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Edited by

T Chandler Haliburton & Caroline Edwards

Mortality, Dying and Death: Global Interdisciplinary Perspectives

Papers Presented at the 5th Global Conference Making Sense Of: Dying and Death
Monday 9th July - Thursday 12th July 2007 Mansfield College, Oxford, United Kingdom

Edited by T. Chandler Haliburton and Caroline Edwards

Oxford, United Kingdom

Series Editors Dr Robert Fisher Dr Nancy Mardas Billias

Advisory Board Dr Alejandro Cervantes-Carson Professor Margaret Chatterjee Dr Wayne Cristaudo Mira Crouch Dr Phil Fitzsimmons Dr Jones Irwin Professor Asa Kasher Owen Kelly Martin McGoldrick Revd Stephen Morris Professor John Parry Professor Peter Twohig Professor S Ram Vemuri Revd Dr Kenneth Wilson, O.B.E

Volume 53 A volume in the Probing the Boundaries project Making Sense Of: Dying and Death

Published by the Inter-Disciplinary Press Oxford, United Kingdom

First Edition 2008

8 Inter-Disciplinary Press 2008

All rights reserved. No part of this book may be reprinted or reproduced or utilised in any form or by any electronic, mechanical, or other means, now known or hereafter invented, including photocopying and recording, or in any information storage or retrieval system, without permission in writing from the publishers.

ISBN: 978-1-904710-52-3

Contents
Introduction PART I END OF LIFE CARE Hospital Experience When End of Life Becomes an Emergency: Dealing with Death and Dying in the Emergency Department Cara Bailey Is Religion Harmful to Patients at the End-of-Life? The Impact of Religion on End-of-Life Decision-Making Kate Coleman-Brueckheimer The Elderly The Return of the Grotesque Aged Female Body in Gunter von Hagens Autopsy: Life and Death (Channel 4) Joanne Garde-Hansen I dont want to be a burden to anybody: Older Peoples Preferences for Care at the End of Life Eileen Sutton and Joanna Coast PART II ATTITUDES AND CONCEPTS Conceptions of Death in Biography and Philosophy The Trauma of Death and the Silence of the Private Diary Nikos Falagkas and Georgia Kalogeropoulou Death and Ambition in Freuds The Interpretation of Dreams Liran Razinsky To Join the Army as a Volunteer During a War: Wittgenstein and the Conception of Death Rossella Pisconti Historical Attitudes Towards Death Coffin Nails and Column Inches: An Overview of the News-worthiness of Death in British and Irish Journalism Since the Turn of the Twentieth Century Mark Wehrly ix

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Mr. Moss's Skull: Changing Attitudes Toward Accidental Exhumation in Annapolis, Maryland, 1855-2006 Michael P. Parker The Politics of Death: Monarchy and Mortality in Late Medieval England, 1399-1413 Ciara - Marie Shevlin PART III SUFFERING AND BEREAVMENT Rituals and Bereavement Maniat Laments as Traditional Narratives: From the Performed to the Monumentalised Korina Giaxoglou The Parasocial Paradox: How Personalized Funerals Extend Our Relationships Beyond Death Terri Toles Patkin The Use of Physical Objects in Mourning by Midlife Daughters Laura Lewis and Judith Belle Brown Suffering, Suicide, Euthanasia The Ethics of Physician Assisted Suicide: A New Approach Lloyd Steffen When People Choose to Die: Does it Matter What We Call It? Gavin Fairbairn Intentional Death: Stoicism and the Debate on Suicide Petra Benske The Death of God and Suicide (Why, Why Not) in Modernist Literature T. Chandler Haliburton PART IV THE ARTS The Art of Dying The Temples at Burning Man Lori van Meter

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The Art of Dying Helen Ennis Representations of the Infamous or Anonymous Dead: Gerhard Richters Photopaintings and Jeffrey Silverthornes Photographs Randall van Schepen Literature and Death Death and Repetition: A Literary Approach Francisc Szekely Half in Love with Easeful Death: Death in The Loved One and Love Among the Ruins Elisa Morera de la Vall Familiarising Death in Fiction: Utopia, Time and Transcendence in Jim Craces Being Dead and Graham Swifts Last Orders Caroline Edwards Life Without A Trace: Transforming Pain Into A Poem Julieta C. Mallari Memorial and Mourning: Eli Mandel and the Yizkor Books Christian Riegel Cinema and Death Not a day has gone by in my life when I haven't thought about death - Ingmar Bergman Ananya Ghoshal I am Dead: Notes on Cinema's Refutation of Time Jan Holmberg A Chance to Live Forever?: Cloning and Personal Survival in The 6th Day Rudolph Glitz

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Notes on Contributors

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Introduction
Are you saying death adapts? It eludes our attempts to reason with it? Don DeLillo1

Whether death is inherently paradoxical or not, it harbours several seemingly irresolvable contradictions and is often the subject of great anxiety. Its very announcement is marked by an absence, yet we seem at a loss to find an alternative mark of relativism that is more deserving or more gratifying. Perhaps this is the rare quality of death which enables it to bring us together while at the same time reaffirming our necessary separateness. Death is an intimacy that reveals a distance; the distance that separates us from one another and perhaps even from our own selves. Not surprisingly then, the treatment of death - if there can be such a thing - has historically been interdisciplinary and international. It is in this tradition that the contributors to this volume were drawn, by death and by life, to the 5th instalment in the Making Sense of Dying and Death conference series. Spanning across three days in July of 2007, the conference was held at Mansfield College, Oxford, and brought together presenters and attendees from various backgrounds: philosophers, historians, literary scholars, healthcare professionals, psychologists, sociologists, and artists. The goal was to examine the links between the living and the dead from these various perspectives. It was hoped that the diverse quality of the discussion generated would shed new light on the oft-avoided subjects that surround the processes of dying and death. One such process, end of life care giving, was addressed by Cara Bailey and Kate Coleman-Brueckheimer in their respective papers. The former explored end of life care in the Emergency Department from the perspectives of both the dying and hospital staff. Bailey asserted that more people than ever before are spending the end of their life in the acute hospital setting. She then considered the implications of this phenomenon and the recent initiatives designed to address it. The difficult responsibilities of staff treating the dying and the bereaved were shown to be case-specific and often unpredictable. For example, as Coleman-Bruekheimer outlined, religious affiliation and/or religiosity affects preferences for end of life treatments especially those classifiable as life-sustaining interventions. Offering an extensive review of previous studies, Coleman-Bruekheimer revealed how the already difficult decision-making process at the end of life is often made more strenuous by religious considerations. More secular but no less influential concerns of the elderly were examined by Eileen Sutton and Joanna Coast. They have devoted an ongoing study to identifying the essential features of quality of dying and

Introduction

______________________________________________________________ preferences for end of life care. One of the findings they shared was older peoples desire not to be a burden on their loved ones and care-givers during the end of their lives. This relates to the issue of perception - how others observe and perceive aging and death - which emerged as a recurring theme throughout the conference. Joanne Garde-Hansen used the Channel 4 series Autopsy: Life and Death featuring the work of German anatomist Gunter von Hagen to consider mediated and culturally constructed perceptions of, specifically, the aged female body. Discussion then developed around the point of conflict where perception and construction encounter the physical. The psychological encounters with death were likewise an issue of much deliberation. Nikos Falagkas and Georgia Kalogeropoulou used entries from George Seferiss private diaries to explore how the bereaved respond both emotionally and temporally - to the trauma of death. A similar psychoanalytical approach was employed by Liran Razinsky whose paper focused on the relationship between ambition and the notion of death as it appears in Freuds The Interpretation of Dreams. Taking a more philosophical approach, Rosella Pisconti referred to Wittgenstein specifically his conception of death - to offer a rationale for volunteer wartime enlistment. Combined, the papers of Falagkas and Kalogeropoulou, Razinsky, and Pisconti highlighted the differing notions of death that have informed critical theory over time. In comparison, the changes in popular attitudes toward death since the late medieval period were the subject of papers by Mark Wehrly, Michael P. Parker and Ciara-Marie Shevlin. Wehrly focused on British and Irish journalism to reveal an increased public appetite for sensational and even violent news during the twentieth century. This infatuation with death-spectacle contrasts with an increased sacralisation of remains, the physical truth of death, as observed by Parker. Exhumation, Parker argues, has changed through history - from a rare occurrence that was essentially inconsequential, to one of increasing controversy and politicization as urban areas are re-developed. Ciara-Marie Shevlin, by contrast, looks back to late medieval England and the mysterious death/murder of Richard II to analyse the historiography of articulations of grief. Shevlin argues that the death of a monarch can instigate significant social action (the most notorious recent example being Princess Diana), particularly when conspiracy theories are involved. In addition to the public treatment of dying and death, the personal experience of loss was given much attention. From the compiling of traditional Greek narratives of lament to the rise of theme-based funerals in America, Korina Giaxoglou and Terri Toles Patkin respectively explored the processes of monumentalisation and commodified remembrance. One of the concerns raised was the implications of such performative ritualisation. It was suggested that the dynamic quality of lament and bereavement may in

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______________________________________________________________ fact be jeopardized by this process. However, as Laura Lewis revealed, there are cases when a physical object can aid in the mourning process. Specifically, her qualitative study of women in mid-life who had unexpectedly lost their mothers revealed that certain objects can contribute to a dynamic and even creative mourning process. Changing attitudes toward death and differing preferences for end of life care were very much integral to the discussion of suffering, suicide, and euthanasia. The ethical dimension of this issue was addressed by Lloyd Steffen who linked todays rare instances of authorized euthanasia to the just war tradition. Through this connection, Steffen accessed what he argued was a practical mode of ethical reasoning that avoids the problems associated with Kantian absolutism and utilitarian relativity regarding principles. Approaching the issue from an entirely different perspective, Gavin Fairbairn focused on the language used when people choose to end their life. Ultimately, he argued against the use of the term assisted suicide as it does not clearly indicate (or reflect) the conditions under which a person has chosen to die. The importance of the circumstances surrounding suicide was also emphasized by Petra Benske - her examination of Hellenistic philosophy and Stoicism led her to conclude that in certain contexts suicide becomes a genuinely altruistic and even political gesture. Again, her paper exemplified that attitudes toward suicide have been inconstant over time. This was further evidenced by T. Chandler Haliburton, whose paper focused specifically on the modernist era and argued that the changing treatment of suicide during the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries was reflected in the works of art produced during that period. This link between death and the arts was another subject that received much attention over the course of the three day conference. Lori van Meters paper on the Burning Man project explored the creation - and destruction - of art as a means of memorialising the deceased and expressing grief. The papers of Helen Ennis and Randall van Schepen focused on the medium of photography and how it juxtaposes the living viewer (or artist) and the dying or dead subject. They emphasized how the ability of art to capture an experience is especially paradoxical when the experience it preserves is that of death itself. In this same way, the narrative of mourning becomes at once an embalming and creative process. As Francisc Szekely argued, the mourner creates the illusion of a happy-ending to a narrative which is necessarily sad. It was novelist Evelyn Waughs awareness of this narrative approach to death that Elisa Morera de la Vall highlighted in her study of The Loved One. However, in Love Among the Ruins, de la Vall argued, Waugh depicts a dystopian society that has lost all hope and therefore does not avoid or beautify death, but rather devalues and embraces it. In contrast with Waughs dystopian vision of death and its nullifying impact upon hope, Caroline Edwards asserted that the final negativity of death can

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______________________________________________________________ be overcome at a narrative level through Utopian modes of storytelling. She argued that the contemporary denial of death is countered in novels that neutralise deaths threatening potential to overturn social and symbolic order, refiguring the dead body as the site of mediations between nature and culture that transcend the temporal finality of death. This, in turn, was partly contrasted by the analysis of Kapampangan poet Jose Gallardos poem Life without a Trace offered by Julieta C. Mallari. Mallari observed a shift in the poets worldview as he neared death that she argued was suggestive of the writers marginalized status relative to his art. Paradoxically, the finality of death consumed Gallardos artistic impulse while the produced art transcended both that finality and the fatal predicament of the artist himself. Again, an altruistic (separate from self or selves) dimension of death emerged regardless of the artists (in this case, the dyers) intentions. As such, this returns the experience of death to the communal realm - at least after the fact. This was the focus of Christian Riegels examination of the work of Canadian poet Eli Mandel. Through the textualization of private grief, Riegel suggested, the mourning process becomes a public, communal one. The conference ended with a consideration of mass media, specifically cinema. Ananya Ghoshal set the tone for discussion, examining the darker suggestions of film director, Ingmar Bergman, whose work seems to beg the ultimate question, why live at all? Jan Holmberg developed this line of inquiry, citing of the first ever movie review: when these contrivances [meaning the cinmatographe] are in the hands of the public, then death will no longer be absolute, final. Referring to instances when characters on screen assert that they are dead, Holmberg linked the indeterminable temporality of cinema to the Heideggerian determination of the human condition as that of a being-to-death. At the same time, the actively reproductive quality of the filmic medium lends itself to a consideration of human cloning as a means of denying death. Finally, Rudolph Glitz considered the philosophical (and science-fictional) implications of the assumed feasibility of human cloning as they inform the construction of cinematic death-defying and death-indifferent villains. It was these unanswered and unanswerable questions surrounding dying and death that the attendees were left with as the discussion drew to a close. Still, while some of these inquiries are as old as death itself, the 5th instalment in the Making Sense of Dying and Death conference series succeeded in introducing new questions to the highly interdisciplinary field of dying and death. Once more, death had brought us together only to keep us apart. Yet though it must be that each separates in the pursuance of death, we shall no doubt return again in this communal inquiry and celebration. Why? Simply because as humans we demand of death what we demand of everything else: that it be reasonable.

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______________________________________________________________ T. Chandler Haliburton and Caroline Edwards.

Notes
1

D. DeLillo, White Noise: Text and Criticism, ed. M. Osteen, Penguin Books, New York, 1998, p. 308.

PART I END OF LIFE CARE

Hospital Experience

When End of Life Becomes an Emergency: Dealing with Death and Dying in the Emergency Department Cara Bailey, RGN, MN.

Abstract The Emergency Department (ED) is witness to many different kinds of death. Living in an age of advanced technology, it is sometimes possible to save life that may be deemed unworthy of life at costs which are far greater than just financial. The NHS End of Life Care Programme aims to improve end of life care and provide training for staff. Existing strategies are difficult to apply to the ED because of its unpredictable and complex nature. They fail to acknowledge the needs of the bereaved and the needs of the staff dealing with death as routine. This lack of support along with the fear of litigation over end of life decision making is known to be a major source of occupational stress. The paper draws on preliminary findings from work in progress exploring end of life care in the ED from the perspectives of staff, patients and the bereaved. It looks at the business of dealing with death in the emergency environment where technology has provided so many options, at a time when more people than ever before are spending the end of their life in the acute hospital setting.

Keywords End of Life Care, Dying in Hospital, Sudden Death, Emergency Department, Bereavement, Staff Perceptions.

A dying man needs to die, as a sleepy man needs to sleep, and there comes a time when it is wrong, as well as useless, to resist.1 Given that the process of dying is comparable for all humans at a physiological level, it is remarkable and often heartrending that the experience can be so different on an individual basis. Late modernity2 offers a range of scenarios in which death occurs which has changed from previous generations. In England during the early 20th century, the home was the place of death where your last days were spent with your family at your bedside. Over time attitudes towards death and dying have changed and despite the emergence and development of Palliative and Hospice Care, the

When End of Life Becomes an Emergency

______________________________________________________________ location of death has moved with a significant shift from the community to hospitals and care homes.3 Modern society is characterised by an ageing population where more people than ever before are living longer. Over the last 20 years the number of people aged 85 and over has nearly doubled. It is estimated that the number of people aged 60 and over is projected to increase from 12 million in 2001 to 18.6 million in 2031.4 However, one only needs to walk onto a hospital ward to suggest that the extra years have not necessarily been lived in good health. Today, over 66% of patients die in hospital.5 Within society, we are dying for longer with less social support but with higher expectations than ever before.6 Given the increasing life expectancy, and hence, the frequency of death among the old and very old, it is inevitable that many people will require institutional care in the last stages of their life. Despite patient concerns of burden,7 there is a widespread assumption of both policy makers and professionals that home is the preferred place of death for the majority. Evidence suggests that preferences can and do change over time often in response to changing symptoms and the distress of patients or family caregivers.8 Older people living in nursing homes are frequently transferred to the ED for costly medical evaluations9 questioning the appropriateness of transfer at the end of life10 even with the existence of an advanced directive.11 Hospices make a valuable contribution to end of life care, but they currently provide for just 4% of the total number of deaths.12 Recent studies suggest that institutions such as hospitals and nursing homes, will remain the most likely place of death for majority of the Western population.13 More than one third of people dying within a hospital do so within the first few hours of being admitted to hospital14 with many of these deaths occurring within the ED.15 There is an increasing suspicion that the majority who die in acute hospitals have a bad experience16 and despite the common occurrence of death across all healthcare settings, care at the end of life continues to be reported as poor.17 Qualitative research findings also suggest that bereaved relatives care needs are not always recognised or adequately addressed.18 The additional complications associated with the emergency patient suggest that in ED these needs are more difficult for healthcare staff to address. The NHS End of Life Care Programme19 is part of an overall strategy to give people greater choice in their place of care and death. It aims to reduce the number of emergency admissions to acute care for those who wish to die at home and reduce the number of patients transferred from care homes to acute care in the last week of their life. Several documents have been released to help healthcare professionals provide good end of life care. Whilst evaluations of the programme show the positive impact of strategies like the Liverpool Care Pathway which aims to bring a hospice model of care

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______________________________________________________________ of dying into the acute hospital20 their use with the emergency context is more complex. During my own observational research at a large ED, it was evident to see that there was a lack of recognition amongst staff of models like the Pathway for the Dying and whilst some staff knew they existed, patients were very rarely put on the pathway in the ED. The factors involved in their reluctance to put emergency patients on the pathway included lack of information, constraints of time, recognition and acceptance of imminence leading to the further claim that such strategies are non-transferable to emergency care. Several staff were unaware of the pathway and those that knew about it were still reluctant to use it as they were unsure of how and what had to be done. Those who did know about it, tended to be in a senior nursing position or attached to the specialist bereavement group in the department. Staff had not received any training on implementing the pathway and were not encouraged to use it. Issues of time are important in relation to decision making in ED. Staff are called upon to make rapid decisions often with relatively little knowledge, with the added pressure of the latest event being sudden and often unexpected. Relatives of patients often have limited time to prepare for their loss and hence risk the possibility of an abnormal grief reaction.21 One observation illustrates this dilemma which is not an uncommon situation within the ED: Mary had been living in a nursing home following a series of strokes over the past two years. She had been brought into the ED having been found on the floor by carers that morning. On examination, her level of consciousness was lower than normal and she was having difficulty breathing. The ED doctor spoke to Marys family about her prognosis, telling them that in the event of her heart stopping it would be very unlikely she would recover and given this view it would be aggressive and undignified to attempt CPR if she did have an arrest. The family were very reluctant to agree with the doctor and asked for everything at this stage to be done. The doctor reiterated Marys poor prognosis and said that the medical decision not to resuscitate would overrule but she would like them to be involved as much as possible with the final decision. The sister caring for Mary spoke to the rest of the emergency team about putting Mary on the care of the dying pathway, but given the families reluctance it was refuted. Mary was cannulated, given intravenous fluids and intravenous antibiotics and transferred to the medical ward. The DNR order was written and authorised.

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______________________________________________________________ Whilst Mary met the criteria to go on the pathway, family refusal meant she did not receive the most appropriate care. The late implementation of end-oflife management plans and the lack of consistency which plans like the pathway for the dying avoids can lead to patients being inappropriately subjected to medical interventions and investigations up to their time of death.22 Despite, the DNR being written, Mary was still receiving active treatment and frequent investigation which is common. The timing of end of life decisions is crucial to the co-ordination and delivery of care. In Marys case, the lack of agreement led to inconsistencies and as Middlewood23 may argue a lack of co-ordination of therapeutic goals, a reliance on euphemism to indicate approaching death, and a lack of recognition of the role of palliative care clinicians in the acute hospital environment. The early decisions that could have been made within the ED may have led to a more comfortable last few days of life for Mary and her family to come to terms with her death and say their goodbyes in their own time. Several factors are exacerbated in Marys case given the sudden, unexpected crisis that had brought her into hospital. As a result, the family were initially reluctant to accept their mothers imminent death, they lacked the time to consider the consequences of treatment and had expectations of the emergency team to do everything they could to save her life. Whilst models of end of life and palliative care aim to regard dying as a normal process24 and provide space to address issues on an emotional and spiritual level, dilemmas are frequently created as in Marys case when end of life becomes an emergency. Whilst there is no exact definition of end of life care, it is usually referred to by healthcare professionals about the care of a person during the last part of their life, from the point at which it has become clear that the person is in a progressive state of decline.25 It is based on similar principles of palliative and supportive care facing the problems associated with lifethreatening illness through the prevention and relief of suffering by means of early identification and impeccable assessment and treatment of pain and other problems, physical, psychosocial and spiritual.26 In contrast, the Emergency Department (ED) or Room (ER as it sometimes referred) is the section of a health care facility intended to provide rapid treatment for victims of sudden illness or trauma. In the UK the hospital ED provides medical care for members of the public who are suddenly taken ill, or believe they are ill. Emergency staff provide care to patients complaining about a wide spectrum of acute medical, surgical and psychological conditions. The ED staff team is in a constant state of readiness for people who have an unexpected illness or injury, or who have a sudden change in a chronic condition. Whilst both specialities aim for control of pain and to alleviate further suffering or distress, the ED still carries the societal expectation of cure.27 In comparison to specialist palliative care units, the ED is not set up to

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______________________________________________________________ care for the dying, despite it being a place in the healthcare system that many patients are brought to in the last days or hours of their life. Systematic reviews show that hospital palliative care teams do improve the care of the dying28 and whilst the hospital has a well established palliative care team, the ED very rarely access their advice or services. Cassel and Lyckholm29 explored the relationship between palliative care services and ED and identified that a sizeable portion of palliative care appropriate patients can be identified upon arrival in the ED and by doing so there is a significant reduction in cost and intensive care unit misuse, while providing excellent symptom management. The lack of clarity over definitions of palliative, supportive and end of life care in relation to the ED means that currently there is very little support offering interventions to address end of life care goals.30 Despite the presenting complaint, the ED aims for rapid stabilisation from which the patient can be transferred to other areas of the healthcare system, with this comes routine and this is notable even with patients who are at the end of their life. A common theme running through the observations in the ED is the noticeable routine that staff perform when a patient presents. All patients requiring emergency or urgent assessment go to the resuscitation room. All emergency and very urgent cases are seen by a team including at least one senior doctor, one junior doctor, one or two nurses, one EDA and the sister in charge of the unit. Life support algorithms are in place to ensure rapid and accurate assessment and treatment often with limited information that they have available at the time. One consultant told me that: Often resuscitations are made very difficult for the staff because of the lack of information we have. It is just collecting little bits of noise, some information from the ambulance crew some from the police, just bits of noise that we have to use to make the picture and sense of what has happened. In my observations, resuscitation becomes a conveyor belt of routine and protocol. Consequently, end of life decision making has to break this conveyor belt at some point. The point at which this is recognised and voiced is fundamental to both the dignity for the patient, the impact upon the bereaved and the administration of care from the emergency team to the dying patient, the relatives and the rest of the patients in the department. One incident illustrates this significantly: A patient was brought into the ED who had collapsed and had been down for forty minutes prior to the ambulance arriving. The patient was brought into the ED in cardiac

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______________________________________________________________ arrest with full resuscitation underway. The patient had been defibrillated three times and given three cycles of adrenaline. The Doctor in charge of the resuscitation continued to ask for further drugs and further cycles of CPR. Out loud he said this patients brain is dead but continued to actively resuscitate. After an hour of CPR in the ED, he said this patients heart is dead, his brain is dead, does everyone agree? The resuscitation was stopped and the patient was pronounced dead. Following the resuscitation I spoke to two nurses who had been involved in the resuscitation. Both were surprised the resuscitation had lasted so long, and told me that there was no way this man could have come round with any quality of life. Another doctor told me that despite the Dr in charge being excellent clinically and doing everything by the book during this resuscitation he would not have gone on as long as that. The cerebral cortex (the part of the brain that controls personality and the capacity to experience) is redundant after being starved of oxygen for four to six minutes. This mans brain had not received oxygen for forty minutes before resuscitation was commenced. The ambulance crew had correctly followed advanced life support algorithm and through the use of advanced technology, the emergency team were able to change his heart rhythm to one compatible with life. During my observations, it became apparent to me and to several members of the resuscitation team that this man was unlikely to recover. In the slight chance that he would recover from the resuscitation he would be in a persistent vegetative state, his personality and capacity to be who he was had been lost. Yet the resuscitation continued utilising all the possible technology to attempt to save his life. Major shifts in patterns of disease and treatment have affected the way in which practitioners are now exposed to the dying process.31 Whilst an ageing society brings with it a broad spectrum of chronic diseases, advances in knowledge and technology mean that we are saving life that once could not be saved. The ED is the first point of call during a medical emergency and it is full of modern machines; defibrillators, artificial ventilation equipment, rapid infusion sets and more recently the mechanical chest compression system. There is an expectation upon emergency staff that have access and knowledge of such machines that systemically the body can be stabilised and hence life can be prolonged. But at some stage we have to question why and what for? Dealing with death and caring for the dying and the bereaved on a regular basis is likely to present both professional and personal challenges.32 Over time, it is known to be a source of occupational stress.33 Comparative studies have shown that hospice staff have lower levels of death anxiety in

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______________________________________________________________ contrast to hospital nurses who are known to exhibit high levels of death anxiety and a reluctance to spend time with dying patients and the bereaved.34 Emergency staff are most likely to be exposed to sudden, unexpected and traumatic deaths which in addition to other stressors such as risks of violence, the unpredictable nature and overcrowding contribute to the stressful environment of working in the ED. As Timmermans35 states, resuscitative efforts are emergencies for relatives and patients and routines for medical professionals. The difficulties, dangers and draining nature of the emotional work associated with death upon staff are implicit although submerged beneath the business of body work and practicalities of getting the job done.36 Burnout among nurses and physicians working in emergency departments has only been brought to the attention of researchers recently. Timmermans37 found that ED clinicians coped with stress by distancing themselves emotionally from the dying patient during resuscitation attempts. Drawing on my own observations it is possible to see behaviours related to withdrawal and avoidance in relation to caring for the dying and their relatives. Once a resuscitation has been called (stopped and death declared), the majority of the resuscitation team move away from the patient leaving maybe one or two nurses to carry out last offices. It is at this point that the priority of care moves to the bereaved relatives. Whilst some may argue that bereavement care should be established well before the death of a patient, this is not possible in the ED where deaths many deaths are unexpected and those that are expected are often due to a sudden change or rapid deterioration. For many this will be the first contact with relatives at a point where staff are informing them of their loved ones death. There is rarely any subsequent support of the type recommended by the hospice movement yet, the impact of a sudden death on relatives is often more pronounced than that of a death after a prolonged illness.38 It is evident to see that some staff members find the care of bereaved relatives a rewarding part of their job yet others avoid it at all costs asking other members of staff to talk to relatives and offer bereavement advice. One staff nurse told me that despite having worked in the ED for several years she had never had to tell relatives that their loved one had died and always got her senior to do it. She explained to me: The problem is I have never had to do it, I always do this (referring to the patient) and get the Sister in charge to go (to the relatives room). It would be different if I had just started I could say to someone but not now. Its never a good time for it to be the first time, it would be like I was practicing and thats not fair when they have just lost their mother or father.

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______________________________________________________________ This staff nurse lacked the confidence to address her issues with talking to bereaved families and felt as if she could not ask for help from her colleagues given her experience and time in the department, instead she avoided the situation of getting involved. Some staff members talked about their involvement with the bereaved family as a rewarding part of work and others referred to it being a fundamental part in their ability to cope with their own caregiver grief and move on to other patients: Although it is hard I find it not good that is not the right word but I find it almost like closure on my part. The way in which individual staff members treat the deceased is an important observation and an indication of how they cope with the exposure to death which enables them to move on and continue providing care to other patients in the department. Within the ED in which the research is being conducted, the Emergency Department Assistants (EDA) are heavily involved in end of life care; assisting with last offices, transferring the deceased to the mortuary and often looking after the bereaved family in the ED and en route to the chapel. One EDA told me that people deal with it differently but she still thinks of them as a patient: I dont mind taking patients to the mortuary, they are still patients to me not bodies, some people call them bodies but to me they are patients, I talk to them still when we are moving them and that. But then, I know I have done my job and when you get back there are other people that you need you in the department, other patients that need you to be happy and smiling and you need to get on with that. She described it as having to deal with it in order to be able to do the job and provide care for the rest of the patients in need of it. She compared it to working on a ward saying that as a nurse on a general ward having lost a patient cant take that home with them its similar for us, even if we have not known them and their family that long. Whilst the reactions are different for individual staff, their actions and behaviours are seeking a shared sense of closure that needs to occur in order to move on in their working and personal life. The behaviours are individual and something I refer to as Comfort Traits: the personal characteristics of the healthcare professional that enables them to approach death and dying as a normal process of life. Within the ED, death is frequently premature and often traumatic yet these personal characteristics assist in their professional role enabling them to provide care to the dying; holistic care that comforts their suffering promotes their dignity and supports them and their family through the last days or hours of life. These traits enable the healthcare professional to recognise imminence

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______________________________________________________________ despite the emergency context and talk openly and honestly to the patient and their family about their end of life choices. Such traits, enable the professional to provide support to the bereaved family in a culture where time is restricted and priorities allocate tasks. Finally, these traits help them to acknowledge their own grief and deal with it in an appropriate manner to enable them move on to their next patient requiring their assessment, clinical knowledge and support. The paper has discussed some of the issues raised from conducting informed observation in a busy ED in a large teaching hospital. This is the first part of a larger doctorate study exploring end of life care in the ED from the perspectives of emergency staff; patients with terminal and life threatening conditions, their families and the bereaved. Emergency staff working in the ED care for the dying and bereaved as an everyday routine within their job and face death of all types and dying at various stages. Whilst the majority of society will die in hospital, the reports of end of life care are unsatisfactory. A major obstacle to satisfactory end-of-life care is the mismatch between expectations and reality.39 Advances in medical technology and knowledge means that life can now be sustained and prolonged in cases which previously would have led to death. The ED is viewed by society and portrayed in the media as a place where life saving work is conducted leading to a false sense of success of resuscitation procedures. Whilst, the NHS end of life care programme aims to address inconsistencies previously raised about lack of education in pre and post registration programmes and support staff who care for the dying, the products from the programme released so far are inappropriate to the unpredictable nature of the ED and lack the acknowledgement of staff needs in relation to occupational stress and the risk of burnout. Whilst strategies like the Liverpool Care Pathway for the dying can be adapted and used with a positive effect on the wards, their use in the ED is restricted by lack of knowledge and training, timing and recognition of imminence. The routine involved in resuscitations, makes end of life decision making more complex as clinicians concern themselves with fears of litigation and the impact that advanced technologies will sustain and prolong life but the for what? question has to be asked. Staff members working in emergency care face many work related pressures in addition to the stresses associated with caring for the dying and bereaved. Without adequate support strategies in place, research shows that staff are at risk of burnout and withdrawal from practice. As the observations have highlighted, there is a certain individual that can talk openly to a dying patient about their wishes at the end of life and support a bereaved mother through the tragic death of her young son, and return to her other patients requiring her clinical skill, judgement and support. Whilst education strategies need a more thorough review in relation to consistency and

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When End of Life Becomes an Emergency

______________________________________________________________ accuracy, this is far deeper than what people can be taught. In the words of Kubler-Ross: Those who have the strength and the love to sit with a dying patient in the silence that goes beyond words will know that this moment is neither frightening nor painful, but a peaceful cessation of the functioning of the body.40 The personal characteristics or comfort traits that enable that person to provide strength in a time of tragedy and great loss, also need to cope with their own grief after willingly giving themselves at times of intense intimacy. Certain characteristics or details of patients can remind them of their own immortality or that of their parents or the tragedy of losing a child or sibling opening old wounds or suggesting possible personal scenarios.41 Recent strategies to bring the hospice philosophy into acute care have lacked consideration for the additional pressures of the ED; the open door to the rest of the hospital where the majority of people will die. Because of this, there is a need to broaden the focus beyond palliative care42 and at a macro level. As the discussion has shown, there are some dilemmas when end of life becomes an emergency that can be handled effectively by the individual providing the care, yet the problems associated with this should be a global issue for public health and healthcare systems43 and I would argue further; an issue within mainstream education and even society to address the fact that death is inevitable and despite the temptation to save life at all costs; these costs are sometimes more than just financial. I close with the words of Stewart Alsop an American newspaper columnist and political analyst who suffered with leukaemia and lost his battle to Cancer in 1974: A dying man needs to die, as a sleepy man needs to sleep, and there comes a time when it is wrong, as well as useless, to resist.44

Notes
1

S. Alsop (1914-1974), qtd in R. C. Sproul, Surprised by Suffering, William Tyndale Publishers, Wheaton, Illinois, 1989, p. 46. 2 A. Giddens, The Consequences of Modernity, Stanford University Press, Stanford, California, 1991.

Cara Bailey

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______________________________________________________________
3

S. Ahmad and M. S. OMahony, Where Older People Die: A Retrospective Population-Based Study, Qualitative Journal Medicine, vol. 98 (12), 2005, pp. 865-870. 4 Office of National Statistics, Annual Review of the Registrar General on Deaths in England and Wales, 2006, retrieved 14 December 2007, <www.statistics.gov.uk/downloads/theme_health/>. 5 Office of National Statistics, Annual Review of the Registrar General on Deaths in England and Wales, 2005, retrieved 14 December 2007, <www.statistics.gov.uk/downloads/theme_health/>. 6 S. Kite, Upstream From Death, Journal Royal Society of Medicine, Vol. 95, 2002, pp. 529-530. 7 M. Gott, J. Seymour et al., Older Peoples Views About Home as a Place of Care at the End of Life, Palliative Medicine, vol.18 (5), 2004, pp. 460-7; C. Thomas and S. M. Morris, Place of Death: Preferences Among Cancer Patients and Their Carers, Social Science and Medicine, vol. 58, 2004, pp. 2431-2444; K. McCall and A. Rice, What Influences Decisions Around the Place of Care for Terminally Ill Cancer Patients?, International Journal of Palliative Nursing, vol.11, 2005, pp. 541-7; C. Thomas, The Place of Death of Cancer Patients: Can Qualitative Data Add to Known Factors?, Social Science and Medicine, vol. 60, 2005, pp. 2597-2607. 8 C. Thomas and S. M. Morris, op. cit.; K. McCall and A. Rice, op. cit.; C. Thomas, op. cit. 9 R. J. Ackermann, K. A. Kemle et al., Emergency Department Use by Nursing Home Residents, Annals of Emergency Medicine, vol. 31, 1998, p. 749. 10 D. Saliba, R. Kington et al., Appropriateness of the Decision to Transfer Nursing Facility Residents to the Hospital, Journal of Geriatric Society, 2000, vol. 48, pp. 154-163. 11 J. Finn and L. Flicker, Interface Between Residential Aged Care Facilities and a Teaching Hospital Emergency Department in Western Australia, Medical Journal of Australia, vol. 184 (9), 2006, pp. 432-435. 12 Office National Statistics, op. cit. 13 S. Ahmad and M. S. OMahony, op. cit.; J. Costello, Dying Well: Nurses Experiences of Good and Bad Deaths in Hospital, Journal of Advanced Nursing, vol. 54 (5), 2006, pp. 594-601. 14 D. W. Yates, G. Ellison and S. McGuiness, Care of the Suddenly Bereaved, British Medical Journal, vol. 301, 1990, pp. 2931. 15 R. J. Parris, J. Schlosenberg, C. Stanley, S. Maurice and S. F. J. Clarke, Emergency Department Follow-Up of Bereaved Relatives: An Audit of One Particular Service, Emergency Medical Journal, vol. 24, 2007, pp. 339342.

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When End of Life Becomes an Emergency

______________________________________________________________
16

R. Smith, A Good Death, British Medical Journal. Vol. 320, 2000, pp. 129-130. 17 M. Mills and H. Davies, Care of Dying Patients in Hospital, British Medical Journal, vol. 309, 1994, pp. 583-6; D. Field, Special Not Different: General Practitioners Accounts of Their Care of Dying People, Social Science and Medicine, vol. 46 (9), 1998, pp. 1111-20; S. Middlewood, Dying in Hospital Medical Failure or Natural Outcome?, Journal of Pain and Symptom Management, vol. 22 (6), 2001, pp. 1035-1041. 18 S. Silvey, Bereavement Care in Hospitals, Bereavement Care, vol. 9, 1990, pp. 1718; I. Finlay and D. Dallimore, Your Child is Dead, British Medical Journal, vol. 302, 1991, pp. 524-1525; R. Davidhiza and B. Kirk, Emergency Room Nurses: Helping Families Cope with Sudden Death, The Journal of Practical Nursing, vol. 43 (6), 1993, pp. 14-19. 19 Department of Health, Our Health, Our Care, Our Say: A New Direction for Community Services, Department of Health, London, 2006. 20 B. A. Jack, M. Gambles, D. Murphy and J. E. Ellershaw, Nurses Perceptions of the Liverpool Care Pathway for the Dying Patient in the Acute Hospital Setting, International Journal of Palliative Nursing, vol. 9 (9), 2003, p. 375; J. Hockley and B. Dewar, Promoting End-of-Life Care in Nursing Homes Using an Integrated Care Pathway for the Last Days of Life, Journal of Research in Nursing, vol. 10 (2), 2005, pp. 135-152. Nottingham University Hospitals Website, National Health Service Trust, 2007, retrieved 14 December 2007, <www.nuh.nhs.uk>. 21 R. J. Parris, et al., op. cit. 22 Middlewood, op. cit. 23 Ibid. 24 D. Doyle and G. W. C. Hanks, Oxford Textbook of Palliative Medicine, Oxford University Press, New York, 1998. 25 M. Watson, C. Lucas, A. Hoy and I. Back, eds., Oxford Handbook of Palliative Care, Oxford University Press, London, 2005. 26 World Health Organisation, WHO Definition of Palliative Care, 2006, retrieved 7 March 2006, <http://www.who.int/cancer/palliative/en/>. 27 E. Golub, The Limits of Medicine-How Science Shapes Our Hope for the Cure, Times Books, New York, 1994; E. MacPhail, Overview of Emergency Nursing, in L. Newberry, Sheehy's Emergency Nursing: Principles and Practice, Mosby, St Lois, 1998, pp. 3-7; S. Timmermans, Death Brokering: Constructing Culturally Appropriate Deaths, Sociology of Health and Illness, vol. 27 (7), 2005, pp. 93-1013.

