“The Titanic, the largest vessel the world had seen, set sail from Southampton, England, on April 10, 1912, on her maiden Atlantic Ocean voyage to New York. It struck an iceberg off the coast of Newfoundland and sank in the early hours of April 15. About 1,500 people died. One hundred years later, the ill-fated ocean liner continues to fascinate” (Los Angles Times).
Just about everyone has heard of the Titanic and its tragic end. Whether your knowledge of the ill-fated ship came from Discovery Channel documentaries or James Cameron’s 1997 film staring Kate Winslet and Leonardo DiCaprio, the Titanic continues to captivate us. But…why? For years individuals have written and read hundreds of books on the ship’s voyage, created and watched numerous documentaries, walked through exhibitions, and became captivated by the stories of the 1953 and 1997 Titanic films. With the release of a 3D version of the 1997 Titanic and new programs revolving around the doomed voyage (such as the new ABC miniseries) it’s hard to not have Titanic on the mind. The story of the Titanic is a tragedy. With artifacts from the site taken in to auction and talks of merchandising it into a brand with Titanic inspired products such as jewelry, giftware, home-products, and even a fragrance, is it disrespecting the tragedy instead of just letting the Titanic rest in peace? Or are we keeping the memory of it alive, providing it with a deserved afterlife?