Grief Mourning and Death Rituals

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"This book focuses on what happens after a death has taken place. Drawing on social theory and anthropology, contributors examine responses to death as they occur within the unique set of cultural, social and historical circumstances which characterizes post-war society. The book does not just document and make sense of contemporary practices but also critically reviews the ways grief, mourning and death ritual have been approached by academics and practitioners in the field. It does this by combining substantial reviews with shorter illustrative examples of grief, mourning and death ritual as they are manifest in specific settings and with defined groups. These illustrative examples include personal and institutional responses to death at different points in the life cycle, and responses to different sorts of death - the death of children and death in disasters for example. The examples include commentaries on bereavement work and on changes in both the funeral industry and memorialization practices." "Grief, Mourning and Death Ritual is aimed at advanced students in sociology, anthropology and psychology with an interest in death, dying and mortality. It is also directly relevant to those concerned with loss and how to respond to it. This book is therefore suitable for use on courses in nursing, palliative care, social work and counselling."--BOOK JACKET.
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Editorial Reviews

Doody's Review Service
Reviewer: Lisa Stepp, PhD, RN, APN, AOCN, CRNH (Private Practice)
Description: The process of death continues to grow as an area of interest for those involved in the delivery of human services. Both physical and social sciences continue to explore the death experience and the appropriate interventions necessary to ease the dying process. This book is the third volume in the Facing Death series, a collection of works that discuss death, dying, and bereavement.
Purpose: This book attempts to bring together a reflection of social practices and values surrounding death with the practical issues addressed by health care practitioners and policy makers. Although a major undertaking, the authors are able to achieve this objective by building on previous knowledge and providing information regarding current practices.
Audience: It is designed for clinicians involved in end of life care. Students as well as advanced clinicians will benefit from this exploration into grief and mourning. The contributors and editors are leaders in the field of end of life care. Their involvement in the symposia on Social Aspects of Death Dying and Bereavement as well as their own experience provide a wealth of knowledge that they share through their writing.
Features: Grief work and grieving are an important concept in terminal and end of life care. This book provides the reader with a more structured view of these processes and significant insight into appropriate interventions. Both personal and professional responses to death are addressed.
Assessment: This is a welcome addition to the series and comprehensively covers a crucial topic in end of life care.
Drawing on social theory and anthropology, contributors in social work and sociology examine responses to death as they occur within in post-war society. They not only document contemporary practices, but also critically review the ways grief, mourning, and death ritual have been approached by academics and practitioners in the field, combining substantial reviews with shorter examples of rituals in specific settings and groups. Examples include commentaries on bereavement work and on changes in the funeral industry and memorialization practices. Hockey teaches at Hull University. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (

3 Stars from Doody
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780335205011
  • Publisher: McGraw-Hill Companies, The
  • Publication date: 5/1/2001
  • Series: Facing Death Series
  • Pages: 302
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 0.63 (d)

Table of Contents

List of contributors
Series editor's preface
Introduction 1
1 Theories of grief: a critical review 19
2 Is grief an illness? Issues of theory in relation to cultural diversity and the grieving process 49
3 Four siblings' perspectives on parent death: a family focus 61
4 'Naturalizing' death among older adults in residential care 73
5 Just an old-fashioned love song or a 'harlequin romance'? Some experiences of widowhood 82
6 Discourse into practice: the production of bereavement care 97
7 The skills we need: bereavement counselling and governmentality in England 125
8 'You have to get inside the person' or making grief private: image and metaphor in the therapeutic reconstruction of bereavement 135
9 Supporting bereaved children at school 144
10 The Child Death Helpline 158
11 A place for my child: the evolution of a candle service 174
12 Changing death rituals 185
13 Funeral ritual past and present 212
14 Forget me not: memorialization in cemeteries and crematoria 218
15 The cemetery: the evidence of continuing bonds 226
16 Hindu death and mourning rituals: the impact of geographic mobility 237
17 Grieving in public 247
18 Post-disaster rituals 256
Conclusion 267
Useful organizations and addresses 274
Index 276
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