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Constructing Death

Constructing Death
The Sociology of Dying and Bereavement

£35.99

  • Date Published: October 1998
  • availability: Available
  • format: Paperback
  • isbn: 9780521595094

£ 35.99
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About the Authors
  • A basic motivation for social and cultural life is the problem of death. By analysing the experiences of dying and bereaved people, as well as institutional responses to death, Clive Seale shows its importance for understanding the place of embodiment in social life. He draws on a comprehensive review of sociological, anthropological and historical studies, including his own research, to demonstrate the great variability that exists in human social constructions for managing mortality. Far from living in a 'death denying' society, dying and bereaved people in contemporary culture are often able to assert membership of an imagined community, through the narrative reconstruction of personal biography, drawing on a variety of cultural scripts emanating from medicine, psychology, the media and other sources. These insights are used to argue that the maintenance of the human social bond in the face of death is a continual resurrective practice, permeating everyday life.

    • Relevant to both a sociological and a health care practitioner audience
    • Combines a theoretical argument with original research material
    • Ranges beyond sociology into anthropology and history
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    Reviews & endorsements

    '… a stimulating and lucid volume … a book that will be of wide interest to … social scientists, students of health and illness and the body'. The Times Higher Education Supplement

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    Product details

    • Date Published: October 1998
    • format: Paperback
    • isbn: 9780521595094
    • length: 248 pages
    • dimensions: 229 x 152 x 14 mm
    • weight: 0.37kg
    • contains: 2 tables
    • availability: Available
  • Table of Contents

    Part I. Social and Material Worlds:
    1. Experiencing and representing the body
    2. Death, embodiment and social structure
    3. The social aspect of death
    Part II. Representing Death:
    4. Medicine, modernity and the risks of life
    5. The revival of death awareness
    6. Reporting death
    Part III. Experiencing Death:
    7. Falling from culture
    8. Awareness and control of dying
    9. Grief and resurrective practices.

  • Author

    Clive Seale, Goldsmiths, University of London

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