Cara Bailey

17

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28

I. J. Higginson, Palliative Care and Progressive Illness, The Development Forum, 2002, retrieved 14 December 2007, <www.devforum.org.uk/uploads/palliative_care_irene_higginson>. 29 J. B. Cassel and L. J. Lyckholm, Identifying Palliative Care Needs in the Emergency Department: Better Care, Lower Cost, Academic Emergency Medicine, vol. 13 (5), 2006, p. 96. 30 G. K. Chan, End-of-Life and Palliative Care in the Emergency Department: A Call for Research, Education, Policy and Improved Practice in This Frontier Area, Journal of Emergency Nursing, vol. 32 (1), 2006, p. 101. 31 L. F. Degner and C. M. Gow, Evaluations of Death Education in Nursing: A Critical Review, Cancer Nursing, vol. 11 (3), 1988, pp. 151-9. 32 S. A. Dean, S. J. Payne and C. Kalus, A Comparative Study of Death Anxiety in Hospice and Emergency Nurses, Journal of Advanced Nursing, vol. 28 (4), 1998, pp. 700706. 33 A. Giddens, op. cit. 34 Dean and Payne, op. cit.; M. Carr and M. Merriman, Comparison of Death Attitudes Among Hospice Workers and Health Care Professionals in Other Settings, Omega, vol. 32 (4), 1996, pp. 387-301. 35 S. Timmermans, Sudden Death and the Myth of CPR, Temple University Press, Philadelphia, 1999. 36 T. A. Brosche, Death, Dying, and the ICU Nurse, Dimensions of Critical Care Nursing, vol. 22 (4), 2003, pp. 173179; S. Page and L. Meerabeau, Nurses Accounts of Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation, Journal of Advanced Nursing, vol. 24, 1996, pp. 317325. 37 Timmermans, 1999, op. cit. 38 Yates, op. cit. 39 Kite, op. cit. 40 E. Kubler-Ross, On Death and Dying, The Macmillan Company, New York, 1969. 41 B. McNamara, C. Waddell and M. Colvin, Threats to the Good Death: The Cultural Context of Stress and Coping Among Hospice Nurses, Sociology of Health and Illness, vol. 17 (2), 1995, pp. 222-244. 42 Kite, op. cit. 43 P. A. Singer and R. E. Berman, Quality Care at the End of Life, British Medical Journal, vol. 324, 2002, pp. 1291-1292. 44 S. Alsop, op. cit.

18

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______________________________________________________________

Bibliography
Ackermann, R. J., K. A. Kemle et al., Emergency Department Use by Nursing Home Residents, Annals of Emergency Medicine, vol. 31, 1998, p. 749. Ahmad, S., and M. S. O'Mahony, Where Older People Die: A Retrospective Population-Based Study, Qualitative Journal Medicine, vol. 98 (12), 2005, pp. 865-870. Alsop, S., qtd in R. C. Sproul, Surprised by Suffering, William Tyndale Publishers, Wheaton, Illinois, 1989, p. 46. Brosche, T.A., Death, Dying, and the ICU Nurse, Dimensions of Critical Care Nursing, vol. 22 (4), 2003, pp. 173179. Carr, M. and M. Merriman, Comparison of Death Attitudes Among Hospice Workers and Health Care Professionals in Other Settings, Omega, vol. 32 (4), 1996, pp. 387-301. Cassel, J. B., and L. J. Lyckholm, Identifying Palliative Care Needs in the Emergency Department: Better Care, Lower Cost, Academic Emergency Medicine, vol. 13 (5), 2006, p. 96. Chan, G.K., End-of-Life and Palliative Care in the Emergency Department: A Call for Research, Education, Policy and Improved Practice in This Frontier Area, Journal of Emergency Nursing, vol. 32 (1), 2006, p. 101. Costello, J. Dying Well: Nurses Experiences of Good and Bad Deaths in Hospital, Journal of Advanced Nursing, vol.54 (5), 2006, pp. 594-601. Davidhiza, R. and B. Kirk, Emergency Room Nurses: Helping Families Cope with Sudden Death, The Journal of Practical Nursing, vol. 43 (6), 1993, pp. 14-19. Dean, S.A., S. J. Payne and C. Kalus, A Comparative Study of Death Anxiety in Hospice and Emergency Nurses, Journal of Advanced Nursing, vol. 28 (4), 1998, pp. 700706. Degner, L.F. and C. M. Gow, Evaluations of Death Education in Nursing: A Critical Review, Cancer Nursing, vol. 11 (3), 1988, pp. 151-9. Department of Health, Our Health, Our Care, Our Say: A New Direction for Community Services, Department of Health, London, 2006. Doyle, D. and G. W. C. Hanks, Oxford Textbook of Palliative Medicine, Oxford University Press, New York, 1998. Field, D., Special Not Different: General Practitioners Accounts of Their Care of Dying People, Social Science and Medicine, vol. 46 (9), 1998, pp. 1111-20. Finlay, I. and D. Dallimore, Your Child is Dead, British Medical Journal, vol. 302, 1991, pp. 524-1525.

Cara Bailey

19

______________________________________________________________ Finn, J. and L. Flicker, Interface Between Residential Aged Care Facilities and a Teaching Hospital Emergency Department in Western Australia, Medical Journal of Australia, vol. 184 (9), 2006, pp. 432-435. Giddens, A., The Consequences of Modernity, Stanford University Press, Stanford, California, 1991. Golub, E., The Limits of Medicine-How Science Shapes Our Hope for the Cure, Times Books, New York, 1994. Gott, M., J. Seymour et al., Older Peoples Views About Home as a Place of Care at the End of Life, Palliative Medicine, vol.18 (5), 2004, pp. 4607. Higginson, I.J., Palliative Care and Progressive Illness, The Development Forum, 2002, retrieved 14 December 2007, <www.devforum.org.uk/uploads/palliative_care_irene_higginson>. Hockley, J. and B. Dewar, Promoting End-of-Life Care in Nursing Homes Using an Integrated Care Pathway for the Last Days of Life, Journal of Research in Nursing, Vol. 10 (2), 2005, pp. 135-152. Jack, B.A., M. Gambles, D. Murphy and J. E. Ellershaw, Nurses Perceptions of the Liverpool Care Pathway for the Dying Patient in the Acute Hospital Setting, International Journal of Palliative Nursing, vol. 9 (9), 2003, p. 375. Kite, S., Upstream From Death, Journal Royal Society of Medicine, vol. 95, 2002, pp. 529-530. Kubler-Ross, E., On Death and Dying, The Macmillan Company, New York, 1969. Llewellyn S. & S. Payne, Caring: The Costs to Nurses and Families, in A. Broome and S. Llewellyn, eds., Health Psychology: Processes and Application, 2nd edn, Chapman and Hall, London, 1995, p. 109. MacPhail, E., Overview of Emergency Nursing, in L. Newberry, Sheehy's Emergency Nursing: Principles and Practice, Mosby, St Lois, 1998, pp. 3-7. McCall, K., and A. Rice, What Influences Decisions Around the Place of Care for Terminally Ill Cancer Patients?, International Journal of Palliative Nursing, vol.11, 2005, pp. 541-7. McNamara, B., C. Waddell and M. Colvin, Threats to the Good Death: The Cultural Context of Stress and Coping Among Hospice Nurses, Sociology of Health and Illness, vol. 17 (2), 1995, pp. 222-244. Middlewood, S., Dying in Hospital Medical Failure or Natural Outcome?, Journal of Pain and Symptom Management, vol. 22 (6), 2001, pp. 10351041.

20

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______________________________________________________________ Mills, M. and H. Davies, Care of Dying Patients in Hospital, British Medical Journal, vol. 309, 1994, pp. 583-6. Nottingham University Hospitals Website, National Health Service Trust, 2007, retrieved 14 December 2007, <www.nuh.nhs.uk>. Office of National Statistics, Annual Review of the Registrar General on Deaths in England and Wales, 2006, retrieved 14 December 2007, <www.statistics.gov.uk/downloads/theme_health/>. Office of National Statistics, Annual Review of the Registrar General on Deaths in England and Wales, 2005, retrieved 14 December 2007, <www.statistics.gov.uk/downloads/theme_health/>. Page S. and L. Meerabeau, Nurses Accounts of Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation, Journal of Advanced Nursing, vol. 24, 1996, pp. 317 325. Parris, R. J., J. Schlosenberg, C. Stanley, S. Maurice and S. F. J. Clarke, Emergency Department Follow-Up of Bereaved Relatives: An Audit of One Particular Service, Emergency Medical Journal, vol. 24, 2007, pp. 339342. Saliba, D., R. Kington et al., Appropriateness of the Decision to Transfer Nursing Facility Residents to the Hospital, Journal of Geriatric Society, 2000, vol. 48, pp. 154-163. Silvey, S., Bereavement Care in Hospitals, Bereavement Care, vol. 9, 1990, pp. 1718. Singer, P. A. and R. E. Berman, Quality Care at the End of Life, British Medical Journal, vol. 324, 2002, pp. 1291-1292. Smith., R., A Good Death, British Medical Journal, vol. 320, 2000, pp. 129-130. Timmermans, S., Death Brokering: Constructing Culturally Appropriate Deaths, Sociology of Health and Illness, vol. 27 (7), 2005, pp. 93-1013. Sudden Death and the Myth of CPR, Temple University Press, Philadelphia, 1999. Thomas, C. and S. M. Morris, Place of Death: Preferences Among Cancer Patients and Their Carers, Social Science and Medicine, vol. 58, 2004, pp. 2431-2444. Thomas, C., The Place of Death of Cancer Patients: Can Qualitative Data Add to Known Factors?, Social Science and Medicine, vol. 60, 2005, pp. 2597-2607. Watson, M., C. Lucas, A. Hoy and I. Back, eds., Oxford Handbook of Palliative Care, Oxford University Press, London, 2005.

Cara Bailey

21

______________________________________________________________ World Health Organisation, WHO Definition of Palliative Care, 2006, retrieved 7 March 2006, <http://www.who.int/cancer/palliative/en/>. Yates, D.W., G. Ellison and S. McGuiness, Care of the Suddenly Bereaved, British Medical Journal, vol. 301, 1990, pp. 2931.

Cara Bailey, RGN, MN, is a PhD candidate at the School of Nursing, The University of Nottingham.

Is Religion Harmful to Patients at the End-of-Life? The Impact of Religion on End-of-Life Decision-Making. Kate Coleman-Brueckheimer
Abstract Individuals may count different aspects of human functioning as more important than others. Religious patients evaluate the potential impact of a proposed course of action on their religious life as well as considering how other areas of life will be affected. Hence, a patient may see acts that negatively affect her religious life as at least equally harmful to those that negatively impact upon her physical existence. Practices of fully informed consent and full disclosure of diagnosis and prognosis may not be acceptable to patients from traditions that do not place a high value on individual rights and autonomy. Placing the sole burden of decision-making on an individual from a tradition where the emphasis is on interdependence, obligations, and collective decision-making may be both distressing and disrespectful. A review of the literature identified four quantitative studies and two qualitative studies examining the relationship between religion and end-oflife treatment preferences. The studies were diverse in terms of methods, religions represented, definition and measurement of religiosity, and definition of end-of-life treatment. With respect to attitudes towards advance directives and healthcare proxies, the results obtained for populations from Western monotheistic religions were consistent and contrasted with those obtained for populations from Eastern religions.

Keywords Religion, End of Life, Decision-Making, Literature Review.

Religion is not a mere illumination of facts already given elsewhere, it is something more, namely a postulator of new facts as well. Different events can be expected in the religious world, and a different conduct is required .1 Religious beliefs may affect the decisions that people make concerning medical treatments and may thereby contribute to different health outcomes. When such outcomes are adverse, to say that the patient has thus been harmed, represents a value-judgement that goes beyond a neutral description. In this paper, I will seek to challenge the notion that the harmfulness of religion may be assessed in an absolute way. Firstly, I shall

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______________________________________________________________ argue that strongly held religious beliefs imply a set of ontological commitments, as well as an epistemology, that are not shared by the biomedical tradition, which instead incorporates a scientific epistemology based on falsifiability and an ontology that is empirically verifiable.2 Following on from this, I shall use the concept of harm in a relative way to demonstrate how health outcomes are not intrinsically either harmful or beneficial. Finally I will present evidence from research examining whether religion impacts upon end-of-life treatment preferences. Theorists and theologians have defined religion in a variety of ways.3 In this paper I shall adopt the psychologist Kenneth Pargaments definition of religion as a search for significance related to the sacred, where both destination and path are of spiritual value.4 A fundamental difference between religion and science is the central place religion awards to the Divine. Religion is associated with creed (belief), cultus (practice), and mysticism. Some religions may place a greater emphasis on rituals and social codes, as is the case in Judaism, Christianity and Islam. Others, for example Hinduism and Buddhism, may emphasise mystical speculation. Religions can be understood as both establishing and attempting to overcome a dualism between the empirical lived reality of human experience and an ultimate reality identified with Divine meaning.5 Whilst there may be a multiplicity of motives for religious behaviour, it can be argued that the desire to serve the Divine is axiomatic and irreducible.6 It is important to emphasise that, ontologically, to the deeply religious, Divine entities, which may include angels and demons as well as God, may not be metaphorical. These individuals will not treat religious objects as if they were real; for them they are really real. Indeed, if, for them, the material world is seen as an imperfect reflection of the ultimate Divine reality, these Divine entities may even assume ontological priority.7 Similarly, a sacred epistemology including accounts of Divine creation may take precedence over empirical scientific accounts. Human experience is multidimensional, and determining whether something is harmful needs to take into account this multi-faceted nature. Different individuals may count different aspects of human functioning as more important than others, and this will come to bear when making decisions about whether a proposed course of action is in their best interests. In addition to the potential impact of a proposed course of action on the physical, emotional, psychological, and social aspects of life that nonreligious patients may consider, religious patients will also evaluate the potential impact on their religious life. The different perspectives that people adopt may imply different understandings of beneficence and maleficence. A routine act of beneficence for one patient may become an act of maleficence for another.

Is Religion Harmful to Patients at the End-of-Life?

25

______________________________________________________________ In light of this, a patient may see acts that negatively affect their religious life as at least equally harmful to those that negatively impact upon their physical existence.8 Therefore, an intervention that is potentially beneficial on the physical level may be rejected completely because of its negative impact on the religious level. An illustration is provided by Knuti and colleagues,9 who present the case of a Jehovahs Witness with acute myelocytic leukaemia who declined life-saving blood product support on the grounds of her religious beliefs. The patient was aware that her decision would adversely affect her chance of survival and in all other respects she requested aggressive curative treatment. Her wishes were respected and, in due course, she died. In discussing whether she was harmed by this, the authors conclude that if one considers only the physical dimension, the answer is in the affirmative. However, if one includes the spiritual dimension, the answer is not straightforward. They go on to note that this womans concept of selfhood extended beyond death, and quality of life meant maintaining her personal integrity as a Jehovahs Witness. This patient was well informed about both the different treatments available and her obligations as a Jehovahs Witness. She valued her life and wanted to live, but what happened to her soul after death also mattered to her, and she did not wish to compromise her existence in the after-life by accepting prohibited blood products. To borrow from Eliezer Berkovits,10 this patient wanted to survive like anyone else, but not at any cost; not at the cost of betraying the meaning of her own life. In other circumstances, a patient may not reject an intervention outright, but may request that it be modified in order to limit the potential impact on her religious life. For example, a patient may request a less than medically optimum dose of morphine that will only provide her with partial pain relief if she believes a higher dose risks clouding her mind and limiting her ability to engage in coherent and directed prayer. A paramount consideration is that all patients are be able to make adequately informed choices, and enabling a religious patient to make an informed choice may require the healthcare provider to take the patients religious perspective into account. Thorough explanation of both the nature and side effects of the proposed treatment will also need to address the specific religious concerns such a patient may have. Beyond medical information, a patient may also require additional religious information or guidance to assist her in making the complex decisions that will be involved at the end of life. Otherwise, she may unwittingly base decisions on erroneous reasoning or an inaccurate or incomplete set of facts. The patient may feel distressed if her set of beliefs is neither comprehensive nor sophisticated enough to enable her to meet the challenges of her present situation.11 Careful explanation of the patients current religious obligations (which may have changed as a result of her present ill health), as well as the

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______________________________________________________________ religious significance of the proposed treatment will need to come from an appropriately qualified and informed individual who is acceptable to the patient. Through a process of open communication, it may be possible to find an intervention that is both therapeutically and religiously acceptable. A further consideration is the context within which information is given and within which decisions are made, which will likely be informed by a patients systems of beliefs. For example, practices of fully informed consent, and full disclosure of diagnosis and prognosis will be more acceptable to patients who place a high value on individual rights and autonomy.12 In contrast, a person who operates within a system of rules governing their relationship with the Divine and their fellow man may place a higher value on interdependence, obligations, and collective decisionmaking.13 Placing the sole burden of decision-making on such an individual may be both distressing and disrespectful.14 However, by the same token, a decision-making unit that extends beyond patient and carer to incorporate religious authorities or other community members may offer the healthcare provider one or more allies who will be able to reframe treatment options in terms that are religiously understandable and acceptable to the patient.15 An extended decision-making unit may also provide the opportunity to determine whether the patients expressed need is religiously normative or a misinterpretation.16 Patients who are competent to make decisions will rarely choose to make life more difficult and unpleasant for themselves. However, for patients whose religion provides that murder and suicide are ultimate transgressions punishable in the next world by Divine retribution, decisions concerning endof-life issues such as ceasing active curative treatment or withholding lifesustaining treatments cannot be based just on personal preference, best medical opinion, or the constraints of secular law. Religions generally frown upon needless suffering17 as reflected in the fact that an extensive body of medical ethics has evolved from a variety of different religious viewpoints.18 A substantial body of research has accumulated that has explored the relationship between religion and mortality, morbidity, and recovery from illness,19 and diverse psychological, social, and physiological mediators have been suggested to account for a connection between religion and health.20 In this paper, the notion of the harmfulness of religion has been discussed in relation to the way religion impacts upon preferences concerning end-of-life treatment. The studies that are summarised in this section below explore this issue. A literature search identified four quantitative cross-sectional studies21 and two qualitative studies22 examining the relationship between religion and end-of-life treatment preferences. The religions represented were predominantly Christian in two studies,23 exclusively Jewish in two studies,24 mixed in one study,25 and Buddhist, Taoist, or Confucian in one study .26

Is Religion Harmful to Patients at the End-of-Life?

27

______________________________________________________________ A central issue confronting the researcher who wishes to study the interface between religion and health is how to define, operationalise, and measure religiosity.27 Generally speaking, authors of the studies reviewed here made use of multidimensional investigator-developed questionnaires and scales for this purpose. Only Murphy, Albert, Weber et al28 used an independently developed and validated tool.29 Dimensions of religiosity assessed included service attendance,30 other religious practices and behaviours,31 strength and comfort derived from religion,32 religious beliefs,33 self-described level of religiosity34 and religious affiliation.35 End-of-life treatment was defined both in general36 and in specific 37 terms. Authors used diverse methods, including hypothetical clinical vignettes, where participants were asked what their treatment preferences would be if the different health-related scenarios applied to them.38 In terms of preference for life-sustaining interventions, the results are not consistent across studies. Murphy, Albert, Weber et al39 reported that preference for life-sustaining treatments in ALS patients was correlated neither with religious affiliation nor with degree of religiosity. However, Heeren, Menon, Raskin et al40 did find an effect for religious affiliation in elderly patients with acute illnesses, in that tube-feeding was acceptable in fewer scenarios for Catholics than it was for other Christians. The authors hypothesised that Catholics faced with serious medical illness would be less willing to submit to life-sustaining treatments than other Christians because of a greater belief in Divine intervention and a greater desire for a dignified death. They suggest there is something unique about Catholicism that explains these results. Bowman and Singer41 in a qualitative study of Chinese Buddhist, Confucian, and Taoist elders found that virtually no respondents favoured aggressive life-sustaining treatments. The authors interpret these results with reference to participants religious values and traditions, where meaning is found in the inevitability of the cycle of life and where the future is, to a large extent, preordained. Respondents also stated that they would not wish to prolong either their own or their families suffering. Murphy, Albert, Weber et al42 also looked at actual intervention use and, again, report no association with religious affiliation, although religiosity did have an effect: patients who were more spiritual were less likely to use percutaneous endoscopic gastronomy (PEG), and patients who were more likely to use non-invasive assisted ventilation were more likely to be religious. Interestingly, both these groups were more affected in mobility. This raises the question of whether a higher degree of physical impairment prompted an increase in spirituality or religious involvement for these patients. Finally, Carmel and Mutran,43 in their structural model study of elderly Jews, reported that religiosity had a significant direct positive effect on wishes for life-sustaining treatments. Religiosity also had a significant indirect positive effect on this outcome that was mediated through fear of

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______________________________________________________________ death and the will to live, and a significant indirect negative effect mediated through fear of dying. The authors conclude that these results are congruent with the Jewish belief that life is sacred and should be preserved at all costs. This manifested itself in a stronger will to live amongst religious Jews than amongst secular Jews. Degree of religiosity, fear of death, fear of dying, and will to live all had a bearing on the wish for life-sustaining treatments. The authors conclude that religious Jews are more afraid of death than secular Jews, because they believe they will be judged after death. However, they are less afraid of dying and less troubled by the death of others. Secular Jews, in contrast, were less afraid of death, but more afraid of dying. The authors conclude that religious Jews are more emotionally equipped to deal with life and its hardships, including the death of others, than they are with their own death. Results obtained by Kaldjian, Jekel and Friedland44 where fear of death was more likely in HIV positive patients who perceived their disease as a punishment, support this interpretation. They also found that fear of death was less likely in patients who read the Bible frequently, attended services regularly, or who stated that God was their main purpose in life. Carmel and Mutran45 suggest that some religions have more effective mechanisms for minimising fear of death than others, and the Kaldjian results may lend support to this position. With respect to preferences and use of advance directives, the results obtained for populations belonging to Western monotheistic religions were fairly consistent and stand in contrast to the results obtained by Bowman and Singer.46 Murphy, Albert, Weber et al47 reported that patients with ALS who were more spiritual were more likely to use a healthcare proxy. Kaldjian, Jekel and Friedland48 found that advance directives were more commonly used by HIV positive patients who prayed daily. Prior discussion about resuscitation status was more likely in those who believed in God's forgiveness and was less likely in those who perceived their HIV status as a punishment. In contrast, Bowman and Singer,49 in their qualitative study of Chinese elders, found that respondents expressed indifference or negativity towards advance directives and the use of health care proxies. They believed the future was pre-ordained, making advance directives unrealistic and irrelevant. Their opposition towards advance directives was also fuelled by the belief that thinking negative thoughts could lead to negative outcomes. Social and moral meaning was found in interdependence, which overrode self-determination and autonomy. Respondents believed that health care proxies could act as an impediment in collective decision-making as they would limit the influence of other family members. Leichtentritt and Rettig50 reported that religious beliefs in their sample of elderly Jews were reflected in participants' thinking about euthanasia. Nineteen percent of participants were significantly influenced by

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______________________________________________________________ their religious beliefs. Religious beliefs that influenced attitudes towards euthanasia were characterised by the extent to which participants believed euthanasia to be a sin according to God and Jewish law. Those in whom this belief was stronger tended to express more unfavourable attitudes towards euthanasia. Consistent with Carmel and Mutran,51 the authors conclude that the Jewish religious values informing attitudes towards euthanasia are centred on notions of quality of life. According to Jewish law, the value of life is absolute and supreme. Therefore, questions regarding the quality of life are not directly relevant in determining whether therapeutic procedures should be initiated, or whether life-support systems should be withheld or withdrawn. The patient does not have a right to die; instead the patient has an obligation to live. The authors also note that Hebrew does not have the appropriate language to refer to the concept of euthanasia. Language both develops out of and provides a framework for thought. Given that Hebrew is intimately tied to Judaism, the lack of these concepts is perhaps unsurprising. In summary, both research and theory suggest that religious considerations influence both the decision-making process and the actual decisions made by religious patients concerning their medical treatment at the end of life. Particular preferences for disclosure of diagnosis or prognosis, and an individual or a collective decision-making unit may influence the decision-making process. A concept of selfhood that extends beyond death may influence specific decisions made. This has implications for all members of multi-disciplinary teams involved in patient care, most notably healthcare practitioners and chaplaincy. These professionals may need to adapt their methods of working in light of a patients set of religious beliefs and may find it beneficial to call upon an appropriately qualified and informed religious expert.

Notes
1

W. James, The Varieties of Religious Experience: A Study in Human Experience, Centenary Edition, Routledge, London, 2002/1902. 2 K. Popper, Conjectures and Refutations: the Growth of Scientific Knowledge, Routledge Kegan and Paul, London, 1963. 3 K. I. Pargament, The Psychology of Religious Coping: Theory, Research, Practice, The Guilford Press, New York, 1997; P.C. Hill and K.I. Pargament, Advances in the Conceptualisation and Measurement of Religion and Spirituality: Implications for Physical and Mental Health Research, American Psychologist, vol. 58, 2003, pp. 64-74; S.H. McFadden, Religion and Spirituality, Encyclopedia of Gerontology, vol. 2, 1996, pp. 387-397. 4 K. I. Pargament, op. cit., 1997.

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______________________________________________________________
5

D. Greenberg and E. Witztum, Sanity and Sanctity: Mental Health Work Among the Ultra-Orthodox in Jerusalem, Yale University Press, New Haven, 2001; R. Littlewood and S. Dein, The Effectiveness of Words: Religion and Healing Among the Lubavitch of Stamford Hill, Cultural Medicine and Psychiatry, vol. 19, 1995, pp. 339-383. 6 W. James, The Varieties of Religious Experience: A Study in Human Experience, Centenary Edition, Routledge, London, 2002; Pargament, 1997. 7 D. Greenberg and E. Witztum, 2001; R. Littlewood and S. Dein, pp. 339383; S. C. Heilman and E. Witzum, All in Faith: Religion as the Idiom and Means of Coping with Distress, Mental Health, Religion & Culture, vol. 3, 2000, pp. 115-124. 8 S. C. Heilman and E. Witzum, op. cit., pp. 115-124. 9 K. A. Knuti, P. C. Amrein, B. A. Chabner, T. J. Lynch Jr., and R. T. Penson, Faith, Identity, and Leukaemia: When Blood Products are not an Option, Oncologist, vol. 7, 2002, pp. 371-380. 10 E. Berkovits, With God in Hell: Judaism in the Ghettos and Death Camps, Sanhedrin Press, New York, 1979. 11 K. I. Pargament, op. cit., 1997. 12 P. Mazanec and M. K. Tyler, Cultural Considerations in End-of-Life Care: How Ethnicity, Age, and Spirituality Affect Decisions When Death is Imminent, American Journal of Nursing, vol. 103, 2003, pp. 50-58. 13 P. Byrne, G. R. Dunstan, I. Jakobovits , R. L. A. Jayaweera, J. Marshall, E. E. Philipp, C. Saunders and M. J. Seller, Hospice Care: Jewish Reservations Considered in a Comparative Ethical Study, Palliative Medicine, vol. 5, 1991, pp. 187-200; K. W. Bowman and P. A. Singer, Chinese Seniors Perspectives in End-of-Life Decisions, Social Science & Medicine, vol. 53, 2001, pp. 455-464. 14 P. Mazanec and M. K. Tyler, pp. 50-58. 15 S. C. Greenberg and E. Witztum, op. cit., 2001. 16 P. Mazanec and M. K. Tyler, op cit., 2003, pp. 50-58. 17 K. Pargament, op. cit., 1997; A. Steinberg, The Terminally Ill - Secular and Jewish Ethical Aspects, Israel Journal of Medical Sciences, vol. 30, 1994, pp. 130-135. 18 K. D. ORourke and P. Boyle, Medical Ethics: Sources of Catholic Teaching, University Press, Georgetown, 1994; I. Jacobovits, Jewish Medical Ethics, Philosophical Library, New York, 1959; S. C. Crawford, Hindu Bioethics for the Twenty-First Century, State University of New York Press, New York, 2003; B. Freedman, Duty and Healing: Foundations of a Jewish Bioethic, Routledge, New York, 1999.

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______________________________________________________________
19

L. H. Powell, L. Shahabi and C. E. Thoresen, Religion and Spirituality: Linkages to Physical Health, American Psychologist, vol. 58, 2003, pp. 3652; H. Koenig, Religion and Medicine IV: Religion, Physical Health, and Clinical Implications, International Journal of Psychiatry in Medicine, vol. 31, 2001, pp. 321-336; P. S. Mueller, D.J . Plevak and T.A. Rummans, Religious Involvement, Spirituality, and Medicine: Implications for Clinical Practice, Mayo Clinic Proceedings, vol. 76, 2001, pp. 1225-1235; S. Dein and J. Stygall, Does Being Religious Help or Hinder Coping with Chronic Illness? A Critical Literature Review. 20 Palliative Medicine, vol. 11, 1997, pp. 291-320; T. E. Seeman, L. Fagan Dubin and M. Seeman, Religiosity/Spirituality and Health: A Critical Review of the Evidence for Biological Pathways, American Psychologist, vol. 58, 2003, pp. 53-63. 21 O. Heeren, A. S. Menon, A. Raskin and P. Ruskin, Religion and End of Life Treatment Preferences Among Geriatric Patients, International Journal of Geriatric Psychiatry, vol. 16, 2001, pp. 203-208; P. L. Murphy, S. M. Albert, C. M. Weber, M. L. Del Bene and R. P. Rowland, Impact of Spirituality and Religiousness on Outcomes in Patients with ALS, Neurology, vol. 55, 2000, pp. 1581-1584; L. C. Kaldjian, J. F. Jekel and G. Friedland, End-of-Life Decisions in HIV-Positive Patients: The Role of Spiritual Beliefs, AIDS, vol. 12, 1998, pp. 103-107. 22 S. Carmel and E. Mutran, Wishes Regarding the Use of Life-Sustaining Treatments Among Elderly Persons in Israel: An Explanatory Model, Social Science & Medicine, vol. 45, 1997, pp. 1715-1727; K. W. Bowman and P. A. Singer, Chinese Seniors Perspectives in End-of-Life Decisions, Social Science & Medicine, vol. 53, 2001, pp. 455-464; R. D. Leichtentritt and K. D. Rettig, Meanings and Attitudes Toward End-of-Life Preferences in Israel, Death Studies, vol. 23, 1999, pp. 323-358. 23 O. Heeren, A. S. Menon, A. Raskin and P. Ruskin, op. cit., pp. 203-208; L. C. Kaldjian, J. F. Jekel and G. Friedland, End-of-Life Decisions in HIVPositive Patients: The Role of Spiritual Beliefs, AIDS, vol. 12, 1998, pp. 103-107. 24 S. Carmel and E. Mutran, Wishes Regarding the Use of Life-Sustaining Treatments Among Elderly Persons in Israel: An Explanatory Model, Social Science & Medicine, vol. 45, 1997, pp. 1715-1727; R. D. Leichtentritt and K. D. Rettig, Meanings and Attitudes Toward End-of-Life Preferences in Israel, Death Studies, vol. 23, 1999, pp. 323-358. 25 P. L. Murphy, S. M. Albert, C. M. Weber, M. L. Del Bene and R. P. Rowland, op. cit., pp. 1581-1584. 26 K. W. Bowman and P. A. Singer, op. cit., pp.455-464.

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______________________________________________________________
27 28

P.C. Hill and K.I. Pargament, op. cit., pp. 64-74. P. L. Murphy et al, op. cit., pp. 1581-1584. 29 M. I. Kalamazoo, Multidimensional Measurement of Religiousness /Spirituality for Use in Health Research, National Institute on Aging/Fetzer Institute, John N Fetzer Institute, 1999. 30 O. Heeren et al, op. cit., pp. 203-208; P. L. Murphy et al, op. cit., pp. 15811584; S. Carmel and E. Mutran, op. cit., pp. 1715-1727. 31 Murphy et al, 2000, pp. 1581-1584; L. C. Kaldjian et al, op. cit., pp. 103107; S. Carmel and E. Mutran, 1997, pp. 1715-1727. 32 O. Heeren et al, op. cit., pp. 203-208; S. Carmel and E, Mutran, op. cit., pp. 1715-1727. 33 P. L. Murphy et al, op. cit., pp. 1581-1584; L. C. Kaldjian et al, op. cit., pp. 103-107; S. Carmel and E. Mutran, op. cit., pp. 1715-1727. 34 R. D. Leichtentritt and K. D. Rettig, op. cit., pp. 323-358. 35 K. W. Bowman and P. A. Singer, op. cit., pp.455-464. 36 Ibid. 37 O. Heeren et al, op. cit., pp. 203-208; P. L. Murphy et al, op. cit., pp. 15811584; L. C. Kaldjian et al, op. cit., pp. 103-107; S. Carmel and E. Mutran, op. cit., pp. 1715-1727; R. D. Leichtentritt and K. D. Rettig, op. cit., pp. 323-358. 38 K. W. Bowman and P. A. Singer, op. cit., pp.455-464; O. Heeren et al, op. cit., pp. 203-208; S. Carmel and E. Mutran, op. cit., pp. 1715-1727. 39 P. L. Murphy et al, op. cit., pp. 1581-1584. 40 O. Heeren et al, op. cit., pp. 203-208. 41 K. W. Bowman and P. A. Singer, op. cit., pp.455-464. 42 P. L. Murphy et al, op. cit., pp. 1581-1584. 43 S. Carmel and E. Mutran, op. cit., pp. 1715-1727. 44 L. C. Kaldjian et al, op. cit., pp. 103-107. 45 S. Carmel and E. Mutran, op. cit., pp. 1715-1727. 46 K. W. Bowman and P. A. Singer, op. cit., pp.455-464. 47 P. L. Murphy et al, op. cit., pp. 1581-1584. 48 L. C. Kaldjian et al, op. cit., pp. 103-107. 49 Bowman and Singer, 2001, pp.455-464. 50 R. D. Leichtentritt and K. D. Rettig, op. cit., pp. 323-358. 51 S. Carmel and E. Mutran, op. cit., pp. 1715-1727.

Bibliography
Berkovits, E., With God in Hell: Judaism in the Ghettos and Death Camps, Sanhedrin Press, New York, 1979.

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______________________________________________________________ Bowman, K. W. and P. A. Singer, Chinese Seniors Perspectives in End-ofLife Decisions. Social Science & Medicine, vol. 53, 2001, pp. 455-464. Byrne, P., G. R. Dunstan, I. Jakobovits, R. L. A. Jayaweera, J. Marshall, E. E. Philipp, C. Saunders and M. J. Seller, Hospice Care: Jewish Reservations Considered in a Comparative Ethical Study, Palliative Medicine, vol. 5, 1991, pp.187-200. Carmel, S., and E. Mutran, Wishes Regarding the Use of Life-Sustaining Treatments Among Elderly Persons in Israel: An Explanatory Model, Social Science & Medicine, vol. 45, 1997, pp. 1715-1727. Cromwell C. S., Hindu Bioethics for the Twenty-First Century, State University of New York Press, New York, 2003. Dein, S., and J. Stygall, Does Being Religious Help or Hinder Coping With Chronic Illness? A Critical Literature Review. Palliative Medicine, vol. 11, 1997, pp. 291-298. Freedman, B., Duty and Healing: Foundations of a Jewish Bioethic, Routledge, New York, 1999. Greenberg, D., and E. Witzum, Sanity and Sanctity: Mental Health Work Amongst the Ultra-Orthodox in Jerusalem, Yale University Press, New Haven, 2001. Heeren, O., A. S. Menon, A. Raskin and P. Ruskin, Religion and End of Life Treatment Preferences Among Geriatric Patients, International Journal of Geriatric Psychiatry, vol. 16, 2001, 203-208. Heilman S.C., and E. Witzum, All in Faith: Religion as the Idiom and Means of Coping with Distress, Mental Health, Religion & Culture, vol. 3, 2000, pp. 115-124. Hill, P. C., and K. I. Pargament, Advances in the Conceptualisation and Measurement of Religion and Spirituality: Implications for Physical and Mental Health Research, American Psychologist, vol. 58, 2003, pp. 6474. Jacobovits, I., Jewish Medical Ethics, Philosophical Library, New York, 1959. James, W., The Varieties of Religious Experience: A Study in Human Experience, Centenary Edition, Routledge, London, 2002. Kalamazoo, M.I., Multidimensional Measurement of Religiousness /Spirituality for Use in Health Research, National Institute on Aging/Fetzer Institute, John N. Fetzer Institute, 1999. Kaldjian, L. C., J. F. Jekel and G. Friedland, End-of-Life Decisions in HIVPositive Patients: The Role of Spiritual Beliefs, AIDS, vol. 12, 1998, pp. 103-107.

34

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______________________________________________________________ Knuti, K.A., P. C. Amrein, B. A. Chabner, T. J. Lynch Jr., and R. T. Penson, Faith, Identity, and Leukaemia: When Blood Products are Not an Option, Oncologist, vol. 7, 2002, pp. 371-380. Koenig, H., Religion and Medicine IV: Religion, Physical Health, and Clinical Implications, International Journal of Psychiatry in Medicine, vol. 31, 2001, pp. 321-336. Leichtentritt, R.D., and Rettig, K.D. Meanings and Attitudes Toward Endof-Life Preferences in Israel, Death Studies, vol. 23, 1999, pp. 323-358. Littlewood, R. and S. Dein, The Effectiveness of Words: Religion and Healing Among the Lubavitch of Stamford Hill, Cultural Medicine and Psychiatry, vol. 19, 1995, pp. 339-383. McFadden, S.H. Religion and Spirituality, Encyclopedia of Gerontology, vol. 2, 1996, pp. 387-397. Mazanec, P., and M. K. Tyler, Cultural Considerations in End-of-Life Care: How Ethnicity, Age, and Spirituality Affect Decisions When Death is Imminent, American Journal of Nursing, vol. 103, 2003, pp. 50-58. Mueller, P.S., D. J. Plevak and T. A. Rummans, Religious Involvement, Spirituality, and Medicine: Implications for Clinical Practice, Mayo Clinic Proceedings, vol. 76, 2001, pp. 1225-1235. Murphy, P. L., S. M. Albert, C. M. Weber, M. L. Del Bene, and R. P. Rowland, Impact of Spirituality and Religiousness on Outcomes in Patients with ALS, Neurology, vol. 55, 2000, pp. 1581-1584. ORourke, K.D., and P. Boyle, Medical Ethics: Sources of Catholic Teaching, University Press, Georgetown, 1994. Pargament, K.I., The Psychology of Religious Coping: Theory, Research, Practice, The Guilford Press, New York, 1997. Popper, K., Conjectures and Refutations: the Growth of Scientific Knowledge. Routledge Kegan and Paul, London, 1963. Powell, L.H., L. Shahabi, and C. E. Thoresen, Religion and Spirituality: Linkages to Physical Health, American Psychologist, vol. 58, 2003, pp. 36-52. Seeman, T.E., L. Fagan Dubin, and M. Seeman, Religiosity/Spirituality and Health: A Critical Review of the Evidence for Biological Pathways, American Psychologist, vol. 58, 2003, pp. 53-63. Steinberg, A., The Terminally Ill - Secular and Jewish Ethical Aspects, Israel Journal of Medical Sciences, vol. 30, 1994, pp. 130-135.

Kate Coleman-Brueckheimer is a PhD student at the Centre for Behavioural and Social Sciences in Medicine, University College London.

The Elderly

The Return of the Grotesque Aged Female Body in Gunter von Hagens' Autopsy: Life and Death (Channel 4, 2006) Joanne Garde-Hansen
Abstract This paper explores young female audience members emotional and semitactile encounters with the aged female body in Gunter von Hagens Autopsy: Life and Death (Channel 4, January 2006). The paper examines the following: an understanding of ageing and mortality as a peculiarly feminised process; a reinsertion of the biological imperative into cultural constructions of the body; an emphasis upon emotion and affect in understanding media representations of ageing and death.

Keywords Deep Old Age, Feminism, Women, Pathology, Grotesque, Monstrous, Female Body.

