“9/11 – An Image Which Continues to Shape Twenty-first-Century United States Culture”
Panel Chair: Clair A. Sheehan
If, as the current SAAS conference theme, “The Image and the Word”, suggests, “[o]ur 21st century stands under the aegis of the image” (Boletin 27), then the most significant guiding cultural image of twenty-first century America has to be the hauntingly repetitive film of domestic passenger jets colliding with the physical embodiment of twentieth-century US power, the Twin Towers of the World Trade Centre.
This panel for the SAAS Conference in 2019 is calling for submissions which explore how the now iconic image created by the 9/11 terrorist attacks impacted on American society. Papers that track the origins of this incident within late 20th-century literature, and/or consider the limitations these events placed on writers who chose to use their work to address the shifting socio-political climate of the early 21st century, will be especially welcomed. The panel is particularly interested in papers which imagine how popular authors, both within the United States and across the world, have chosen to revisit this historic episode and its aftermath, but it will give equal consideration to submissions which compare the manner in which these events were interpreted and depicted in literature and film.
Potential authors could include, but are in no way limited to, Don DeLillo, Jonathan Safran Foer, Joseph O’Neill, Phillip Roth, Paul Auster, William Gibson, Khaled Hosseini, Salman Rushdi, Art Spiegleman, Barbara Kingsolver, Amy Waldman, Mohsin Hamid, Jonathan Franzen and Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie.