The day America (almost) lost its sense of humor : late-night talk show hosts, George W. Bush, and September 11, 2001 : an honors thesis (HONRS 499)
This paper explores the changes in treatment of President George W. Bush by late-night talk show hosts after the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2002. Twelve weeks worth of monologues from David Letterman and Jay Leno are examined using genre of political satire as the primary method of explanation. The initial sections of the paper deal with the histories of both political satire and late-night talk shows respectively. The intermediate sections of the paper discuss the events of September 11 and the comedians' monologues before and after the tragedy. Finally, the paper uses the genre of political satire to explain variations in the treatment of President Bush.