I hope I die before I get like that. Shes already dead. A 20 year old British female respondent on seeing a naked 84 year old woman in Autopsy: Life and Death, Channel 4, 2006. Those in deep old age are always already dead to contemporary media culture. Without emitting the signs of any capital: cultural, financial, corporeal, they are, as Elizabeth Hallam argues throughout her book, socially dead and their real deaths are equally invisible in media.1 In a youth and body-obsessed culture there are even fewer ways for western societies to identify with ageing and dying. As Norbert Elias has argued frailty is often enough to separate the ageing from the living. Their decline isolates them and as such the living seek to protect them selves from the knowledge of deterioration.2 The dehumanization of those in deep old age is symptomatic of a culture that has pushed elderliness to the very extremities of our life course. The establishment of a Third Age; the proliferation of images of glamorous ageing celebrities; the life-extending practices of vitamin supplements, work-outs and healthcare policies; the invocation of retirement as a new life phase; the reinvention of the body through cosmetic surgery have all stretched out mid- and later-life, making more explicit the link between ageing and dying. The fact that this paper was placed in a session

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______________________________________________________________ entitled The Elderly reaffirms Andrew Blaikies point: to talk of the elderly is to create a category of people definable by their elderliness alone (they can possess no existence independent of their elderliness, and are thus not fully human). He continues: If sex was the taboo subject of the nineteenth century and death that of the twentieth, perhaps deep old age will be the great prohibition of the twenty-first.3 Having said this, what do the few media representations of old age have to say? Eric Midwinters research for the Centre for Policy on Ageing discovered in the early 1990s that media is more ageist than sexist. Viewed as a nuisance, victims or even perhaps admired in a condescending manner, the communications industry may only have played back to us and possibly reinforced the shadows and meanings and prejudices that already exist in our minds.4 As a result, Midwinter urged a rejection of the homogenous view of older people as the proportion of them increased. The proliferating variety of communication media has allowed for more heterogeneous representations. Images of older women in comedy such as The Golden Girls can be juxtaposed with those in detective genres such as Prime Suspect or with female celebrities such as Honor Blackman, or with respected journalists like Kate Adie, and with the recent reinvention of the retired in Saga Magazine. Clearly, British and American media have made strides in reorienting toward an ageing market; making older people (especially older women) more visible and less stereotyped. However, in giving agency to older people as far as they invest in youth culture and are targeted consumers of media, products and services does not efface the inevitability. This, as Brian Massumi argues, continues as a low-level fear produced because the body is seen to be subversive of the self. [T]he very existence of flesh [is] the onset of decline, which [can] be slower or faster depending on the beauty products or exercise accoutrements one [buys].5 Pushing the sell-by date to much later in life does not mean that the sell-by date disappears. It means that a significant proportion of elderly people (particularly elderly women) are made to disappear from the cultural scene. Yet, what happens when they return? This paper seeks to interrogate and understand the distancing techniques of contemporary media culture that socially inscribe audiences with a disgust and fear reaction when encountering images of profound old age. At the same time, I draw attention to the ways in which media draw audiences closer to that fearful other through affect and emotional empathy. That this paper focuses upon the televising of a naked 84-year old woman is no accident. Older women are, as Susan Sontag proclaimed in 1972, in double jeopardy, victims of both ageism and sexism.6 More than that, they have been jeopardized further by feminism. It has ignored representations of older women, preferring instead to concentrate upon the struggles of younger women dealing with inequalities, sexuality,

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______________________________________________________________ motherhood, career and the menopause. Beyond this, older women disappear from the feminist project. If it is to recuperate them, it is in danger of being seduced into directing itself toward the rejuvenating and narcissistic discourses that pervade contemporary representations of mid- and later-life. Thereby, pushing those unable to refashion their identity even further into obscurity. Women in profound old age do not fully disappear from media culture though. When they do appear, they do so in a particular way and in a particularly troubling way for feminism. This is the return of the repressed aged female other not only to the scene of our youth-obsessed culture but to the scene of any feminist project that embarks upon thinking through and questioning the media representation of older women. What I want to argue in this paper is that the detailed exposure of a naked 84-year old womans body on British television presents an extremely complex problem for feminist media theory. Firstly, deep old age which is normally hidden away behind the screens of nursing homes and geriatric wards becomes not a lonely, desolate experience but a confident, public performance of the body for educational purposes.7 Yet, it is deeply pathologized. Secondly, it presents what is unacceptable to our contemporary society: the decrepit body, unmasked and undisguised by any clothing normally used by older women to pass as younger and aesthetically palatable. Thirdly, it draws attention away from death (an event that has become increasingly managed) onto the real taboo of our times, the unmanageability of deep old age: that last stage in life we try to eradicate from our consciousness. Fourthly, it produces, just as the programme-makers intend, the disgust function in the audience. Yet, as my research will show, audiences also emotionally and corporeally connect with it. Lastly, it challenges the notion that once at the extremity of old age in the West we have reached the limit of the pure cultural construction of aging.8 For feminism this is particularly important. Feminist readings of the female body cannot end when all traces of reproductive capacity and sexual desire have disappeared. To concentrate on older women only up to the point at which they fail to succeed in being youthful creates another labeling problem that is wished on to even older and more defenseless people.9 So, let us turn our attention to the media text in question. Pathologist Gunter von Hagens recent four-part documentary Autopsy: Life and Death (Channel 4, 2006) chose, in its episode on Ageing, to use the aged female body as the exemplar par non of the bodys betrayals. It is no accident that it is a female body as this body can expose those betrayals more painfully, more shockingly and more grotesquely. This pathologization of ageing through recourse to the female body continues a cultural project that has pathologized that body from hysteria, to post-natal depression, to the menopause. Von Hagens promises answers to the audience in the opening

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______________________________________________________________ sequence to the episode: the truth and science behind ageing, dying and death.10 In a culture obsessed with self-control, timing and management, von Hagens use of technical language (are we programmed to die?) directed at a frail female body comforts the audience with a powerful portrayal of masculine confidence and Germanic precision. Anna appears in the background, a ghostly shadow, a waxy mannequin, colourless and alien. She is between life and death, described as already dead by the audience I showed the excerpt to. The use of lighting, the stark stage, the music, the camera work and the illuminated presence of von Hagens all serve to shore up the pathologist as the authority. Anna is in fact only a few of von Hagens steps away from the cadaver on the slab. While she is liminal (between life and death) von Hagens is also conduit between Anna and the cadaver. He will track the ground and reveal to the audience how Anna will one day (soon) become the body on the slab. The brutality of his statement by slicing this 84-year old woman in half invites the audience to be sensitive toward Annas predicament who seems to be balancing precariously on a precipice so near to the pathologists scalpel. This is sensationalist viewing yet an educational documentary. The opening sequence fulfilling Hallams point that the elaboration of the cultural devices used to conceal the body in death, actually work [] to draw the eye towards it.11 This is the audiences first encounter with the monstrous and grotesque body but which do they fear looking at most: the cadaver or the profoundly aged woman? In the context of a proliferation of media images of dying and death, it is likely that deep old age presents a body most feared. Here, in this scene, the audience is presented with the doubled body of the grotesque as Mikhail Bakhtin describes it: Grotesque imagery constructs what we call a double body. In the endless chain of bodily life it retains the parts in which one link joins the other, in which the life of one body is born from the death of the preceding, older one.12 Annas two-bodied image, alive yet dead, described by respondents as the living dead accords with Margrit Shildricks theorization of the monstrous body: The concept of the monstrous and the figure of the monster have haunted western history from its earliest records [. . .]. Monsters of course show themselves in many different and culturally specific ways, but what is monstrous about them is most often the form of their embodiment. They are, in an important sense, what Donna Haraway (1992) calls

The Return of the Grotesque Aged Female Body


inappropriate/d others in that they challenge and resist normative human being, in the first instance by their aberrant corporeality.13

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Designed to evoke conflicting states of objectivity, neutrality, voyeurism, disgust and discomfort the documentary establishes the audience as a vulnerable us and the deeply aged woman as Other, both will share the same end. Yet, it is the pathologist as mediator who will protect the vulnerable Self from death by providing the knowledge on the special precautions that can be taken. Furthermore, [d]isgust [. . .] locates the bounds of the other, either as something to be avoided, repelled, or attacked14 and reinforces the body images of a more youthful audience who are narcissistically invested subjects in their own bodies and body parts.15 However, in the next clip the profoundly aged female body is no longer distanced from the audience and from the pathologist. While the aged Other is positioned quite clearly as Youths grotesque and monstrous binary opposite, here is also a tactile encounter that serves to bring dis-ease to the viewer.16 This is a particularly unsettling scene for both the audience and for a feminist analysis. The grotesqueness of the aged female body is brought into stark relief by contrasting it (perhaps unfairly) with an exceptionally young, tall and perfectly trim, female body. Anna is described in terms of what she has lost on a corporeal level: muscle-tone, vertebral fluid, height, breast tissue, larynx-position and skin elasticity, while youth has all of these in abundance. While Jessica stands as the desirable normative body ideal of femininity that a media literate audience is familiar with, Anna is the feared other of womens nightmares. She represents the complete loss of femininity. Elizabeth Markson argues that womens bodies are objects of both a medical gaze and the male gaze; largely they appear in media as: bodies to be looked at, admired, and desired for their youth, beauty, and fecundity. The postmenopausal body, having lost its reproductive (and by implication, sexual) charm, neither is the object of the appreciative male gaze nor does it fit into contemporary cultural discourses about ideal female beauty.17 Von Hagens, with his scientific and male gaze, clearly identifies himself (in pulling at his own skin) as in between, reifying his position as conduit: between life and death, youth and old age, audience and other. Yet, there is another loss, a loss of those boundaries between Self and Other, between the scientist and the grotesque body and this is manifested in the tactility of his

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______________________________________________________________ encounter. This is not the distanced scientific authority one anticipated in the opening sequence. Von Hagens pulling at Annas skin is a particularly interesting moment for understanding the vulnerability of the audience when faced with the inevitability of the ageing body. In the following clip we see the audience reaction to this scene and the articulation of their emotional response. The audience consists of a mixed gender group of eight 18-20 yearolds. This clip focuses on the responses of two females within that group.18 A number of issues emerge at this point in the documentary. Firstly, if the audience previously positioned Anna as only a stones throw from the cadaver on the slab then dehumanizing her is undermined when von Hagens pulls at her skin. The pinching of Annas skin reanimates her and produces in the audience an affective response that allows them to feel for her. One respondent replicates the action on her own hand even if she does articulate this through the disgust function. Secondly, the loss of boundary between audience and grotesque body is made manifest as Annas body opens out into the world and connects corporeally and emotionally with the viewer. While Jessica presents Bakhtins new bodily canon that is an entirely finished, completed, strictly limited body Anna is Bakthins grotesque body that ignores the impenetrable surface that closes and limits the body as a separate and completed phenomenon. The grotesque image displays not only the outward but also the inner features of the body.19 The respondents articulation of being able to see the veins and blood through Annas thinning skin reveals the precariousness of this new bodily canon when faced with the return of the repressed grotesque. Thirdly, the audiences encounter with Annas body is, as Margrit Shildrick has argued, an ethical encounter with the vulnerable Self. The monstrous body for Shildrick is a liminal figure that touches the individual. Shildrick applies Levinas ethics and projects a discourse of the selfs vulnerability and responsibility in its semi-tactile encounter with otherness. Her premise is that vulnerability, often ascribed to those who are physically imperfect, is actually a state of being of the Self who is responsible to the Other. This is most manifest through the skin: Once the surface of our bodies is understood not as a protective envelope that defines and unifies our limits but as an organ of physical and psychical interchange, then the (monstrous) other is always there, like my skin.20 Finally, and most importantly for feminist media studies, researching how audiences emotionally and physically process the profoundly aged body resurrects biology and affect as key to our understanding of representations of ageing, dying and death. Not yet drowned out by the wealth of academic research on the social and cultural construction of the body, biology and

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______________________________________________________________ affect have recently re-surfaced as fundamental approaches for thinking through the body. As Anna Gibbs has argued: The biological per se [. . .] has long been exiled from the Humanities as a whole by the anti-essentialist project of denaturalization that sought to reveal the operations of social and cultural construction which everywhere turned nature into second nature.21 It is for this reason, that I have presented Annas body not simply as a body of words, the sum of discourses about it.22 The dominance of textual models for reading the ageing body should be squarely set with and against the way in which the audience feeds back to itself the inter-subjective experience of a semi-tactile encounter with deep age. Because affects [. . .] are innate activators of themselves [. . .] and because affects are communicated rapidly through facial expression, affect is also contagious between people.23 It is this contagious function of affect that disavows the distancing effect of youths encounter with ageing, dying and death. What Gunther von Hagens Autopsy: Life and Death achieves is a doubling movement: it distances the viewer through discourses of scientific objectivity and the disgust function while drawing the viewer very close by inaugurat[ing] and orchestrat[ing] affective sequences as media and bodies come together.24

Notes
1

E. Hallam, Beyond the Body: Death and Social Identity, Routledge, London, 1999. 2 N. Elias, The Loneliness of the Dying, Blackwell, Oxford, 1985, p. 2. 3 A. Blaikie, Ageing and Popular Culture, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, 1999, pp. 16, 109. 4 E. Midwinter, Out of Focus: Old Age, the Press and Broadcasting, Centre for Policy on Ageing (in association with Help the Aged), London, 1991, p. 1. 5 B. Massumi, ed., The Politics of Everyday Fear, University of Minnesota Press, Minneapolis, 1993, p. 10. 6 S. Sontag, The Double Standard of Aging, Saturday Review, 23 September 1972, pp. 29-38. 7 A. Blaikie, 1999, p. 110. 8 K. Woodward, Aging and its Discontents: Freud and Other Fictions, Indiana University Press, Bloomington, 1991, p. 194.

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______________________________________________________________
9

M. Young, and T. Schuller, Life After Work: The Arrival of the Ageless Society, Harper Collins, London, 1991, p. 181. 10 Clip 1: Opening Sequence in the first minute of the documentary Prof. von Hagens appears on a darkly lit, stark stage with a living naked 84 year old woman stood motionless in silhouette. Von Hagens says he will explain why we die when we do by slicing this 84 year old woman in half. As he says this he moves away from the live model to the cadaver of an 84 year-old woman on a slab. 11 Hallam, op. cit., p. 22. 12 M. Bakhtin, Rabelais and his World, trans. H. Iswolsky, Indiana University Press, Indiana, 1984, p. 318. 13 M. Shildrick, Embodying the Monster: Encounters with the Vulnerable Self, Sage, London, 2002, p. 1.; D. Haraway, The Promise of Monsters: A Regenerative Politics for Inappropriate/d Others, in Cultural Studies, L. Grossberg, C. Nelson and P.A. Treichler, eds, Routledge, New York, 1992, pp. 295-337. 14 W. Miller, The Anatomy of Disgust, Harvard University Press, Cambridge, MA 1997, p. 50. 15 E. Grosz, Volatile Bodies: Toward a Corporeal Feminism, Allen and Unwin, Sydney, 1994. 16 Clip 2: In order to demonstrate the differences between a youthful and ageing body, Prof. von Hagens compares a naked 84-year old Anna (the model introduced at the beginning of the documentary) with a naked 24year old Jessica. Von Hagens points to the areas of the each womans body in order to show the differences between youth and age (he focuses on skin, breasts, larynx, vertebral discs, posture and hair). 17 E. W. Markson, The Female Aging Body Through Film in C. A. Fairclough, ed., Aging Bodies: Images and Everyday Experience, AltaMira Press, Walnut Creek, CA, 2003, pp. 77- 102 (p. 80). 18 Clip 3: During this excerpt from my audience research two females within in the focus group discuss their disgust and discomfort at seeing a naked 84 year-old woman. In particular, they focus upon how von Hagens pulls at Annas skin in order to demonstrate its lack of elasticity. It is the transparency of Annas skin, revealing the veins which pop out that upsets these audience members the most. 19 Bakhtin, op. cit., pp. 320, 318. 20 Shildrick, op. cit., p. 119. 21 A. Gibbs, Disaffected, Continuum: Journal of Media and Cultural Studies, vol. 16 (3), 2002, pp. 335-341, p. 335. 22 Ibid., p. 336.

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______________________________________________________________
23 24

Ibid., p. 337. Ibid., p. 338.

Bibliography
Bakhtin, M., Rabelais and his World, trans H. Iswolsky, Indiana University Press, Indiana, 1984. Blaikie, A., Ageing and Popular Culture, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, 1999. Elias, N., The Loneliness of the Dying, Blackwell, Oxford, 1985. Gibbs, A., Disaffected, Continuum: Journal of Media and Cultural Studies, vol. 16 (3), 2002, pp. 335-341. Grosz, E., Volatile Bodies: Toward a Corporeal Feminism, Allen and Unwin, Sydney, 1994. Hallam, E., Beyond the Body: Death and Social Identity, Routledge, London, 1999. Haraway, D., The Promise of Monsters: A Regenerative Politics for Inappropriate/d Others, in Cultural Studies, L. Grossberg, C. Nelson and P.A. Treichler, eds., Routledge, New York, 1992, pp. 295-337. Markson, E. W., The Female Aging Body Through Film in Aging Bodies: Images and Everyday Experience, ed. C. A. Fairclough, AltaMira Press, Walnut Creek, CA, 2003, pp. 77- 102. Massumi, B., ed., The Politics of Everyday Fear, University of Minnesota Press, Minneapolis, 1993. Midwinter, E., Out of Focus: Old Age, the Press and Broadcasting, Centre for Policy on Ageing (in association with Help the Aged), London, 1991. Miller, W., The Anatomy of Disgust, Harvard University Press, Cambridge, MA, 1997. Shildrick, M., Embodying the Monster: Encounters with the Vulnerable Self, Sage, London, 2002. Sontag, S., The Double Standard of Aging, Saturday Review, 23 September 1972, pp. 29-38. Woodward, K., Aging and its Discontents: Freud and Other Fictions, Indiana University Press, Bloomington, 1991. Young, M. and T. Schuller, Life After Work: The Arrival of the Ageless Society, Harper Collins, London, 1991.

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Joanne Garde-Hansen

______________________________________________________________ Dr Joanne Garde-Hansen is senior lecturer in Media Theory in the Faculty of Media, Art and Communications, University of Gloucestershire, UK. She is a member of the Women, Ageing and Media (WAM) research group.

I dont want to be a burden to anybody Older Peoples Preferences for Care at the End of Life Eileen Sutton and Joanna Coast
Abstract The significance of patient choice for care at the end of life has been recognised by the UK government who have instituted a National End of Life Care Strategy, which aims to improve the quality and equity of service provision. Death is now most likely to occur at the end of a long life so it is important that the preferences of older people themselves are taken into consideration in planning these services. This paper provides evidence from an ongoing research study that is focused on the preferences of older people at the end of life. The study aims to identify the essential features of quality of dying, to develop attributes of a good death and quality of care at the end of life and to see if preferences change along the course of the dying trajectory. Preliminary findings suggest that factors such as independence and control, the importance of relationships and dignity in dying are fairly constant, but preferences for place of care are subject to change along the dying trajectory. Nevertheless, there are suggestions that these preferences are significantly influenced by factors such as the availability of informal care and knowledge and availability of service provision. Keywords Older People, Death and Dying, End-of-Life, End of Life, Preferences, SelfPerceived Burden.

1.

Introduction Over recent years life expectancy in the United Kingdom has increased and the proportion of older people in the United Kingdom population is growing.1 This increasing ageing population has implications not only for health and social care service provision, but also for the providers of informal care2. Death is now most likely to occur at the end of a long life and the recent growth in hospice and palliative care services has drawn attention to the importance of quality of death and dying, in addition to quality of life, in old age. The UK Government has declared its commitment to providing high quality person-centred care for older people, as well as

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Older Peoples Preferences for Care at the End of Life

______________________________________________________________ dignity in care at the end-of-life and recognised the importance of patient choice for care at this time. The National End of Life Care Strategy, introduced following the publication of the document Our Health, Our Care, Our Say3 in 2006, aims in improve the quality and equity of end of life care provision.4 Organizations such as the Help the Aged and Age Concern have produced guidelines or definitions and principles of a good death,5;6but we do not know if goals to improve the dying experience of older people are being achieved in practice7. Some evidence exists that their choices concerning place of death are not being met. In a recent study 49% of people aged 65 and over expressed a preference to be cared for at home when they were dying. However, 56% of people in the UK actually die in hospital.8However, whilst statistics are available on life expectancy, mortality and cause and place of death, we still know relatively little about older peoples personal experience of the dying process. This paper provides evidence from on ongoing research study, which considers the preferences of older people for care at the end of life. 2. Research Aims The mains aims of the research study are to try to discover the things that are most important to people when they are dying. This information will then be used to attempt to develop distinct attributes, or features of care at the end of life. These attributes will then be utilised in the development of a measure for the economic evaluation of end of life health and social care interventions. 3. Research Methods Qualitative in depth interviews have been conducted with 23 older people living in the South-West of England from three distinct groups: General population aged 65 and over (11) Older People living in residential care or sheltered housing (7) Older people receiving palliative care (5) These groups have been selected to facilitate comparisons and explore changing preferences along the dying trajectory. The interviews are largely informant led and respondents are initially questioned on their experiences of the death of loved ones. A topic guide for use in interviews was developed following a review of current literature in the area of end of life preferences to aid probing of relevant issues. The interviews were recorded and transcribed verbatim. Data was then subjected to thematic content analysis with the aid of the Software package Atlas Ti. Following analysis of interview data and development of attributes second-stage interviews are

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______________________________________________________________ planned to take place with a number of participants in order to refine the wording of these attributes. 4. Emerging Themes Initial analysis of the data has revealed six main themes raised by respondents: Physical pain and symptom relief, personal care Psychological feelings, dignity, mental health, independence, control, self-perceived burden Social family, friends, relationships Spiritual religion, spirituality Practical decision-making, preparation Care place of care, service provision, availability of care, choice, relationships with healthcare professionals However, the interconnectedness of these themes has been recognised. Continuing analysis is exploring evidence of differences between the three groups. 5. Place of Care/Death As noted earlier the UK government is currently looking to improve patient choice in the place that people are cared for when they are dying. However survey research can sometimes overlook the complexities of this issue. This section of the paper will therefore explore the respondents views on this theme in greater detail. For some people being at home with familiar things, with their memories and being able to do normal everyday things was important: I think its better because I think that especially if you know in your heart that its not going to be long, its nice to spend the time with things around you that youre familiar with, with a routine that youre familiar with, with the things that you like best. To spend it for any length if time where you, I didnt have my books around me and I couldnt look out and see my garden and I didnt have my pictures and I couldnt get out my photographs and have a quiet little cry about the way things were And looking at the clock and thinking well nobodys going to come in to see me until x amount of time and when they do its not like coming home where they can tinker off and make themselves a cup of coffee and make it as normal as possible (Female, 67, General Public).

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______________________________________________________________ This respondent also contrasted the situation when her family come to visit her at home with the restrictions imposed on visits in a hospital or residential care environment. Another important factor was the provision of services to support someone to live at home when they are terminally ill. The following respondent suffered from severe respiratory problems, but attended a hospice as a day patient and had a home oxygen service which enabled her to stay in her own home: oh I couldnt live without it. I wouldnt be alive without it. It does help the breathing. I mean it enables me to stay at home, and just, we were talking about retirement home, selling the house and I said No way, Im not selling my house to go to a retirement home where I couldnt be happy. I told them at (hospital) Youd kill me within a month. I said Theres no way I could be happy. (Female, 81, Palliative Care). However, for some people home is not the place where they would want to die and this may relate to their personal circumstances or experiences of caring for loved ones at home themselves: well personally I would not want to die at home. The very simple reason is, that when my mother died she died in the room up there, right. And wed got all the family here and we had the Marie Curie nurses here and she had the hospice nurses here. And she, we were with her, my sister stayed herewith me so we were with her all the time. But when she actually died and they took her away my grandchildren were 13 and 11 at the time and they were a bit worried about going past the room. (Female, 67, General Public). As noted above the majority of people in the UK die in hospital and some respondents related experiences of poor hospital care which made them anxious about the standard of care they might receive and less likely to want to die in hospital themselves: my Dad was in the hospital for a very, very short time, and he needed to have an extra pain relief, and this was the

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______________________________________________________________ year before he died mind. And we sent for the nurse, you know, and he really needed something, we knew that he never had very long to live. And she said, Oh no, no we cant give him any more because hell get addicted to it. Well how could anyone be so stupid? Really, how could anyone, when someone is dying, Oh no, he might get addicted. So what? If he spends three months addicted to heroin or whatever, so what? But at the hospice if they needed pain relief they got it. (Female, 68, General Public). This particular quote is connected to one of the other themes to emerge from data analysis, which is the importance of good physical care, including adequate pain relief, thus illustrating the inter-connectedness of the themes contributing to a good death. The palliative care patients interviewed in two local hospices all attended as day patients and received support and advice from health care staff. They remarked on the sincerity and approachability of the staff and volunteers, and the benefits of sharing and empathizing with others who were going through a similar experience: Oh its a lovely atmosphere up here and everybody seems so helpful and its. It is. You feel it when you come through the doors, cos when at first ((nurse)) said Well try it and I said I dont know, she said Oh theyre doing breathing exercises and Id like you to do that and I came very reluctantly. I cant be bothered. Im not one for a lot of people. I never have beenbut the minute I came through here, there was just a lovely atmosphere and everybody was so welcoming and we have a good chat and we have a laugh and Ive enjoyed the breathing (exercises) which has helped my breathing quite a bit. (Female, 81, Palliative Care). Respondents provided evidence of poor knowledge of the availability of hospice care and misinformation on the services provided in the hospice setting. This respondent, who suffered from a disease with an extended dying trajectory believed that going to the hospice meant that was it, but after seeing the facilities and meeting the staff she was happy to attend the hospice as a day patient and had decided to go there as an inpatient in the last few weeks of her life:

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______________________________________________________________ Theyve showed me the rooms and its ensuite and they said You can come you know and I come back and I said Well Im not frightened anymore. If my husband cant deal with me, come the end of this illness, cos it will get worse very quickly this illness. I said I wouldnt mind at all coming here. You know Im quite happy about it. (Female, 65, Palliative Care). Studies have shown that older people have poorer access to palliative care in comparison to younger people and the reasons for this are unclear9. It may be associated to lower expectations, rationing of health care, or knowledge and availability of services. The following respondent explained that in effect access to the day hospice has to be rationed and patients are only allowed to attend sessions for 16 weeks: youre allowed 16 weeks when - I wont want to give it up. But I know I got to cos this rules for everybody that if I -you know Ive got to make room for somebody else then, put it like that. I suppose I dont know, but thats what I put it down to and I would feel - I know a lot of peoples got to move at a certain time. I havent had a day off since Ive been here. (Female, 65, Palliative Care). She explained that she was dreading the day that she could no longer attend the sessions as coming through the door was like being given a big hug. 6. Decision-Making Some of the older people consulted in the interviews had already made a decision to move from their homes into residential care because they felt that they could no longer cope in their own home. However, this did not mean that they had considered where they would like to be when they died; indeed some respondents felt that older people might postpone making this kind of decision. This may be because of particular personal characteristics or circumstances. The following quote is taken from an interview with a man
who was divorced and didnt have any children, but who also suffered from severe mental health problems:

honestly I havent thought about that cos weve had quite a few people die here recently, theyve died in their bed at night. And Ive noticed, thats another thing I noticed, but if a persons been dead no one mentions it the next day. In the morning, no one mentions anything, theyre

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______________________________________________________________ sort of gone but they dont say, I think all old people push it out of their minds. (Male, 81, Residential Care). Older peoples decision-making, and consequently their expressed preferences, is also tempered by worries about how their decisions impact upon others, like their family or potential caregivers: I think for everyone its important to stay in your own home as long as possible but we all know what well at least most of us are wise enough to realise the time has come when were not possible to stay in our home on our own. Were too much of a responsibility to other people and therefore we should make a decision about what it is more convenient for everyone. (Male, 90, Residential Care). 7. Self-Perceived Burden The concept of self-perceived burden has been noted in previous studies of terminally and chronically ill patients10 and this was a recurring theme raised during interviews: Well it does worry you because you start thinking whos going to be, whos going to take that burden. Not every family is in a position where they can call on somebody to take over and as long as it remains within the family generally its a lot better than if its in a hospital So you know it does come into it quite a lot really what happens to you at the end of (life). (Male, 68, General Public). As I said the most important for me at the time I was diagnosed with cancer. To me cancer is a death sentence and my main priority then was to go and try and take any worries off my children that was why I sort of made a Will, sort of done. That was my priority at the time. (Male, 69, Residential Care). well as I mentioned to you Im not one bit scared of death and I dont want to be a burden to anybody if I thought that Id be pushed around in a wheelchair I couldnt have that. I shouldnt say no more about it but I think Ill probably go the same way as my father and pack it in. I dont want to be a burden. (Male, 72, General Public).

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______________________________________________________________ So, the availability of care, which is often provided by family members or friends, and described as informal care, has a huge impact on older peoples decision-making around preferences for place of care at the end of life: Ive no daughter-in-law, my son is divorced from his wife, hes got two teenage children. So that, erm, you know, theres no females to do any helping. My sister is 74 and she lives in London so shes not ever, you know, ever so well. So, so, you know, Ive got to think ahead to think, you know, what Ive got any choice what I want. (Female, 83, Palliative Care). I said Dad wheres those tablets? He threw them down the toilet didnt he? He wouldnt take them, see how independent he was? He said Itll pass see so I wouldnt of had dad put in a home, but then its their circumstances innit? I mean sometimes elderly people need attention 24 hours a day and sometimes they cant get it from their families cos their families got to lead their own lives havent they? That is how I look at it. (Female, 74, General Public). As people are living longer, perhaps into their 90s, there is also the factor their potential providers of informal care may themselves be in their 70s and in poor health. 8. Discussion In summary, preliminary analysis of interview data has revealed that it is difficult to establish distinct attributes of a good death and quality of care at the end of life due to the co-dependency of these attributes. Factors such as independence and control, the importance of relationships and dignity in dying are fairly constant, but preferences for place of care are subject to change along the dying trajectory due to changing circumstances, but also possibly associated with changing expectations, as people get older. Nevertheless, there are suggestions that these preferences are significantly influenced by factors such as the availability of informal care and knowledge and availability of service provision. 9. Challenges of End of Life Research The following aspects of this research study were found to be particularly challenging and have impacted upon the data presented. They are

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______________________________________________________________ useful to note for those considering undertaking research in this area in the future: Gaining ethical approval for research - length of the process Recruitment of palliative care patients - gate-keeping by health Care professionals Applicability e.g. minority ethnic groups Impact on researcher/transcriber Methodological challenge of reducing a large number of themes To distinct attributes for use in economic studies.

Notes
1

Department of Health, National Service Framework for Older People, The Stationery Office, London, 2001. 2 House of Lords Science & Technology Committee, Ageing: Scientific Aspects, Volume 1: Report, The Stationery Office, London, 2005-6. 3 Department of Health, Our Health, Our Care, Our Say, 2006. 4 Department of Heath, National End of Life Care Programme, retrieved 18 August 2005, <http://eolc.cbcl.co.uk/eolc>. 5 Help the Aged, End-of-Life: Making Decisions Around the End-of-Life, retrieved 20 July 2005, <http://www.helptheaged.org.uk/NR/rdonlyres/evmneb3k63ooalcmc3lcy2xrk qdzjpr2r5xk3w75xxcc2vnrnusw6odxkblwnxdpcpbm7gpk7udat4vicljdiwg2j6 f/endoflife.pdf.>. 6 Melanie Henwood and Debate of the Age Health and Care Study Group, The Future of Health and Care of Older People: The Best is Yet to Come, (Age Concern) The Millennium Papers, London, 1999. 7 R. Smith, A Good Death, British Medical Journal, vol. 320, 2000, pp 129130. 8 I. J. Higginson, Priorities and Preferences for End of Life Care in England, Wales and Scotland, National Council for Hospice and Specialist Palliative Care Services, London,2003. 9 G. E. Grande, M. C. Farquhar, S. I. G. Barclay and C. J. Todd, The Influence of Patient and Care Age in Access to Palliative Care Services, Age and Ageing, vol. 35, 2006, pp. 267-273.

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______________________________________________________________
10

C. J. McPherson, K. G. Wilson and M. A. Murray, Feeling Like a Burden to Others: A Systematic Review Focusing on the End of Life, Palliative Medicine, vol. 21, 2007, pp. 115-128.

Bibliography
Department of Health, National Service Framework for Older People, The Stationery Office, 2001. Department of Health, Our Health, Our Care, Our Say, The Stationery Office, 2006. Department of Health, National End of Life Care Programme, retrieved 18 August 2007, http://eolc.cbcl.co.uk/eolc Grande, G. E., M. C. Farquhar, S. I. G. Barclay and C. J. Todd, The Influence of Patient and Care Age in Access to Palliative Care Services, Age and Ageing, vol. 35, 2006, pp. 267-273. Help the Aged, End-of-Life: Making Decisions Around the End-of-Life, retrieved 20 July 2005, http://www.helptheaged.org.uk/NR/rdonlyres/evmneb3k63ooalcmc3lcy2 xrkqdzjpr2r5xk3w75xxcc2vnrnusw6odxkblwnxdpcpbm7gpk7udat4viclj diwg2j6f/endoflife.pdf. Henwood, M. and Debate of the Age Health and Care Study Group, The Future of Health and Care of Older People: The Best is Yet to Come, Age Concern/The Millennium Papers, London, 1999. Higginson, I. J., Priorities and Preferences for End of Life Care in England, Wales and Scotland, National Council for Hospice and Specialist Palliative Care Services, London, 2003. House of Lords Science & Technology Committee, Ageing: Scientific Aspects, Volume 1: Report, Stationery Office, London, 2005-6. McPherson, C. J., K. G. Wilson and M. A. Murray, Feeling Like a Burden to Others: A Systematic Review Focusing on the End of Life, Palliative Medicine, vol. 21, 2007, pp. 115-128 Smith, R., A Good Death, British Medical Journal, vol. 320, 2000, pp 129130.

Eileen Sutton is a Research Associate at the Medical Research Council, Health Services Research Collaboration.

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______________________________________________________________

Joanna Coast is Professor of Health Economics at the University of Birmingham

PART II ATTITUDES AND CONCEPTS

Conceptions of Death in Biography and Philosophy

The Trauma of Death and the Silence of the Private Diary Nikos Falagkas and Georgia Kalogeropoulou

Abstract Having addressed the potentiality of a union of psychoanalysis with philosophy, we concentrate on the theory of trauma, which attempts to account for the individuals confrontation with alterity. According to Laplanches trauma theory, an intense and overwhelming event (understood as an intrusion to the subject) triggers a psychic causality characterised by the double temporality of trauma: there is an initial absence of consciousness concerning the traumatic event followed by a period of latency, only after which, the trauma becomes manifest in the subjects repetitive actions or dreams and can be therefore recognized and handled as such. The diary writing bears resemblances to the psychoanalytical procedure as it is motivated by the conscious effort of the diarist to express himself or herself in a spontaneous way. The entries from George Seferiss private diary concerning the deaths of his mother and brother demonstrate that the private diary constitutes a privileged topos where both the bipolar temporality and the causality of afterwardness of trauma are clearly reflected: there is an initial silence synchronically to the event of the death of the other, which demonstrates the diarists incapacity to assimilate it and then, following a period of latency, a gradual acceptance of the loss.

Keywords Trauma Theory, Private Diary, Sigmund Freud, Jean Laplanche, George Seferis.

1.

Introduction In an attempt to explore the possibilities and legitimacy of a union of the psychoanalytical discourse and the diary theory, we will revisit the Freudian theory of trauma and see how it can be applied to private diary entries that deal with the death of the other. We will start by discussing our method and continue with a presentation of Freuds theory of trauma and its, often contradicting, interpretations. Finally we will address the issue of the psychic causality of trauma exploring the way in which the trauma can be reflected in certain entries from the private diary of the Greek poet George Seferis.

