"Voiceless in the Presence of Realities"
9/11/01 Remembrances from the Long Island Studies Institute
September 5 - December 10, 2006
Emily Lowe Gallery, Lowe Hall
The title of this exhibition comes from a line in the poem "Silence" by Edgar Lee Masters. The poem describes a variety of instances where the ability to express oneself is stifled, either by the myriad nuances it would take to describe these expressions, or by the untapped depth that the feelings would conjure. The reasons for the inability to use our voice, in the case of the aftermath of September 11, is not always for lack of words, but for the sheer number of words that come to mind. Five years after the events of September 11 there still remains an inability to capture the totality of feeling and devastation in succinct, specific sentences. Something this large is almost impossible to grasp and even less possible to explain to others.
In the days following September 11, the Long Island Studies Institute began to collect materials that reflected the Long Island response to the tragedy. We collected e-mails that people sent to their friends and loved ones to let them know that they were alive. We collected the emergency responders' gear. We collected the newspapers' biographical essays of those who had died, and the accounts of those that escaped. The collection continues to be added to on a periodic basis
There are many ways to express our sorrow, and these are but a few examples. The photographs, sculptures and paintings that we chose show the depth of emotion we feel, as well as our need to depict our unease. And that although we are sometimes voiceless, we have many emotions we want to share. That although our words might not be adequate, we do remember, we do feel, and we do grieve.
Geri E. Solomon, Assistant Dean of Special Collections and University Archivist
Michael Curtis, Project Archivist
Click here for more information: September 11th Project Collection