"This Is London": Cosmopolitan Nationalism and the Discourse of Resilience in the Case of the 7/7 Terrorist Attacks


This essay analyzes competing discourses of resilience across United States and United Kingdom online news and blog coverage following the 2005 London 7/7 subway bombings. More specifically, it tracks how dominant articulations of resilience reflect an emerging Anglo-American sensibility that created constraints and possibilities for British national identity and security policy. We argue that the prevailing construction of Londoners as resilient represents a budding form of cosmopolitan nationalism that may have paved the way for the adoption of resilience as an official plank of U.S. and U.K. security policy. We conclude by examining the potential socio-political consequences of the discursive cultivation of resilience and explore its dialectical relation to vulnerability.