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To Live until We Say Good-Bye

To Live until We Say Good-Bye

5.0 1
by Elisabeth Kubler-Ross

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Dr. Elisabeth Kubler-Ross, whose books on death and dying have sold in the millions, now offers an extraordinary visual record of her work.


Dr. Elisabeth Kubler-Ross, whose books on death and dying have sold in the millions, now offers an extraordinary visual record of her work.

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7.98(w) x 10.04(h) x 0.43(d)

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To Live Until We Say Good Bye 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Ponder this thought: you've just been apprised by your family doctor that you are terminally ill and have but a brief time left on this earth. Later, someone happens by and is interested in documenting your final sojourn through interviews and photographs, wherein life's most poignant and definitive moment is embraced. How would you respond? This is precisely what Swiss-born, American psychiatrist and world renown thanatologist Elisabeth Kubler-Ross (1926-2004), did in her scant 160 page, but heart-rending, 1978 book, 'To Live Until We Say Good-Bye.' Mal Warshaw, the photographer for this work, originally proposed the concept for it after snapping black and white pictures of a 42 year old New York model dying of cancer--his friend 'Beth,' which he brought to Kubler-Ross, whom he eventually worked in conjunction with for this project. They later randomly selected the four other main characters for this photo essay--'Jamie,' a five year old girl diagnosed with a brain tumor, along with her mother--'Linda,' from suburban New York, 'Louise'--a social worker in her mid-50's from Cleveland, who had breast cancer, and 'Jack'--a 71 year old construction worker and superintendent of apartments from New York City, living with liver cancer. Many are familiar with Kubler-Ross's five step process for those confronted with the sudden dilemma of dying: denial, anger, bargaining, depression and acceptance, which she alludes to throughout the book. This volume's quintessential purpose--offering natural, thought inspiring photographs of those who acceded to sharing their struggle, really speak for themselves, such as the one of Kubler-Ross giving 'Louise' the urn for her ashes. The author emphasizes that unfinished business, guilt and fear are what most plagues a dying patient's last days. In American humanistic psychologist Clark E. Moustakas's 1977 book, 'Turning Points,' he quotes (from 'Death in the First Person,' American Journal of Nursing, 1970) an anonymous, lonely and dying student nurse, who uttered--for other nurses, provocative words regarding their not viewing, or relating to, her as a person because of trepidation, often masked by academic routine: 'If you really care, would you lose so much of your valuable professionalism if you even cried with me?' This is what not only Kubler-Ross--the Doctor, but Elisabeth--the humanitarian, did through her compassion, sensitivity and intimacy with the dying, which was all the aforementioned woman wanted. Kubler-Ross's book has to be the classic work on the subject of choreographing what actually transpires during life's most tempestuous vicissitudes, which she describes as 'windstorms.' She then closes her testament by stating, 'I hope that this book encourages people to expose themselves to these windstorms, so that at the end of their own days, they will be proud to look in the mirror and be pleased with the carvings of their own canyon.' If you want an eternal snapshot of the dance of death, that is not just another exercise in lugubriousness, but one which offers faith and renewal of the human spirit, buy 'To Live Until We Say Good-Bye' by Elisabeth Kubler-Ross, where off the tree of fate a many faceted fruit awaits your finger's probing.