Download e-book for kindle: A Social History of Dying by Allan Kellehear

By Allan Kellehear

ISBN-10: 0521694299

ISBN-13: 9780521694292

Our studies of loss of life were formed by way of historic principles approximately dying and social accountability on the finish of existence. From Stone Age rules approximately death as otherworld trip to the modern Cosmopolitan Age of loss of life in nursing houses, Allan Kellehear takes the reader on a 2 million 12 months trip of discovery that covers the key demanding situations we'll all finally face: looking forward to, getting ready, taming and timing for our eventual deaths. it is a significant assessment of the human and scientific sciences literature approximately human death behavior. The ancient process of this publication areas our contemporary photos of melanoma demise and therapy in broader old, epidemiological and international context. Professor Kellehear argues that we're witnessing an increase in shameful sorts of death. it's not melanoma, center illness or scientific technology that offers glossy loss of life behavior with its maximum ethical checks, yet really poverty, aging and social exclusion.

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Extra resources for A Social History of Dying

Example text

To understand ‘dying’ in those times we might have needed to scrutinise the cosmological maps about death, listen to and observe the survivors, and learn the culture-specific omens for good and bad journeys to the other world. In this context we might initially argue that perhaps dying as we currently understand this – as a period of living and social transition for the dying person – did not exist as a pre-death experience. Instead, these social processes were dependent on survivors to perform on behalf of the dead.

He will then be asked to sit on an oar. This, rather unsurprisingly, could be a trick. If you sit at the paddle end the god will tip you over the precipice so that you descend to a rather second-rate heaven. At this second-rate heaven you may endure further ordeals depending on what you have done or not done in your life; the punishments differ for men and women. Those who are favoured by the gods at the precipice go on to the real Elysium, which is very similar to the Western Spiritualists’ idea of the eternal Summerland – clear skies and warmth, good food and company, bliss beyond words.

He must plant pandanus trees lest he have nothing to climb when fleeing from the feral pig. Parents might build little houses to place bow and arrows for their sons’ future spirit or they might plant pandanus trees for a girl’s spirit. In Fiji (Frazer 1913a: 462–7) the journey and its ordeals are similarly numerous. After death a soul comes upon a certain pandanus tree at which he must throw a whale’s tooth. If he misses it means that his wives are not being strangled to join him. If he hits the tree then his wives may follow him along the spirit path.

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A Social History of Dying by Allan Kellehear


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