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______________________________________________________________ 2. Method The use we intent to make of the trauma theory will be directly dictated by our epistemological standpoint which would seek to combine the psychoanalytic discourse with the exploration of the limits and the possibility of a modern theory of knowledge situating itself in the continuation of the Kantian move. It is clear that such an approach can only be uttered in the crossroads of psychoanalytic theory and philosophy. This union, which has been discussed a lot and questioned even more, has resulted in a great range of different points of view from the psychoanalysing of philosophy to the philosophical critique that accuses psychoanalysis either of naive positivism or of ontologising realistic tendencies, or even of being a structuralistic postmodern narrative having little to do with science and the quest for truth. If a Kantian view of psychoanalysis is possible, it would refrain from simply trying to raise the psychoanalytic tools to the dignity of philosophical concepts, but would instead seek to restore the genuine force of reflexivity hidden in the very core of psychoanalytic theory. The speculative interest of psychoanalysis comes along with the clinical aspect of the analytic practice but necessarily goes beyond it. It can be used with the pretention of a purely theoretical discourse, which daringly looks onto the products of culture, such as the different aspects of civilisation (for example the texts of Freud criticizing the religion or tracing the genesis of civilized society)1 or the social creations of human imagination, such as art or, to a certain extent, even science. It is necessary though to underline that such a use of psychoanalysis cannot but be limited to the elaboration and validation of certain concepts in an epistemological level only. Otherwise, it may become a clumsy psychologism that would consider creation as a symptom and end up in nonsensical reductionism. And this appears to be a real danger, which derives, to some extent, from the inherent totalizing, imperialistic tendencies of the psychoanalytic discourse.2 Besides, such a use is actually a common tactic among psychoanalysts and theorists of psychoanalysis, dating back to Freud himself.3 It remains an open question whether one could actually create a coherent theory of knowledge based on Freuds texts, mostly due to the fact that his theory evolved in a completely non-linear manner undertaking many revisions and changes, but also because of the theorys profound involvement with a special kind of praxis. There are though certain aspects of the Freudian psychoanalysis that can be said to be indispensable for every modern epistemology, such as the theory of narcissism pointing to the libidinal birth of logos itself, the notion of projection that touches upon the problem of validity of knowledge, and, finally, the very theory of trauma in its metaphoric use. The latter, as a potentially general genealogical theory tracing the birth of sense into the subject via its confrontation with the

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______________________________________________________________ enigma of the radical alterity of the other, can revive the question of the subjects construction, a question situated in the long philosophical tradition of representation. 3. Trauma Theory Regarding the epistemological dimension of the trauma theory in its most abstract form, we can distinguish two potential uses. Firstly, there is a metaphoric use touching upon the genesis of meaning originating from the archaic era of the human being or its pre-social existence.4 Then there is a philosophic use that undertakes to describe the subjects confrontation to the limit of meaning itself, which could be translated in the encounter of every mortal with the fact of death, the death being by definition the impasse of meaning and the absolute alterity as such. A fundamental difference exists between the two standpoints: it is clear that in the case of the individual confronting the other, like for example in sexual seduction taking place in childhood (which was the essence of Freuds early causal seduction theory explaining adult neuroses), the other (not the Lacanian other, and in this aspect we are close to Laplanches conception of trauma)5 intrudes the subject with a message too organized and purposeful to be assimilated at the time, having therefore to be treated as nonsense at the time when it occurs, even though it includes a concrete meaning coming from the other. In contrast with the massive meaning of seduction, the fait brut of death, which, needless to remark, is always the death of the other, presents itself as a total absence of meaning that is equally intrusive and intensive, and confronts the subject with the emptiness, the void as such. Nonetheless it is clear that there is a great resemblance in the cases of massive meaning and of massive absence of meaning, because the subject is being confronted with the radical alterity of the message. And if we decide to attenuate the extremity of the two dimensions presented here, we are led to an image of trauma much more unified and generalisable as a theory. Given the fact that the human being has to be socialized and educated, and that there is for all of us a time before that, it is clear that every meaning can be massive, if it is destined to a structure that does not have the schemas to meet it. In the case of death, more than the meaningless fact of death, the subject has actually to face the constant enigma of survival,6 which imposes itself as an inevitable question every time the subject is confronted with the others death or with its own potential death as in the case of accidents. It is needless to say that death can only become tragic or traumatic from a social / human / psychic point of view, as far as it reveals the contradiction between the illusions fed by the social human being and the limit of meaning and representation, which discloses the futility of all human necessity. It is in fact the dialectic relation between the initial absence and the genesis of social meaning that the trauma theory seeks to articulate from the

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______________________________________________________________ standpoint of psychoanalysis, by elaborating a model which includes the intrusion metaphor and the development of a psychic causality characterized by a special temporality. The aspects that interest us most in trauma theory are the elaboration of the bipolar temporality which tries to capture psychic causality, as well as the intrusion metaphor, inasmuch as it could serve as a model of understanding the way in which the subject encounters the radical alterity of the others message. 4. The Double Temporal Structure of Trauma The trauma theory makes its appearance very early in Freuds oeuvre, alongside with the seduction theory, and underlies the whole of Freudian thought until its latest episodes and even after the abandonment of the seduction theory and the acknowledgment of the role of fantasy in psychic causality.7 The main texts where the theory of trauma is outlined are the Beyond the Pleasure Principle and the Moses and Monotheism. However, the notion of afterwardness or belatedness, which is a central aspect of the theory of trauma, has been fully addressed in the Wolfsman Case.8 The temporal structure of trauma was developed mainly by Jean Laplanche, who expanded Freuds seduction theory to a more general theory aspiring to describe the genesis of the self as a result of the implantation of the message of the other. According to the fundamental Vocabulaire de la Psychanalyse, Freuds trauma theory has temporal, economic and topographical aspects,9 and engages a complicated view of psychic causality, which dialectically combines the external reality with the internal reality of the subject. The trauma, in order to be a psychic trauma, does not just simply come from the outside; it is instead divided into two structural moments. First, there is necessarily the implantation of something coming from outside, a fact characterised by its intensity, its unexpected nature and its overwhelming and violent character.10 The causality of trauma lies in the fact that the event is not grasped while it occurs. It is always experienced too soon and too unexpectedly to be fully known and is, thus, not available to consciousness until it imposes itself again later, after a period of latency or of incubation. Then it becomes manifest in the subjects repetitive actions or dreams (nightmares). The traumatic event, as it has been theorized in psychoanalysis, centers around the notion of piercing or penetrating, effraction or wounding. Trauma though is not locatable in the original violent event, but mostly in the reinvestment of the event afterwards, in a second moment. What is in fact traumatic is the internal reviviscence of this memory11 in a point in time at which the subject has acquired the cognitive tools to understand what occurred in the past (as far as Freuds seduction theory is concerned, according to which the premature sexual experience is the basis of

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______________________________________________________________ adult neurosis). Our thesis is that the seduction theory can be generalized beyond the context of sexuality, and that the belatedness or afterwardness of the trauma causality is a process necessarily preceding the passage from the real of the experience to the symbolic level, a passage which presupposes the recognition of the trauma as such. 5. Psychoanalysis and the Private Diary Having situated our method in the crossroads of psychoanalysis and philosophy, and having proposed a wider perception of the theory of trauma largely drawn on Laplanches view of trauma, we argue that there is room in these grounds for a creative dialogue between psychoanalysis and diary theory.12 The diary writing bears some significant differences vis--vis an analytic situation, because it essentially lacks the factor of the analysts reconstruction of the subjects enunciations and it excludes the process of transference.13 Nonetheless, there are striking resemblances between the two and especially in the fact that the diary writing is motivated by the conscious effort of the writer to express himself in a spontaneous, direct way on the empty canvas of the white sheet of paper without any constraints such as a pre-existent structure or a given subject.14 It is therefore our hypothesis that the diary constitutes a privileged topos where the bipolar temporality of trauma can be clearly reflected and the freedom involved in diary writing would allow us to retrace the trauma causality not only in what is actually said but also in the discourse distortions found in the diary text, with the silence of the diary being the extreme example of them. In examining the diaries of the Greek poet Seferis, we will discuss the pattern of trauma as it is materialised in the entries concerning the deaths of the diarists loved ones. The death of the other is traumatic par excellence because it confronts the subject not only with the radical strangeness of the others message, but also with the limits of meaning or symbolization itself. 6. Death in Seferiss Private Diary The private diary of the Nobelist Greek poet George Seferis (19001971) covers the time period from 1925 to 1960 and was published in seven volumes under the title Meres [=Days]. One of the first things that have been claimed by French diary theory is that most diarists prefer to discuss what has caused them the most negative feelings.15 In line with that, the death of the other is a recurring theme of many diaries and Seferiss one is no exception.16 There are, however, two deaths in Seferiss diary, which are not properly mentioned but rather hinted. The first death is that of the diarists mother, which occurred on the 9th of September 1926. There is an entry in Seferis diary that starts with this

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______________________________________________________________ date but goes no further. Instead, there is a blank space in the printed volume, which stands for a number of empty pages in the manuscript.17 As we learn by the following entry, those pages had been left empty in order to be completed later on. However, faithfully to the nature of the private diary, which favours the spontaneous writing, they never were. The fifth volume, during the time period of which the diarists brother Angelos had died, is dedicated to his memory.18 The entry to report the event of his death is written on 28-1-1950 and it is as follows: Night of 18th to 19th of January: Angelos.19 So, all we have in this entry is a new date, the deceased name and no other information given. The rest of the page in the volume is blank, probably corresponding to empty pages in the manuscript, as was the case on the mothers death twenty four years earlier. These two blank entries are not only unique in Seferiss diary but also constitute a real anomaly in relation to diary practices in general because one of the few things commonly agreed about diaries is that an entry consist of only one date and of something else, usually a text.20 But, of the entries we have seen, the one has nothing after the date and the other has two dates. However, what is more striking in both cases is the blank space, which signalises the absence and implies that the diarist had the intention but not the courage to write on his mothers and on his brothers death. We argue that the blank entry visualises in a dramatic way the first moment of a trauma imposed on the diarist by death and that the silence reveals the overwhelming irruption of the real into the symbolic. To conclude, in these two entries the private diary is challenged by the intensity of the reality and the result is a diary writing which bears the trace of a truth in its absence.21 The entries that follow the two blank ones come in both cases approximately a month later and demonstrate that, despite the monthly diary silences, the diarist could not still cope with the loss of his mother and with that of his brother. In the first case he wrote: I left the last pages of the previous notebook empty. I will write when I have the strength about the last months disaster. [//] How one can get used to the pain?22 As we can see, the diarist refers to the death of his mother as the last months disaster. However, the last phrase of the entry is the question How can one get used to the pain? separated by an empty line from the previous text and this rhetorical question may probably be a small step towards realisation. The entry that follows the implicit announcement of his brothers death is just one ambiguous sentence long: The dreadful war nature wages to prevent the Poet from existing.23 This sentence could refer either to the diarist himself or, more likely, to the diarists dead brother, who had also written poems. If the latter is true, then we could identify, similarly to the mothers case, a small step towards realisation taken as well a full month after the loss. To sum up, approximately a month after the two blank entries, the diarist was able to refer, even implicitly, to the deaths. Nonetheless, the

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______________________________________________________________ trauma that has been caused still affected in both cases the writing of the diary making it tentative and ambiguous. In his private diary Seferis will speak about his mother or rather about his recollections of her four more times, three of them in entries of 1932. During this year he will write: while I was going I felt my mothers blood in my veins and I can never see her in a sitting room; she always appears either in the seashore or in the vineyards and the woods and even I stumbled upon papers and photographs that reminded me of my mothers death.24 It was obviously during that year, six years after the trauma of loss had occurred, that the diarist could finally confide to his diary the thoughts and memories concerning his mother. If coming to terms with the death of his mother took the diarist six years, it was just during the year following that of his brothers death that two entries were written about him. The one contains extracts from the deceaseds letters to the diarist and the other includes an emotional outburst, which is apparently provoked by the fact that Seferis was writing his diary using the pen of his brother.25 We should note that this entry belongs to a very emotional period of Meres, during the diarists trip to Asia Minor, his lost homeland. The part that refers to his brother is the following: Faces that shone, cool lips that laughed, voices; Im writing with my brothers pen. God, have mercy upon our dead! Such air, such tones, such warmth, such light - they dont let you break away from them; they hold you, delay you longer and longer - this feeling of a bare autumn resurrection. My eyes, I think, are full; they have room for nothing else.26 It is with this entry written ninth months after his brothers death that the diarist seems to have come to terms with the loss and to have become able to confess his grief. To sum up, the diary reflects the double temporality of trauma, which is first evident in the initial silence synchronically to the event of the death of the other and demonstrates the diarists incapacity to assimilate it. Then come the gradual acceptance of the losses and, finally, the confession of the memories and feelings associated with the deceased, following a period of latency according to the causality of afterwardness or belatedness implicated in the trauma.

7.

Concluding Remarks The inscription of trauma in the intimate writing of Seferis reveals itself in an initial silence which leads to the continuous efforts of symbolization after a significant period of latency or incubation, a process

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______________________________________________________________ that presents the traits of the traumatic psychic causality of belatedness. It is intriguing that as far as diary writing is concerned, the trauma can go beyond the paroxysmic expressions, which are usually associated with it, and make its appearance under the form of an absence. It is this very absence, the crack in the subjects discourse, which allows us to capture its unconscious truth when, despite his conscious effort of enunciating this truth, he actually betrays it under the form of a unique event of a heavy silence.27 The writing of the diary can be parallelized, to some degree, to what Derrida calls non-transcriptive writing, which constitutes for him the prototype of the process of symbolization. He describes a writing that has to be at the same time secondary, that is, derived in a certain way, because it is enunciated through the vehicle of language, but also originary in that the truth it expresses is not a transcription of a deeper, hidden, unconscious truth (as Freuds unconscious is not a deeper ego) but is rather created at the time it is articulated.28 It is, in fact, the very attempt to write that structures temporality for the subject, in its continuous effort, expressed by repetition, to confront the limit of death while remaining at the same time into the symbolic. Through the trauma theory we can understand this eternal struggle of the human being, which is always situated in a point of transition between the real and the symbolic, trying to invest in social objects, though it is always compelled by the limit of death, which shows itself as the frozen melancholy of the dead time of trauma.29 The trauma has to be transformed and sublimated by the writing, and this coincides finally with the essence of the very act of structuring time itself.

Notes
1

See S. Freud, Totem et Tabou, Payot, Paris, 2001, S. Freud, LAvenir dune Illusion, P.U.F., Paris, 1995 and S. Freud, Le Malaise dans la Culture, P.U.F., Paris, 1995. 2 See for example Wittgensteins critique of the seductive power of psychoanalytic concepts in J. Bouveresse, Wittgenstein Reads Freud - the Myth of the Unconscious, trans., Carol Cosman, Princeton University Press, Princeton, 1995. 3 See M. Borch-Jacobsen & S. Shamdasani, Le Dossier Freud - Enqute sur lHistoire de la Psychanalyse, Les Empcheurs de Penser en Rond, Paris, 2006. 4 It is worth noticing that the metaphoric use of trauma theory is standing in the basis of a concrete therapeutic model. Moreover, the pre-social existence refers to the time before the individuals real entrance in society or, in

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______________________________________________________________ lacanian terms, into the symbolic, and before the creation of an unconscious which coincides with the originary repression. 5 J. Laplanche, Nouveaux Fondements pour la Psychanalyse, P.U.F., Paris, 1987. 6 According to C. Caruth, Freuds Beyond the Pleasure Principle (1920) and Moses and Monotheism (1938), written during the events surrounding WWI and WWII, represent Freuds formulation of trauma as a theory of the peculiar incomprehensibility of the human survival. See C. Caruth, Unclaimed Experience - Trauma, Narrative and History, The Johns Hopkins University Press, Baltimore, 1996. 7 The seduction theory, despite how it appears, cannot be assimilated to a simply realistic essentialist attitude. 8 S. Freud, LHomme aux Loups, P.U.F., Paris, 1947. 9 J. Laplanche & J.-B. Pontalis, Vocabulaire de la Psychanalyse, P.U.F., Paris, 1967. 10 C. Caruth, An Interview with Jean Laplanche, in Topologies of Trauma Essays on the Limit of Knowledge and Memory, L. Belau & P. Ramadanovic, eds., Other Press, New York, 2002. 11 S. Freud, Project for a Scientific Psychology, in The Origins of Psychoanalysis: Letters to Fliess, E. Mosbavher & J. Strachey, eds., Basic Books, New York, 1945. 12 The study of the private diary genre has often employed theories of psychology and psychoanalytical tools or vocabulary. One of the first booklength studies that were written about the private diary in France is Michle Leleus Les Journaux Intimes, which belonged to a series entitled Caractres. Caractrologie et Analyse de la Personnalit. If a psychological theory has profoundly marked one of the first studies about this genre, psychoanalysis is one of the main tools employed in one of the most influential ones. Batrice Didier in her study Le Journal Intime described the diarists fear of the outside world and his need to return to his inner self and to his inner life as a movement towards his infantile years motivated by the love for his (often deceased) mother. Incestuous desire, egotism, passivity and malaise of identity, all derive from this fundamental tendency of the diarists and all can be found in various French private diaries. During the past few years there is a great interest in using psychoanalysis in the study of private diaries. In the proceeding of the conference Ecriture de Soi et Psychanalyse Anne Clancier discussed, amongst others, the fears, the mechanisms of obsession and the narrations of dreams found in Amiels diary. Furthermore, in his study entitled LEcriture de Soi Guy Besanon observed that the repetitions discussed in Freuds Beyond the Pleasure

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______________________________________________________________ Principle are largely present in many private diaries while the views he expressed on the pathology of Narcissism can be illustrated, for example, by Goncourts and Gombrowiczs private diaries. For all the above see M. Leleu, Les Journaux Intimes, P.U.F., Paris, 1952, B. Didier, Le Journal Intime, P.U.F., Paris, 1976, A. Clancier, Henri-Frdric Amiel. Un Long Journal Intime, in Ecriture de Soi et Psychanalyse, J.-Fr. Chiantaretto, ed., LHarmattan, Paris and Montreal, 1996, pp. 69-81 and G. Besanon, Fonction Psychothrapique de Journal Intime in LEcriture de Soi, LHarmattan, Paris et al., 2002, pp. 139-183. See also A. Montandon, ed., De Soi Soi : LEcriture comme Autohospitalit, Presses Universitaires Blaise Pascal, Clermont-Ferrand, 2004 and J.-Fr. Chiantaretto, A. Clancier & A. Roche, eds., Autobiographie, Journal Intime et Psychanalyse, Economica, Paris, 2005. 13 The transference refers to the fact that the analysand is bound to revive his basic conflict in the face of the analyst. 14 Concerning the similarity between private diary writing and psychoanalysis we should add that Besanon go as far as to claim that the writing of the private diary is not only similar to psychotherapy but, in certain cases, more faithful in reflecting the individuals mental organisation and, thus, more effective than the very process of psychoanalysis itself. See Besanon, Fonction Psychothrapique de Journal Intime, p. 140. Regarding the diarists freedom (and its limits) to write whatever he wants and the subsequent diversity of the private diarys content see M. Blanchot, Le Journal Intime et le Rcit, Le Livre Venir, Gallimard, Paris, 2003, pp. 252259. In addition, it is worth mentioning Didiers remark that we could never finish counting the metamorphoses of the journal, the genre-Phnix par excellence, as well as Simonet-Tenants characterization of the private diary as a ralit protiforme. See Didier, Le Journal Intime, p. 16 and Fr. Simonet-Tenant, Le Journal Intime. Genre Littraire et Ecriture Ordinaire, Nathan, Paris, 2001, p. 11. 15 See P. Bourget, La Maladie du Journal Intime, Nouvelle Pages de Critique et de Doctrine, Plon, Paris, 1922, v. II, p. 20, Leleu, Les Journaux intimes, pp. 40-41, A. Girard, Le Journal Intime, P.U.F., Paris, 1986, p. 510, Ch. Ddyan, Le Nouveau Mal du Sicle. De Baudelaire nos Jours, Socit dEdition dEnseignement Suprieur, Paris, 1968-1972, v. I, pp. 279-292, A. Antoine, Le Mal du Sicle dans le Journal Intime de Maine de Biran, in Difficult dEtre et Mal du Sicle dans les Correspondances et Journaux Intime de la Premire Moiti du XIXe Sicle, S. Bernard-Griffiths & Chr. Croisille, eds., Presses Universitaires Blaise Pascal, Clermont-ferrand, 1998, pp. 43-56, Simonet-Tenant, Le Journal Intime, pp. 85-88 and M. Braud, La

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______________________________________________________________ Forme des Jours. Pour une Potique du Journal Personnel, Seuil, Paris, 2006, pp. 99-102. 16 See for example, G. Seferis, eres VII, Ikaros, Athens, 1996 [first edition: 1990], p. 53 [entry of 27-9-1957]. Concerning the topic of death in French private diaries see B. Didier, Le Journal Intime: Ecriture de la Mort ou Vie de lEcriture in La Mort dans le Texte, G. Ernst, ed., Presses Universitaires de Lyon, Lyon, 1988, pp. 127-147. 17 G. Seferis, Meres I, Ikaros, Athens, 2003 [first edition: 1975], p. 77. 18 In memory of my brother Angelos. [/] Today, the 19th of January 1967, seventeen years have passed. [/] G.S.. G. Seferis, eres V, Ikaros, Athens, 1996 [first edition: 1973], p. 3. 19 Ibid, p. 151. 20 See Blanchot, Le Journal Intime et le Rcit, pp. 252-253 and Ph. Lejeune & C. Bogaert, Le Journal et le Temps, Le Journal Intime. Histoire et Anthologie, Textuel, Paris, 2006, pp. 22-25, Braud, La Forme des Jours, pp. 161-162. 21 Compare to P.-L. Assoun, Un Souvenir dEnfance de Colette: Le Trauma du Jour in Autobiographie, Journal Intime et Psychanalyse, J.-Fr. Chiantaretto, A. Clancier & A. Roche, eds., Economica, Paris, 2005, pp. 6168. 22 Seferis, Meres I, p. 78 [entry of 2-10-1926]. 23 Seferis, Meres V, p. 152 [entry of 1-3-1950]. 24 G. Seferis, Meres II, Ikaros, Athens, 1984 [first edition: 1975], pp. 49, 61, 87 [entries of 17-5-1932, 29-8-1932 and 29-8-1932]. 25 Seferis, Meres V, pp. 226, 229-230 [entries of 24-10-1950 and 21-111950]. 26 Our translation is largely based on the one published by Athan Anagnostopoulos. See G. Seferis, A Poets Journal. Days of 1945-1951, Harvard University Press, Cambridge, Massachusetts and London, 1974, pp. 188-189. 27 On the importance of the meta-psychology of the unique event as an essential trait of Freuds thought, see P.-L. Assoun, Introduction l'Epistmologie Freudienne, Payot, Paris, 1981. 28 J. Derrida, Freud et la Scne de lEcriture, LEcriture et la Diffrence, Seuil, Paris, 1967, pp. 293-340. 29 See A. Green, Psychanalyse et Temporalit. Entretien avec Franois Richard, Adolescence, v. 5, 2004, pp. 719-733.

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______________________________________________________________

Bibliography
Antoine, A., Le Mal du Sicle dans le Journal Intime de Maine de Biran, in Difficult dEtre et Mal du Sicle dans les Correspondances et Journaux Intime de la Premire Moiti du XIXe Sicle, ed. S. Bernard-Griffiths & Chr. Croisille, Presses Universitaires Blaise Pascal, Clermont-ferrand, 1998, pp. 43-56. Assoun, P.-L., Un Souvenir dEnfance de Colette: Le Trauma du Jour in Autobiographie, journal intime et psychanalyse, ed. J.-Fr. Chiantaretto, A. Clancier & A. Roche, Economica, Paris, 2005, pp. 61-68. Introduction l'Epistmologie Freudienne, Payot, Paris, 1981. Besanon, G., Fonction Psychothrapique de Journal Intime in LEcriture de Soi, LHarmattan, Paris et al., 2002, pp. 139-183. Blanchot, M., Le Journal Intime et le Rcit in Le Livre Venir, Gallimard, Paris, 2003, pp. 252-259. Borch-Jacobsen, M. & S. Shamdasani, Le Dossier Freud - Enqute sur lHistoire de la Psychanalyse, Les Empcheurs de Penser en Rond, Paris, 2006. Bourget, P., La Maladie du Journal Intime in Nouvelle Pages de Critique et de Doctrine, Plon, Paris, 1922. Bouveresse, J., Wittgenstein Reads Freud - The Myth of the Unconscious, trans. C. Cosman, Princeton University Press, Princeton, 1995. Braud, M., La Forme des Jours. Pour une Potique du Journal Personnel, Seuil, Paris, 2006. Caruth, C., An Interview with Jean Laplanche, in Topologies of Trauma Essays on the Limit of Knowledge and Memory, ed. L. Belau & P. Ramadanovic, Other Press, New York, 2002. Unclaimed Experience - Trauma, Narrative and History, The Johns Hopkins University Press, Baltimore, 1996. Chiantaretto, J.-Fr., A. Clancier & A. Roche, eds., Autobiographie, Journal Intime et Psychanalyse, Economica, Paris, 2005. Clancier, A., Henri-Frdric Amiel. Un Long Journal Intime in Ecriture de Soi et Psychanalyse, ed. J.-Fr. Chiantaretto, LHarmattan, Paris and Montreal, 1996, pp. 69-81. Ddyan, Ch., Le Nouveau Mal du Sicle. De Baudelaire nos Jours, Socit dEdition dEnseignement Suprieur, Paris, 1968-1972. Derrida, J., Freud et la Scne de lEcriture in LEcriture et la Diffrence, Seuil, Paris, 1967, pp. 293-340.

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______________________________________________________________ Didier, B., Le Journal Intime: Ecriture de la Mort ou Vie de lEcriture in La Mort dans le Texte, ed. G. Ernst, Presses Universitaires de Lyon, Lyon, 1988, pp. 127-147. Le Journal Intime, P.U.F., Paris, 1976. Freud, S., Project for a Scientific Psychology in The Origins of Psychoanalysis: Letters to Fliess, ed. E. Mosbavher & J. Strachey, Basic Books, New York, 1945. LAvenir dune Illusion, P.U.F., Paris, 1995. LHomme aux Loups, P.U.F., Paris, 1947. Le Malaise dans la Culture, P.U.F., Paris, 1995. Totem et Tabou, Payot, Paris, 2001. Girard, A., Le Journal Intime, P.U.F., Paris, 1986. Green, A., Psychanalyse et Temporalit. Entretien avec Franois Richard, Adolescence, Vol. 5, 2004, pp. 719-733. Laplanche, J. & J.-B. Pontalis, Vocabulaire de la Psychanalyse, P.U.F., Paris, 1967. Laplanche, J., Nouveaux Fondements pour la Psychanalyse, P.U.F., Paris, 1987. Lejeune, Ph. & C. Bogaert, Le Journal et le Temps in Le Journal Intime. Histoire et Anthologie, Textuel, Paris, 2006. Leleu, M., Les Journaux Intimes, P.U.F., Paris, 1952. Montandon, A., ed., De Soi Soi : LEcriture comme Autohospitalit, Presses Universitaires Blaise Pascal, Clermont-Ferrand, 2004. Seferis, G., A Poets Journal. Days of 1945-1951, Harvard University Press, Cambridge Massachusetts and London, 1974. Seferis, G., Meres I, Ikaros, Athens, 2003 [first edition: 1975]. Meres II, Ikaros, Athens, 1984 [first edition: 1975]. eres V, Ikaros, Athens, 1996 [first edition: 1973]. eres VII, Ikaros, Athens, 1996 [first edition: 1990]. Simonet-Tenant, Fr., Le Journal Intime. Genre Littraire et Ecriture Ordinaire, Nathan, Paris, 2001.

Nikos Falagkas is a PhD candidate in Modern Greek studies at Kings College London and the title of his thesis is Intimate writing: toward a generic definition of the Greek private diary (c. 1890-1960). Georgia Kalogeropoulou is a PhD candidate in philosophy at the Ecole des Hautes Etudes en Sciences Sociales (Paris) and the title of her thesis is The

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______________________________________________________________ philosophical tradition consciousness. of representation and Freuds theory of

Both would like to thank the Greek state scholarships foundation (IKY) for the funding of their research degrees.

Death and Ambition in Freuds The Interpretation of Dreams Liran Razinsky


Abstract While, death has always been regarded as marginal in psychoanalytic theory, the current paper attempts to establish the significance of deaths psychic presence, and therefore the role it ought to play in psychoanalytic understanding. It does so through a reading of Freuds The Interpretation of Dreams, where the hidden theme of death is uncovered as a motive force in Freuds own dreams, associations and interpretations. It is shown that one cannot dismiss death as unimportant, and that doing so would leave too much out, for death is a pivotal theme in the book. The paper focuses on the most recurrent theme in Freuds book, that of ambition. This theme, it is claimed, is closely intertwined with that of death, and this link must be recognized in order to more fully understand the theme of ambition. On a more general level, the discussion serves to show that death, even when not directly represented, is active in the mind through its influence on other domains. Death cannot be isolated, as is sometimes the case in analytic ideas about the possibility of its representation. Ambition is one theme related to and altered by the thought of death.

Keywords Freud, Psychoanalysis, The Interpretation of Dreams, Death, Finitude, Ambition.

Psychoanalysis has in general always seen death as psychically unimportant and death anxiety as secondary, superficial, and reducible. Sexuality always has the primacy as a motive force. Anxiety is not about death or any existential concerns, it is about excitations or excessive libido. 1 In part, this position is issued from Freud's central claim that death is irrepresentable. Death cannot be represented in the unconscious, he maintains, for it is negative, abstract, and involves time, all of which have no place in the unconscious. Neither can it be represented in conscious thought.2 In this short paper, I will argue the opposite of Freuds position. I will claim that death is very central in the psyche, including in the unconscious, and that death concerns are not secondary but primary. Even when not represented directly, death is psychically active and influential.

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______________________________________________________________ I wish to demonstrate these claims today through using Freuds own book, The Interpretation of Dreams as a case study, where my aim is to uncover the hidden theme of death as a motive force in Freuds own dreams, associations, and interpretations. I will show in fact that death is a pivotal theme in the book, while laying stress on how Freuds general approach to death articulated above not only fails to stand up to external criticism, but also to the facts of his own mental life. The current paper is part of a larger research that criticizes psychoanalysis for its neglect of death through an analysis of its canonic texts. Freuds major claim in The Interpretation of Dreams, is that dreams have meaning, and that this meaning is related to the expression of an unconscious wish. The book however, is also a kind of auto-biography, an internal journey through his own dreams and the associations and memories that explain them. The most discussed and prevalent wish in the book is what I call the issue of ambition. It encompasses such issues as Freuds wish to become a professor, and a whole cluster of related themes: anti-Semitism, jealousy, feelings of self-worth and of superiority, and even certain doubts or thoughts concerning the publication of The Interpretation of Dreams.3 In what follows I wish to show, through several examples, that the issue of death is closely, inseparably, intricate with that of ambition. My claim is that while the role of death in mental life is left unmentioned on the theoretical level of the book, death has a very strong influence on the ostensibly unrelated theme of ambition. Freuds method is the discrete analysis of associations to every item in the description of the dream. He sees every word and reference as important, and I shall follow the same method here. 1. The Man with the Beard A first hint at the intrinsic link between ambition and the passing of time is in a short dream of Freud which consists of not much more than an image:4 Freuds friend R. is Freuds uncle in the dream, and he has a very noticeable yellow beard. The real life trigger to the dream was a meeting with R., who had long been awaiting a professorship appointment. The appointment was impending, the friend suspected, due to anti-Semitic discrimination. Freud himself was only recently recommended as professor extraordinarius, but was warned not to get his hopes up, as chances were slim, for the same reasons. The dream, Freud interprets, was expressing his wish that in his own case, things may very well turn out differently than in the case of his friend.5 But what about the yellow beard? The hair of Freuds friend had originally been extremely dark, he tells us:

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______________________________________________________________ But, when black-haired people begin to turn grey, they pay for the splendour of their youth. Hair by hair, their black beards go through an unpleasing change of colour: first they turn to a reddish brown, then to a yellowish brown, and only then to a definite grey. My friend R.s beard was at that time passing through this stage - and so, incidentally, was my own, as I had noticed with dissatisfaction.6 It is hard to ignore the issue of the passage of time, so clear in this association, and that Freud does not discuss. One cannot be indifferent to the continuous delays, since one is growing old, grey, and might never achieve the appointment at all, or achieve it too late. 2. Rome Let us move on to a very interesting series of dreams that revolve around Freuds longing to visit Rome. Rome is portrayed, in Freud's discussion, as unattainable because dangerous. Freud tells us that while he longs to visit Rome, he must avoid staying there, due to reasons of health.78 In one dream Freud sees Rome from a hill, half-shrouded in mist, and comments that There was more in the content of this dream than I feel prepared to detail; but the theme of the promised land seen from afar was obvious in it.9 We have here an allusion to the possibility of dying before achieving ones life mission. Moses, with whom Freud has always identified, sees the Promised Land from afar but dies in the wilderness. The question seems to be raised for Freud whether he will get to fulfill his wish, or die before it is carried out. What is it that Freud does not wish to tell? According to some commentators it had to do with his wife:10 Freud says that he was reminded of the city of Lbeck, which he at first saw shrouded in mist. This city was where Freud and his wife Martha went on their honeymoon.11 It is also a city where Martha had a phantasy of drowning.12 Therefore, these commentators suggest, Rome half shrouded in mist is a metonymical substitute for Martha drowned in the sea at Lbeck, and the latent thought of the dream is Martha might have died before I possessed her.13 A second place mentioned in the dream - the spa at Gleichenberg - is even more pertinent to our discussion. It was there that Freud visited the fianc of Marthas sister Minna, who was seriously ill. Realizing he is doomed, the fianc asks Minna to break off the engagement, but she refuses.14 When Freud learns of this, he writes to Martha: And you wouldnt behave differently, wouldnt leave me before I died, if it looked as though I were going to die. And I certainly wouldnt give up what is most precious to me as long as I am alive.15 So, while the hidden content of the

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______________________________________________________________ dreams seems to have a sexual meaning, this meaning is also closely linked to the issue of death and of fulfilling ones aspirations and desires before ones life ends. The whole series is saturated with imagery of dying - trains, a stream of dark water with black cliffs on one side and meadows with white flowers on the other - an image related perhaps to that of the river Styx. The dark cliffs scenery reminds Freud of Karlsbad, and he is reminded of a Jewish joke: An impecunious Jew had stowed himself away without a ticket in the fast train to Karlsbad. He was caught, and each time tickets were inspected he was taken out of the train and treated more and more severely. At one of the stations on his via dolorosa he met an acquaintance, who asked him where he was travelling to. To Karlsbad, was his reply, if my constitution can stand it.16 The link between imperilment to ones health and traveling to Rome, is here reinforced. Possibly, one will never make it to Rome, for ones constitution might not stand it. It is a race between two movements - the ever-weakening constitution, and the closing in on ones goal. Freud is reminded of Hannibal, his childhood hero, whose lifelong ambition, to enter Rome, had been frustrated.17 He also mentions Massena, whose goal too, the conquest of Lisbon, was not achieved.18 For both, as is the case for Moses, life ended before their goal had been reached and that is exactly what troubles Freud. He aspires to be like these larger-than-life characters, but is afraid that his constitution will not stand it. He fears he will see the Promised Land only from afar, that he will die before entering Rome, or, on a more mundane level, before publishing his book on the interpretation of dreams. It is only after the book is finished in 1901 that Freud is able to surmount his internal resistance and visit Rome.19 3. The Dissection of the Pelvis I will skip a dream that deals obsessively with memorials, and brings together the value of ones work and the possibility of premature death,20 and move directly to Freuds dream called The dissection of the pelvis. To recapitulate briefly: Freud is dissecting the lower part of his own body, and does so without a trace of any gruesome feeling. Then, once more in possession of [his] legs, he makes a journey [] with an Alpine guide who carries him. They reach a wooden house and a chasm to be crossed, where Freud sees two men lying. Freud awakes in a mental fright.21 Here too, the themes of ambition and of death are inseparable. Freud easily observes the link between the dissection of his own body and his self-

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______________________________________________________________ analysis, the task of analyzing his own psyche.22 Concerning death, I will just note briefly that the end of the dream evokes the image of the dead hero being carried by a woman or a goddess, and that Freud specifically says about the wooden house, that it was no doubt, a coffin, that is to say, the grave.23 Freuds question in the dream, how much longer will my legs carry me means, according to this interpretation, how much time do I have left before I die. The issue of death and those of the success of his self-analysis and the future of his work, are not separate. The question How much longer will my legs carry me is a question about time needed and time left, to complete ones work and for it to be recognized. And indeed, in a later comment on this dream Freud notes that the absence of a gruesome feeling in it (Grauen), a feeling that should have perhaps accompanied the dissection of the pelvis, was a fulfilment of a wish: This because Freud should also have been very glad to miss growing grey Grauen []. I was already growing quite grey, and the grey of my hair was another reminder that I must not delay any longer. And, he continues, the thought that I should have to leave it to my children to reach the goal of my difficult journey forced its way through to representation at the end of the dream.24 Once again the issue of finishing ones work, achieving a goal, is intimately connected to the fear of time, which flows relentlessly, and might undermine ones work, or prevent it from being fully carried out. The day event that occasioned the dream, Freud tells us, was a conversation with a lady that asked Freud for something to read. He gave her Haggards She, and in response to her somewhat nagging question, Have you nothing of your own? he replies: No, my own immortal works have not yet been written.25 Thus it is the work, the self-analysis and the book, which is supposed to secure immortality. Freuds association to the tired feeling of his legs and the question How much longer will my legs carry me, is the end of Haggards book where the guide, instead of finding immortality for herself and the others, perishes [], and he states that [a] fear of that kind was unmistakably active in the dream-thoughts.26 Hence, while immortality may be achieved through work, one might fail, because while one is dallying or limping along, time is racing forward. Premature death is, however, not only a threat, but also an impetus to proceed: I must not delay any longer. 4. Late in Life Lifes temporal limitation is intricate with the theme of ambition in another dream where Freud asks his friend to watch over his childrens physical education in case anything happens to [him].27 The dream also identifies Freud himself with a certain Professor R. about whom Freud says that he resembled me [Freud] in having followed an independent path

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______________________________________________________________ outside the academic world and that he had only achieved his well-merited title late in life. So once again I was wanting to be a professor! Freud continues. Indeed the words late in life were themselves a wish fulfilment; for they implied that I should live long enough to see my boys through the age of puberty myself.28 Indeed, once again, Freud wish to achieve some glory through his work is bound up with the fundamental, harrowing, question of whether he will fulfill them before he dies. But to this adds another idea: being a professor, like professor R. actually signifies here living long enough. Being a professor late in life implies ipso facto that he had a long life. 5. The Danger of Numbers In a letter to Jung of April 16, 1909, Freud discusses his (by now old) superstition that he will die at 61 or 62. The conviction, he says, first appeared in 1899, where two events occurred: He had finished The Interpretation of Dreams, and received a new phone number, 14362. He was then 43 years old. Thus, he says, it was plausible to suppose that the other figures [following the 43] signified the end of my life, hence 61 or 62. Suddenly method entered into my madness. The superstitious notion that I would die between the ages of 61 and 62 proves to coincide with the conviction that with The Interpretation of Dreams I had completed my life work, that there was nothing more for me to do and that I might just as well lie down and die.29 The completion of the tremendous effort put into his book is for Freud a reason to assume his life is about to end. On the one hand, his work completed, he could die in peace. He should no longer fear dying before it is finished. On the other hand, Freud does not accept so easily the superstitious belief in a predestined age of death. Instead, another unconscious thought might be at work: Earlier I had my work that kept me going, that gave me a future. I knew something was still lying ahead, it was a sort of an insurance for life. Now that my work is finished, what will keep me going? Freud must assume new projects lest he succumb to death. But there is yet another dynamics involved. We recall that The Interpretation of Dreams is supposed to secure symbolic immortality for Freud.30 And thus, dying in the wake of its completion is rendered somehow less dying for Freud, since on a certain level, he has already gained immortality.31

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______________________________________________________________ 6. Conclusions: Death and Ambition In conclusion, we have found that death and ambition are very much interrelated in The Interpretation of Dreams. We see in every reference to his professorial aspirations, in every consideration of his works future, and in every vacillation between doubt and reassurance about his work, the shadow of death, the stark reminder that life is finite. The time he has left to accomplish ones aims is uncertain, and this fact enters every consideration, every expectation. We have seen here how these are not marginal, sporadic or isolated thoughts, but pertinacious, tormenting concerns that comes into play upon every consideration of the future, the value of his work, and what mark he will leave on the world. Ambition is linked to death because it is related to planning of future time, and ones projects are always limited, and because it involves the issue of self-worth in its deepest sense, on the background of finitude.32 We met several forms of this link in Freuds book. We saw the motif of a race against time/death. We met the idea that ones deeds in this life may grant one a form of immortality. Alternatively, attaining the goal of ambition might also be dangerous because once one would have nothing more to aspire to, death would seem closer, and life finished. There seems to be a continuous back and forth movement regarding the question of the value of life. Death is an impetus to act, to live fully, and on the other hand always threatens to undermine that which is achieved. If both of us are still granted a few more years for quiet work, we shall certainly leave behind something that can justify our existence, Freud writes to Fliess, in April 1896, in a formulation that expresses how work can either vanquish death or be vanquished by it.33 The exact psychic meaning of death might vary for different people, but it has in fact meaning, and this meaning comes into play with the rest of psychic life. In the above discussion we saw how it is a persistent motivational force in Freuds dream book. Even if Freud could claim that only wishes are true instigators of dreams, and even if he could maintain his very dubious position that death is not represented in the unconscious, it would still seem that he should have recognized the way death interacts with other factors and colours them. Even if not represented, even as a non-entity from a psychic point of view, death colours and emphasizes other mental states, wishes, feelings, and thoughts. Even if not present, it is nonetheless present, as absence, and influences the rest of psychic life. Sometimes it is futile to look for death as a separate element in the picture. The current paper demonstrated, through the example of ambition, how death acts and influences psychic life in general. It showed how the question of direct representation is sometimes irrelevant, and how death can operate in the background of other wishes, thoughts and feelings. It would be mistaken to treat death, as does Freud, as a kind of mental island, which can or cannot, according to him be represented, and ignore its interesting

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______________________________________________________________ interplay with other issues. Freuds arguments against the possible representation of death lose, from this perspective, much of their sting.

Notes
1

L. Razinsky, A Psychoanalytic Struggle with the Concept of Death: A New Reading of Freud's Thoughts for the Times on War and Death, Psychoanalytic Review, vol. 94 (3), 2007; L. Razinsky, On the Strange Case of the Attitude of Psychoanalysis Towards Death, Contemporary Psychoanalysis, vol. 43 (1), 2007. 2 S. Freud, Thoughts for the Times on War and Death, in The Standard Edition of the Complete Psychological Works of Sigmund Freud, ed. J. Strachey, The Hogarth Press, London, vol. 14, 1915, p. 297; S. Freud, The Ego and the Id in S. E., vol. 19, 1923, pp. 57-9; S. Freud, Inhibitions Symptoms and Anxiety, in S. E., vol. 20, 1926, pp. 12930, 140. Even though clear formulations of these attitudes only appear later in Freuds writings, they are active from the very beginning. Death, Freud seems to say, is not important for understanding the psyche. For example, he tells us in The Interpretation of Dreams that death has no value for the child, that it is equivalent to a long absence or trip, that the child does not fully grasp its meaning, and therefore is not influenced by it as we would think he would be. Fear of death, specifically, has no meaning for him. S. Freud, The Interpretation of Dreams, in S. E., vols. 4, 5, 1900, p. 254. The extension of this notion from the child to the adult, whose unconscious also fails to recognize death, is clear. 3 All these aspects are subsumed under my use here of the term ambition. 4 Freud, Interpretation of Dreams, p. 137. 5 Ibid. pp. 137-45. 6 Ibid. pp. 138-9. 7 Ibid. pp. 193-4. A footnote to that sentence, added in 1909 says: I discovered long since that it only needs a little courage to fulfill wishes which [] have been regarded as unattainable. 8 D. Anzieu, Freuds Self-Analysis, The Hogarth press, London, 1986 [1975], p. 185, finds that Freuds argument, that Rome, in his case, should be avoided for reasons of health has more than a grain of truth in it. 9 Freud, Interpretation of Dreams, p. 194. 10 Anzieu, p. 185, Jones, p. 146. 11 Jones, p. 165. 12 Anzieu, p. 185; Jones, p. 146.

