By Alexander T. Riley
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Extra resources for Angel patriots : the crash of United Flight 93 and the myth of America
A: So I saw. Looks like three, four, and five are empty. B: Can you believe it, we had five deaths in the last twelve hours. A: How lovely. B: Well, see you tomorrow night. 11 The extramundane fact par excellence, the disappearance from the world of an entity that had previously existed in a conscious state, is by this kind of process made banal and unremarkable. And yet David Sudnow, the ethnographer who captured this conversation, shows in this study that even here, in the routine world of hospital death organization, some deaths remain exceptional and retain the power to break these frames.
However, the broad notion of death as something we work strenuously to hide from ourselves in American culture remains hard to fully refute.
A movement from physical sites of memory (which are still inevitably partially mediated) to fully mediated sites begins in chapter five, and in chapters six and seven we enter fully into mediated locations of narrative, memory, and meaning. These latter two chapters analyze popular media sources that narrate the events that took place on the plane and describe the characters involved in the drama. I first take on the collection of biographical books written on a number of the Flight 93 passengers, then turn to the several films that have been made about the flight.