Here and Now with Robin Young and Jeremy Hobson
Public radio's live
midday news program
With sponsorship from
Mathworks - Accelerating the pace of engineering and science
Accelerating the pace
of engineering and science
Thursday, September 8, 2011

Tracing 9/11 Through Culture

M.I.A. performs at the 51st Annual Grammy Awards in 2009, in Los Angeles. (AP)

M.I.A. performs at the 51st Annual Grammy Awards in 2009, in Los Angeles. (AP)

We all know the big films that came from Sept. 11, from “United 93″ to “World Trade Center.” There were also major Sept.11 books by John Updike, Don DeLillo, Jonathan Safran Foer and Sue Miller.

But culture critic Jeffrey Melnick says the multiple traumas of Sept. 11 are also woven in more subtle ways through American culture, even 10 years on.

Melnick says shows like “Lost” and films like “Chicken Little,” neither of which mention Sept.11, were about the terrorist attacks.

Melnick says there’s also art focused on the aftermath, what he calls “September 12 Art.”

September 12 art includes films like Steven Speilberg’s “Munich” and music by Hip Hop artists like Eric Sermon and M.I.A and Jay Z’s collaboration the British DJ, Punjabi MC.


  • Jeffrey Melnick, professor of American Studies, College of Liberal Arts at the University of Massachusetts Boston

Please follow our community rules when engaging in comment discussion on this site.
Robin and Jeremy

Robin Young and Jeremy Hobson host Here & Now, a live two-hour production of NPR and WBUR Boston.

October 8 128 Comments

Michael Bloomberg Takes Climate Fight To Cities

New York's former mayor and Vancouver's mayor Gregor Robertson are pushing for climate change policies at the city level.

October 8 4 Comments

John Fogerty Talks Creedence, And Life After

He was the creative force behind one of the biggest bands in the world, Creedence Clearwater Revival.

October 7 232 Comments

Lawsuit Challenges Transgender Locker Room Access At Planet Fitness

We hear a counterargument to our conversation earlier this week about how to accommodate transgender people in gyms.

October 7 12 Comments

‘I Drive Your Truck’ Songwriter Now Drives Her Brother’s Truck

Like the real-life story that inspired her hit song, Connie Harrington now drives a pickup truck to remember a loved one who died.