The Courage to Laugh

Overview

"Life," said George Bernard Shaw, "does not cease to be funny when someone dies, any more than it ceases to be serious when someone laughs." With heartening and amusing examples from a world in which many think there is no laughter, Allen Klein augments the truth of Shaw's insightfulness. Illustrating the inherent importance of the ability to laugh, Klein gives readers the power to face the end of life with dignity and compassion. Based on the author's years of giving speeches and leading workshops for patients and their caregivers and families,
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Overview

"Life," said George Bernard Shaw, "does not cease to be funny when someone dies, any more than it ceases to be serious when someone laughs." With heartening and amusing examples from a world in which many think there is no laughter, Allen Klein augments the truth of Shaw's insightfulness. Illustrating the inherent importance of the ability to laugh, Klein gives readers the power to face the end of life with dignity and compassion. Based on the author's years of giving speeches and leading workshops for patients and their caregivers and families, The Courage to Laugh will be the first book to: * show how patients use humor to cope when life is threatened;
* offer hope and encouragement to readers dealing with loss;
* give readers permission to laugh when they feel like crying;
* explain how popular culture can ease death-related fears; and
* provide uplifting quotes and jokes. With poignant wisdom from children, parents, doctors, and nurses, combined with the spirited writing of the author, The Courage to Laugh is a lifesaving tool for everyone experiencing a serious illness and for the people who care for them.
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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
After his wife died from a rare liver disease, Klein wrote The Healing Power of Humor, which explained how laughter had helped him recover from her untimely death. Calling himself a "jollytologist," the author, who lectures and leads seminars on humor, enlarges on this earlier theme by presenting a welcome compilation of many personal stories culled from his research into death and dying. These show the important role of laughter as well as tears in the grieving process. Although Klein stresses that humor should not be used to cover up grief, he believes that, for the patient as well as loved ones, appropriate laughter is a refreshing and therapeutic tonic in the face of illness and death. Among the examples he provides are the sustaining power of humor for the terminally ill living in hospices, as well as the amazing capacity of AIDS patients to make jokes that ease their pain ("In my condition, I don't even buy green bananas anymore"). He describes the bravery of very sick children who seek out light moments to help them cope with their disease and includes the experiences of concentration camp survivors who sustained their will to live through humor. Never glib, Klein's affirmations allow a crucial measure of relief for moments of distress, or in the face of loss. Editor, David Groff; agent, Shelley Roth. (Sept.)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780786259915
  • Publisher: Gale Group
  • Publication date: 3/18/2004
  • Edition description: Large Print
  • Pages: 339
  • Product dimensions: 5.80 (w) x 8.64 (h) x 0.88 (d)

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