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13 14

Anzieu, p. 185. Ibid. 15 Letter to Martha, June 23, 1885. E. Freud, (ed.), Letters of Sigmund Freud. (T. Stern and J. Stern, Tr.), Basic Books, New York, p. 155. 16 Freud, Interpretation of Dreams, p. 195. 17 Iibid. 18 A. Grinstein, On Sigmund Freuds Dreams, Wayne state university press, Detroit, 1968, pp. 82-9. 19 Winckelmann, also mentioned in Freuds association (in relation with Hannibal) is another one of those who paid for having wished to get to Rome or actually, for fulfilling that wish, for he was murdered after he had gotten there (Grinstein, p. 77). Here we have a different nuance. Not the fear that the goal of ones life will not be attained since death will win the race, but rather, the fear that one will pay dearly for achieving ones goals. Life goes on as long as this goal lies unattained. By postponing the realization of ones ambitious wishes, one, in a way, postpones death. 20 I refer to Non vixit dream (Freud, Interpretation of Dreams, p. 421), where ambitious wishes are central, and which is obsessed with memorials. A memorial to The Austrian emperor, to Freud's ex-Boss, to another colleague, and a memorial that does not exist for another Friend, "whose whole life had been devoted to science", and whose premature death, Freud tells us, had robbed him of a well-merited claim to a memorial. Accordingly, he says I gave him [a] memorial in my dream (Freud, Interpretation of Dreams, p. 423). We have then a series of memorials for those who lived long enough to fulfill their role in the world, and for those who did not, but what seems to bother Freud more is his own memorial. In a famous letter to Fliess (12.6.1900), he asks, after visiting the house where he his most famous dream was dreamt: Do you suppose that someday one will read on a marble tablet on this house Here, on July 24, 1895, the secret of the dream revealed itself to Dr. Sigm. Freud. So far there is little prospect of it. J M Masson,, ed., The Complete Letters of Sigmund Freud to Wilhelm Fliess, 1887-1904, Harvard university press, Cambridge, MA, 1985 p, 417. The dream seems to reflects a series of thoughts which revolves around the issues of achieving something in research, dying and achieving glory. Have I done enough? What will be left of me when I am dead? My work? A memorial? Nothing at all? Will someone dream about me as I dreamt about my friend? 21 Freud, Interpretation of Dreams, pp. 452-3. 22 Ibid., p. 454. 23 Ibid.

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24 25

Freud, Interpretation of Dreams, pp. 477-8. L. D. Nachman, Our Mortal Dress: Sigmund Freud and the Theme of Death, Psychoanalytic Review, vol. 68, 1981, pp. 547-560, links this citation to what he sees as Freuds full acknowledgement of death as lurking behind all the time (p. 551). 26 Freud, Interpretation of Dreams, p. 454. 27 Ibid., p. 270. 28 Ibid., p. 271. 29 W. McGuire, The Freud/Jung Letters, Princeton University Press, Princeton NJ, 1974, p. 219 (letter 139) 30 Freud, Interpretation of Dreams, p. 453. 31 That is maybe the way to understand Freuds frank remark, in his interleaved copy of the 1904 edition of The Psychopathology of Everyday Life that his preoccupation with dates of his death was related to a suppressed ambition (immortality) and was a displacement of the normal fear of death. S Freud, 1901, The Psychopathology of Everyday Life, in S. E., vol. 6, 1901, p. 260 n. 3. One more dream where the connection between ambition and lifes finitude can be seen is the 1851 and 1856 dream. This dream can be interpreted, as I show elsewhere, as referring to Freuds own death, and this interpretation is reinforced by Freuds mentioning of his own fearful obsession with the age of 51 as a possible age for his death. But Freuds interpretation also turns on the theme of ambition and the will to succeed. The trigger for the dream is a comment Freud hears from Breuer, his colleague, who criticizes him for still treating the same patient for five years. Freud says that the dream-thought was a protest against the accusation that he was not getting on faster with the patient of course, but then in other domains as well. The analytic treatment is then not getting fast enough, and when five years have passed suddenly arises the question, will it ever succeed. Freud is very aware of that, when he asks bitterly about his friend Was he not aware that [] conditions of that kind are altogether incurable and last a life-time? What were four or five years in comparison with a whole life-time? Freud, Interpretation of Dreams, p. 437. So Freuds work is slow-going; it takes him too long to produce results and there is no real certainty that success is possible at all. This theme cannot be separated from the issue of Freuds death since the source of Freuds anxiety is the likelihood that of the two events towards which he is moving, success and death, the latter shall come first. Success means not only the success of the specific analysis, but of the psychoanalytic method in general, and of Freud as its creator. Freud tells us

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______________________________________________________________ through the dream-thought: if only I had been the second generation, the son of a professor [] I should certainly have got on faster (Freud, Interpretation of Dreams, p. 438, italics in the original). Being the second generation of a professor is of course wanting to become oneself a professor. Freud reassures himself that he still has time, but the associations quickly lead him to recall the significance of the age of 51 as a dangerous age. Not only does he know colleagues who died at that age (that is still before Freud informs the reader that according to Fliess theory, he himself is expected to die at 51), but also, among these colleagues is, as I cited before, one who, after long delays, had been appointed to professorship only a few days before his death (Freud, Interpretation of Dreams, p. 439). 32 This second sense is the one stressed in E. Becker, The Denial of Death, The Free Press, New York, 1973. According to Beckers perspective, mans fundamental desire, in the face of finitude, is to stand out, to count more, which he terms heroism. 33 Letter from 2.4.1896, Masson, p. 180. Note that existence must be justified for Freud, a belief that is itself related to an attitude to death.

Bibliography
Anzieu, D., Freuds Self-Analysis, The Hogarth Press, London, 1986 [1975]. Becker, E., The Denial of Death, The Free Press, New York, 1973. Freud, E. ed., Letters of Sigmund Freud, trans. T. Stern and J. Stern, Basic Books, New York, 1960. Freud, S., The Interpretation of Dreams, in The Standard Edition of the Complete Psychological Works of Sigmund Freud, ed. J. Strachey, The Hogarth Press, London, vols. 4, 5, 1900. The Psychopathology of Everyday Life, S. E., vol. 6, 1901. Thoughts for the Times on War and Death, S. E., vol. 14, pp. 273-300, 1915. On Transience, S. E., vol. 14, pp. 305-308, 1916 [1915]. The Ego and the Id, S. E., vol. 19, pp. 1-66, 1923. Inhibitions Symptoms and Anxiety, S. E., vol. 20, pp. 75-172, 1926. Grinstein, A., On Sigmund Freuds Dreams, Wayne State University Press, Detroit, 1968. Jones, E., Sigmund Freud: Life and Work, Hogarth Press, London, vol. 1, 1953.

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______________________________________________________________ Masson, J. M. ed., The Complete Letters of Sigmund Freud to Wilhelm Fliess, 1887-1904, Harvard University Press, Cambridge, MA, 1985. McGuire, W., ed., The Freud/Jung Letters, Princeton University Press, Princeton, NJ, 1974. Nachman, L. D., Our Mortal Dress: Sigmund Freud and the Theme of Death, Psychoanalytic Review, vol. 68, 1981, pp. 547-560. Razinsky, L., A Psychoanalytic Struggle with the Concept of Death: A New Reading of Freud's Thoughts for the Times on War and Death, Psychoanalytic Review, vol. 94 (3), 2007, pp. 355-387. Razinsky, L., On the Strange Case of the Attitude of Psychoanalysis Towards Death, Contemporary Psychoanalysis, vol. 43 (1), 2007, p. 149.

Liran Razinsky is a PhD candidate in the Psychology Department at The Hebrew University of Jerusalem.

To Join the Army as a Volunteer During a War: Wittgenstein and the Conception of Death Rossella Pisconti
Abstract In this note some motivations are discussed which cause people to join the army as volunteer during a war. Such a choice would, indeed, deliberately expose oneself to an extremely dangerous situation, since the probability of dying becomes very high. This issue has been investigated with reference to the Austrian philosopher Ludwig Wittgenteins personal experience, since he willingly served the army during the World War I, and was used to write down on a diary his thoughts about the atrocities he was surrounded by. The well known conception of death in Wittgensteins philosophy dates back to that troubled period of his life, and points out that, even if science could answer to all its questions, issues of life and death would remain untouched. The repercussions are further investigated of those early reflections about the horrors of war on both his life and philosophy, as it emerges from Wittgensteins Tractatus logico-philosophicus, the only work which had been edited when the author was alive.

Keywords Wittgenstein, Conception of Death.

1.

The Riddle of Death and the Problems of Science The summer the Tractatus was finished, the Austrian philosopher Wittgenstein was 29 years old, being born on April 26, 1889 in Vienna, to a wealthy Jewish family. In August 1914, shortly after the start of World War I, Wittgenstein joined the Austrian army as a volunteer, at the beginning as a private and later as an officer, until 1918, when he was taken captive in Italy and spent almost a year at a prison camp in Cassino. According to his sister Hermine, the reason leading her brother to join the army was not simply the willingness to defend his country.1 He also had the intense desire to pursue something difficult and do something different from a sheer intellectual work. The diaries he wrote during the years he was fighting in the war confirm in full this belief. In particular, what emerges from them, with striking evidence, is how Wittgenstein confided the fact that the experience of war would allow him to understand, beyond any deception and illusion, who - that is what kind of man - he really was. As a matter of fact,

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______________________________________________________________ Wittgenstein was expecting war to make him a better person.2 Therefore, in September 1914 he wrote down: Now I have the chance to be a decent human being, for I'm standing eye to eye with death. May the spirit illuminate me.3 Death becomes the ultimate test, an experience at the limit where the meaning of ones own life and death eventually unveil. Wittgenstein, then, had gone to war as a volunteer to put his thoughts and his life under the light that the danger of death would have lit up on them. But the diaries also confirm how essential the work on logic kept being for Wittgenstein. Among the most recurring expressions in the notes written during those years spent at war, the reference to the logic-philosophic work is continuous and persistent: Im working; I worked a little, and more confidently; I have not worked; Im working; I have hardly worked; Im working again!; Im working a lot. Despite the revolting environment!; In order to be good, keep working.4 It is exactly from this work - at least partly documented in the so called Notebooks 1914-1916, written between August 22, 1914 and January 10, 1917 - that progressively emerged the Tractatus logico-philosophicus, which, as we already know, Wittgenstein ended in the summer of 1918, during a long leave, when war - and with the war also the Habsburg Empire in which Wittgenstein was born and had been educated - was almost over. The Tractatus engaged Wittgenstein for at least seven years of intense work. Wittgenstein, in this book, thinks that philosophy has always analysed the questions addressed considering them as important and deep problems. On the other hand, Wittgenstein does not intend to deny that philosophy should pose questions (the problem of life,5 our problems of life)6 that deserve, so to say, the appellation of important and deep. What he wants us to infer is the acknowledgement that the deepest problems are in fact not problems at all7 and that it is completely misleading to talk, for instance, about the problem of death as a problem, if that means that we are led to consider it in the same way as a scientific problem, that is one that could not be differentiated, by principle, from other scientific problems, which can be solved investigating the world, in order to establish how the latter is. According to Wittgenstein, then, it is nonsensical to make a distinction - as philosophers have always believed they could - between two radically different sets of problems or questions: unessential questions or problems (do spatial objects - for instance - consist of elementary parts?)8 and deeper and fundamental questions and problems, such as: Is it possible to live in such that way life would stop being problematical?9 All the problems

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______________________________________________________________ and all the questions, as well as every solution and answer, are in fact, of an equal value; and they are all separated by what is deep and essential. In fact, both questions and answers are, always and in any case, concerning how things are in the world;10 no description regarding how things are in the world, as accurate and thorough as it could be, will ever be able to answer the riddle about being in the world or not being in it. A book thoroughly describing the world would include all the true propositions we need. But all the facts described would be, so to say, of an equal value, and, likewise, all the propositions. There are no propositions which, in any absolute sense, are sublime or important.11 The problem of our eternal survival, of our timelessness, for instance, is a problem that, despite the appearances, is just as different, as it is deeper and more essential than the question, for instance, concerning tomorrows weather conditions. In fact, assuming it would be solved together with other queries related to science, the questions concerning our existence and our death would not be solved. Is some riddle solved by my surviving forever? Is not this eternal life itself as much of a riddle as our present life?12 The above applies to every answer given to a scientific problem, as complex and impervious the path leading to it may have been; and applies even in the case when all possible scientific questions have been answered. In fact, as Wittgenstein remarks, even in this case, the problems of life remain completely untouched.13 Therefore, Wittgenstein concludes that there are then no questions left;14 and this is the actual discovery, that no scientific answer touches our life in depth and decides of its sense. Where we can pose questions and frame problems - as Wittgenstein stresses in the proposition 6.5 - there we can find solutions and answers: If a question can be framed at all, it is also possible to answer it,15 even if, to be able to find it, a hard work and a good deal of talent can be required; and wherever there are no possible answers, there are not questions to be posed either: When the answer cannot be put into words, neither can the question be put into words.16 Therefore, according to Wittgenstein the riddle is a sort of question whose answer is just ignored. Death, my death, is something I cannot experience. Based on such a conception of death, Wittgenstein takes comfort while at the front, repeating, during the most fearful moments, some verses written by Goethe: Nothing can ever be destroyed, annihilated!17 The questions on death vanish because according to Wittgenstein: death is not an event in life. We do not live to experience death.18 In no case when you are alive you can be dead at the same time. But the fear that most people have to die derives from the image that in the very moment they are dying they will be alive. But of course, this has no meaning at all. According to Wittgenstein, our death is something we cannot logically experience, because death is something that simply cannot happen while we are alive. The solution of the riddle of death lies outside space and time.19 If we use the word riddle to address a question that

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______________________________________________________________ cannot have an answer, we can then deduce, as in fact the Tractatus does, that the riddle does not exist.20 In the domain of science, in fact, it is inappropriate to talk about riddles. Science deals with problems and not with riddles; questions we have not been able to answer so far; solutions that we have not found yet or not even sensed, but that, by principle, we might finally find. Outside science there are no riddles, because there are no questions, but only nonsensicalities engendered by the attempt to frame questions where questions cannot be framed. Wittgenstein thinks that the term problem is used in a misleading way also in the books dealing with ethics if referring to issues that have moral implications, as in the case of the discussion on the event of death.21 This way, he considers those cases first when a concern about a specific problem should not necessarily lead to the solution of the problem itself. If the problem is meant as such, what we refer to as moral problems, according to Wittgenstein, are nothing more than philosophical problems or, better, philosophical unclarities.22 We do not have a zone that we delimit and call ethics, but we have an ethical spirit that expresses itself in an attitude about the world and life, and can enter every thought or speech. Both in the Notebooks and in the Tractatus Wittgenstein distinguishes two types of attitudes - that one of the happy one and that one of the sad one - about the world as a whole.23 It seems that Wittgenstein does not want to relegate the term ethics to a precisely delimited sphere of the speech; it seems, instead, that he tied the notion of ethics to all that the world is or can be as a whole, to life itself.24 Analysing an example proposed by Rhees, Wittgenstein tries to answer the question: in ethics, to what we can compare a problem and its solution?25 The example taken into consideration suggests the situation where a scientist reaches the conclusion that he cannot live with his wife and at the same time devote himself to cancer research. He will have to give up either his wife, in the interest of all the human beings affected by this disease, or his research work in his wifes interest. If the scientist in the example does not follow any sort of ethical code he will struggle at different times in order to arrive at considerations which are univocal between them. Whatever the subjects decision may be, there will always be the probability that a third part can consider that choice, according to the application of different criteria, as selfish or altruistic, meritorious or reprehensible.26 Following this analysis, some people will be inclined to consider the condition examined in the example as a moral problem, even if the solution of the latter does not bring to the solution of the former, but rather to give up one of the two options that can be chosen. According to Wittgenstein: here we can say there are all the elements for a tragedy, and we could only say May God help us!27 It seems that in this situation, there is nothing which can be suggested in order to overcome the problem. Morals inspire certain actions

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______________________________________________________________ and attribute a sense to the considerations expressed on the real and possible actions. Comparing different ethics equals comparing different forms of life and this leads to the consideration that there is not a fundamental, rational form of life. In philosophy two combined and symmetrical myths are represented by the model of foundation and the model of destruction, both characterised by the claim of purporting a radical explanation. For the founders, as Bouveresse calls them, it is crucial that what Wittgenstein refers to as problems of life28 (namely, the riddles of life and death, the ethical issues, etc.) are constructed on firm foundations, while, for those addressed by the term genealogist, death is the result of several factors. The analysis presented by the genealogists and the founders are divergent as the latter analyse every aspect within a preconstituted grid, while the former, although they do not provide any scientific explanation to the riddle of death, are more inclined to take into consideration several ways according to which it can be understood. It seems that, according to Wittgenstein, knowing what is the correct answer to the questions on the problem of death is a nonsensical matter: to think that the correct answer is given by a form of ethics instead of a different one only means that we are choosing to consider the case according to that very form of ethics.29 Stating that we have solved the doubts on the riddle of death equals saying that we are referring to a particular way of thinking (for instance to a certain type of religion) which we consider the most gratifying as compared to the others. We can be persuaded that a specific action is either good or bad, or the soul is immortal as well as we can be convinced of the result given by adding two plus two, but this does not imply that we should/could share our conviction with someone else as it happens in the case of a simple arithmetic operation. As remarked by Rhees,30 in the philosophical domain this kind of observations based on the problem of ethics are not trivial and, moreover, it is not possible to ignore them adducing as justification the term relativism. The moral discussion on an ethical problem concerning the subject of life or death does not imply demonstrating that people thinking differently about those issues are wrong, but: if Wittgenstein has something to tell us on this point, it is, seemingly, that it is absurd to imagine that when we are fighting against a certain ethical system we are doing something more, that is more rational, more scientific, etc., than fighting against a given ethical system.31 2. Sins and the Fear of Death Wittgenstein considers death as the beam of light under which life itself, in its reality, is illuminated. In this regard, on May 4, 1916,

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______________________________________________________________ Wittgenstein wrote in his Notebooks that: Perhaps nearness to death will bring light into my life.32 After his coming back from the front, Wittgenstein had remarkably changed.33 He had immediately given away his part of the considerable fortune his father had left. Wittgensteins personal experience and conception of death were affected in a particularly devastating way by his two brothers suicides. His brother Hans, a musical prodigy, disappeared from a boat in Chesapeake Bay, distraught over his fathers insistence that he pursue a career in industry. Rudi, his other brother, likewise rebelling against his fathers wishes, sought a life in theatre. He committed suicide by drinking cyanide in Berlin.34 Those two losses may have had traumatic psychological consequences on Wittgenstein. He had to give a meaning to his brothers choices as a way to eventually accept them; David Pinsent writes in his diary that Wittgenstein was continually thinking about suicide.35 Several times Russell feared Wittgenstein had killed himself on occasions when he failed to arrive as scheduled for their meetings.36 Among the others, Malcom also worries that Wittgenstein would take his own life in response to the loss of his capacity for philosophical reflection, especially considering that Wittgenstein once had asked him, When a person has only one thing in the world - namely, a certain talent - what is he to do when he begins to lose that talent?37 In his Notebooks Wittgenstein asks himself the question whether suicide should be considered as a sin, that is, if it is from an ethical standpoint, something bad. In this regard he writes: If suicide is allowed, then everything is allowed; if anything is not allowed, then suicide is not allowed.38 In order to condemn suicide, the question concerning the value of life in itself, should have been resolved in a positive way, and Wittgenstein considers this question as completely meaningless. There are some good lives, so to say, happy, but life in itself is neither good nor bad. Therefore, Wittgenstein approaches the following conclusion: Or is even suicide in itself neither good nor evil.39 Perhaps Wittgenstein found in those speculations on suicide a reason to continue to live, as opposite to what his brothers had done before him. In a letter written on January 16, 1918 to his architect friend Paul Engelmann, met during a training for army officers, Wittgenstein describes the changes that occurred to his personality after the war: There is certainly a difference between the person I am now and that I was then, when we were at Olmtz. And this difference consists, as far as I know, in the fact that I am a little more decent. By this I mean that now my indecency (Unastndigkeit) is clearer to me than it used to be then.40

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______________________________________________________________ Wittgenstein, consequently, emphasizes that his deep moral transformation did not consist in the achievement of moral decency, but in the awareness of its indecency. This need had led Wittgenstein, at the beginning of the 1930s, to write a confession, to prepare himself for a new life. To shed a light,41 intended as the objective of philosophy and the philosophical work, becomes for Wittgenstein a personal moral need that, throughout his whole life is manifested in a particularly evident way when he felt the urge to confess two personal secrets to some of his acquaintances. Among them, there was Fania Pascal, a Russian language teacher who gave him and his friend Francis Skinner some private lessons, and who thereafter became his friend. Pascal herself recalls that once Wittgenstein during a visit told her that he had to confess two sins he felt guilty of. The former was that most of his acquaintances, including his friends, thought he were three quarters Arian and one quarter Jewish. Indeed the ratio was inverted, and he did nothing to deny it.42 This guilty feeling lies in the fact that he had not flaunted his Jewish origins in front of the people he met, in a period following the Second World War, when such elements represented a dangerous discriminative factor. As to the latter sin, he recounted that, when he was young, in the years he had spent as a teacher in a primary school in a little village in Austria, he had beaten and hurt a little girl. When she reported the incident to the headmaster Wittgenstein denied the facts. In the first case he confessed, Wittgenstein was accountable for a sort of reticence, in the second case, instead, he confessed a sheer lie, thinking, probably, that both were serious sins he had to repent of. It is interesting to remark that, thinking over what had happened, Pascal asked herself whether Wittgenstein had ever realised that all men keep guilty feelings. Wittgenstein, reader of the novels written by Dostoevskij, was utterly aware of that and, moreover, he problematizes about the duality implied by being a human being. Wittgensteins confession appears reducible partly to the refusal of the coexistence of human duality, on one side the integrity, purity and decency in which he recognised himself; on the other side, indecency, a part of himself he abjures, as the part inducing him to betray his origins, hiding them even from his friends, and to be cruel and hypocritical with his pupil, publicly denying he had ever beaten her. He, like Raskolnikov - the young protagonist of Crime and Punishment43- faced with the sins he had really committed vacillates in the grip of remorse. Dostoevskijs famous novel has also the merit to approach, among several themes, thoroughly, the story of a confession, the one of a double murder committed by the protagonist. He justifies his gesture from a human point of view - in fact he thinks that once he has killed an old female usurer the money obtained could be given out to the poor - as well as morally, demonstrating to himself that he is a superior man, a master and not a

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______________________________________________________________ common louse. Petrovic, the investigating magistrate in charge of the murder investigation, especially in the last of the three interviews with Raskolnikov, leads the young man to understand that there is no way out from ones own conscience and that only confession, and punishment in the end, will assuage his hearts affliction. Wittgenstein is convinced that Dostoevskij is right when he states that whoever is happy accomplishes the end of being44 and as a consequence of that satisfaction men do not need an end beyond life any more.45 According to Wittgenstein decency allows men to be happy but, most of all, not even to fear death.46 Pascal, on Wittgenstein as a man recalls: his expression, innocent as it could be, had something severe and intransigent, towards the others but also towards himself.47 The decision to confess the truth is a very hard task but, although it requires an extreme courage, it forges a mans integrity and consistency, and by acknowledging his own limits, he is aware that this implies the risk to make a mistake. According to Wittgenstein then: courage not cleverness, not even inspiration, is the grain of mustard growing into a great tree. To the extent there is courage there is a link with life and death.48 Thanks to the courage to unveil also ones own human fragility, according to Wittgenstein it could be possible to attribute a price to the thoughts. Some are very expensive, some others less.49 Courage which lies in the awareness of the duality of human nature, enables self-recognition, and this cognition of ones own sins constitutes the prelude to their correction, and not to acknowledging ones own narrowness. In fact, according to Wittgenstein a confession has to be part of your new life,50 a life lived in the present. During his youth, Wittgenstein appears as being constantly under the tension of being truthful, eliminating imperfections and improving himself, a target he will never stop aiming at.51 This desire and commitment will lead him to face, most of all, the limits of human condition. At the age of 28, in a letter written during the war to his sister Hermine fifteen years his senior - while he confided in her about his mood he notices that, despite everything was going well, things would have been better if he had been a better man, stating his willingness to commit himself to achieving this goal: I hope I will become like that.52 In Wittgensteins conception of death this willingness to improve himself corresponds to that search for satisfaction that can be achieved only by living in harmony with the world because fear in the face of death is the best sign of a false life, i.e., a bad life.53 To better explain: our life has no end in just the way in which our visual field has no limits. Therefore we cannot depict death and consequently we cannot fear it, the fear of death is always something other than this kind of fear. We are afraid of death because we are aware we are going to die, because we have not found the sense of life, namely, because we are unhappy. More precisely: the fear of death is

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______________________________________________________________ nothing more than one of the names we use to address unhappiness. The only way to be ready in front of death is to be happy. That means there is no other way to get ready than - maybe - improving oneself from an ethical perspective, refining ones own sensitivity.

Notes
1

L. Wittgenstein, Vostro fratello Ludwig, Lettere alla famiglia (1908-1951), ed. B. McGuinness, M. A. Ascher, O. Pfersmann, trans. G. Rovagnati, Archinto, Milan, 1998, p. 62, [28.10.17]. The original title of this work is Wittgenstein Familienbriefe. 2 Ibid. 3 L. Wittgenstein, Diari Segreti, ed. F. Funt, Laterza, Rome-Bari, 2001, p. 58. The original title of this work is Geheime Tagebcher. 4 See, Wittgenstein, Diari Segreti, p. 104. 5 L. Wittgenstein, Tractatus Logico-Philosophicus, ed. A.G. Conte, Einaudi, Turin, 2004, 6.52, 6.521. 6 Ibid. 7 L. Wittgenstein, Tractatus Logico-Philosophicus, 4.003. 8 L. Wittgenstein, Quaderni, ed. A.G. Conte, Einaudi, Turin, 2004, p. 204. This Italian edition includes both the Notebooks (Tagebcher 1914 1916) and the Tractatus Logico-Philosophicus in the same volume. 9 Wittgenstein, Quaderni, p. 218. 10 Wittgenstein, Tractatus Logico-Philosophicus, 6.432. 11 L. Wittgenstein, Lezioni e conversazioni sull etica, lestetica, la psicologia e la credenza Religiosa, ed. M. Ranchetti, Adelphi, Milan, 1967, pp. 9-10. The original title of this work is Vorlesungen und Gesprache ber sthetik, Psychologie und Religion and can also be found in L. Wittgenstein, A Lecture on Ethics, The Philosophical Review, vol. 74, 1965, pp. 3-12; J.C. Klagge, A. Nordmann (eds), Philosophical Occasions 1912-1951, Hackett, Indianapolis, 1993, pp. 37-44. 12 Wittgenstein, Tractatus Logico-Philosophicus, 6.4312. 13 Ibid., 6.52. 14 Ibid. 15 Wittgenstein, Tractatus Logico-Philosophicus, 6.5. 16 Ibid. 17 Compare B. McGuinness, Wittgenstein: A Life: Young Ludwig (18891921), The University of California Press, Berkeley, 1988; See G. Cascione, La comunit felice, Cacucci, Bari, 1997, p. 165. 18 Wittgenstein, Tractatus Logico-Philosophicus, 6.4312.

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______________________________________________________________
19 20

Ibid. Ibid., 6.5. 21 Ibid., 6.4321. 22 The purpose of Russell is to reach a solution of the issue concerning the unit of the proposition, whereas Frege remarks that such an engagement derives from philosophical unclarities. It is the dissolution of the fregean doctrine that leads Wittgenstein to the perspective he elaborated in the Tractatus. See, J. Conant, The Method of the Tractatus in From Frege to Wittgenstein: Perspectives on Early Analytic Philosophy, E. Reck, ed., Oxford University Press, New York, 2002. 23 Wittgenstein, Tractatus Logico-Philosophicus, 6.43. 24 C. Diamond, Ethics, Imagination and the Method of Wittgensteins Tractatus, in A. Crary and R. Read, eds., The New Wittgenstein, Routledge, London-New York, 2000, p. 153; C. Diamond, The Realistic Spirit: Wittgenstein, Philosophy, and the Mind, MIT Press, Cambridge, 1991, chapters 2 and 4; Compare P. Donatelli, Wittgenstein e letica,. Laterza, Rome-Bari, 1998, p. 101; P. O Connor, Oppression and Responsibility. A Wittgenstein Approach to Social Practices and Moral Theory, Pennsylvania State University Press, University Park, PA, 2002 p. 8-9. 25 J. Bouveresse, Wittgenstein: Scienza, Etica, Estetica, ed. S. Benvenuto, Laterza, Rome-Bari, 1982, p. 124. 26 Ibid. 27 Wittgenstein, Lezioni e conversazioni sulletica, lestetica, la psicologia e la credenza Religiosa, p. 40. 28 Wittgenstein, Tractatus Logico-Philosophicus, 6.52, 6.521. 29 Bouveresse, op. cit, p.127. 30 Ibid. 31 Ibid. 32 Wittgenstein, Diari Segreti, p. 112. 33 G Gargani, Introduzione. Il coraggio di essere in Wittgenstein, Diari Segreti, p. 16. 34 McGuinness, op. cit., p.35. 35 McGuinness, op.cit., p. 93. To compare Wittgensteins conception of suicide with Humes, see C. Diamond, Ethics, imagination and the method of Wittgensteins Tractatus, pp.154-155. 36 B. Russell, The Autobiography of Bertrand Russell: 1914-1944, Little Brown, Boston, 1978, p. 137, [first edition 1968]. 37 N. Malcolm, Ludwig Wittgenstein: A Memoir, Oxford University Press, London, 1989, p. 94, [first edition 1958]; B. Russell, The Autobiography of Bertrand Russell: 1914-1944, Little Brown, Boston, 1978, p. 137, [first

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______________________________________________________________ edition 1968]; N. Malcolm, Ludwig Wittgenstein: A Memoir, Oxford University Press, London, 1989, p. 94, [first edition 1958]. 38 Wittgenstein, Quaderni, p. 195. 39 Ibid. 40 P. Engelmann, Letters from Ludwig Wittgenstein With a Memoir, Basil Blackwell, Oxford, 1984, [first edition 1967]. 41 This is a quite recurring expression in Wittgensteins works. For example, L. Wittgenstein, Ricerche Filosofiche, ed. M. Trinchero, trans. R. Piovisan, Einaudi, Turin, 2004, 122, 123, 125. The original title of this work is Philosophische Untersuchungen. 42 R Rhees, Recollections of Wittgenstein, Rev Sub edition, Oxford, 1984, p.58. 43 F. Dostoevskij, Delitto e castigo, Rusconi, 2005. 44 Wittgenstein, Quaderni, p. 218. 45 Ibid. 46 Wittgenstein, Quaderni, p. 219. 47 Rhees, op. cit., p. 38. 48 Wittgenstein, Diari Segreti, p. 79. 49 L. Wittgenstein, Pensieri Diversi, ed. M. Ranchetti, Adelphi, Milan, 1988, p. 103, 1946. This work is usually quoted as Vermischte Bemerkungen. 50 Wittgenstein, Pensieri Diversi, p. 47, 1931. 51 L. Wittgenstein, Della Certezza, trans. M. Trinchero, Einaudi, Turin, 2004, p. 387; L. Wittgenstein, On Certainty, ed. G. E. M. Anscombe, G. H. von Wright, Blackwell, Oxford, 1969. The original title of this work is ber Gewiheit. 52 Wittgenstein, Vostro fratello Ludwig. Lettere alla famiglia (1908-1951), p.62, [28.10.17]. 53 Wittgenstein, Quaderni, p. 19.

Bibliography
Bouveresse, J., Wittgenstein: Scienza, Etica, Estetica, ed. S. Benvenuto, Laterza, Rome-Bari, 1982. Diamond, C., The realistic spirit: Wittgenstein, Philosophy, and the Mind, MIT Press, Cambridge, 1991. Ethics, imagination and the method of Wittgensteins Tractatus, in The New Wittgenstein, A. Crary, R. Read, eds., Routledge, London-New York, 2000. Donatelli, P., Wittgenstein e letica, Laterza, Rome-Bari, 1998

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______________________________________________________________ Dostoevskij, F.M., Delitto e castigo, Rusconi, 2005. Cascione, G., La comunit felice, Cacucci, Bari, 1997. Conant, J., The Method of the Tractatus in From Frege to Wittgenstein: Perspectives on Early Analytic Philosophy, E. Reck, ed., Oxford University Press, New York, 2002. Engelmann, P., Letters from Ludwig Wittgenstein With a Memoir, Basil Blackwell, Oxford, 1984. Gargani, G., Introduction, in Diari Segreti, L. Wittgenstein, Laterza, RomeBari, 2001. Malcolm, N., Ludwig Wittgenstein: A Memoir, Oxford University Press, London, 1989. McGuinness, B., Wittgenstein: A Life: Young Ludwig (1889-1921), The University of California Press, Berkeley, 1988. OConnor, P., Oppression and Responsibility. A Wittgenstein Approach to Social Practices and Moral Theory, Pennsylvania State University Press, University Park, PA, 2002. Klagge, J. C., A. Nordmann, eds., Philosophical Occasions 1912-1951, Hackett, Indianapolis, 1993, pp. 37-44. Rhees, R., Recollections of Wittgenstein, Rev Sub edition, Oxford, 1984. Russell, B., The Autobiography of Bertrand Russell: 1914-1944, Little Brown, Boston, 1978. Wittgenstein, L., A Lecture on Ethics, The Philosophical Review, vol. 74, 1965, pp. 3-12. [Vorlesungen und Gesprache ber sthetik, Psychologie und Religion] Conferenza sulletica, in Lezioni e conversazioni sull etica, lestetica , la psicologia e la credenza Religiosa, ed. M. Ranchetti, Adelphi, Milan, 1967. On Certainty, ed. G.E.M. Anscombe, G. H. von Wright, Blackwell, Oxford, 1969. [Vermischte Bemerkungen] Pensieri Diversi, ed. M. Ranchetti, Adelphi, Milan, 1988. [Wittgenstein Familienbriefe] Vostro fratello Ludwig. Lettere alla famiglia (1908-1951), ed. B. McGuinness, M.A. Ascher, O. Pfersmann, trans. G. Rovagnati, Archinto, Milan, 1998. [Geheime Tagebcher] Diari Segreti, ed. F. Funt, Laterza, Rome-Bari, 2001. [ber Gewiheit] Della Certezza, trans. M. Trinchero, Einaudi, Turin, 2004. [Philosophische Untersuchungen] Ricerche Filosofiche, ed M. Trinchero, trans. R. Piovisan, Einaudi, Turin, 2004.

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______________________________________________________________ [Tractatus logico-philosophicus] [Tagebcher] Tractatus LogicoPhilosophicus e Quaderni, ed. A. G. Conte, Einaudi, Turin, 2004.

Rossella Pisconti is PhD candidate, at the University of Bari (Italy), Faculty of Political Science, Department of History and Social Science.

Historical Attitudes Towards Death

Coffin-Nails and Column Inches: Perspectives on the Newsworthiness of Death in British and Irish Journalism Since the Turn of the Twentieth Century Mark Wehrly
Abstract In the late nineteenth century, newspaper readers in Victorian Britain witnessed a revolutionary change in reporting characterised as a shift from the old to the new journalism. Newspapers imbued with this new journalism appealed to a more common, base appetite for sensational news, created by a new mass readership that grew in tandem with rising literacy levels and cheaper newspapers. Among the most significant events in the proliferation of new journalism were the Whitechapel Murders, which created the myth of Jack the Ripper. T.P. OConnor and his Star newspaper thrived during the affair, with shocking and graphic descriptions of each of the killings keeping his readership hanging on every word. Journalism and death have had a close relationship ever since, with OConnors coverage becoming in many ways the template for a modern crime-reporters methodology. Today, Irelands most noted crime reporter, Paul Williams of the Sunday World, employs a similar approach to that of OConnor to relate the details of the countrys sordid underworld. This paper will provide, briefly, a historical overview of the relationship between death and journalism in this respect, examining the allure of sensationalism in the coverage of murder.

Keywords History, Murder, Journalism, Media Studies, Tabloid Newspaper, Popular Culture, Media Ethics.

