Post-Millennial Cry of Santo Subito: Media Canonization of Kobe Bryant
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On Sunday, January 26, 2020, Kobe Bryant – a retired star of the Los Angeles Lakers basketball franchise – died suddenly and tragically in a helicopter crash. Following his death, Bryant was instantaneously mourned and celebrated as a basketball legend, an inspiration, a role model, a family man, and a Renaissance man; he was secularly and medially canonized. This study analyzes the secular canonization process and aims at extrapolating the post-Millennial element of the narratives of the tributes to Bryant. The presentation looks into how the reaction to the death of Bryant, who, although a Millennial himself, seemed to embody the post-Millennial image of post-Millennials (Generation Z) i.e., competitive, spontaneous, adventuresome, and curious, reflects the self-image of post-Millennials i.e., loyal, compassionate, thoughtful, open-minded, responsible, and determined.