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A Brief Note on Artists and the 9/11 Terrorist Attacks

some brief articles from Reason and Coyote Blog…


I would like to add one more successful artistic treatment of 9/11 — the Onion’s 9/11 issue. The issue was in its way as brave as Petit’s tightrope walk, as it came out when no one was joking about the tragedy (hell, no one really attempts to address it with humor to this day). But the Onion staff put out an amazing issue that was both funny and respectful and a spot-on tribute.



Hugging up 76,000% percent

Being a younger person, I wasn’t aware of this issue of The Onion. Frankly I can’t imagine how worried the people involved must’ve been that there’d be a huge violent backlash against them (regardless of the fact that it’s fairly mild, in the moments after tragedy people don’t behave very well)… I know I’d have butterflies in my stomach.

Now on to Reason’s Nick Gillespie…

On the 10th anniversary of the 9/11 attacks, I published an essay in Reason titled “Why Art Failed Us After 9/11.” My basic argument was the terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon were ultimately so senseless and pointless that they mostly escaped our capacity to come to terms with them. A number of prominent artists, musicians, and writers—I focus on Bruce Springsteen and Don DeLillo at length—tried to process the attacks and failed, largely because they refused to inhabit the actual scene of the crime. Ground Zero, it seemed, was the one place no one could figuratively stay near because the mound of flesh, bone, and rubble was just too much to bear.

Read the whole thing here:

I have little in the way of commentary to offer at this moment concerning Nick’s opinions on art and 9/11… I just felt you artistic fellows out there might find some value in reflecting on the subject…

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