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NewsloreContemporary Folklore on the Internet$
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Russell Frank

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9781604739282

Published to University Press of Mississippi: March 2014

DOI: 10.14325/mississippi/9781604739282.001.0001

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When the Going Gets Tough

When the Going Gets Tough

Newslore of September 11

(p.63) 3 When the Going Gets Tough

Russell Frank

University Press of Mississippi

This chapter examines the newslore about the September 11, 2011 terrorist attack against the U.S. It explains that this event triggered the largest folk responses in the short history of computer-mediated communication, but there were no joking about the victims. Most of the jokes were only defiant gestures that were considered by virtue of their clever vulgarity. This chapter also discusses the influence of the U.S. government’s declaration of the war on terror in providing a focal point for American anger and fantasies of revenge and in making the “enemy” the focus of the September 11-related jokes.

Keywords:   September 11 terrorist attack, newslore, computer-mediated communication, war on terror, American anger

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