Recalling The Pain

The fifth anniversary of the 9/11 attacks will be inescapable this weekend, but how many tributes can we stomach? It’s a question that artists and musicians have been facing since the first days after the attacks, and the answer seems to be that it all depends. “Some genres are inherently more concrete and visceral than others. A television show or film might punch viewers in the stomach, while a novel or song taps them on the shoulder. The answer also has to do with the type of story that the artworks choose to tell, and whether the way that story is told makes us more anxious and afraid or offers some hard-won comfort.”