Award Date

5-2010

Degree Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Arts in Communication Studies

Department

Communication

First Committee Member

Joseph Valenzano, Chair

Second Committee Member

Thomas Burkholder

Third Committee Member

David Henry

Graduate Faculty Representative

Anthony Ferri

Number of Pages

94

Abstract

This thesis examines the response of American popular culture to the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001. By utilizing the September 17, 2001 pre-game ceremony, held at Busch Stadium as a case study example, larger generalizations are made about the role popular culture played in the days following the tragedy. In order to analyze this example, I have developed heroic cultural nostalgia, a framework that combines elements of myth, nostalgia and national identity. Heroic cultural nostalgia provides an explanation of how popular culture plays a role in crisis response. The framework highlights the role of individuals with heroic characteristics in evoking nostalgia as a means of providing an escape from current conditions and as a reinforcement of American exceptionalism.

Keywords

Baseball; Missouri; Myth; Nationalism; Nostalgia; Popular culture; September 11 Terrorist Attacks; 2001; Saint Louis (Mo.)

Disciplines

American Popular Culture | American Studies | Critical and Cultural Studies | Cultural History | United States History

Language

English


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