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Exploring the Boundaries of Heroes, Celebrities and Role Models after 9/11: Lessons from Shanksville
Unformatted Document Text:  Lessons from Shanksville p. 1 Abstract During the past several decades, a number of scholars and social critics have discussed the growth of celebrity culture within the United States. They note that many people now model their personal lives after celebrities rather than looking to traditional heroes as their role models. The terrorist attacks on the United States on September 11, 2001, might have changed the boundary between celebrities and heroes. A sense of heroism was renewed in the public arena by the courageous acts of many people on that fateful day. In this paper, we assess these changes through a study of visitors to the temporary memorial at the United Airlines Flight 93 crash site in Shanksville, Pennsylvania. Results from our study indicate that the many common heroes who emerged in September 11th may now temper the strong influence of celebrities on public beliefs and practices. Implications of this research for the study of social influence are discussed.

Authors: Brown, William. and Fraser, Benson.
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Lessons from Shanksville
p. 1
Abstract
During the past several decades, a number of scholars and social critics have
discussed the growth of celebrity culture within the United States. They note that many
people now model their personal lives after celebrities rather than looking to traditional
heroes as their role models. The terrorist attacks on the United States on September 11,
2001, might have changed the boundary between celebrities and heroes. A sense of
heroism was renewed in the public arena by the courageous acts of many people on that
fateful day. In this paper, we assess these changes through a study of visitors to the
temporary memorial at the United Airlines Flight 93 crash site in Shanksville,
Pennsylvania. Results from our study indicate that the many common heroes who
emerged in September 11th may now temper the strong influence of celebrities on public
beliefs and practices. Implications of this research for the study of social influence are
discussed.


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