. The questions we take up will use art, literature, architecture, and politics to understand 9/11 as an American and a world phenomenon.

I see this course as an experiment; it's multimedia and multidisciplinary approach is an attempt to organize the huge and still largely undifferentiated cultural response to the attacks of September 11th 2001. I look at our class as a part of that experiment-it is a hypothesis about we might think about the role of art and literature in response to such an acute (and significant) national and international event. Indeed, this course will ask us to theorize the whole idea that art has a role in the "response" to political and historical events, and require us to consider the role of the 9/11 attacks in shaping the twenty-first century world.