Collective Memory and Crisis: The 2002 Bali Bombings, National Archetypes and the Counter-Narrative of Cosmopolitan Nationalism

BD West

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)peer-review

28 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Utilizing a Geertzian cultural systems approach, Australian newspaper reporting of the 2002 Bali bombing is analysed to explore the dynamics of collective memory during crisis. With Australian footballers among the casualties in the terrorist attack, the traditional heroic figure of the Australian sportsman was widely used as a symbolic frame through which journalists, politicians and social commentators rationalized national suffering. The resulting promotion of an insular Australian nationalism inflamed public hostility towards Indonesia about the treatment of Australia's dead and injured. A counter-narrative of the attack emerged, however, with Australian tourists in Bali being mythologically aligned with First World War Anzac soldiers. In keying the bombing into the cultural logics of contemporary global travel and post-Fordist consumption, this collective memory provided a `model for' the emergence of a more cosmopolitan nationalism that legitimized a return to everyday activities and allowed for the development of closer diplomatic ties with Indonesia.
Translated title of the contributionCollective Memory and Crisis: The 2002 Bali Bombings, National Archetypes and the Counter-Narrative of Cosmopolitan Nationalism
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)337 - 353
Number of pages16
JournalJournal of Sociology
Volume44
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2008

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