The turn of the twentieth century saw what many historians and commentators regard as the birth of modern journalism as we know it today. From the mid-nineteenth century, the factors of production within the newspaper industry became more available, the abolition of the tax on newspaper stamps made newspapers cheaper to consume, and rapidly increasing literacy levels ensured newspapers would be more widely read than ever before.1 In order to cater for this new accessibility of the newspaper there was an incumbency upon the journalist to make his copy more readable, more encapsulating and more in line with the prejudices of the reading proletariat. The end result was the birth of a more popular journalism, with its

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______________________________________________________________ endeavours to catch as many eyes as possible by providing the most interesting, sensational, even shocking headlines and stories. The resultant departure to what became known as the tabloid style of reportage at the turn of the twentieth century was in marked contrast with the journalism that had gone before. This was categorised by commentators at the time as a shift between the old and the new journalism. The remit of the new journalism was diverse, but in defining its principle characteristics it acted as a contradiction of everything the old journalism was. New journalism denoted a plain style of writing that promised universal understanding; old journalism was noted for literary austerity. New journalism was lively, sensational and did not rely on the doings of parliament as the sole realm of newsworthy content - it embraced sport, entertainment and human interest stories, as well as revealing, in great detail, some of the uglier facets of society such as murder and prostitution.2 Towards the end of the century, the value of sensationalism was being realised, particularly when W.T. Stead was appointed to the journalistic staff of the liberal Pall Mall Gazette, apparently at the behest of W.E. Gladstone, in 1880.3 Stead best captured the mood that was becoming more prevalent among journalists at the time with two essays, both written in 1886, entitled Government by journalism and The future of journalism. The main thrust of both works was that journalism was on a fast track to a golden era, in which it would literally become an agency of government with the prospect of wielding considerable influence in modern society.4 Perhaps the best illustration of that point was the way in which Stead had, the previous year, caused major legislative reform on the age of sexual consent following The maiden tribute of modern Babylon, his sensational expos of a child prostitution ring in central London.5 Other journalists joined the debate, and while they shared Steads excitement at this new era of journalism, there was some disagreement as to how influential journalists could or should be in campaigning to alter public opinion, whatever the reality was in parliamentary politics. T.P. OConnor was foremost among those who argued that newspapers needed to lighten up, embracing gossip, entertainment, sport and sensation. He added that politics should not rule the newsroom, and when they did appear in the paper should only be familiar, not in contradiction with the majority opinion of readers.6 Within this context of the genesis of modern journalism, an understanding of the newsworthiness of death is vital to a better understanding of popular attitudes to mortality. The role of the journalist in the new schema gradually became one of reflecting, rather than changing, popular opinion. After years of trying to shape the political landscape of Britain, Alfred Harmsworth - the owner of the halfpenny Daily Mail eventually conceded that newspapers could not radically alter public perceptions, and at best could merely perpetuate those perceptions within its

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______________________________________________________________ columns.7 John Horgan echoed those sentiments in the introduction to his Irish Media: A critical history since 1922 when he wrote of the way changes in Irish society have been reflected, through time, in the media and vice versa.8 The ways in which death manifested itself in the columns of newspapers, therefore, anticipated broad cultural trends in the way death was confronted by the public - not only in the newspapers they read, but also in the popular works of fiction, be they printed or, eventually, broadcast. 1. Murder Journalism A pivotal moment in modern journalism was arrived at in 1888, when the district of Whitechapel was the scene for a series of murders that would give birth to the myth of Jack the Ripper.9 Beginning in August of that year and dominating newspaper columns throughout the winter, the affair provoked terror from newspaper readers all over Victorian Britain.10 Chief among the purveyors the violence and sensation surrounding the affair was the Star newspaper, set up two years previously by liberal newspaper magnate Henry Labouchere. Following a poor election campaign for the liberals in 1886, Labouchere saw the need to reach out to the electorate through a new newspaper, one that could appeal to the reading tastes of the masses more effectively than any liberal paper had attempted before. T. P. OConnor quickly became linked to the post of editor, and was favoured by Labouchere as someone who could write lively, inclusive and popular stories, and not just confine his work to politics. He went so far as to refer to him as an always-to-be-depended-upon journalist continually interesting and indeed with a touch of genius. Viscount John Morley was also in contention for the job at the Star, and if experience and pedigree counted for anything he would probably have been made editor; a former Irish chief secretary, he had in the past edited the Fortnightly Review (1867-1882) and the Pall Mall Gazette (1880-1883). However, in 1883 he had been replaced at the Gazette by Stead, who had gone on to vastly increase the papers readership through the shock of the Maiden Tribute. Thus, it was no surprise that Morley continued to be eclipsed by the new journalism when OConnor was chosen ahead of him to pilot the Star for Labouchere, for the simple reason that his main rival for the job had a reputation of scholarly austerity rather than liveliness.11 OConnor immediately set about putting his popular style into action at the Star, and had already built up a strong brand before reports of the first of the Whitechapel murders appeared in his columns in August 1888.12 Throughout the affair, however, OConnor cemented his reputation for sensationalism, and the newspapers reported sales figures spiked even further.13 He wrote the following on 1 October in reaction to the deaths of the fifth and sixth Whitechapel victims, Elizabeth Stride and Catherine Eddowes:

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______________________________________________________________ The terror of Whitechapel has walked again, and this time has marked down two victims, one hacked and disfigured beyond discovery, the other with her throat cut and torn. Again he has got away clear; and again the police, with wonderful frankness, confess that they have not a clue. They are waiting for a seventh and an eighth murder, just as they waited for a fifth, to help them to it. Meanwhile, Whitechapel is half-mad with fear. The people are afraid even to talk with a stranger. Notwithstanding the repeated proofs that the murderer has but one aim, and seeks but one class in the community, the spirit of terror has got fairly abroad, and no one knows what steps a practically defenceless community may take to protect itself or avenge itself on any luckless wight who may be taken for the enemy. It is the duty of journalists to keep their heads cool, and not inflame mens passions when what is wanted is cool temper and clear thinking; and we shall try and write calmly about this new atrocity.14 In that statement, OConnor encapsulated the hysteria of the period. For over two months, the popular press described in minute detail the horrific nature of each of the killings to a shocked but nonetheless captive audience. However, while OConnor stated that his paper would try to write calmly about the murders, the outlet of his sensationalism was anything but calm. Take the graphic description of the death of Limerick woman Mary Jane Kelly on 10 November 1888: The ears and nose had been clean cut off. The breasts had also been cleanly cut off...The stomach and abdomen had been ripped open, while the face was slashed about, so that the features of the poor creature were beyond all recognition.15 Murder had been a prevalent subject in newspapers for some time before the Whitechapel affair, of course, but it was only in the aftermath of the departure towards sensationalism that journalists fully realised the extent of public fascination with the subject. Irish local newspapers, in particular, had frequently dealt with murder cases in their districts, and had even tended towards sensationalism at times, but not on the scale of OConnor and the other new journalists of Fleet Street in the last nineteenth century.16 Reports of the Whitechapel Murders in Ireland were few and far between, and those that did exist were comparatively restrained, dwelling more on the inability of the police to find the killer than on the number of stab wounds

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______________________________________________________________ inflicted on the latest victim.17 In that regard, they may not have caught as many eyes as the Fleet Street barons managed through their sensationalism. However, importantly they had still managed to tap into one of the crucial reasons why people were buying newspapers in bulk during the Whitechapael affair. It might be argued that the real selling point for the Whitechapel Murders as a news story was the mystery that surrounded Jack the Ripper, a persona who had been invented largely by the media. Ripperologists, as they have come to be known, still debate the killers identity to this day18, but Britons of the 1880s liked nothing better than the contemplation of a mystery. Take, for example, Sir Arthur Conan Doyles Sherlock Holmes, who first appeared in the 1887 novel, A Study in Scarlet. Although the Holmes series was not the father of the fictional detective genre - Edgar Allen Poes C. Augustine Dupin, who first appeared in 1841, was regarded by many as the template - Conan Doyles stories popularised the genre in Britain. This was a fact that was not only reflected by the huge sales enjoyed by the publishers, but also by the public outcry when Holmes was killed off by the villainous Professor Moriarty in The Final Problem in 1893. The reaction was so visceral that eight years later, in 1901, Doyle eventually caved in to pressure from both his readers and publishers and brought Holmes back in The Hound of the Baskervilles. The following year Doyle was knighted, primarily for his efforts as a propagandist during the Boer War, but the coincidence of the return of Holmes could not have been lost on many people.19 In many ways, Sherlock Holmes was a prototype for the modern newspaper reader. While Dr Watson talks of him as having little interest in high literature and politics, Holmes was described in A Study in Scarlet as an expert in sensational literature, having a detailed knowledge of all manners of horror perpetrated throughout the nineteenth century.20 However, the real point of the Holmes mysteries was not the killings themselves, but the remarkable way in which Holmes solved the case - usually with practised air of consummate ease amid everyone elses befuddlement. In one of his frequent cameos in the Holmes series, Inspector Lestrade has to concede admiration for his unofficial colleague when he says: Were not jealous of you at Scotland Yard. No, sir, we are very proud of you, and if you come down to-morrow there's not a man, from the oldest inspector to the youngest constable, who wouldn't be glad to shake you by the hand.21 In an era of uncertainty - in which the unsolved mysteries of Whitechapel loomed large - the figure of Holmes as a crime-cracking hero was particularly satisfying. The extent of the public outcry, so visceral as it

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______________________________________________________________ was to lead a jaded Conan Doyle to resuscitate Holmes, was entirely understandable as a result. Newspaper editors, of course, had little preoccupation with probing the reasons for the popular fascination with the Whitechapel murders. The simple fact that circulation was up spoke volumes to the fact that gritty events, reported in plain, accessible language, could catch the public imagination.22 However, the parallel between media coverage of murder and references, fictional or otherwise, to the subject in popular culture, can be traced well beyond the Holmes-Ripper comparison. The phenomenon of the gangland, for instance, is particularly resonant in Ireland at the present time. A number of Irish crime journalists have achieved a certain amount of celebrity in recent times, and two in particular - Martin OHagan and Veronica Guerin - have become martyrs in Irish journalistic lore after both were murdered. OHagan was shot by a group calling themselves the Red Hand defenders, a cover name for the Loyalist Volunteer Force in Northern Ireland, after the Sunday World journalist had exposed a combined campaign of sectarian assassinations against Catholics and a large illegal drugs distribution network.23 Guerin, meanwhile, became the subject of two films, When the Sky Falls (2000) and the more famous Jerry Bruckheimer offering, Veronica Guerin (2003), following her murder after several years of reporting on a growing criminal network in Ireland specialising in illegal drug selling and distribution, principally for the Sunday Independent. Her death led to the arrest of over 150 people linked with organised criminal gangs in Ireland.24 Moreover, Irelands national broadcaster, RTE, recreated the gangland warfare motif in their premier drama series, Fair City, in many different ways over the past number of years. Perhaps their most successful effort came in 2003, when actor Stuart Dunne portrayed an unscrupulously callous crime boss named Billy Meehan, for which the actor earned an Irish Film and Television Awards (IFTA) nomination.25 At the time of writing, the most noted crime writer in Ireland is Paul Williams of the Sunday World, who authored The General, a biography of a famous Dublin criminal Martin Cahill, who came to prominence for the robbery of valuable jewellery and artwork, particular the family collection of art in Russborough House, which he stole in 1986.26 Cahill, in turn, was the subject of a film based directly on Williams book called The General (1998), directed by John Boorman. Furthermore, another film directed by Thadeus OSullivan and starring Kevin Spacey, entitled Ordinary Decent Criminal, was also loosely based on Cahill. The extent of the influence Williams wields in Irish society as a result of his investigations was apparent as recently as May 2007, when he was embroiled in a confrontation on an Irish radio programme with one of his subjects, Alan Bradley. An argument had ensued between the pair in which Williams claimed Bradley was being

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______________________________________________________________ investigated for the murder of a Latvian housewife living in north Dublin. One of Bradleys associates, John Daly, called into the show via mobile phone, despite the fact he was serving a nine-year prison sentence in Portlaoise prison, to show solidarity with Bradley before berating and threatening Williams. There immediately followed an outpouring of public support for Williams on the programme, and recriminations followed as to how a convicted armed robber could have access to a mobile phone in prison.27 Later that month, the Irish justice minister Michael McDowell lost his seat in the general election, and quickly retired from political life.28 In many ways, Williams has become for a large section of the Irish people what Sherlock Holmes was at the turn of the twentieth century in London. However, one question that must be broached at this juncture is how the coverage of murder cases might constitute socially responsible journalism. The undoubted newsworthiness of murder presents its problems in terms of media ethics; indeed, the issue of the ethical justification for covering horrific crime is a subject that has been debated since before Whitechapel. At many points in the history of journalism, the sight of a new departure in the craft has led to a flurry of criticism. Ornberg and Jonsson argue that three eras of innovation in American journalism - those of the advent of the penny press in the 1830s, the entrance of Joseph Pulitzer into the media environment in the 1880s and the subsequent yellow journalism war which began in 1895 as a clash of sensationalist styles between the New York Journal and the Sunday World - were all met with scathing criticism. In all events, the new style of journalism being propounded was branded as too sensational and emotional, with the result being a loss of respectability in the profession.29 In Britain and Ireland, the same was ultimately true of the new journalism. W.T. Stead in particular came in for some particularly cutting criticism. Gladstone, who had reputedly been a supporter of his in the past, said Stead had done more harm to journalism than any other individual ever known, while the National Review dubbed him a mass of vanity, a crank, and an egregious emissary.30 Perhaps the most famous description of the new journalism propounded by Stead and OConnor came from Matthew Arnold, who called it feather-brained in its treatment of news values.31 In Ireland some of the most sustained arguments were made against the use of sensationalism and the publication of murder cases. In 1922, David Barry wrote in the Irish Ecclesiastical Record that while there was no denying that the newspaper had become a major, if not the main, source of information for the general public, the dangers of its prominence were apparent. It is clear that a sound and operative public opinion regarding the claims of religion and morality can hardly be hoped for, Barry wrote, if the exhortations from the pulpit on Sunday, and the edifying example given by those who are comparatively few, have to withstand a debased tone and

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______________________________________________________________ scandalous reports in the papers to which nearly all have access every day. This included transgression of the eighth commandment, according to Barry. Journalists failed to consult the welfare of a neighbours soul when they sought to implicate him or her in some sort of scandal, in which case circumstances have made them deal in half-truths and paint a distorted picture of events and opinions. This included the impact the publication of all the gritty details could have on the friends of family of a murder victim. In a heightened competitive atmosphere in an industry now thriving on sensation and scandal in the wake of Stead, OConnor and others, these dangers were being realised on a daily basis, Barry contended. In addition, newspapers were liable to tone down the horror of certain crimes and in doing so harden readers feelings and mislead their conscience. He continued: The publication of every crime is, no doubt, more or less likely to lead those who are weak to its communion by familiarising their minds with it, lessening their abhorrence of it, and showing them that the perpetration of it is not unthinkable.32 An editorial in the Irish Review the following year concurred with these sentiments. We wonder, they wrote, if it is realised the extent to which the daily press is responsible for the present condition of the country. The incessant reporting, of every outrage, is a direct factor in the creation of further disturbance and outrage.33 These criticisms have endured throughout the twentieth century, and in the present climate are supported by the perception that journalists have ignored their social responsibility in the coverage of murder through their obvious selection bias. Richard Lundman has argued that previous research into journalisms selection bias in relation to the coverage of murders has provided an incomplete picture of newsworthiness as novelty. If novelty had equated to value in terms of the selection of news, then there would be a much higher proportion of reportage of what might be termed unusual murder cases than was clearly the case. Instead, journalists reflected long-standing and pervasive race and gender typifications in their choices, reporting on murders committed by men, not women, and blacks, not whites.34 But perhaps the most succinct, if disputable, piece of criticism was provided by Vincent Browne, the editor of Irish current affairs magazine Village, when he wrote recently that crime journalism is a debased form of the trade because it relies almost entirely on two unreliable sources: police and criminals.35 However, there remains a vocal response to critics of murder journalism. While Ornberg and Jonsson highlighted the historical tradition of opposition to sensationalist departures in British and American journalism, they challenged the idea that tabloid journalism somehow equated to bad journalism. The fact that the tabloid constituted a journalistic other to those resistant to change greatly increased the size of the public sphere in which

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______________________________________________________________ journalism dwelt, while the results of tabloid journalism have had plenty of positive aspects: Being unabashedly emotional does not seem to have stopped the penny press from having a bettering influence on issues of great importance to the poor and disenfranchised in the society of its time.36 This last point is one that supporters of sensationalist journalism have consistently used to extol the social benefits of such a method. The Sunday World illustrated this point with an advertising campaign that included a picture of Paul Williams on the side of double-decker busses throughout Dublin with the catch-line Who keeps an eye on the bad guys. Rebekah Wade was also keen to stress this point following the rape and murder of an eight-year-old girl, Sarah Payne, in 2000. The News of the World, edited by Wade, embarked on a name-and-shame campaign against paedophiles during which the paper sought to introduce Sarahs law, a measure which would have given controlled public access to the sex offenders register. During the campaign, the News of the Worlds sales figures doubled.37 In such ways, the journalism of murder has sought to change society, so that out of such tragedy some good might occur, but the question of whether the positives outweigh the negatives continues to be debated. At present, the media coverage surrounding the disappearance of the three-year-old Madeline McCann from a holiday apartment in Portugal illustrates both sides of the argument. While the media at large have been instrumental in the search, they have also been criticised for their selection bias. One commentator went so far as to say that the huge mobilisation of attention on the case was due to the fact that the girl was English, white, and the daughter of doctors. Meanwhile, the disappearance of innumerable Portuguese or immigrant children had drawn scant attention from the press.38 2. Conclusion and Other Avenues of Investigation Regardless of the positives and negatives of murder journalism, it is important to acknowledge that the issue of death in journalism constitutes more than merely crime reporting. The past twenty years have been important in reviving the journalistic tradition of commemoration - one of the oldest remaining facets of the craft. Obituary columns, despite fluctuating fortunes, were thriving until 1914, but thereafter they became one of the casualties caused by the squeeze on space created by paper rationing of two world wars and the continual move of the newspaper industry away from the literary and more towards pop culture. In the meantime, they became devalued in a literary sense, and were more a preserve of the cub reporter than that of an esteemed, proven journalist. However, with Hugh Massingberd becoming the

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______________________________________________________________ obituaries editor at the Daily Telegraph and James Ferguson taking up the same post at the Independent in the 1980s, new life was breathed into the obituary column. In America, a similar revival occurred as editors sought to find ways to make the newspaper an intelligent, yet readable, alternative to television news. In such a way, the obituary has reasserted itself as key to the formation of an identity for print journalism that is quite separate to that of the broadcast media. The outcome is that the obituary column has become a place where the newspaper has license to express itself, perhaps more freely than most others. As Nigel Starck has argued, quite simply, the best obituaries of today, meaning those that do not adhere to the principle of reverential voice and faithful recitation of the subjects CV - instead devising an inventive and witty review of their life - are sublime to read.39 In this way, a new tradition has been initiated in the past twenty years, one which seeks to find another way in which death and journalism can become associated. However, it has not over-ridden the better-understood tradition within crime journalism that has made death and journalism synonymous through murder; it is simply another way in which newspaper readers are made to confront mortality. Another area that has not been touched upon here is that of mass murder. Media coverage of the first and second world wars or the 9/11 and 7/7 terrorist attacks also constitute examples of the way journalism confronts death. But while war and mass murder are more extensive subjects in human terms, the tradition of crime reporting has been, for the past century, perhaps the most institutionalised way within the profession of journalism in which death and journalism coalesce. The way in which the human-interest value of the individualised murder story has played a seminal role in the history of journalism throughout the twentieth century has profound lessons for journalism. The role journalism has played in the way death, particularly murder, is perceived in popular culture, cannot be underestimated, and as such provides a window to public perceptions of mortality. It has frightened, but it has also fascinated - and for both those simple reasons, in spite of ethical dilemmas, it has bound column inches to the nails of coffins, in much the same ways, for over a century.

Notes
1 2

L. Cullen, Eason & Son: A History, Eason, Dublin, 1989, pp 5-11. A. J. Lee, The Origins of the Popular Press in Britain, Rowman & Littlefield, London, 1976, p. 108.

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3

O. Mulpetre, W. T. Stead and the Virgin Trade: A Special and Secret Commission of Inquiry, Journal of the Whitechapel Society, June, 2005, pp. 8-10. 4 W.T. Stead, Government by Journalism, The Future of Journalism, Contemporary Review, vol. 49, 1886, pp. 653-674, 711-723. 5 Mulpetre, p. 9. 6 M. Hampton, Understanding Media: Theories of the Press in Britain, 18551914, Media, Culture and Society, vol. 23, 2001, p. 227. 7 P. Brendon, When the Press Went Pop, Powers of the Press: A Special Supplement to the David Low Exhibition with BBC History Magazine, vol. 3, May 2002, pp 19-22. 8 J. Horgan, Irish Media: A Critical History Since 1922, Routledge, London, 2001, p. 11. 9 The name was taken from a letter written to the Central News Agency, dated 25 September 1888, by someone purporting to be the killer, available online at Casebook: Jack the Ripper, March 1996, retrieved 5 June 2007, <http://www.casebook.org/ripper_letters>. 10 Lee, op. cit., p. 118. 11 I. Sheehy, T.P. OConnor and The Star, in Ireland in Transition, 18671921, D.G. Boyce, ed., Routledge, London, 2004, pp 76-81. 12 By August 1888, the title bar of the Star claimed that the newspaper was the largest circulating evening newspaper anywhere in Britain. 13 Lee, op. cit., p. 121. 14 Editorial: What we think, The Star, 1 Oct. 1888. 15 Whitechapel: Details of the Seventh Crime of the Murder Maniac, The Star, 10 Nov. 1888. 16 B. Griffin, Sources for the Study of Crime in Ireland, Four Courts, Dublin, 2005, p. 92. 17 Munster News and Limerick and Clare Advocate, 13 Oct. 1888; see also A. Sharp, Jack the Ripper and the Irish Press, Blackhall, London, 2005. 18 R. Odells Ripperology, Kent State, Ohio, 2006 charts the history of the study of the Ripper murders, from the initial police investigations of 1888 to the present set of hypotheses. In all, the book identifies seven phases of speculations, with the opening of Scotland Yard files in 1976 being a watershed. Presently, Patricia Cornwells DNA-based implication that the artist Walter Sickert was the murderer has thrown open a whole new area of debate. 19 A.C. Doyle, The Complete Sherlock Holmes, vol. 2, K Freeman, ed., Barnes & Noble, New York, 2003, xii. 20 A.C. Doyle, A Study in Scarlet, Penguin, London, 1982, p. 13.

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21

A.C. Doyle, The adventure of the six Napoleons, in The Return of Sherlock Holmes (online), January 1998, retrieved 5 June 2007, <http://etext.library.adelaide.edu.au/d/doyle/arthur_conan/d75re/six.napoleon s.html > 22 Lee, p. 121. 23 J. Cusack, Obituary: Martin OHagan, The Guardian, 1 Oct. 2001. 24 Editorial: First anniversary of Veronica Guerin murder, Irish Times, 21 June 1997. 25 List of IFTA Awards at RT website, 2003, retrieved 30 March 2007, <http://www.rte.ie/arts/2003/0116/rte.html>. 26 P. Williams, The General, Forge, Dublin, 2003. 27 The Wednesday 2 May 2007 edition of RTEs Liveline programme, and the following days edition, were both dominated by the on-air altercation between Williams and Bradley. There was a unanimous outpouring of support from those who called in to the programme in the aftermath. The following Sunday (6 May) Williams newspaper, the Sunday World, said the affair placed intense pressure on Justice Minister Michael McDowell to explain how he had lost control of the prison system to such an extent that a high security inmate could casually contact a radio phone-in show. 28 McDowell quits politics after losing Dail seat to Gormley, Irish Times, 26 May 2007. 29 H. Ornberg and A .Jonsson, Tabloid Journalism and the Public Sphere: A Historical Perspective on Tabloid Journalism, Journalism Studies, vol. 5, 2004, p. 284. 30 Stead by his Peers, at The W.T. Stead resource site, 2001, retrieved 5 June 2007, <www.attackingthedevil.co.uk/peers/index.php>. 31 M. Arnold, Up to Easter, The Nineteenth Century, vol. 123 May, 1887, p. 640. 32 D. Barry, The Ethics of Journalism, Irish Ecclesiastical Record, vol.19, May 1922, pp 514-526. 33 Current Affairs: comment on the responsibility of newspapers for the present condition of the country, Irish Review, vol. 1, Jan, 1923, p 62. 34 R. Lundman, The newsworthiness and selection bias in news about murder: comparative and relative effects of novelty and race and gender typification on newspaper coverage of homicide, Sociological Forum, vol. 18, September 2003, p. 380. 35 V. Browne, Sunday World Makes Unsubstantiated Allegations Against Bertie Ahern, available online at Village, 4 May 2007, retrieved 4 June 2007,

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______________________________________________________________ <http://www.village.ie/media/commentary/sunday_world_makes_unsubstanti ated_allegations_against_bertie_ahern>. 36 Ornberg and Jonsson, p. 652. 37 C. Critcher, Media, Government and Moral Panic: The Politics of Paedophilia in Britain, 2000-1, Journalism Studies, vol. 3, 2002, pp 521537. 38 M. de Queiroz, Some Missing Children More Equal than Others, Inter Press Service, 18 May 2007, retrieved 5 June 2007, <http://www.ipsnews.net/news.asp?idnews=37797>. 39 N Starck, Posthumous Parallel and Parallax: The Obituary Revival on Three Continents, Journalism studies, vol. 6, 2005, p. 283.

Bibliography
Arnold, M., Up to Easter, The Nineteenth Century No. 123, May, 1887, pp. 629-643. Barry, D., The Ethics of Journalism, Irish Ecclesiastical Record, vol. 19, May 1922, pp 514-526. Brendon, P., When the Press Went Pop, Powers of the Press: A Special Supplement to the David Low Exhibition with BBC History Magazine, vol. 3, May 2002, pp 19-22. Browne, V., Sunday World Makes Unsubstantiated Allegations Against Bertie Ahern, available online at Village: Irelands current affairs website, 4 May 2007, retrieved 4 June 2007, <http://www.village.ie/media/commentary/Sunday_world_makes_unsub stantiated_allegations_against_bertie_ahern>. Critcher, C., Media, Government and Moral Panic: The Politics of Paedophilia in Britain, 2000-1, Journalism Studies, vol. 3, 2002, pp 521-537. Cullen, L., Eason & Son: A History, Eason, Dublin, 1989. Cusack, J., Obituary: Martin OHagan, The Guardian, 1 Oct. 2001. Dear Boss, Casebook: Jack the Ripper, March 1996, retrieved 5 June 2007, <http://www.casebook.org/ripper_letters>. De Queiroz, M., Some Missing Children More Equal than Others, Inter Press Service, 18 May 2007, retrieved 5 June 2007, <http://www.ipsnews.net/news.asp?idnews=37797>. Doyle, A. C., A Study in Scarlet, Penguin, London, 1982.

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______________________________________________________________ The Adventure of the Six Napoleons, in The Return of Sherlock Holmes (online), January 1998, retrieved 5 June 2007, <http://etext.library.adelaide.edu.au/d/doyle/arthur_conan/d75re>. The Complete Sherlock Holmes, vol. 2, K Freeman, ed., Barnes & Noble, New York, 2003. Editorial: Current Affairs: Comment on the Responsibility of Newspapers for the Present Condition of the Country, Irish Review, vol. 1, Jan, 1923, p 62. Editorial: First Anniversary of Veronica Guerin Murder, Irish Times, 21 June 1997. Editorial, Sunday World, 6 May 2007. Editorial: The Whitechapel Murders, Munster News and Limerick and Clare Advocate, 13 Oct. 1888. Editorial: What we think, The Star, 1st Oct. 1888. Griffin, B., Sources for the Study of Crime in Ireland, Four Courts, Dublin, 2005. Hampton, M., Understanding Media: Theories of the Press in Britain, 18551914, Media, Culture and Society, vol. 23, 2001, pp. 213-231. Horgan, J., Irish Media: A Critical History Since 1922, Routledge, London, 2001. Lee, A.J., The Origins of the Popular Press in Britain, 1855-1914, Rowman & Littlefield, London, 1976. List of IFTA Awards at RT website, January 2003, retrieved 30 March 2007, <http://www.rte.ie/arts/2003/0116/rte.html>. Lundman, R., The newsworthiness and selection bias in news about murder: comparative and relative effects of novelty and race and gender typification on newspaper coverage of homicide, Sociological forum, vol. 18, Sept. 2003, pp. 357-386. McDowell quits politics after losing Dail seat to Gormley, Irish Times, 26 May 2007. Mulpetre, O., W. T. Stead and the Virgin Trade: A Special and Secret Commission of Inquiry, Journal of the Whitechapel Society, June, 2005, pp. 8-10. Odell, R., Ripperology, Kent State, Ohio, 2006. Ornberg, H., and Jonsson, A., Tabloid Journalism and the Public Sphere: A Historical Perspective on Tabloid Journalism, Journalism Studies, vol. 5, 2004, pp. 283-295. Sheehy, I., T.P. OConnor and The Star, in Ireland in Transition, 18671921, D.G. Boyce, ed., Routledge, London, 2004, pp 76-91.

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______________________________________________________________ Starck, N., Posthumous parallel and parallax: the obituary revival on three continents, Journalism Studies, vol. 6, 2005, pp. 267-283. Stead by his peers, W.T. Stead resource site, January 2001, retrieved 5 June 2007, <http://www.attackingthedevil.co.uk>. Stead, W.T., Government by Journalism, Contemporary Review, vol. 49, 1886, pp. 653-674. The Future of Journalism, Contemporary Review, vol. 49, 1886, pp. 711-723. Whitechapel: Details of the Seventh Crime of the Murder Maniac, The Star, 10 Nov. 1888. Williams, P., The General, Forge, Dublin, 2003.

Mark Wehrly is completing his PhD in the Irish local newspaper industry from 1885 to 1927 at the National University of Ireland, Maynooth. He has also worked as a freelance journalist in Ireland since 2001.

Mr. Mosss Skull: Changing Responses toward Accidental Exhumation in Annapolis, Maryland, 1855-2006 Michael P. Parker
Abstract This paper examines the changing attitude towards accidental exhumation in Annapolis, Maryland, from 1855 until the present. In the nineteenth century the discovery of human remains outside an established cemetery was considered worthy of notice in the local newspapers, but the remains themselves merited no special treatment: after being examined and stripped of items of antiquarian interest, they were disposed of casually. This attitude changed dramatically in the early twentieth century: human remains were increasingly sacralized, i.e., treated as sacred relics holding some innate power. The emergence of this new attitude in Annapolis may be traced to the translation of the body of John Paul Jones from Paris and its elaborate reinterment in the Naval Academy Chapel in 1906. By the close of the twentieth century sacralization had led to politicization: local interest groups had learned to capitalize on the discovery of human remains to prosecute partisan agendas and renegotiate the boundaries between sacred and secular space. Civil authorities have, in turn, asserted their jurisdiction over remains, roping off discovery sites and taking the finds into custody. If place of burial rendered human remains sacred in the nineteenth century, today human remains sacralize the place: the signifier has become the signified.

Keywords Burial Rites, Exhumation, Human Remains, Sacralization, Annapolis, Maryland, John Paul Jones.

On the afternoon of 20 August 1901, the Evening Capital, the daily newspaper of Annapolis, Maryland, reported an interesting discovery by local businessman William Hamilton Moss. The previous afternoon workmen excavating the street bed of Church Circle had exhumed portions of a coffin containing human remains, which they piled on the curb. Mr. Moss: was returning home to lunch from his place of business, corner of Bladen street and College avenue, when he observed the skull lying with the bones on the sidewalk

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______________________________________________________________ near the spot where it was dug up. He noticed the frontal bone was green, as though having come in contact with some metal, and thinking that perhaps the body had been interred in a metallic casket, he was about to pass on, when it occurred to him to observe the skull more carefully, which he did, finding . . . English coins embedded in the eye socket[s] . . . .1 Prying the coins from the skull with his penknife, Moss took them home, where they were subjected to acids and thoroughly rubbed up; they proved to be George III pennies, one dated 1773. Moss invited local citizens to stop by his home to inspect his find, which, as the Evening Capital noted, verified that the citys early residents observed the ancient custom of using coins to weigh down the eyelids of corpses. The skull and bones, along with other human remains discovered during the roadwork, were put into a barrel and carted off.2 Although Mr. Mosss treatment of the exhumed skull may surprise or appall a contemporary audience, it would have troubled few residents of late nineteenth-century or early twentieth-century Annapolis. Bones were frequently exhumed throughout the city in the course of construction or road maintenance. In July 1877 skulls and bones were thrown up in the grading of Conduit street3; workers discovered a skeleton on Market Street in November 19064; in 1912 laborers excavating foundations for the new auto garage of Carvel Hall Hotel on Prince George Street found a marble slab inscribed Body of _______ Brice and, several months later, a skeleton entangled in the roots of a nearby locust tree. The bones were gathered in a heap and buried in another spot at the instance of the management of the hotel; the marble tombstone was cleaned as well as possible and set . . . up as a slab in the hostelry.5 Church Circle, formerly the site of the citys burying ground, was a particularly rich source of finds: a few bones, besides the skull and the jaw of an early Annapolitan were unearthed while installing a water meter in 1906.6 The 1901 story of Mr. Mosss skull nicely epitomizes the nineteenth-century attitude toward accidental exhumation in Annapolis. No one questioned William Mosss right to handle the human remains and to strip them of items of antiquarian value (indeed, the 1901 headline reads in large type, Old English Coins - One Hundred And Twenty-Eight Years Old, with the bones relegated to the third line.) Neither city officials nor representatives of St. Annes Church asserted their jurisdiction over the discovery. Similarly, no member of the Brice family, still prominent in Annapolis today, stepped forward to claim the remains of the ancestor exhumed at the Carvel Hall Hotel eleven years later. And perhaps most significantly, although the discovery of human remains was considered

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______________________________________________________________ worthy of notice in the local newspaper, the remains themselves merited no special treatment: after being examined and divested of incidental artifacts, they were disposed of casually. This attitude began to change dramatically in the first decade of the twentieth century: human remains were increasingly sacralized, i.e., treated as sacred relics holding some innate power.7 The emergence of this new attitude in Annapolis may be traced to the exhumation of the body of Revolutionary War hero John Paul Jones in Paris in 1905 and its reinterment at the Naval Academy the following year; this local development prefigures the rites accorded World War I dead on a national scale during the following decade. By the close of the twentieth century sacralization had led to politicization: local interest groups had learned to capitalize on the discovery of human remains to prosecute partisan agendas and renegotiate the boundaries between sacred and secular space. The frequency of accidental exhumation in Annapolis stems from several causes. Although settled in 1651, Annapolis enacted its first ordinance governing the disposition of human remains only in 1855, apparently in response to the type of public health concerns aired by sanitary reformer Edwin Chadwick in A Special Inquiry into the Practice of Burial in Towns (1843).8 During the preceding two centuries, the sole institutional burial ground within the corporate limits of the city had been the cemetery attached to St. Annes Protestant Episcopal Church, chartered in 1692. The original burying ground was located within the oval described by Church Circle; in 1790, however, a prominent parishioner, Elizabeth Bordley, willed the church a tract of land on Northwest Street two blocks away as the site of a new burial ground.9 Some remains were removed from the churchyard to the new cemetery and buried indiscriminately in a mass grave, still marked by a small mound10; the monuments removed from the churchyard - there were, in fact, probably very few to begin with - disappeared in the course of the removal, probably recycled for use in other building projects.11 The tombstones remaining in the churchyard were redeployed for use as stepping stones into the church until the incumbency of the Rev. Edwin M. Van Duesen (1845-47), a New Yorker who, appalled at the neglect of the grounds, installed new granite steps and returned the memorials to suitable positions.12 The human remains themselves, which were increasingly stranded outside the limits of the churchyard as the roadbed was widened and the boundaries redrawn, received no special treatment: with the relocation of the cemetery, the site had been effectively deconsecrated, and the remains eventually lost their special, protected status.13 Although many Annapolitans were buried in St. Annes, many were not: dissenting Protestants, Roman Catholics,14 the poor,15 slaves,16 and victims of epidemics17 were often interred in private, usually unmarked plots throughout the city. Occasionally the very wealthy eschewed St. Annes in favor of garden burials.18 Over the past 150 years human remains have been

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______________________________________________________________ discovered not only on Church Circle, but on Main Street, Market Street, Conduit Street, Duke of Gloucester Street, King George Street, Prince George Street, Larkin Street, and Munroe Court. Indeed, the chorus of an old Broadway tune, This whole towns a cemetery, proves literally true in Annapolis19: remains have been discovered on nearly every block. But at least until the turn of the twentieth century, an important distinction endured between the remains in an established cemetery like St. Annes and those found elsewhere: the former were protected and revered by the community whereas the latter were the concern solely of the property owner, who usually regarded them as so much trash. The event that precipitated a change in the way that Annapolitans regarded human remains was not an accidental exhumation, but a very deliberate one: the disinterment of John Paul Jones in France and his subsequent reburial at the Naval Academy. After his death in Paris on 18 July 1792, Jones was buried in the citys cemetery for foreign Protestants, St. Louis, on the rue des Ecluses St. Martin.20 The cemetery was closed in 1796 when it was sold to M. Phalipeaux, a contractor; after service as a market garden, a common dump pile, and a repository for a collector of night soil, the lot was developed with residences and shops. The American ambassador to France from 1897 to 1905, General Horace Porter, made it a personal quest to recover the body of Jones. Commencing his research in 1899, he identified the probable grave site and, after tortuous negotiations with French authorities, he excavated a series of elaborate tunnels underneath the existing structures that culminated on 31 March 1905 in the discovery of the lead coffin containing the preserved body of the naval hero. President Theodore Roosevelt dispatched a naval squadron under Admiral Charles Dwight Sigsbee to transport the body to the Naval Academy in Annapolis, where it was officially welcomed on 24 April 1906 in an elaborate ceremony attended by Roosevelt, French ambassador Jean Jules Jusserand, and Maryland governor Edwin Warfield.21 The mayor proclaimed a public holiday, and over 10,000 visitors joined the 8500 residents of the city to participate in the celebration.22 After several years in a holding tomb, Jones was permanently interred in the crypt of the new Naval Academy Chapel, directly under the altar, in a sarcophagus of Pyrenean marble modeled on that of Napoleon in the Invalides.23 A striking feature of the recovery and reburial of Joness remains is how closely the episode was modeled on the medieval ceremony of the translation of a saints relics: indeed, Jones is treated as the martyr whose bones are necessary to consecrate the Naval Academy Chapel. Porters account of finding the corpse, published in The Century Magazine, is a close imitation, perhaps inadvertent, of the translatio, the traditional prose account of the discovery, recognition, and transport of a saints remains; photos of Joness incorrupt corpse (he was pickled in alcohol) circulated as proof of

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______________________________________________________________ miraculous intervention; the tomb itself is surrounded by niches holding secondary and tertiary relics - swords, medals, letters and documents - of the heros life.24 The career of Jones provided midshipmen with a moral exemplar, but the interment itself served to sanctify the new chapel, which in the years since has acquired the nickname Cathedral of the Navy, and to provide the Academy with the Protestant version of a patron saint.25 The contrast between the honors accorded Jones and the way Annapolitans were accustomed to treating human remains had an immediate effect. The next day, 25 April 1906, in a reciprocal gesture of FrancoAmerican amity, Prof. Henri Marion of the Naval Academy organized a memorial ceremony for unknown French soldiers and sailors who had died in Annapolis between 1781 and 1783 and had been buried along the shores of College Creek in what had subsequently become the St. Johns College football field. A committee of townsmen located the site of the burials near the 15-yard line: six years later, on 18 April 1911, President William Howard Taft presided at the dedication of a permanent monument.26 If heretofore in Annapolis the place of burial had sanctified human remains, the commemoration of the unknown French dead reversed the pattern: now, the remains sanctified the place. The signifier has become the signified. The long-term effect of the Jones re-interment is less easy to pinpoint, but three examples point the trend. On 16 May 1906 the Evening Capital reported on an ill-managed funeral in Annapolis, comparing it unfavorably with the elaborate exequies accorded Jones three weeks earlier.27 More substantively, beginning in the late nineteenth-century residents had begun to deposit old tombstones from throughout Anne Arundel County in St. Annes Churchyard. In the earliest instances, only the stones were moved; by the 1920s, however, the stones were always accompanied by the remains that they marked.28 The most elaborate example was another deliberate exhumation, that of the remains of Sir Robert Eden, last proprietary governor of Maryland, who had died in Annapolis in 1784.29 In 1923 a Baltimore lawyer with Annapolis roots, Daniel Randall, began the search for Edens grave, focusing on the ruins of the church of St. Margarets Westminster about six miles from city. In November 1925 Randall located the remains and, after the most up-to-date forensic testing at the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine, they were declared those of Eden and reinterred in St. Annes Churchyard on 5 June 1926 in impressive ceremonies.30 In attendance were the mayor, the Episcopal bishop of Maryland, and the Honorable David Balfour, second secretary of the British Embassy in Washington and a descendant of Eden, as well as representatives of a host of patriotic organizations. What contrasts with earlier incidents is the emergence of so many figures who claimed jurisdiction over or interest in the remains, including descendants and representatives of the Protestant Episcopal Church; indeed, the rector of St. Margarets Parish boycotted the ceremony

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______________________________________________________________ out of pique that the bishop had selected St. Annes rather than his own parish as the final resting spot for Edens bones.31 The Eden interment in a sense represents a reconsecration of the churchyard: the presence of the bishop and the public pledge by the rector of St. Annes, Dr. Edward Darlington Johnson, of his readiness to accept the custody of this grave and this memorial restored the sacred nature of the circle and placed it on a level equal to that of the cemetery proper.32 The elaborate reburial of John Paul Jones and later of Eden represented what might be called a continental or even Catholic attitude toward human remains as opposed to a Protestant perspective, which tended to eschew relics as idolatrous and placed comparatively little theological significance on the resurrection of the body.33 General Porter himself observed in his account that The French have a profound respect for the dead and the sacredness of places of burial . . . graves are tenderly cared for and kept decked with flowers, and their desecration is a rare crime.34 The contrast with Anglo-American mores is implicit. The agent of change in the Jones reburial was the Federal government and, more specifically, the U.S. military, which had taken on the task of maintaining national cemeteries during the Civil War and would do so on a much broader scale after World War I. Other participants had specific agendas as well. Porter was an enthusiastic memorializer: an aide to Ulysses S. Grant during the Civil War, he was one of the leading spirits in erecting the generals imposing tomb on Riverside Drive in New York.35 Roosevelt, who vastly expanded the size of the American Navy and sent the Great White Fleet on its voyage around the globe, personally selected the Naval Academy as the site for Joness final resting place. The local rationale for acceding to the Federal agenda was more complex. Annapolis literati such as Thomas Fell, the president of St. Johns College, lamented the fact that his school had hitherto failed to memorialize the unknown French dead and vowed that in the future it would henceforth honor the past according to the best European models. Human remains had become the vital link with history. The citys elites embraced this attitude as a way to assert military and cultural equality with Europe: Americans could match Europeans navy by navy, monument, bone by bone. Indeed, the invariable presence of officials from foreign embassies at these ceremonies suggests that the intended audience was international as much as local. Less learned Annapolitans undoubtedly viewed the Jones and French Monument ceremonies in more economic terms: both celebrations had brought thousands of visitors to the city, helping to bolster its newly-emergent tourism industry. If one sacred site would draw 10,000 visitors, how many would two sites attract? Or five? Or ten? By the 1920s civic leaders such as Daniel Randall, historical groups such as the Society of Colonial Wars, and

