Anne Snellen

Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy



Major Professor

Mary Jo Reiff, Howard R. Pollio

Committee Members

Ilona Leki, Janet Atwill


This study is developed in conjunction with the Center for Applied Phenomenological Research at the University of Tennessee and the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences, Sofia, to examine how the editorial pages of The Times of London sought to provide a collective understanding of the events of 9/11 during the first year after the attacks. Leaning on the methods of historiography, phenomenology, and rhetorical analysis, this study offers an interdisciplinary approach to discovering meaning translated through the interrelated processes of conjuring historical memory, inventing novel, figurative terminology, and building narrative structures to frame our understanding of events. This study considers how cultural memories of traumatic, public events are created, arguing that the shaping of collective memory and the development of historical narrative are tightly interconnected through the language we share and create with others. Results indicate that these editorialists cultivated an awareness of time that was steeped in culturally-salient narrative traditions, staging an historical drama in The Times, and were therefore always highly conscious of the interaction between the editorials as story and readers as audience.

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