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by: Amy Turk

Perspectives SOC 42010

Amy Turk

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About this Document

Intro to Death & Dying
Death & Dying
Megan Shaeffer
Class Notes
goals, structural, Functionalism, Conflict, Theory, Christian, era, Black, plague, afterlife
25 ?




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This 3 page Class Notes was uploaded by Amy Turk on Friday September 16, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to SOC 42010 at Kent State University taught by Megan Shaeffer in Fall 2016. Since its upload, it has received 3 views. For similar materials see Death & Dying in Sociology at Kent State University.


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Date Created: 09/16/16
PERSPECTIVES ON DEATH & DYING ● How we learn about it… ○ Formal ■ Organized programs ■ Schools’ ■ Workshops ○ Informal ■ Life experiences ■ Society ● Media ● Pop culture ● Internet ● Teachable moments ● Dimensions ○ Cognitive ■ Intellectual aspects ■ Factual info ■ Knowledge ■ Theories and interpretations ○ Behavioral ■ Actions and behaviors ■ Interacting with dying people ○ Affective ■ Feelings, emotions, attitudes ■ Sharing and discussing grief reactions and mourning responses ○ Valuational ■ Identify, articulate, affirm values of human life Goals ● Enrich personal lives ● Inform, guide personal interactions with society ● Prepare individuals for public roles as citizens ● Support professional and vocational roles ● Communicate effectively about death-related issues ● Create awareness ● Symbolic interactionism = identity made with what person is buried with ○ Identity created through burial ● Martin Carver = burial is like a poem Structural Functionalism ● Death creates a vacuum ● Acknowledging social importance of deceased ● Social continuity by elite burial ○ Saying “our kingdom was powerful” ■ Visible sign that gives comfort Conflict Theory ● Power and struggle for resources ● Burlal = shows important areas and shows boundaries ● Raedwald = buried at Sutton Hoo ○ Pagan ● Way of claiming territory ● Pagan mindset of bringing everything with you ● “The Hour of Our Death” by Phillippe Aries ○ History of European death attitudes ○ 4 themes ■ Awareness of the person ■ Defense against untamed nature ● We want to avoid death ■ Belief in afterlife ■ Belief in existence of evil and that death is related to it Early Christian Era ● “Good death” or “Tame Death” ● The hero accepts, prepares, waits ● The dead are sleepers ○ You’ve prepared for your death and accepted it ● A deep social acceptance ○ Death is more public ■ Happened to more people ● 1000s to 1100s ○ “One’s own death” ○ Salvation = individual trial ○ “What’s going to happen to me when I die?” ● 1300s ○ The Great Famine ○ The black plague ● The Great Famine might’ve weakened the immune system and made the Black Death worse ○ Cannibalism stories emerged ● ¼ of people in Europe died from the plague ● People realize that death can affect anyone at anytime ○ Social barriers were broken ● Heightened sense of vulnerability ○ Contemplate one’s mortality ● Population decrease, increase in need for labor ○ People have more options for work ○ Adds to individualism ● Social mobility ● People start to travel looking for higher paying labor ● Property ownership ● Reformation = enlightenment ○ Rationalism ○ Scientific reasoning ○ Death = unnatural, untimely, unsanitary ● Dead & dying separated from living ○ Medicine fights death ○ Dying moved to hospitals ■ Seen as scary ○ Burial grounds moved outside cities ■ “Home for the dead” ○ Memorializing people who died ● Victorian attitudes ○ Post-mortem photography ○ Hair made into jewelry = mourning jewelry ● Feeling of increased control over death ○ Management and prevention ○ Beginning of medicalization 20th Century ● The “avoided death” ● Reduction in overall death rates since 1900s ● Personal encounters with death are less frequent ● Seems more strange and alien


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