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______________________________________________________________ the Annapolis Chamber of Commerce had enthusiastically embraced the cause. The process of sacralizing Annapolis had begun. Throughout the twentieth century accidental exhumations continue to occur at a steady rate. The forgotten grave of Charles Carroll IV was rediscovered in May 1961, and the remains eventually reinterred at St. Marys Church.36 A new townhouse development disturbed an unmarked African-American cemetery off inner West Street ca.1980;37 a childs body was disinterred during the demolition of the Red Coach Inn in 1981;38 street and sidewalk repairs on Church Circle uncovered yet more caches of bones in 1985, 2000, and 2004;39 the bones of an African-American child were discovered in London Town in 2002;40 most recently, the bones of a horse and a man were found buried on Duke of Gloucester Street in October 2006.41 The Carroll and London Town discoveries are perhaps the most significant inasmuch as they led to elaborate reburial ceremonies based on those of Jones and Eden but honoring increasingly powerful minority groups. In 1961, the first year of John F. Kennedys presidency, the Catholic community in Annapolis embraced the reburial of Charles Carroll IV, son of the only Roman Catholic signer of the Declaration of Independence, as a way of asserting the role their coreligionists had played in the founding of the city. The Carroll family, represented by descendant Carroll Brice; St. Marys Church; and a phalanx of patriotic organizations led by the Daughters of the American Revolution vied to take the lead in organizing the ceremonies.42 The Carroll exhumation was also significant inasmuch as it marked the first appearance of police officials at the excavation site; this is now standard practice though the jocular presence of county police Capt. Elmer Hagner has since been supplanted by 24-hour police vigils and swathes of yellow vinyl Crime Scene tape. In the London Town event, the African-American community in the city and county staged an impressive televised funeral for the remains of the young slave, replete with procession, African drummers, costumed re-enactors, four ministers, and a raft of elected officials. The Carroll and London Town ceremonies demonstrate a democratization of the sacralizing impulse: members of minority groups (in the African-American case, an unnamed slave child) were increasingly accorded the elaborate exequies formerly reserved in Annapolis for military heroes or the AngloSaxon elite. These ceremonies represent a type of identity politics: they use the remains of the dead member to foster group cohesion and to assert the groups power in the larger community. Two final instances of accidental exhumation suggest the broader implications of the power increasingly accorded to human remains and the expansion of those portions of Annapolis regarded as sacred ground. The citys decision to replace the concrete sidewalks surrounding St. Annes Churchyard with brick in early 2004 touched off a month of stormy, very public debate over the treatment of human remains. The mayor refused to

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______________________________________________________________ apply for a permit from the Historic Preservation Commission to undertake the work, arguing that projects involving public safety or routine maintenance were exempt from its purview; a coalition of preservation groups and private citizens rejoined that the probability that the work would disturb human remains demanded that a full-time professional archaeologist be employed during the excavation, a condition that Historic Preservation Commission review would have mandated. The city began work without a permit on 21 January 2004. That evening, the Capital ran a story which began, The discovery yesterday of an apparent childs bone and three pieces of 18th-century pottery temporarily stopped a sidewalk improvement project in downtown Annapolis (B1); the story was illustrated by the color photograph of a burly workman in coveralls digging a trench, seemingly oblivious to the delicate piece of femur balanced on a brick beside him. This story and the flurry of follow-ups over the next two weeks detailed how Gregory Stiverson, the president of the Historic Annapolis Foundation, denounced the citys placing itself above the law as dangerous, subversive to order, and downright un-American and obtained an injunction to stop the work from the States Attorney; how the grey eminence behind the scheme was the wife of an unpopular Republican governor with whom the mayor was attempting to curry favor; and finally, how the city government backed down, obtained its permit, and resumed the work with two archaeologists on hand at all times to oversee the excavations. Several months later, after extensive forensic analysis, the childs femur and other remains subsequently exhumed were quietly re-interred in the modern St. Annes Cemetery. The 2004 Church Circle exhumation underscores how the sacralization of human remains gives rise to potential conflict. In Annapolis the possible presence of remains is increasingly cited as a reason for opposing new development projects: this argument played a critical role in blocking St. Annes attempts to build an undercroft in the churchyard in the late 1990s and emerged as a major factor in community opposition to a condominium development behind Munroe Court in 2005.43 The increased significance accorded to remains has led to a concomitant appreciation of their increased power: the jurisdictional disputes between the mayor, the Historic Preservation Commission, the Historic Annapolis Foundation, and St. Annes Church in 2004 are indicative of a desire to harness the power in the remains, or at least to prevent some other competing authority from doing so. The Church Circle exhumation was at least conducted in the public arena; the inner West Street exhumation of 1980 is notorious in large part because news of it was suppressed, never appearing in the Capital or any other newspaper. In the early 1970s the Annapolis Urban Renewal Authority demolished several blocks of houses in a neighborhood off inner West Street

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______________________________________________________________ for redevelopment; when construction finally commenced in the late 1970s, workers exhumed at least two skeletons from an unmarked but documented African-American cemetery. Without consulting the city or AfricanAmerican leaders, the state agency that oversees preservation and archaeological issues quietly took possession of these remains and allowed the developer to proceed. Other remains are still thought to lie buried behind the new houses. The state agency has more than once denied its involvement though the remains have been traced to a museum facility fifty miles away; local historians have decried the insensitive handling of the bones, but no one is willing to go on the record for fear of touching off a major conflict between city and state governments and the African-American community.44 Paradoxically, the very value now placed on human remains in Annapolis has led in this case to their being treated very much the way Mr. Mosss skull was a century ago: packed in a barrel and carted away to who knows where. The changing attitudes toward accidental exhumation in Annapolis over the past 150 years mirror national trends, but the specific events that brought those trends to public consciousness are very local. The deliberate reinterment of John Paul Jones in 1906 provided a profitable model that Annapolitans could apply to their own accidental exhumations; the ubiquity of human remains led to the recognition that the entire city could be transformed into one vast shrine, a place of pilgrimage for Marylanders and Americans in search of their colonial past. The emergence of the tourist trade as the citys major source of jobs and income provided a solid economic underpinning for the more romantic aspirations of local antiquarians and preservationists: forward-thinking businessmen supported the new, reverent attitudes toward exhumed human remains and ancient artifacts in general as a stimulus to local commerce. By the late twentieth century, however, the business community began to view the wealth of human remains in Annapolis as impeding commerce - Bone find slows work, Unearthed bones halt construction in city - rather than bolstering it, and a number of influential groups now seem ready to collude in the suppression of their discovery. Although Annapolitans have come to acknowledge the power of human remains, they disagree on how to use that power, with the result that the simplest course of action is now to abjure it by hiding or destroying any new discoveries. Were some descendant of Mr. Moss to find a skull in Annapolis today, he might well pick it up and then quietly - very quietly place it back in the ground.

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Notes
1

Old English Coins. One Hundred And Twenty-Eight Years Old. Found In Skeletons Eye Sockets, p. 1. 2 Evening Capital, 19 August 1901, p. 1. 3 Maryland Republican and State Capital Advertiser, 7 July 1877, p. 3, and 14 July 1877, p. 3. 4 Evening Capital, 22 November 1906, p. 1. 5 Workmen Unearth A Human Skeleton, Evening Capital, 14 October 1912, p. 1. 6 Digging Up Skeletons, Evening Capital, 22 November 1906, p. 1. 7 For background on the evolution of these attitudes, see G. Laderman, The Sacred Remains: American Attitudes Toward Death, 1779-1883, Yale University Press, New Haven, 1996, pp. 15-21. 8 The ordinance, which was enacted on 2 July 1855, prohibited new burials within the corporate limits of the city except in St. Annes Cemetery and the new City Cemetery, both on College Creek. This ordinance superseded one originally passed by the Mayor and Aldermen on 13 December 1853 but which was found defective (Annapolis Mayor and Aldermen, Proceedings, MSA M49-3, Box 20, Folders 29 and 38, and Box 21, Folder 20, Maryland State Archives, Annapolis, MD). 9 The property was in fact part of the City Common that her grandfather, the lawyer Thomas Bordley, had seized in a controversial legal maneuver in 1704. In the wake of the State House fire of that year. Bordley and a colleague, Thomas Larkin, filed a claim to the entire city, forcing the actual property owners to pay the two lawyers to recognize their prior titles. No one paid for them for the Common, and Bordley and Larkin were left in possession. See Anthony Lindauer, From Paths to Plats: The Development of Annapolis, 1651 to 1718, Maryland State Archives and Maryland Historical Trust, Annapolis, 1997, pp. 21-22. 10 W. K. Paynter, St. Annes Annapolis: History and Times, St. Annes Parish, Annapolis, 1980, p. 108. 11 E. H. Peake, Financial Secretary of the St. Annes Cemetery Committee, Personal Interview, 2 June 2007. The tombstone of Greenbury Lark (b. 1761) has resurfaced in a basement on Murray Avenue as the counter for a built-in wet bar (Robert L. Worden, Personal Interview, 4 June 2007). 12 Quoted in the Rev. E. Allen, Historical Notices of St. Anns Parish in Ann Arundel County, Maryland, Extending from 1649 to 1857, a Period of 208 Years, J. P. Des Forges, Baltimore, 1857, p.119.

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13

Although the vestry minutes of St. Annes survive for the period, they make no mention of the deconsecration of the old cemetery or of the consecration of the new one. The church itself, whose rebuilding was interrupted by the Revolution, was formally consecrated on 24 November 1792 (Allen, p. 98). The loss of protected status was not immediate: when a cache of bones was discovered opposite to Col. Maynadiers on the north side of Church Circle in 1826, the city authorized commissioners to remove them to the new graveyard (Annapolis Mayor, Aldermen, and Councilmen Proceedings 1821-1826, MSA M47-17, p. 226, Maryland State Archives, Annapolis, MD). 14 In the eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries some members of the Roman Catholic community were buried in the Carroll family graveyard at Homewood Farm, about three miles from the center of Annapolis; Charles Carroll of Carrollton attempted to convey the plot to the Archdiocese of Baltimore, but he died before the transfer took place. The last known burial took place in 1855. After the construction of the first St. Marys Catholic Church on Duke of Gloucester Street in 1822, some few burials took place in the churchyard. The passage of new city ordinances prohibiting burials in any plot bounded by a public street led the Redemptorist Order, which administered the parish, to open a new Catholic Cemetery on West Street outside the city limits in 1858. The remains buried in the churchyard were moved to the new cemetery though only two headstones, dating from 1853 and 1854, can be traced to churchyard burials (Robert L. Worden, Saint Marys Church in Annapolis, Maryland: A Sesquicentennial History, 18532003, St. Marys Parish, Annapolis, 2003, pp. 68-73). 15 In 1711, for example, the fee for burying in the church yard was 2 10, a sizeable sum (Allen, p. 41). 16 In a carryover of a West African tradition, slaves often buried deceased children under the floorboards of their homes; see Al Luckenbach, Anne Arundel County Archaeologist, quoted in E. B. Ferguson, History reinterred: slave child reburied in London Town ceremony, Capital, 9 May 2003, p. 1. The slaves of Judge Nicholas Brewer and probably other owners buried their dead on the old Poor House Lot off West Street; the custom was later formalized with the sale of the property to African-American families and its incorporation as Brewer Hill Cemetery in 1884. 17 Evidence of such burials exists on the eighteenth-century Poor House Lot, which was occupied by a military hospital during the Revolutionary War and a smallpox hospital from the 1860s through the 1880s; a portion of this tract later became the Annapolis National Cemetery and Brewer Hill Cemetery.

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______________________________________________________________ Other burials may have taken place around the 1840s smallpox hospital, located in what is now Munroe Court. 18 This was certainly the case of the unidentified member of the Brice family unearthed at Carvel Hall, which was adjacent to the James Brice House, the largest private home in Annapolis. The body of a child discovered in November 1980 on the site of the Red Coach Inn, originally the garden of the Hammond-Harwood House, may have been that of Townley Loockerman, who fell through the ice and drowned en route to school ca. 1810; young Townley was the grandson of Annapolis mayor Jeremiah Townley Chase (email from Karen Gosnell to the author, 28 October 2006). 19 Bob Merrill, Sid, OlKid, from Joseph Stein and Robert Russell, Take Me Along (1959). 20 My account of Joness disinterment and reburial is based on Horace Porter, The Recovery of the Body of John Paul Jones, The Century Magazine, vol. 70, October 1905, pp. 927-55. 21 The speeches are reprinted in U. S. Congress, Joint Committee on Printing, John Paul Jones Commemoration at Annapolis, 24 April 1906, Government Printing Office, Washington, DC, 1907. 22 Two Nations Honor John Paul Jones, Annapolis Evening Capital, 24 April 1906, p. 1. The population of Annapolis in the 1900 Federal Census was 8402. 23 The U. S. Congress had failed to include money for the crypt in the original appropriation for the chapel, and it took six years for the passage of the enabling legislation. Jones was finally entombed in the sarcophagus on 26 January 1913 (J. Sweetman, The U. S. Naval Academy: An Illustrated History, Naval Institute Press, Annapolis, 1979, p. 149). 24 For a description of the tradition of the translatio, see P. J. Geary, Furta Sacra: Thefts of Relics in the Central Middle Ages, Princeton University Press Princeton, 1978, pp. 47 and 143-52; and Relic, The New Catholic Encylopedia. 25 In fact, John Barry (1745-1803), who held the first naval commission and won the first naval victory in the Revolution, is usually regarded as The Father of the American Navy. But Barry was a Roman Catholic, and his body, respectably buried in St. Marys Churchyard in Philadelphia, not available for translation (John Barry, American National Biography). 26 Ceremonies Tomorrow . . . Monument to the Unknown, Evening Capital, 17 April 1911, p. 1; and President Taft is Here to Unveil Monument . . . Much Speechifying and Uniforms, Evening Capital, 18 April 1911, p. 1. 27 An Unusual Funeral, p. 1.

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28

Most notably those of Eden, described below, and Captain John Worthington (d. 1701), removed from Pendennis Mount across the Severn River from Annapolis by Dr. Gordon Claude in the early 1920s. See Paynter, pp. 106-07. 29 For an account of Edens last days in Annapolis and the search for his tomb, see Rosamund Randall Beirne, Portrait of a Colonial Governor: Robert Eden. II - His Exit, Maryland Historical Magazine, vol. 45, Winter 1950, pp. 294-311. 30 Body of Eden Now in Final Resting Place, Evening Capital, 7 June 1926, p. 1. 31 Beirne, op. cit., p. 311. The increasingly prominent part played by government officials and historical societies in reinterments echoes the phenomenon that Robert Bogdan documents in Freak Show: Presenting Human Oddities for Amusement and Profit, Chicago, University of Chicago Press, 1988, pp. 62-66 and 277-78: professionals such as doctors and scientists took over the management of freaks from non-professional entrepreneurs, secluding them and presenting them solely to increasingly privileged audiences. The management of accidental exhumations in Annapolis, with the increasing sequesteration of human remains from public view, provides an interesting parallel. 32 Body of Eden Now in Final Resting Place, p. 8. 33 This attitude is exemplified by the mortuary chapel erected by the Redemptorists at St. Marys in 1885 to house the remains of deceased members of the order, but it was closed to the public and apparently had little effect on the way Annapolitans viewed the dead. The chapel was demolished in 1946 (Worden, St. Marys Church, pp. 70-72). 34 The Recovery of the Body of John Paul Jones, p. 936. 35 Horace Porter, American National Biography. 36 Grave Of Charles Carroll Of Homewood Found Deep In Woods Near City, Evening Capital, 31 May 1961, p. 1; Suitable Resting Place Sought For Grave Of Charles Carroll, Evening Capital, 7 May, 1961; New Light Shed On Graves By Former Official In DAR, Evening Capital, 12 June 1961, p. 1; and Remains From Early Carroll Grave Reburied, Evening Capital, 13 September 1961, p. 1. 37 J. W. McWilliams, Larkin Street Cemetery, More than You Wanted to Know, email to the author, 27 April 2007. 38 J. Burke, Workers Uncover Skeleton, Evening Capital, 5 November 1981, p. 1. 39 K. Drawbaugh, Grave matter: Street crew digs up bones, Capital, 7 August 1985, p. A1; A. Foreman, Old graves found on Church Circle, 14

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______________________________________________________________ July 2000, p. A1; J. Horseman, Bone find slows work, Capital, 21 January 2004, p. B1; J. Horseman, HAF may sue to block citys sidewalk project, Capital, 22 January 2004, p. A1; and J. Horseman, City to seek OK for sidewalk project, Capital, 23 January 2004, p. B1. 40 D. M. Ware, London Town Reinterment: A Celebration of Heritage. A Childs Resting Place Discovered, Historic London Town and Gardens Newsletter, Spring and Summer 2003, p. 1; and E. B. Furgurson III, p. A1. 41 S. Woodards, Unearthed bones halt construction in city: Family says theyve seen ghost, felt presence, Capital, 24 October 2006, p. 1. 42 Unfortunately, when Carrolls grave was excavated, the staff from the Hopping Funeral Home found no identifiable remains with the exception of a single casket handle. The handle was encased in the full-size coffin provided for the translation of the bones, and the ceremonies proceeded as planned (Worden, p. 69). 43 A group of St. Annes parishioners supported by the rector, the Rev. John Price, wished to construct an underground meeting and activity room in the churchyard; the project would have disturbed those human remains still buried there. In what has been described as a conflict between old families (who by the 1990s had become concerned about their ancestors remains) and new money, the vestry narrowly defeated the proposal in 1997 (Richard E. Israel, vestryman 1995-98, personal interview, 2 June 2007). Per Munroe Court, letter of John Birchfield, president of the Presidents Hill Community Association to Jon Arason, Director, Annapolis Department of Planning and Zoning, 17 July 2005. 44 McWilliams; Worden, email to the author, 25 April 2007.

Bibliography
Allen, E., Historical Notices of St. Anns Parish in Ann Arundel County, Maryland, Extending from 1649 to 1857, A Period of 208 Years, J. P. Des Forges, Baltimore, 1857. American National Biography, ed., J. A. Garraty and M. C. Carnes, 24 vols., Oxford University Press, New York, 1999. Annapolis Mayor, Aldermen and Councilmen, Proceedings, 1821-26, MSA 47-17, Maryland State Archives, Annapolis, MD. Annapolis Mayor and Aldermen, Proceedings, MSA 49-3, Maryland State Archives, Annapolis, MD. Another Body Exhumed, Annapolis Evening Capital, 19 August 1901, p. 1. An Unusual Funeral, Annapolis Evening Capital, 16 May 1906, p. 1.

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______________________________________________________________ Beirne, R. R., Portrait of a Colonial Governor: Sir Robert Eden. II His Exit, Maryland Historical Magazine, vol. 45, 1950, pp. 294-311. Birchfield, J., letter to Jon Arason, Director, Annapolis Department of Planning and Zoning, 17 July 2005. Body of Eden Now in Final Resting Place, Annapolis Evening Capital, 7 June 1926, p. 1. Bogdan, R., Freak Show: Presenting Human Oddities for Amusement and Profit, University of Chicago Press, Chicago, 1988. Burke, J., Workers Uncover Skeleton, Annapolis Evening Capital, 5 November 1981, p. 1. Ceremonies Tomorrow . . . Monument to the Unknown, Annapolis Evening Capital, 17 April 1911, p. 1. Digging Up Skeletons, Annapolis Evening Capital, 22 November 1906, p. 1. Drawbaugh, K., Grave matter: Street crew digs up bones, Annapolis Capital, 7 August 1985, p. 1. Foreman, A., Old graves found on Church Circle, Annapolis Capital, 14 July 2000, p. 1. Geary, P. J., Furta Sacra: Thefts of Relics in the Central Middle Ages, Princeton University Press, Princeton, 1978. Gosnell, K., email to the author, 28 October 2006. Grave Of Charles Carroll Of Homewood Found Deep In Woods Near City, Annapolis Evening Capital, 31 May 1961, p. 1. Horseman, J., Bone find slows work, Annapolis Capital, 21 January 2004, p. B1. City to seek OK for sidewalk project. Annapolis Capital, 23 January 2004, p. B1. HAF may sue to block citys sidewalk project. Annapolis Capital, 22 January 2004, p. A1. Israel, R. E., personal interview, 2 June 2007. Lindauer, A., From Paths to Plats: The Development of Annapolis, 1651 to 1718, Annapolis, Maryland State Archives and Maryland Historical Trust, 1997. Marion, H., John Paul Jones Last Cruise and Final Resting Place, The United States Naval Academy, George Howard, Washington, DC, 1906, Maryland Republican and State Capital Advertiser, 7 July 1877, p. 3, and 14 July 1877, p. 3. McWilliams, J. W., email to author, 27 April 2007. New Catholic Encyclopedia, prepared by an editorial staff at the Catholic University of America, 19 vols., McGraw Hill, New York, 1967.

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______________________________________________________________ New Light Shed On Graves By Former Official In DAR. Annapolis Evening Capital, 12 June 1961, p. 1. Old English Coins. One Hundred And Twenty-Eight Years Old. Found in Skeletons Eye Sockets, Annapolis Evening Capital, 20 August 1901, p. 1. Paynter, W. K., St. Annes Annapolis: History and Times, St. Annes Parish, Annapolis, 1980. Peake, E. H., personal interview, 2 June 2007. Porter, H., The Recovery of the Body of John Paul Jones, The Century Magazine, vol. 70, October 1905, pp. 927-55. President Taft is Here to Unveil Monument . . . Much Speechifying and Uniforms, Annapolis Evening Capital, 18 April 1911, p. 1. Remains From Early Carroll Grave Reburied, Annapolis Evening Capital, 13 September 1961, p. 1. Suitable Resting Place Sought For Grave Of Charles Carroll, Annapolis Evening Capital, 12 June 1961, p. 1. Sweetman, J., The Naval Academy: An Illustrated History, Naval Institute Press, Annapolis, 1979. U. S. Congress, Joint Committee on Printing, John Paul Jones Commemoration at Annapolis, 24 April 1906, Government Printing Office, Washington, DC, 1907. Ware, D. M., London Town Reinterment: A Celebration of Heritage. A Childs Resting Place Discovered, Historic London Town and Garden Newsletter, Spring and Summer 2003, p. 1. Woodards, S., Unearthed bones halt construction in city; Family says theyve seen ghost, felt presence, Annapolis Capital, 24 October 2006, p. A1. Worden, R. L., Saint Marys Church in Annapolis, Maryland: A Sesquicentennial History, 1853-2003, St. Marys Parish, Annapolis, 2003. Email to the author, 25 April 2007. Workmen Unearth A Human Skeleton, Annapolis Evening Capital, 14 October 1912, p. 1. Michael P. Parker is a Professor of English at the United States Naval Academy. With Professor Timothy Raylor of Carleton College, he is currently working on an edition of the poetry of Edmund Waller for Oxford University Press.

The Politics of Death: Monarchy and Mortality in Late Medieval England, 1399-1413. Ciara - Marie Shevlin
Abstract This essay will consider the social, cultural and political ramifications of the untimely or unexpected death of a monarch. Recent history has shown that the death of a member of royalty can cause significant social action. This paper will focus primarily on the mysterious death/murder of Richard II and how such an event had an equal, if not greater, effect upon the royal subjects of the late medieval period. The first section entitled The Kings Body provides an introduction to the philosophic position of the Kings material and symbolic body as a basis for the further investigation of the political of Remembrance, investigates the problems that arise when dealing with historiographical accounts of royal deaths. Rather than attempting to present a definitive narrative this essay is concerned with defending the value of variety as a means of accessing the diversity of cultural articulations of grief. The Unquiet Dead discusses the process where-by the dead monarch came to haunt the reign of his usurper Henry IV. By analysing conspiratorial claims and considering current critical theory about the birth of conspiracy I will propose that the unexpected death of the king created complex, complicated and moreover extremely sophisticated responses.

Keywords Regicide, Royal Burial, Conspiracy, Unquiet Dead, Body, Materiality of Mortality.

1.

Introduction This essay will explore the social, political and cultural impact of a royal death and argue that such an event creates a wide ranging and complex array of responses. With particular reference to the mysterious death/murder of Richard II, it will engage specifically with current theoretical questions surrounding the effects and consequences of death for both the deceased and the living. The essay will initially provide a brief introduction to the medieval political theology that surrounded the issue of kingship. In particular this section will focus on the political symbolism of the kings body as a basis for the further investigation of the materiality of the royal body. Furthermore, by analysing the material elements of Richard IIs initial burial at Langley

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______________________________________________________________ Abbey it will be possible to view the political, social and cultural implications of the performative aspects of burial. It will also provide an impetus for exploring the issue of, what I will refer to as the materiality of mortality.1 By relocating the question of the materiality of mortality to the reburial of Richard II at Westminster Abbey, a sustainable framework for the investigation of responses to royal death in the medieval period will be created. The second section of the essay entitled The Anxiety of Remembrance will analyse the complexity of cultural responses to royal death as evidenced by historiographical accounts. By exploring some of the wide range of sources relating to Richards death, from near-contemporary to modern, it will be possible to expose how contradictory and conflicting historiographies reveal more about the cultural anxieties surrounding an event than the facts of the occurrence itself. Finally the last part of the essay will consider the concept of The Unquiet Dead. By analysing how Richard II managed to effectively haunt the reign of Henry IV it will be possible to sustain the proposition that the mystery surrounding unexpected death and the dead body both lead to suspicion and fear. In a bid to emphasise the complexity of medieval responses to death, this essay will conclude with the argument that the royal corpse is a potent point of origin for the germination of rumour and the creation of conspiracy theories. 2. The Kings Body In order to explain how a society can become ruptured by the death of a monarch it is vital to explore medieval scholastic philosophy on the subject of the monarchy. Myers contends from the twelfth century, kingship became the object of much concentrated study in its own right and the organic theory of kingship, which, promoted a body-as-state model, was developed. 2 John of Salisburys Policraticus utilises Plutarch to suggest an analogy between society and the body. He asserts the position of the head [] is occupied, however, by a ruler.3 Similarly literary examples that incorporate this concept into their imagery re-affirm the cultural presence of this belief. The poem contained in Oxford, Bodleian Library, Digby 102 and entitled The Description of Mans Limbs illustrates the use of the body politic model The heued, y likne to a kyng/For he is lord souereyn of al. 4 By using this bodily metaphor the king is firmly situated as the head both symbolically and literally. Therefore a serious and fatal problem arises for the members of the society or body when the head is destroyed or displaced in an unnatural fashion. Both examples seem to illuminate a sense of foreboding as any danger directed at the head constituted a threat of destabilisation for society. Medieval political theorists also found this imagery fruitful for describing society. Writing in the late fourteenth/early fifteenth century the French writer Christine de Pizan suggested [] just as the human body is not whole, but defective and deformed when it lacks any of its members, so

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______________________________________________________________ the body politic cannot be whole, nor healthy if all the estates of which we speak are not well joined and united together.5 Furthermore the precipitation of anxiety, disruption and division of the members of a society emerged directly from the disposition and death of a ruler because a blow to the head [] is carried back to all the members.6 Therefore the philosophical context of Richard IIs removal immediately promotes the idea that the unnatural destruction of the head of a body of people has ramifications equal to that of the decapitation of the head from the body. The events that followed Richard IIs mysterious death highlight the potent issues that remained concerning the treatment of the royal body as Henry IV denied Richard the elaborate arrangements7 that had been made for the funeral. In April 1399 Richard created a will specifying his wishes for his burial at Westminster Abbey, related here by Mark Duffy: In the event of his death outside London the coffin was to proceed to Westminster at a snails pace of fourteen to sixteen mile a day, accompanied by twenty four torchbearers. The exequies were to be major et principalior et honorificentior, and include four days of masses, Richard was to be buried wearing white satin robes with the regalia of the crown, sceptre and a suitably precious ring.8 These instructions were extremely specific and seem to betray what Saul describes as Richards preoccupation with his self-image.9 In fact, the commissioning of a tomb during his own life time, the detailed funeral instructions and the large number of executors were all intended to leave nothing to chance.10 By giving instructions as to how the body should be treated the creator of a will intends to leave a final symbolic mark of influence over the living world. However, this intention was rendered problematical, as Adam of Usk wryly observed how many thousand marks [Richard] had spent on burial places of vainglory [] Fortune ordered it otherwise.11 Despite the expense and detail of Richards plans he was initially denied the dramatic burial he desired and was instead given a different role. Henry IV instead organised a succession of performative actions that were intended to serve his own political agenda. Another version of the Middle English prose Brut contained in Aberystwyth, National Library of Wales MS 21608 records the period succeeding Richards death thus12: And when Kynge Henry wiste verili that he wasse dede, he lete close hym and seere hym in lynne clothe, all saue the visage, and that wass lefte open so that all men might see and knowe his person from the oer.13

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______________________________________________________________ A number of ritualistic practices are proposed in this narrative. Firstly Richard is said to have been wrapped in cloth specifically described as lynne or linen. Although fine linen was imported into northern Europe14 during this period and was therefore deemed as quite a luxurious item, its material qualities did not resemble the decedent luxury of the white satin that Richard had requested in his will. Linen fabric is made from fibres of the flax plant [] these fibres maintain a crispness after weaving so that linen cloth creases into distinctive points and retains wrinkles.15 As Richard had been particularly aware of his self image during his lifetime and specified the use of satin in his will, the shroud of linen indicates that Henry IV would defy even the dead king in a bid to undermine any agency or power that Richard may have had. 16 Secondly Richards request to be moved slowly to London accompanied by torchbearers indicates a wish for respectful spectacle. Henry did provide torchbearers to accompany the procession; in fact, he ensured that it was accompanied by thirty citizens dressed in white and one hundred torch bearers.17 The quantity is more than five times the number stipulated in his will and the reason for this could have been Henrys desire to create a dramatic and definitive display of the dead king. He was literally illuminating the fact that that Richard II was dead. A number of chroniclers record Richards face was left uncovered on the procession to London. Walsingham states that the body was shown by which he could be recognized, namely from the base of his forehead down to his throat.18 This was probably done so that any person viewing the body on its procession would recognise that Richard II was unquestionably dead. Furthermore this ceremony was conducted so that witnesses would knowe his person from all oer19 and realise that the burial was not a trick as rumours of Richards escape from Pontefract had begun to circulate. One chronicle account suggests letters came to certyn frendes of Kyng Richard as ey hadde be sende fro himself, and seide at he was alive.20 When the royal corpse reached London it arrived at the house in the dead of night21 and the actual interment was a simple affair, devoid of pomp, and the only dignitaries in attendance were the bishop of Lichfield [] the abbots of Waltham and St. Albans.22 In fact as Duffy reports it was even conducted without the customary dinner for attendees.23 Henry contradicted Richards commands for a theatrical burial and instead produced a propaganda performance in an attempt to reinforce his Lancastrian dominance. It was also an effort to symbolically strip power from the regal image, which Richard had carefully attempted to construct of himself, by denying the dead king a final resting place amongst his predecessors.

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______________________________________________________________ 3. The Anxiety of Remembrance Various accounts of how Richard II actually died have been consistently rewritten. This section of the paper will therefore deal with a wide range of historiographical sources from Capgraves Chronicle of England24 to Nigel Sauls Richard II. The death of a monarch brings forth forms of cultural anxiety that are mediated through the construction of histories. 25 As Paul Strohm asserts historiography effectively occupies and colonizes the place of recollection, deciding for itself the pasts undecidabilities.26 Therefore with no temporal access to the moment of Richards death an attempt to establish the true version of events surrounding the monarchs final moments through a method of balancing, guessing or mediating between accounts would neglect the cultural anxiety articulated by his death. Instead this section will view the written narratives concerning the incident as individual artefacts that must be located within specific contexts and viewed as responses to the death of a monarch. By studying the histories of this particular royal death in relation to the political and cultural contexts that surrounded it this section aims to suggest that the death of a monarch disrupts and destabilises the traditional symbolisms associated with royalty. Furthermore when an untimely royal death occurs, which is then subsequently viewed or presented as suspicious, ruptures occur for the society that cause diverse responses from communal acts of grief to the construction of conspiracy theories and counter claims. Therefore it is possible to suggest that it would prove extremely useful to carefully consider why such varied accounts exist rather than trying to find a true version. Richard II was replaced as king by Henry IV in 1399 after finally conceding to the usurpers defamatory and forceful campaign. Capgrave illustrates the official challenge in parliament as occurring thus: [] Henry duke of Lancastair ros in the Parlement, and stood up, that men myte se him, bledded him with the merk of the Crosse, and saide swech wordes : In Dei Nomine, Amen. I, Henry Lancastir, challenge the Crown, with al the membris that long thereto, as for descensus of the real blod of Kyng Herry, be which rite God hath graunted me for to entir with help of my kynred.27 It is made apparent here that that Henry pushed claims of blood rights to the throne, hence the real blod allusion. This was done through a vague and questionable link to Edmund Crouchback. Gill suggests that Henry argued the line of descent should have followed from Edmund Crouchback, who had according to certain rumours, had actually been older than Edward I, but

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______________________________________________________________ had been pushed aside in favour of the latter owing to some bodily or mental infirmity.28 However, an interesting example of the complexities of studying such historiographical sources lies in the narrative proposed by Hutchinson in The Hollow Crown. Hutchinson maintains that the Lancastrian story carefully omitted one significant incident.29 Here the historian refers to an account in the Chronique de la Traison et Mort de Richard II30 which he documents as providing a description of the outburst of one Thomas Merke who raised serious doubts to the legitimacy of Henrys claims he has done still worse, he has seated himself on the throne, were no Lord ought to sit other than the lawfully crowned King of England.31 Here it is possible to see the problems that arise when considering historiographical accounts. Some information will be omitted, edited or elaborated upon depending on the context within which the historiographer is writing. The problem that arises from the multiple accounts of one event is highlighted by Ruth Morse who argues that we cannot expect, even when equipped with the most sophisticated rhetorical sensitivities to able [] to reveal a substratum of decodable facts.32 Therefore, the sheer range of conflicting accounts of Richard IIs death instantly produces itself as particularly problematic. Strohm explains: Moreover, this problem presents itself with particular starkness in the case of Richard IIs death, when the two available near-contemporary explanations were such polar opposites as practically exclude the possibility of a sensible meaning.33 From the near-contemporary chronicles to modern history books Richard IIs death is treated and explained in very different ways. The Lancastrian and Yorkist, the English and French, the sympathetic and incredulous, writers of history have differing opinions and therefore different accounts of how and why Richard died. By comparing and contrasting some of the accounts proposed since the event, it is possible to suggest that the mysterious royal death causes division amongst historiographers due to the social significance and symbolic impact that it promulgates. This method of analysis provides support for the argument that such histories are actually constructions that reflect the social, cultural and political contexts of the time they are written rather than objective and true descriptions of the event in question. Capgraves report on the death of Richard II is brief and succinct. He describes how following the beheading of the Earl of Huntingdon Richard II the king died This cam to Kyng Richardis ere in the castel of Pounfreit, and, as sum men sey, he peyned himself, and deyed for hunger. Summe other seide that he was kept fro mete and drink whil a knyte rode to London and cam ageyn.34 These lines are short; however, they display the problem in

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______________________________________________________________ reporting that which has variant explanations. In the first instance the report provides the reader with the traditional Lancastrian suggestion that Richard II starved himself to death. Furthermore, the presence of the second sentence immediately undermines the agency of the first. It is possible to suggest that here Capgrave appears to be simply amalgamating two different versions of Richards death. Yet by crystallising two opposing explanations in two brief sentences Capgrave is illuminating the division, disruption and confusion that the mysterious death of a monarch inflicts. It exhibits a tension that could be explained by the political context within which this historiographer was writing. Strohm explains that the Chronicle of England was written in the troubled last years of Henry VIs reign and abruptly concluded shortly before Capgraves death with a dedication to the new Yorkist monarch Edward IV.35 Therefore as Capgrave appears to be balancing one set of claims against another36 Lancastrian/Yorkist politics can be seen to be influencing the account of Richards death. This highlights the way in which historians constructed accounts of the death of Richard to suit their own or what they felt were societys contemporary needs. Many modern historiographers also treat Richards death with a degree of uncertainty. According to Hutchinson the truth may never be known37 and due to the vast quantity of opposing, differing and contradictory accounts it seems apparent that the advantage lies in considering the narratives as examples that exhibit how the mortal monarch is imagined. These medieval and modern historiographers, of whom there are many more, have consistently produced slight variations and adaptations of the explanation of his death. The cultural and political places for these multiple accounts are translated into the actions and beliefs of the society in which they are present. They are born from and simultaneously feed the imaginations of the people that come into contact with them. They promote a reciprocity within which rumours are both bred by and constitute historiography. Strohm contends the imagination is not just a store-house of inert forms, but renders images or phantasms which can be configured or reconfigured to represent the possible.38 This analysis of the suggested practices of a range of people, as provided by these chroniclers and historians, suggests that the kinds of rumour, gossip, rituals and conspiracies that have characterised the periods succeeding Richards reign are both symptomatic and a product of cultural anxiety. These accounts support the thesis that the untimely death of a monarch promulgates complex reactions from both subjects and authoritarian institutions. Furthermore, various examples have been given that illuminate the possible ways in which the mortal monarch was imagined in the medieval period and since.

