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Why the cultural impact?
This page reflects the cultural impact of September 11, 2001. This event happened at a time when barely 50% of the US used the internet, and less than a year after the hotly contested 2000 United States presidential election. September 11, 2001 left lingering impacts on culture and society: the stories that were told in movies and television are as much artifacts of this time as military interventions and changes in government policies. Questions about grief, citizenship, responsibility, and patriotism were asked in multiple formats, and as in many times of crisis, there were more questions than answers. Likewise, this era was not the birth of conspiracy thinking--conspiracy theories have always thrived during social and political upheaval--but the ease of web communication spread them with a new and unfamiliar speed.
These items give an insight into some of the impact of September 11, and the larger cultural fears and conversations.
Internet culture and conspiracy theories
Snopes 9/11 Archive
In 2001, only slightly more than 50% of Americans used the internet. There was very limited social media (Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram were still in the future), and many of these articles were spread through email or posted on blogs or social sites like LiveJournal. They reflect not only the search for explanations but also the anxieties around the new War on Terror. The role of Snopes and other debunking sites served as an origination point for internet and digital literacy.
The Onion: 9/11 Issue
Satirical depiction of the US cultural and government response to the events of 9/11. Why include satire? The Onion's response was meant to capture the confusion and uncertainty of the time.
Popular Mechanics: Debunking 9/11 Conspiracy Theories
In the wake of 9/11, there were many conspiracy theories. The central questions addressed by Popular Mechanics were about airplanes and building construction.
Islamophobia and Hate Crimes post 9/11