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Lecture Notes Chapter 8

Lecture Notes Chapter 8

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Published by Layla Matthews
ASB 353
ASB 353

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Published by: Layla Matthews on Oct 01, 2013
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial


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ASB 353-Death and Dying-Cross Cultural PerspectivesChapter 8-Last Rites: Funerals and Body DispositionThe outline for this chapter is:
Psychosocial Aspects of Last RitesAnnouncement of DeathMutual SupportImpetus for Coping with Loss
Funerals in the United StatesThe Rise of Professional Funeral ServicesCriticisms of Funeral PracticesNew Directions in Funerals and Body DispositionNew and Rediscovered Memorial Choices
Selecting Funeral ServicesFuneral Service ChargesComparing Costs-Professional Services-Embalming-Caskets-Outer Burial Containers-Facilities and Vehicles-Miscellaneous Charges-Direct Cremation and Immediate BurialsFuneral and Memorial Services
Body DispositionBurialCremationMemorializationLaws Regulating Body Disposition
Making Meaningful ChoicesThis chapter has so much practical information for all of us about funeralservices and prices. The 8
- 9
edition is so complete I have very little toadd. You know, in the history of mankind, it has only been the last 75 yearsare so that “other people” besides family that have buried individuals. Youwill learn in this chapter that as families became increasingly urbanized and
ASB 353-Death and Dying1Chapter 8Dr. Tina Olson
separated from their extended family, a funeral director was necessary to provide services.Different from our historical roots, today’s funerals focus primarily on thesurvivors.According to Pine, the funeral serves four social functions. The functions:1.serve to acknowledge the person’s death2.provide a setting for disposition of the dead body3.assists in the reorientation of bereaved to their lives4.demonstrates some relationships between bereaved and socialworldCharacteristics of funerals are in Table 8-1. Understanding these terms will be helpful whenever you assist others with funeral decisions.Have you experienced hearing about the death of a loved one or famous person? Where were you in the “widening circles of death notification” inFigure 8-1? How did you learn of the World Trade center tragedy? I think “the circles of death notification” is an interesting way to describe how theinformation about one’s death is distributed though I do think it needs tohave television, radio, and the internet in the initial circle. As you will read,the timeliness of death notification is important to survivors so that they cando their grief work in a healthy way. If you are part of an extended familywho has experienced a death or you will be working in the human service profession, asking the family, “has everyone that you want to be-- beennotified?” is always helpful.This section goes on to describe the importance of the funeral rituals to thefamily and friends of the deceased. Also, the history of funeral homeindustry in America and the types of the professional services includingembalming casket selection, cremation and burial vaults are quite detailed.We know that around the world, people have buried individuals with “gravegoods”. My own children and their 9 cousins wanted to include hand-drawn pictures and special toys in the casket when their beloved Grandfather died.Their grandmother said okay. So before the church service started for thefuneral, the grandchildren ages about 5-12, went down to the open casketand put in their love gifts. At the time, I did not equate this with the “gravegoods” that the Egyptians put in the mummy cases or that the Native
ASB 353-Death and Dying2Chapter 8Dr. Tina Olson
American Indians put on the pyre with their dead. So putting things in thecasket may not be only to comfort the dead but to comfort the giver as well.The first time I taught a death and dying course was in about 1982 before theFederal Trade Commission’s Funeral Rule in 1984 which required allfuneral homes to give families an itemized cost list. This can be very helpfulwhen a family is deciding what funeral home to use or how much to spend. Nationwide, the average cost is about $6,200.I thought the discussion of aftercare programs and for-profit problems wereof great interest. It is interesting to note that recently there have beenconflicts between the funeral staff and the family’s clergy and, therefore,some of the services have been moved back to the church from the funeralhome.Were you surprised to learn the four most common requests for Americansfor body disposition? These are:
earth burial
crypt burial
donation to scienceWhich is most common?Have you thought about your preferences or talked to your spouse or parentsabout their preferences for body disposition at death? I found theconversation with my husband a little awkward as he does not like to talk about death. Nevertheless, since we are both in our sixties, it was time.Types of burial seemed easier to talk about than actually going out and buying a “cemetery plot” which he was not ready to do. It seems odd toconsider buying a burial place and charging it to Visa! However, I feel probably like most parents, in that my incentive is to make the funeral process easier on my children when the time comes.I hope this chapter gives you some helpful information.Dr. Olson
ASB 353-Death and Dying3Chapter 8Dr. Tina Olson

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