9/11 triggers cascade of books (Ten years since 9/11)September 7th, 2011 - 3:27 pm ICT by IANS
New Delhi, Sep 7 (IANS) The 10th anniversary of 9/11 has unleashed a cascade of books, tributes and new editions of old books, swelling a vast body of literature spawned by the fateful day that transformed America and sparked a global war on terror.
“It was not a street any more but a world, a time and space of falling ash and near night,” American novelist Don LeLillo wrote tersely, evoking the horrors of that New York day that morphed into a veritable nightmare after the twin attacks on World Trade Tower — the symbol of American power and pelf.
The attacks transformed the American sensibility in a fundamental way which has been captured in memorable fictions and first person records, which in trade circles is called 9/11 lit. The saga goes on.
Some publishers have justified the new releases, saying a decade provides an apt opportunity to reflect on a catastrophic event of this magnitude.
Authored by Anthony Summers and Robbyn Swan Drawing, “The Eleventh Day: The Full Story of 9/11 and Osama bin Laden” claims to be “the first panoramic, authoritative look back at 9/11″. The publisher says the book, which includes recently released documents, provides “the perspective that can come only from a decade of research and reflection”.
“After the Fall: New Yorkers Remember September 11 and the Years that Followed” is one of the new books that recalls in vivid detail how New York changed after the attack.
The book, authored by Columbia University’s Oral History Research Office, includes interviews with hundreds of ordinary people ranging from taxi drivers to immigrants.
Another book creating a big buzz in publishing circles is “The Black Banners: The Inside Story of 9/11 and the War Against Al Qaeda”.
To be released Sep 12, it has piqued much curiosity, whetted by the author of the book, Ali H. Soufan, a Lebanese-American FBI agent who investigated a host of high-profile anti-terrorism cases in the US and abroad.
Besides new books, there is a glut of new editions of old books that now come appended with new prologues, their authors updating their account with new insights.
Noam Chomsky, a radical intellectual-academic known for his critique of American foreign policy, was one of the first to come out with a headline-grabbing book that was entitled “9/11.”
Published barely a month after the attack, the new edition has an essay entitled “Was There an Alternative?” It “reminds us that today, just as much as 10 years ago, information and clarity remain our most valuable resources in the struggle to prevent future violence against the innocent, both at home and abroad,” says the blurb.
“The 9/11 Commission Report”, a voluminous account of the investigations on the attacks from the National Commission on Terrorist Attacks Upon the US in 2004, remains a must read for those wishing to dig deeper. The authoritative account has been republished in a new edition that includes an epilogue from the commission’s director Philip Zelikow, who has said the panel’s recommendations have not been implemented so far.
Lawrence Wright’s Pulitzer-winning “The Looming Tower”, which traces the origins of Osama’s jehad against America culminating in 9/11, has been reissued in new editions.
“What We Saw”, an account of Sep 11, has been re-published and now comes with a DVD. The paperback edition of “The Truth About Grief” by Ruth Davis Konigsberg, a non-fiction study of bereavement and sorrow of those who lost their loved ones in the catastrophic attack, has also hit the stores.
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Tags: 10th anniversary, american novelist, anthony summers, body of literature, catastrophic event, columbia university, fbi agent, global war on terror, lebanese american, old books, oral history research, oral history research office, osama bin laden, person records, robbyn, taxi drivers, trade circles, veritable nightmare, vivid detail, world trade tower