Queen's University

Sept. 11 attacks and forgiveness

2010-09-15

Queen’s University professor Jill Scott is is an expert in post-September 11 forgiveness and is available to talk about the way people are responding to the anniversary of terrorist attacks – everything from anger at a mosque being built near Ground Zero or a preacher wanted to burn copies of the Qu’ran.

"Reactions to the 9/11 attacks were dominated principally by two emotions--sadness and fear--both of which can and were transformed into the tools of political and military vindication. The raw outpouring of grief became a deeply troubling cultural virus that seems to know no end,” says Professor Scott. “But what of forgiveness? My own view is that we need to look closely at the links between creativity and forgiveness, and ask what role storytelling can play in changing human attitudes and interactions. The stories since 9/11 have changed, but the road to forgiveness is still very long."

Professor Scott is the author of a new book titled A Poetics of Forgiveness: Creative Responses to Loss and Wrongdoing. The aftermath of 9/11, the Holocaust and the Rwandan genocide are among the topics Dr. Scott examines. In 2005, Dr. Scott received the Aurora Prize from the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC). Valued at $25,000, the award allowed her to examine mourning, loss and forgiveness in a post-9/11 era.

To arrange an interview, please contact Michael Onesi at 613.533.6000 ext. 77513 or michael.onesi@queensu.ca, or Kristyn Wallace at 613.533.6000 ext. 79173 or kristyn.wallace@queensu.ca at News and Media Services, Queen’s University in Kingston, Canada.

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