Tourists of history: memory, kitsch, and consumerism from Oklahoma City to Ground Zero

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Publisher:
Duke University Press,
Pub. Date:
2007.
Language:
English
Description
In Tourists of History, the cultural critic Marita Sturken argues that over the past two decades, Americans have responded to national trauma through consumerism, kitsch sentiment, and tourist practices in ways that reveal a tenacious investment in the idea of America’s innocence. Sturken investigates the consumerism that followed from the September 11th attacks; the contentious, ongoing debates about memorials and celebrity-architect designed buildings at Ground Zero; and two outcomes of the bombing of the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building in Oklahoma City: the Oklahoma City National Memorial and the execution of Timothy McVeigh.

Sturken contends that a consumer culture of comfort objects such as World Trade Center snow globes, FDNY teddy bears, and Oklahoma City Memorial t-shirts and branded water, as well as reenactments of traumatic events in memorial and architectural designs, enables a national tendency to see U.S. culture as distant from both history and world politics. A kitsch comfort culture contributes to a “tourist” relationship to history: Americans can feel good about visiting and buying souvenirs at sites of national mourning without having to engage with the economic, social, and political causes of the violent events. While arguing for the importance of remembering tragic losses of life, Sturken is urging attention to a dangerous confluence—of memory, tourism, consumerism, paranoia, security, and kitsch—that promulgates fear to sell safety, offers prepackaged emotion at the expense of critical thought, contains alternative politics, and facilitates public acquiescence in the federal government’s repressive measures at home and its aggressive political and military policies abroad.

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ISBN:
9780822341031
9780822341222
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Grouping Information

Grouped Work IDaa6a0af1-437c-2139-4952-5bf395b1d994
Grouping Titletourists of history memory kitsch and consumerism from oklahoma city to ground zero
Grouping Authorsturken marita
Grouping Categorybook
Last Grouping Update2019-12-23 16:18:04PM
Last Indexed2020-01-26 04:43:38AM

Solr Details

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literary_form_fullNon Fiction
local_callnumber_arlington973.93 STURK
owning_library_arlingtonArlington Public Library
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Detention Center
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Local History
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record_details
Bib IdFormatFormat CategoryEditionLanguagePublisherPublication DatePhysical Description
ils:.b13061756BookBooksEnglishDuke University Press, 2007.xii, 344 pages : illustrations ; 24 cm
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ils:.b13061756.i13295020On ShelfOn Shelffalsetruetruefalsefalsetrue9999
subject_facetCollective memory -- United States
Consumption (Economics) -- Social aspects -- United States
National characteristics, American
Oklahoma City Federal Building Bombing, Oklahoma City, Okla., 1995
Popular culture -- United States
Psychic trauma -- Social aspects -- United States
September 11 Terrorist Attacks, 2001
Souvenirs (Keepsakes) -- Social aspects -- United States
title_displayTourists of history : memory, kitsch, and consumerism from Oklahoma City to Ground Zero
title_fullTourists of history : memory, kitsch, and consumerism from Oklahoma City to Ground Zero / Marita Sturken
title_shortTourists of history
title_submemory, kitsch, and consumerism from Oklahoma City to Ground Zero