The 26/11 Network-Archive: Public Memory, History, and the Global in an Age of Terror
This article examines the online discourses of public memory of the November 2008 or “26/11” terrorist attacks in Mumbai, India. The thesis of the article is that the 26/11 attacks were memorialized online in a hybrid “network-archive” of old and new media content generated by both media organizations and lay users, and that this network-archive is informed by a distinct mode of public memorialization in which historical responsibility is the criterion for bearing witness to terror. This mode of remembering may reflect a new kind of compact between memory and history. By analyzing the theme of 26/11 as “India’s 9/11,” the article shows how the relationship between memory and history in the 26/11 network-archive complicates understanding of the local and global meanings of acts of terror. In the online memory discourse of 26/11, the experience of terror appears to work as a bridge between local suffering and global belonging.