×

Uh-oh, it looks like your Internet Explorer is out of date.

For a better shopping experience, please upgrade now.

The Maintenance of Life: Preventing Social Death Through Euthanasia Talk and End-of-Life Care Lessons from the Netherlands
     

The Maintenance of Life: Preventing Social Death Through Euthanasia Talk and End-of-Life Care Lessons from the Netherlands

5.0 1
by Frances Norwood
 

See All Formats & Editions

ISBN-10: 1594605181

ISBN-13: 9781594605185

Pub. Date: 08/28/2009

Publisher: Carolina Academic Press

The landscape of death and dying has changed. Today, death most often does not happen in an instant, it is more typically a long process of life mixed in with decline and social losses that eventually and sometimes many years after an initial onset of terminal or serious illness culminates in some combination of social and biological death. British sociologist

Overview

The landscape of death and dying has changed. Today, death most often does not happen in an instant, it is more typically a long process of life mixed in with decline and social losses that eventually and sometimes many years after an initial onset of terminal or serious illness culminates in some combination of social and biological death. British sociologist Clive Seale (1998) suggests that changes in death and dying have been accompanied by changing tactics for maintaining social life. He suggests two strategies that that have developed in response to modern death including the development of a kind of therapeutic discourse which is used to transform social losses that occur at the end of life into something meaningful and euthanasia practices where patients choose to alter the exact time of their death to have death of the body more closely coincide with death of the social being. The Maintenance of Life is about what has developed in one present-day society to address social death and modern dying. It is based on a 15-month qualitative study of home death in the Netherlands with general practitioners, end-of-life patients and their family members. The book develops from two study findings: (1) that euthanasia in practice is predominantly a discussion, which only rarely culminates in a euthanasia death; and (2) that euthanasia talk in many ways serves a palliative function, staving off social death by providing participants with a venue for processing meaning, giving voice to suffering, and reaffirming social bonds and self-identity at the end of Dutch life. Through the mainstream practice of euthanasia talk, space has been created within healthcare which helps people live longer as active participants engaged in Dutch social networks at the end of life. Using direct observation and in-depth interviews with patients, families and physicians, this book looks critically at Dutch euthanasia policy and broader end-of-life practices

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781594605185
Publisher:
Carolina Academic Press
Publication date:
08/28/2009
Pages:
320
Product dimensions:
5.50(w) x 8.50(h) x 0.80(d)

Customer Reviews

Average Review:

Post to your social network

     

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

See all customer reviews

The Maintenance of Life: Preventing Social Death Through Euthanasia Talk and End-of-Life Care Lessons from the Netherlands 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
"The Maintenance of Life" is brilliant, beautifully written, and enlightening. It helped me understand my relationship to my mother during her decline and helped me cope with her death. But there’s so much more than that to the book. It shows and shares a deep understanding of Dutch culture, for example. I would not have had the patience for such immersion or ethnography. The explication of Foucault is thankfully clear (unlike the source?) and gently illuminating in its application to “euthanasia talk.” And the book refuses (wisely) to work in straight lines: the short chapter on Dutch back gardens appears like an epiphany at that point in the narrative when insight is received, both for the author, it seems, and certainly for readers. I deeply appreciate, as well, the author's willingness to share stories about personal experience. Clever, too, that “the Conclusion” is not the last chapter of the book. If I were still teaching literary nonfiction, as I did for many years, I would use The Maintenance of Life in a course. I always tried to include a couple of books that crossed the line between scholarship and art—as this one certainly does.