The old timers in our midst may remember the re:constructions project. Comparative Media Studies, then in its second year of operation, pulled the larger community together and reflected on what happened on 9/11, what it meant, and in the process demonstrated some of the potentials both of CMS and its notion of applied humanities.
Looking back on the project, with its 2001 aesthetic and now partially broken links, it’s still remarkable to see how much we were able to do within a few days (although the project continued to simmer for a year or two more). It’s something of a time capsule, with responses to the events more or less as they happened and before they codified into a well-rehearsed narrative. It’s hard to give a sense today of what this meant for the larger CMS family at the time, but just looking at the range of voices and perspectives joined in common cause might give a hint. CMS was and remains an incredible community, and the work emerging from this group continues to distinguish itself by facing the public and making a difference.