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April 9, 2012

Titanic

Why we can’t get over the Titanic.

The inexhaustible interest suggests that the Titanic’s story taps a vein much deeper than the morbid fascination that has attached to other disasters. The explosion of the Hindenberg, for instance, and even the torpedoing, just three years after the Titanic sank, of the Lusitania, another great liner whose passenger list boasted the rich and the famous, were calamities that shocked the world but have failed to generate an obsessive preoccupation. The aura of significance that surrounds the Titanic’s fate was the subject of another, belated headline, which appeared in a special publication of the satirical newspaper the Onion, in 1999, stomping across the page in dire block letters:

WORLD’S LARGEST METAPHOR HITS ICE-BERG