1st Edition

Affective Heritage and the Politics of Memory after 9/11 Curating Trauma at the Memorial Museum

By Jacque Micieli-Voutsinas Copyright 2021
    208 Pages 37 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    208 Pages 37 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    This book critically examines the institutional curation of traumatic memory at the 9/11 Memorial Museum and its evocative power as a cultural storyteller.

    Memorial Museums are evocative spaces. Drawing on aesthetic practices deeply rooted in representing the ‘unrepresentability’ of cultural trauma, most notably the Holocaust, Memorial Museums are powerful, popular mediums for establishing cultural values, asking the visitor to contemplate "Who am I?" in relation to the difficult histories on display. Using primary data, this book poses important questions about the emotionally-charged site: what ‘moral lessons’ are visitors imparted with at the 9/11 Memorial Museum? Who is the cultural institution’s primary audience—the imagined community it reconstructs this traumatic history and safeguards its memories for? What does the National September 11 Memorial & Museum ultimately teach visitors about history, ourselves, and others?  

    This work will be of interest to students and scholars in the areas of Human Geography, American Studies, Museum Studies and Public History, Cultural and Heritage Studies, and Trauma and Memory Studies.


    Part I: 9/11 Memory in Situ

    Chapter 1. Manic Memories, Contested Meanings of Place

    Chapter 2. Affective Pedagogies, Emotional Learning

    Part II: 9/11 Memory ex Situ

    Chapter 3. Trauma after 9/11: Holocaust Memorial Lessons

    Chapter 4. 9/11 Memory and the "Trauma Economy"

    Conclusions: Towards Non-Violent Archives of 9/11 Memory

    Epilogue: Affective Heritage and 9/11 Memory in the Age of Trump


    Jacque Micieli-Voutsinas is an Assistant Professor of Museum Studies and Public History at the University of Central Oklahoma, where she also directs the Graduate Program in Museum Studies. She is co-editor of Affective Architectures: More-Than-Representational Geographies of Heritage (Routledge 2021).