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______________________________________________________________ 4. The Unquiet Dead As evident from the continued Ricardian allegiances that evidenced themselves in impersonations and reported sightings of the monarch alongside the argument that the former king was starved to death by his gaolers39, Richard II effectively haunted the reign of Henry IV. Strohm asserts that a Kings exclusion from proper burial in his own tomb must inevitably reverberate deeply with the symbolic, in ways that rebound the order of things.40 As Richards body was displaced from it predestined place of privilege in Westminster Abbey the impact of the usurpation and the disturbance of dynastic succession was significantly highlighted. Furthermore, because every symbolically unincorporated death gives us a ghost who walks the earth in beauty, buffoonery, or terror41 it is unsurprising that rumours and conspiracy theories circulated. Featherstone contends that [] we may regard conspiratorial thinking as a pathological effect of social recognition, a paranoid form of non-knowledge caused by the political ideologies.42 For those with no access to the visual knowledge that Richard II was dead a culture of suspicion arose that created the groundwork for a period ripe for rumour. Furthermore this form of collective resistance to authoritative narratives is born from a desire to have a definitive answer to the unexplained and could be characterised by the optimistic adage the truth is out there from the cult television programme the X-Files. Although conspiracy thinking may [] be closely linked with paranoia43 it is important not to refuse, resist or dismiss the phenomenon. On the contrary conspiracy narratives, those fantastic travellers tales through the mind, give us glimpses of the unmentionable insight as to how the mind thinks, processes the external, how a person narrates.44 It is through the multiple and duplicitous character of conspiracy narratives that the dominant discourses of history may be deconstructed. Henry IV issued a proclamation that stated clearly that Richard was dead and buried due to the circulation of rumours that he had escaped. Additionally the significance of the rumours may ultimately be measured in the fact that the council [] sent messages to every county, seeking the punishments of persons who had proclaimed the king alive.45 The crown took these definitive measures for a reason and this evidence suggests that the rumours concerning Richards non-death were substantial enough to justify such actions. The Chronica Majora of Thomas Walsingham 1376-1422 suggests that the mother of Robert de Vere [] was pressing very many people to think that King Richard was alive, and also there were daily reports from Scotland that King Richard was established there46 and continues to argue that the mistaken belief was strengthened by the fabrications of a man called [William] Serle.47 Promulgators of the rumours, such as William Serle and Maud de Vere, utilised the symbols of Richards reign to do so in a bid to accumulate power or for their own financial gain. Strohm states:

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______________________________________________________________ Serle had fled with the kings private seal, and he affixed it to a flood of counterfeit letters to Richards former intimates; the countess [de Vere] engaged in artful deceits and forgeries of her own, including the large scale fabrication and distribution of Ricardian badges of the white hart.48 However just because there were those dedicated to fuelling the rumour mill for personal gain the question still remains as to why it was accepted on such a large scale. Although Strohm argues that the reason can be found in relation to societys dissatisfaction at the deterioration - in its material circumstances during the early years of Henrys rule49, I would argue that these rumours were embraced as a complex response to the unexpected death of a king and destabilisation of the organic model of monarchy. Division and contradiction between Lancastrian and Yorkist accounts of the event lead to mystery and suspicion. The result being that the conspiracy theories that surrounded the mysterious death of Richard II were continuously spread, seized and nurtured providing evidence of significant social anxiety. The death of Richard II provoked multiple and multilayered responses. This multiplicity provoked the desire for definitive explanation or a form of totalising narrative. As Boym argues the terms of conspiracy and of narrative overlap: in both cases one speaks about plots and plotting [] we might all be complicit in the desire for a plot, in what Roland Barthes called The passion of making sense.50 Similarities can be seen in recent history as the unnatural deaths of royalty have thrown societies into mass and very public grief. The death of Princess Grace of Monaco in 1982 caused rumours of conspiracy concerning the events immediately leading to her fatal car accident. The untimely death of Princess Diana of Wales created widespread conspiracy theories that are still gaining substantial support a decade after the infamous event. The impact of the rumours and speculation led to a public inquiry by Lord Stevens who stated that the sole purpose was to assess whether there is any credible evidence to support an allegation of conspiracy to murder.51 These examples highlight how the death of a member of royalty disrupts notions of dynasty and order leading to the need for narrative explanations. In the context of Late Medieval England the disruption and confusion caused by the mysterious death of the king would have had a similar and possibly greater effect upon society. Ultimately, Richards body underwent a second burial, being returned to Westminster Abbey thirteen years later, under the instruction of Henry V. According to the anonymous chronicler of Aberystwyth, National Library of Wales MS 21608, it was anon e firste yere off his regne, for e grete and tender loue that he hadde to Kynge Richard, he translated his body fro Langley vnto Westmyster.52 However Strohm contends:

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______________________________________________________________ Henry Vs decision to effect this return is here treated not as an isolated act of piety but as a positive political stratagem a form of symbolic struggle that addressed [though it could not settle] continuing problems of Lancastrian legitimation.53 The political stratagems for reburying Richard were practical as well as symbolic.54 By parading the body in a second more elaborate procession Henry could underscore the fact that Richard was dead in a bid to silence conspiracy theorists and disbelievers. The grand scale observed throughout may be measured in the thousand marks distributed for Richards soul along the route of the cortege bearing his bones.55 Henry V also intermingled his fathers and Richards funeral trappings, the following month Henry V requested that banners and qytons (shields) recently commissioned for his fathers first anniversary hearse should be used for Richards anniversary.56 Therefore having ended Richards corpses awkward odyssey [] Henry V now asserted Richards benign sponsorship of his own career,57 He appropriated Richard IIs body in a bid to suggest a quasi-paternal relationship with the deposed king which he further hoped would legitimise his own right to reign. 5. Conclusion The politics that surround the death of a monarch are complicated and complex. The unnatural and untimely death of a member of royalty creates a dramatic crisis in relation to rules of natural succession and social order. Historians attempt to construct a definitive narrative as to the actual turn of events which leads to contradictory accounts and divergent discourses such as Capgraves ultra-equivocal record of Richards death. The presence of the unknown and the clash of variant explanations both support and create mystery. Politically mystery carries the potential for rumour and gossip that can circulate powerful propaganda. This is exhibited by the financial gains made by Maud de Vere and William Serle subsequent to their conspiracy mongering. The conspiracies themselves are constituted by and constitutive of public reception. As Boym asserts Conspiracy theories flourish at a time of crisis, of political and social change.58 The cultural anxiety created by the mutilation of the corporeal model of society, with the king as head, leads to furtive speculation and the desire for definitive answers. Ultimately the material body of the king has a separate politic. Verdery argues dead bodies have an additional advantage as symbols: they evoke awe, uncertainty, and fear associated with cosmic concerns, such as the meaning of life and death.59 Richards body was paraded, denied its rightful place after death, re-paraded and reburied thus indicating the significance of its authority. Powerful due the meaning inscribed to it and the agency found in its potent

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______________________________________________________________ self representation the royal body and its treatment become central to the focus of the politics of death.

Notes
1

This aspect of my work has been informed by recent anthropological studies in material culture by theorists such as Alfred Gell and Christopher Tilley. For an introduction to the concepts surrounding the materiality of objects see C. Tilley, Objectification, in Handbook of Material Culture, ed. C. Tilley, Sage, London, 2005, pp. 60-74. For a detailed investigation of the power of images see A. Gell, Art and Agency: An Anthropological Theory, Clarendon, Oxford, 1998. 2 H. Myers, Medieval Kingship, Nelson-Hall, Chicago, 1982, pp.245-46. 3 J. of Salisbury, Policraticus of the Frivolities of Courtiers and the Footprints of Philosophers, in C. Nederman, ed., Medieval Political Therory: A Reader: The Quest for the Body Politic 100-1400, Routledge, London, 1993, p. 38. 4 Anon., The Description of Mans Limbs, Oxford, Bodleian Library, Digby 102, Fols., 114-115r. 5 C. de Pizan, The Book of the Body Politic, in C. Nederman, ed., Medieval Political Therory: A Reader: The Quest for the Body Politic 100-1400, Routledge, London, 1993, p. 231. 6 J. of Salisbury, op. cit., p. 49. 7 N. Saul, Richard II, Yale University Press, New York and New Haven, 1997, p. 428. 8 M. Duffy, Royal Tombs of Medieval England, Tempus, Gloucestershire, 2003, p. 167. 9 N. Saul, op. cit., p. 450. 10 M. Duffy, op. cit., p. 168. 11 N. Saul, op. cit., p.428. 12 For a full description see L. Matheson, The Prose Brut: The Development of a Middle English Chronicle, Medieval & Renaissance Texts & Studies, Tempe, Arizona:, 1998, pp. 290-93. 13 W. Marx, ed., Abystwyth, National Library of Wales MS 21608, An English Chronicle 1377-1461: A New Edition, The Boydell Press, Woodbridge, 2003, p. 28. 14 J. Snyder, Cloth from the Promised Land: Appropriated Islamic Tiraz in Twelfth Century French Sculpture, in Medieval Fabrications: Dress

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______________________________________________________________ Textiles, Cloth Work and Other Cultural Imaginings, ed. J. Burns, Palgrave MacMillian, New York, 2004, p. 163. 15 Ibid., p. 151. 16 For a detailed exploration of the relationship between human biographies and objects see J. Hoskins, Agency, Biography and Objects, in Handbook of Material Culture, ed. C. Tilley, Sage, London, 2005, pp. 74-85. 17 M. Duffy, op. cit., p. 168. 18 N. Saul, op. cit., p. 426. 19 W. Marx, op. cit., p. 28. 20 Ibid., p. 30. 21 N. Saul, op. cit., p. 428. 22 Ibid. 23 M. Duffy, op. cit., p. 168. 24 J. Capgrave, Chronicle of England, ed. Rev. Francis Charles Hingeston, Longman, Brown, Greens, Roberts, London, 1858. 25 For an in-depth discussion of the benefits of analysing history in this way see A. Barnard, History and Theory in Anthropology, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, 2000, pp. 47-61. 26 P. Strohm, Theory and the Pre-modern Text, University of Minnesota Press, London and Minneapolis, 2000, p.99. 27 J. Capgrave, op cit., p. 273. 28 P. Gill, Politics and Propeganda in Fifteenth Century England: The Political Writings of Sir John Fortescue, Speculum, Vol. 46, No. 2, 1971, p. 335. 29 H. Hutchinson, The Hollow Crown: A Life of Richard II, Eyre and Spottiswoode, London, 1961, p. 230. 30 B. William, ed., The Chronique de la Traison et Mort de Richard, English Historical Society, London, 1846. 31 H. Hutchinson, op cit., p. 261. 32 R. Morse, Telling the Truth with Authority: From Richard II to Richard II, Common Knowledge, Vol. 4, No. 1, 1995, p. 128. 33 P. Strohm, op. cit., p.101. 34 J. Capgrave, op. cit., p. 276. 35 P. Strohm, op. cit., p. 104. 36 Ibid., p. 101. 37 H. Hutcinson, op. cit., p. 235. 38 P. Strohm, Englands Empty Throne: Usurpation and the Language of Legitimation 1399-1422, Yale University Press, New Haven and London, 1998, p. 27. 39 N. Saul, op. cit., p. 426.

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______________________________________________________________
40

P. Strohm, The Trouble with Richard: The Reburial of Richard II and the Lancastrian Symbolic Strategy, Speculum, Vol. 71, No. 1, 1996, p. 89. 41 P. Strohm, op. cit., 1996, p. 89. 42 M. Featherstone, The Obcsure Politics of Conspiracy Theory, in The Age of Anxiety: Conspiracy and the Human Sciences, ed. J. Parish and M. Parker, Blackwell, Oxford, 2001, p. 31. 43 J. Skinner, Taking Conspiracy Seriously: Fantastic Narratives and Mr Grey the Pan Afrikist on Monserrat, The Age of Anxiety: Conspiracy and the Human Sciences, ed. J. Parish and M. Parker, Blackwell, Oxford, 2001, p. 95. 44 Ibid., p. 95. 45 P. Strohm, op. cit., 1996, p. 94. 46 T. Walsingham, The Chronica Majora of Thomas Walsingham: 13761422, trans. D. Preest, The Boydell Press, Woodbridge, 2005, p. 1404. 47 Ibid.,, p. 1404. 48 P. Strohm, op. cit., 1996, p. 95. 49 Ibid. 50 S. Boym, Conspiracy Theories and Literary Ethics: Umberto Eco, Danilo Kis and the Protocils of Zion, Comparative Literature, Vol. 51, No. 2, 1999, p. 97. 51 L. Stevens, The Operation Pagent Enquiry into the Allegation of Conspiracy to Murder 2006, DirectGov Online, retrieved 22 May 2007, <http://www.direct.gov.uk/en/Nl1/Newsroom/DG_065122>. 52 W. Marx, op. cit., p. 42. 53 P. Strohm, op. cit., 1996, p. 90. 54 For a discussion of the politics of reburial see K. Verdery, The Political Lives of Dead Bodies: Reburial and Postcolonialist Change, Columbia University Press, New York, 1999. 55 P. Strohm, op. cit., 1996, p. 102. 56 M. Duffy, op. cit., p. 170. 57 P. Strohm, op. cit., 1996, p. 104. 58 S. Boym, op cit., p. 98. 59 K. Verdey, The Political Lives of Dead Bodies: Reburial and PostColonialist Change, Columbia University Press, New York, 1999, p. 31.

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Bibliography
1. Primary Sources Aberystwyth, National Library of Wales MS 21608, An English Chronicle 1377-1461 A New Edition, ed., W. Marx, The Boydell Press, Woodbridge, 2003. Capgrave, J., Chronicle of England, ed. Rev. Francis Charles Hingeston, Longman, Brown, Green, Longmans and Roberts, London, 1858. Chronique de la Traison et Mort de Richard II, ed. B. William, English Historical Society, London, 1846. MS Rawlison B 171 Bodleian Library, The Brut or The Chronicles of England, ed. F. Brie, 2nd Edition, Vols. 1-2, Oxford University Press, London, New York and Toronto, 2000. Pizan, C. de., The Book of the Body Politic, trans. K. Forhan, Medieval Political Theory A Reader: The Quest for the Body Politic, 100-1400, ed. C. Nederman and K. Langdon Forhan, Routledge, London and New York, 1993. Salisbury, John of., Policaraticus: Of the Frivolities of Courtiers and the Footprints of Philosophers, trans. C. Nederman, Medieval Political Theory A Reader: The Quest for the Body Politic, 100-1400, ed. C. Nederman and K. Langdon Forhan, Routledge, London and New York, 1993. Walsingham, T., The Chronica Majora of Thomas Walsingham, 1376-1422, trans. D. Preest, The Boydell Press, Woodbridge, 2005. 2. Manuscripts Oxford, Bodleian Library, Digby 102. 3. Secondary Sources Barnard, A., History and Theory in Anthropology, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, 2000. Boym, S., Conspiracy Theories and Literary Ethics: Umberto Eco, Danilo Kis and The Protocols of Zion, Comparative Literature Vol. 51, No. 2, 1999, pp. 97-122. Duffy, M., Royal Tombs of Medieval England, Tempus, Gloucestershire, 2003.

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______________________________________________________________ Featherstone, M., The Obscure Politics of Conspiracy Theory, The Age of Anxiety: Conspiracy Theory and the Human Sciences, ed. J. Parish and M. Parker, Blackwell, Oxford, 2001. Gell, A., Art and Agency: An Anthropological Theory, Clarendon, Oxford, 1998. Gill, P., Politics and Propaganda in Fifteenth Century England: The Polemical Writings of Sir John Fortescue, Speculum Vol. 46, No. 2, 1971, pp. 333-347. Hoskins, J., Agency, Biography and Objects, Handbook of Material Culture, ed. C. Tilley, Sage, London, 2005. Hutchinson, H., The Hollow Crown: A Life of Richard II, Eyre and Spottiswoode, London, 1961. Matheson, L., The Prose Brut: The Development of a Middle English Chronicle, Medieval & Renaissance Texts & Studies, Tempe, Arizona, 1998. Myers, H., Medieval Kingship, Nelson-Hall, Chicago, 1982. Morse, R., Telling the Truth with Authority: From Richard II to Richard II, Common Knowledge, Vol. 4, No. 1, 1995. Saul, N., Richard II, Yale University Press, New Haven and London, 1997. Skinner, J., Taking Conspiracy Seriously: Fantastic Narratives and Mr Grey the Pan Afrikist on Montserrat, The Age of Anxiety: Conspiracy Theory and the Human Sciences, ed. J. Parish and M. Parker, Blackwell, Oxford, 2001. Snyder, J., Cloth from the Promised Land: Appropriated Islamic Tiraz in Twelfth Century French Sculpture, Medieval Fabrications: Dress Textiles, Cloth Work, and Other Cultural Imaginings, ed. J. Burns, Palgrave MacMillan, New York, 2004. Strohm, P., Englands Empty Throne: Usurpation and the Language of Legitimation 1399-1422, Yale University Press, New Haven and London, 1998. Theory and the Premodern Text, University of Minnesota Press, London and Minneapolis, 2000. The Trouble with Richard: The Reburial of Richard II and the Lancastrian Symbolic Strategy, Speculum Vol. 71, No. 1, 1996, pp. 87111. Theilmann, J., Political Canonisation and Political Symbolism in Medieval England, The Journal of British Studies, Vol. 29, No.3, 1990, pp. 241266. Tilley, C., Objectification, Handbook of Material Culture, ed. C. Tilley, Sage, London, 2005.

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______________________________________________________________ Verdery, K., The Political Lives of Dead Bodies: Reburial and PostColonialist Change, Columbia University Press, New York, 1999. 4. Internet Resources Stevens, L., The Operation Pagent inquiry Report into the Allegation of Conspiracy to Murder 2006, DirectGov Online, retrieved 22 May 2007, <http://www.direct.gov.uk/en/Nl1/Newsroom/DG_065122>. Ciara-Marie Shevlin has completed a BA in English & Drama and MA in Medieval Studies at Queens University Belfast.

PART III SUFFERING AND BEREAVMENT

Rituals and Bereavement

Maniat Laments as Traditional Narratives: From the Performed to the Monumentalised Korina Giaxoglou
Abstract Lamenting in its contextual pervasiveness and multi-functionality has been an integral part of Maniat verbal art tradition (Southern Greece). In this paper, I will focus on the way Maniat laments have become accommodated in a manuscript folklore collection as traditional narratives, i.e. as texts shaped in the form of selective representations of local culture. The paper will review the way the compiler shapes traditional texts through practices of verbal monumentalisation in writing, framing thus lament fragments as original lament performances which are attributed to an identifiable lamenter. This temporal and contextual framing will be challenged here and the dynamic character of lament verbal art across different kinds of contexts will be emphasised, making use of the notion of entextualisation.

Keywords Maniat Lament, Traditional Narrative, Entextualisation, Monumentalisation, Metadiscursive Practices, Meta-text.

1.

Introduction. In this paper I will focus on the par excellence genre of mourning, the lament, a verbal art sung or spoken for centuries across the world in occasion-specific stylised performances and aimed at once at the (co-) expression or display of grief as well as at the expression or display of local values and attitudes towards life and death. What I will talk about today makes part of my thesis under completion where I am looking at different forms and norms of the lament genre as developed in Inner Mani, the arid land situated at the southern end of the Pelopponnese in Greece. An area rich in history, Mani had been organised by early 17th century into armed patriarchal clans, fighting over land and honour according to the local code of revenge. In this bloodshedded context, laments were pivotal as social spaces of mourning and contestation as well as ways of creating and preserving an oral narrative tradition. Compared to the rest of Greece, Maniat laments differ not only in terms of content, which shies away from the lyrical towards a sensational recounting

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______________________________________________________________ of revenge killings, but also in terms of form employing the more narrative 8syllable metre instead of the more widespread in Greece 15-syllable. 2. The Present Approach. The starting point for the study of Maniat laments has been an unpublished and semi-edited collection found in the unbound manuscript sheets, recovered along with the personal possessions and documents of Yagos Strilakos (1911-1949), my grandfather; he was a Maniat interested in the collection of dialect words, phrases and laments since he was a student of Greek Philology at the University of Athens in 1930 and after his graduation in 1934, when he returned to his Maniat village origin, Yerolimenas waiting for his appointment as a teacher. The main aim of my research has been to analyse the lament texts in Strilakos collection: a. in relation to the authentic and ordinary contexts of performance, bridging the gap between ritual and ordinary contexts as well as between performative and narrative dimensions and b. in relation to the literate folkloristic canon in which they have been accommodated. I have explored these two questions through the application of the notion of entextualisation drawing on the work of Bauman and Briggs; entextualisation refers to the process of extracting a stretch of discourse from its context rendering it amenable to other contexts in the form of a text.1 The findings of my study on forms and norms of entextualisation in Maniat laments as narratives suggest synergies between oral practices of lamenting and written norms of folklore recording which index the specific ways in which the compiler negotiates local and national norms for linguistic and cultural representation. In this paper, I will focus on the compilers metadiscursive practices in the lines of Briggs;2 here, metadiscursive practices refer more specifically to the folkloristic methods of selecting, extracting, resetting and editing lament forms. More specifically, I will show how through such practices lament fragments in the manuscript collection are predominantly framed as originating in a unique ritual performance, attributed to a single lamenter; I will challenge this framing that equals a con-textual conflation by presenting evidence from other relevant metadiscursive practices observed in the collection as well as from relevant ethnographic accounts. The presentation will conclude on the broader issues implicated in the ideologically loaded trajectory of lament verbal art from the performed to the monumentalised.

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______________________________________________________________ 3. Contextualising Meta-texts. In the manuscript collection, as in Greek folklore anthologies in general, texts are recorded according to writing norms of textual selection, representation and annotation underlying the folklore-as-literature model; in this model, the component of music is excluded and the verbal component is treated as a reified entity.3 According to Kostas Romaios, an established scholar of Greek folklore, folksong analysis should be equated with philological criticism whose main aim is to create an authoritative apparatus criticus.4 In the semi-edited collection, such philological commentary, indexing the professionalising orientations of the compiler, has been observed in a growingly systematic form across the included texts. Here, such commentary is treated as a textual component to be analysed, that I will refer to as the meta-textual component or more simply meta-text, that is a text about another text. The analysis of meta-texts in the collection indicates that there are three different types of meta-text, namely the following: a. chronological references often accompanied by definite or indefinite references to the lamenters name b. glosses relating to the reported events c. glosses relating to the ritual performance context. All three meta-text types serve to frame contextually the lament fragments recorded. More specifically, chronological references in the form of dates serve to ground a lamentable event in local oral history, by mapping the recounted events (e.g. the killing or death) to real events in the community. These are occasionally accompanied by a reference to the geographical location where these events are believed to have taken place. For instance, in the lament for Georgios Michelakos, the date July 1932 is attached to the title, indicating the date of his forty-day memorial. On the same page, another block of meta-text entitled Comments reports on the events that led to the killing of the boy along with his mother for reasons of revenge. A similar function is fulfilled by the notation of definite or indefinite name references mentioned in separate sections headed Comments; these tend to designate the original lamenter, that is the person to whom the composition and performance of the lament is attributed. For instance, in the lament for Georgios Michelakos I referred to above, the compiler specifies in the Comments section the context of performance as follows: It was told by the wife of Panagiot. Lirakou (60 years old) on G. Mixelakos forty-day memorial in July 1932.5

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______________________________________________________________ In this example, the geographical origin of the lamenter as well as her genealogical info and age are mentioned, indicating a greater degree of meta-textual elaboration found in a limited number of meta-texts in the collection6. This type of meta-text including chronological information and reference to the lamenter directly links the lament to an original lament performance, in a ritual context of mourning.7 The second type of meta-text identified in the collection concerns glosses that serve to fill in the reader on information, events and persons, which sometimes are not even included in the recorded text. It is often the case that such narrative glosses forge intertextual links between different lament texts and well-known clan stories, breaking through the linearly ordered anthologising of texts and unveiling the interconnected character of laments as narratives in the local community. So, for instance, in this example, Georgios Michelakos is reported as killed by Spiros Liogiannakos, who had been earlier injured by his father and whose lament reporting the event of injury figures separately at the beginning of the collection. Finally, the third type of meta-text involves the insertion of parenthetical comments in the present tense which either interrupts the text flow - in a way similar to stage directions - or is appended to the sections headed as Comments or Analysis. A usual form of this meta-text is the indication of a point in the lament which suggests a sequential change in lamenter in the context of ritual, serving as a follow-up, a response to or a break from what has gone before (e.g. the mother of Yannis continues the lament). This type of meta-text reconstructs the laments mourning performance, also unveiling part of its participant frameworks and its inherently dialogic character, features which tend to be erased in published folklore collections. The three types of meta-texts reported above, present in the manuscript collection in a relatively unsystematic way provide a wealth of information about the contexts of the recorded laments. Interestingly, the compiler does not follow the guidelines issued to folklore collectors by the leading figure of Greek national folklore, N. Politis, who explicitly emphasised the importance of recording the place (village or region), the name of the informant, as well as the sex, age and the social status in the case of tales and traditions.8 Instead of systematically recording the context of elicitation focusing on the informant and the location of the retelling, the compiler, as illustrated above, emphasises on the reconstruction of aspects of the original ritual performance. The wider implication of this practice is to blur the mediated relationships between the ritual performances and the recorded texts by ordinary lament tellings and to provide an authoritative version of the lament tradition, necessarily selective, in order for it to serve as a tradition appropriate for outsiders, a verbal monument for others to admire.

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______________________________________________________________ 4. Interpretive Comments on Meta-texts: Beyond the Ritual. Looking closely at the information recorded in the manuscript sheets and the compilers diary, there is no evidence to suggest that these lament fragments have been directly drawn from ritual contexts, as suggested by the compiler. In his diary, although there are a few entries describing in detail a funeral or a memorial, there is no reference to the recording of the performed lament - neither any cross-references to one of the reported laments have been found in the collection. Furthermore, there are three clear instances in the collection sheets where the compiler has recorded the date of elicitation and identified the lamenter as his informant, explicitly stating that X told me the lament. Finally, and in spite of the wide-held assumption of verbal artists illiteracy at the time, a diary entry suggests that in at least one occasion he explicitly requested a group of people - assumingly relatives and close friends of his - to write down a few laments. Confirmation of this practice of other-writing is found on a note on the top of a lament record reading someone else had written it. The above evidence suggests that the lament fragments included in the collection have been elicited by the collector himself either in folklore encounters or in prompts of other-writing not even requiring his presence. In addition to this relatively recent context of folklore collection, ordinary contexts of lament telling have been noted in Seremetakis, who has ethnographically described contexts of gatherings where laments are told as stories with a moral meaning, as responses to a just told story, or even as a way of entertainment or gossip.9 5. Conclusions. In this paper, I have presented part of my analysis on manifestations of verbal art entextualisation in the metadiscursive practices of a Maniat folklorist-philologist as observed in his manuscript collection of laments. I have more specifically focused on the discussion of three types of meta-texts accompanying the lament fragments, which constitute an integral component of the apparatus criticus under development in this particular lament collection. Although in very few cases, the meta-texts indirectly reveal a trace of the inherent dialogical character of the verbal art of lamenting and its performativity outside the ritual occasion, the general tendency of meta-texts is to decontextualise laments and reset them in textual form on individual pages clearly delineated from each other by a unique number and a title and accompanied by word glosses and brief information. The types of meta-texts presented here serve to fill in the incurred contextual gaps by rendering lament fragments into cultural (and dialect) artefacts. As I have shown, this is effected by framing them in the distant or recent past and conflating them

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______________________________________________________________ with the context of a unique mourning ritual occasion, thus endowing them with authenticity and originality. On the other hand, the trajectory of the performed lament to this authenticated written artefact is silenced, for any reference to it would break the constructed unmediated continuity from the performed to the recorded. What I would like to suggest, based on this brief presentation is the formal and functional disparity between a dynamic and multi-voiced verbal art serving as an ongoing social process for the construction of self and sentiment of women10 versus the new meanings of a growingly literate culture, lying predominantly at the hands of men and concerned with the selective and authenticating monological recording of the spoken word; this authentication is of course ideologically loaded, aimed at the establishment of sharedness and the memorialisation of local culture towards proud-ridden displays outside the confines of the Maniat community.

Notes
1

M. Silverstein and G. Urban, Natural Histories of Discourse, University of Chicago Press, Chicago, 1996; R. Bauman and C. Briggs, Poetics and Performance as Critical Perspectives on Language and Social Life, Annual Review of Anthropology, vol. 19, 1990, pp. 59-88. 2 cf. C. Briggs, Metadiscursive Practices and Scholarly Authority in Folkloristics, The Journal of American Folklore, vol. 106 (422), 1993, pp. 388-389. 3 cf. M. Herzfeld, Intepretation from Within: Metatext for a Cretan Quarrel, The Text and Its Margins, Post-Structuralist Approaches to TwentiethCentury Greek Literature, M. Alexiou and V. Lambropoulos, eds., Pella Publishing, New York, 1985, pp. 197-219. 4 K. A. Romaios, O Ksandinon o pandolalemenon (Mia nea methodoloyiki arkhi ya tin kritiki ekdosi tu kimenu ton dimotikon tragudion), Arkhion Pondu, vol. 27, 1966, pp. 150-206. 5 My translation from the Greek text. 6 Occasionally, it is the geographical origin of the main persons involved in the lamentable event that is recorded, enhancing the readers sense of the real setting of the recounted events. 7 In addition, meta-texts recording genealogical information or specifying the relation of the lamenter to the lamented (for instance the mother or wife of the lamented) also fulfil an important local function of identifying members of the community and acknowledging the fulfilment of their entitlement or

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______________________________________________________________ obligation to mourn following local norms for indexing and negotiating social relationships. 8 N. Politis, Prolegomena tis A Ekdoseos, Eklogai apo ta Tragudia tu Elliniku Lau, Athina, 1920, p. 12. 9 Seremetakis, op.cit. pp.195-201. 10 Ibid., p. 3.

Bibliography
Alexiou, M., The Ritual Lament in Greek Tradition, Rowman & Littlefield, New York, 2002 [1974]. Bauman, R. and C. Briggs, Poetics and Performance as Critical Perspectives on Language and Social Life, Annual Review of Anthropology, vol. 19, 1990, pp. 59-88. Briggs, C., Metadiscursive Practices and Scholarly Authority in Folkloristics, The Journal of American Folklore, vol. 106 (422), 1993, pp. 388-389. Danforth, L., The Death Rituals of Rural Greece, Princeton University Press, Princeton, 1982. Feld, S. and A. Fox, Music and Language, Annual Review of Anthropology, 1994, pp. 39-43. Herzfeld, M., Intepretation from Within: Metatext for a Cretan Quarrel, in The Text and Its Margins, Post-Structuralist Approaches to TwentiethCentury Greek Literature, M. Alexiou M. and V. Lambropoulos, eds., Pella Publishing, New York, 1985, pp. 197-219. Panourgia, N., Essay Review: Objects at Birth, Subjects at Death, Journal of Modern Greek Studies, vol. 12, 1994, pp. 262-269. Politis, N., Prolegomena tis A Ekdoseos, Eklogai apo ta Tragudia tu Elliniku Lau, Athina, 1920, p. 12. Romaios, .., O Ksandinon o pandolalemenon (Mia nea methodoloyiki arkhi ya tin kritiki ekdosi tu kimenu ton dimotikon tragudion), Arkhion Pondu, vol. 27, 1966, pp. 150-206. Seremetakis, N.C., The Last Word: Women, Death and Divination in Inner Mani, University of Chicago Press, Chicago, 1991. Silverstein, M. and G. Urban, Natural Histories of Discourse, University of Chicago Press, Chicago, 1996.

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______________________________________________________________ Korina Giaxoglou is completing her thesis in the field of sociolinguistics with the support of Greek State Scholarships Foundation (SSF) under the supervision of Dr Georgakopoulou at Kings College London.

The Parasocial Paradox: How Personalized Funerals Extend Our Relationships Beyond Death Terri Toles Patkin
Abstract Recently, many American funerals have become personalized productions, with strategies including the display of photographs and mementos, displays of cremated remains in unique settings, decorated caskets, and fully-themed participatory experiences with sports themes, nature displays or lifestyle representations. The personalized funeral illustrates Erving Goffmans model of social interaction as performance, as well as assisting in the creation of parasocial relationships, one-sided, nonreciprocal relationships in which control of the relationship rests in the hands of the performer (in this case, assisted by family and friends). Paradoxically, the attempt to personalize the memorial transmutes the unique person into a massified commodity in a mediated taste community, deindividuating the departed even as mourners celebrate his or her life. Theme funerals - utilizing sports memorabilia, cultural or ethnic symbols, occupational identifications and lifestyle depictions - serve as the ultimate fan activity, searing the memory of the persons self-identification deeply into survivors minds by attaching the departed to a larger social group.

Keywords Funeral, Lifestyle, Personalization, Parasocial Relationship.

Death rituals provide a conduit for individual grief at the loss of a loved one, while simultaneously reflecting broader cultural values. Funeral rituals are widely perceived as essential for successful grieving, and the role of emotion in orchestrating the process has been acknowledged by funeral directors for decades. Even as the American funeral industry advises customers to make price comparisons and shop carefully, American consumers spend just over $11 billion a year on death-related products and services.1 Despite some subcultural differences,2 many Americans overcome their discomfort in dealing with death by transforming funerals into a celebration of the deceaseds life, focusing on the secular elements of the wake rather than the religious traditions of the funeral. Although the commercialization of the death industry is clearly not new, todays funeral directors increasingly see their role as that of a stage manager, helping craft

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______________________________________________________________ the funeral as an inclusive performance extravaganza in which everyone present plays a part in the production. The funeral as performance illustrates Goffmans3 model of social interaction in general as performance. Goffman sees individual role-playing as providing information in a social setting in a way that helps others define the situation and know how best to act. The performers conduct, appearance, and verbal and nonverbal communication permit the audience member to appropriately interpret the expression the performer gives directly as well as those he gives off indirectly. In this way, the performers presentation of a Front, comprised of Setting, Appearance, and Manner, shapes both his own and others impressions of the self. Goffman points to the importance of the first impression in such interactions; funerals provide a perhaps equally significant last impression of the person. Clearly, the deceased is the focal point of the funeral performance, even though he cannot personally engage in communicative activity. However, as friends and family plan the funeral ritual (in what Goffman terms a team performance), they fabricate the individuals Front in the most positive manner possible, expressing the idealized personality. (In cases where the individual participates in funeral pre-planning, the performer may prepare the Front to be presented at the funeral even more directly.) While the performers Manner is incapable of being expressed directly following death, the funeral arrangers may manipulate aspects of Setting and Appearance easily, through dressing the body and providing casket, flowers and a memorial milieu that reflects the performers status at the time of death. The funeral service reflects Manner indirectly, and the typically positive nature of the eulogy contributes to the fabrication of an idealized Front. This is often reflected among informal conversations among the mourners following the funeral service. Associated rituals such as the wake, postfuneral meal, or family gathering help to reinforce the communicated Front through mourner interaction. As American baby boomers age, the trend appears to emphasize incorporation of creative rituals in the construction of the funeral Front. Multiple eulogies, merging of diverse religious traditions within a single service, and the introduction of media, props and performances are becoming the norm.4 People are more often writing their own obituaries, spinning their life stories the way they want others to see them.5 These new funerals make death into a participatory experience. In an era of weblogs, reality television and public conversations via cell phone, is it so surprising that we divulge more about ourselves in death as well as in life? In a world where living on camera not only describes our everyday life, where reality shows allow ordinary individuals to reach for fame and fortune, why not make the final scene into a media event?

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______________________________________________________________ What Goffman terms the presentation of self or the construction of the front, funeral directors refer to as personalization strategies. Personalization strategies include the use of media, the choice of burial site, the utilization of artefacts, decoration of the casket, and the fully-themed participatory funeral stage set. The use of media to enhance the funeral is not new; many funeral homes have long encouraged the family to become involved by writing the obituary themselves, displaying photographs and other memorabilia during the service, having children make special drawings, playing meaningful music, asking close friends to speak during the service, and selecting flowers preferred by the deceased. This not only provides psychological comfort to the bereaved but also allows the expression of the deceaseds personality. Video memorials - homemade or professional video celebrations of the individuals life, often featuring a montage of significant life events - evoke the wedding or bar mitzvah slideshow, and families may engage a photographer or videographer to record the funeral for later viewing. The slide show may be displayed on a video kiosk at the funeral home or placed online on a memorial web site where mourners may leave comments in addition to simply viewing the memorial.6 One may even select a personalized video gravestone on which images of the deceaseds life are transmitted continually until the battery runs down (in about 15 years).7 Sometimes the deceased will leave a video for survivors to play, perhaps urging them to consider volunteer work or undergo cancer screenings. One woman even asked to be interred with a television set tuned to her favourite soap opera.8 The choice of burial site has long played a symbolic role in funeral planning. Cremated ashes have for years been scattered over the deceaseds favourite spot, and services now offer ocean cruises, hot air balloon rides and other excursions to find just the right location. Like the man who wanted to be laid to rest under his favourite shade tree, a golfer might want one of the plots on the front nine offered at Turtle Run in Danville, Illinois,9 or a University alumnus might wish to be interred on campus.10 Green cemeteries cater to the ecologically-minded,11 ashes can be dropped to the bottom of the sea or the body cryogenically frozen,12 or cremated remains may be launched into space.13 Theres nothing like an artefact to bring someones memory to life. Keepsake memorial containers may hold a lock or hair, personal item or cremated remains, and memento chests may be used to hold prayer cards, photos, personal mementos and keepsakes from the funeral. These may be engraved with the individuals name and dates. Some ask for their remains to be encased in a favourite hunting decoy or bowling pin.14 Even jewellery can be created. LifeGem, for example, will scrape carbon from the departeds ashes and fashion it into a sparkling stone to offer solace to the survivor. A

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______________________________________________________________ diamond that takes millions of years to occur naturally, says the company, can now be created from the carbon of your loved one in a matter of weeks. A .75-carat memento costs $17,000.15 Garden memorials, such as fountains, sundials, and bird baths, may memorialize a loved one, or a mourner might contact Eternal Reefs, which is in the business of creating artificial coral reefs made from cremated remains and concrete in order to create living habitats for sea life.16 Personalization of the traditional casket or cremation container allows the family to inscribe a name, dates, nickname or favorite saying. It is possible to include designs like religious symbols, military emblems, or even simple artwork reflecting a lifestyle or hobby. Commemorative casket interiors can include standard designs and themes from the manufacturer, such as a religious theme or a relationship theme like Mother. Custom embroidering is available for names, quotes, or special designs such as farm scenes, flowers, pets, outdoor and nature themes, military and service organization insignia, or a favorite picture of the loved one. Corner ornamentation allows the family to create a casket that reflects the lifestyle of the deceased by adding symbolic corners such as a cross, an eagle, an angel, a Masonic emblem, bass fishing, a mallard, a barn scene, music notes, golf clubs, and so on. Similar decorations are also available for keepsake memorial containers.17 The Batesville Casket Company has pioneered the fully decorated theme-painted casket, and other companies have followed suit in varying degrees. For only $2195, one may purchase a specially painted theme casket that reflects the personality and interests of the departed.18 Themes include religious (DaVincis The Last Supper or a display of crosses or angels), cultural and ethnic symbols, military decorations, academic salutes to ones alma mater, artistic reproductions (Monets Japanese Footbridge), and lifestyle depictions. The latter includes such options as The Race is Over casket which includes the checkered flag, the trophy, and the roar of the crowd all [of which] serve to insure that every auto-racing fan will enjoy the high performance look of this Art Casket and Return to Sender, a package designed for the trip home.19 The newest trend centers on uniquely shaped coffins, built to resemble eggs, skateboards or ballet slippers. These most often emerge from customer request rather than manufacturer creativity, and only account for a small portion of the market to date.20 The personalized casket may be displayed with accessories that include a variety of themes, and from there is it but a short step to include specialized props such as soft music to enhance the experience of the mourners, a display of military or sports uniform, or hay bales to hold up the Farmer casket. In Burbank, California, a boxers funeral featured a real boxing ring.21 The funeral as fully-themed participatory experience grows

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______________________________________________________________ from this push for personalization. In 2001, the International Cemetery and Funeral Association, with 5800 member funeral homes and cemeteries and associated businesses, gave Wade Funeral Home in St. Louis, Missouri, honorable mention for its themed funeral sets including Big Mommas Kitchen, a Sunday family-dinner tableau complete with a loaf of Wonder Bread on top of the refrigerator and a platter of real fried chicken on the stove.22 The Big Momma's Kitchen setting boasts Crisco, Wonder Bread and real fried chicken in a tribute to Sunday meals and the women who prepare them. We've even had to replenish the chicken, said Aaron Grimes, a Wade branch manager. We don't encourage (eating) it.23 Themes such as Big Mommas Kitchen offer nontraditional services held in theater-quality sets. The cost of the special stage sets at a themed funeral is offset by the lower cost for the casket; since the coffin is no longer the center of attention, the family might only spend a few hundred dollars for it rather than investing thousands in a fancier model.24 Sports and fishing themes (sometimes complete with an indoor pond) offer a new twist on the traditional service, in which family members make the service a celebration of the persons life and a reflection of their interests. Other unique funerals have been held in zoos, shopping malls, airports, aquariums, and at the racetrack.25 Similarly, Vegas Mortuary builds full sets that follow the Vegas theme.26 Friends and family members also appear to take pleasure in using the funerals theme to enhance their own memories of the deceased, speaking of their love for farming, nature, hobby or sport. As funeral directors like to say, death ends a life, not a relationship.27 Themed funerals simulate parasocial communication, that simulacrum of conversational give-and-take that mimics intimacy and friendship but in reality separates participant roles and sharply structures interaction, often via mass media. Anecdotal and empirical evidence supports the notion that adults and children form strong affective ties to mass media characters and personalities in much the same way we form impressions interpersonally and that these pseudo-relationships can play powerful and important roles in peoples lives, particularly for those who struggle with social isolation or social ineptitude.28 And yet, unlike the loss of a real friend or relative, the death of a media friend does not provide traditional rituals or clear ways to comfort the bereaved. Indeed, the mourning for a parasocial friend is filled with paradox and helplessness. Attempts to comfort the dead persons family with words or flowers are intrusions by strangers. And intensely felt personal grief is simultaneously strengthened and weakened by the extent to which it is shared with the crowd. In order to banish grief and helplessness, therefore, thousands of people take to the streets or hold vigils near the parasocial friends home or place of death.29 Even when the media provide the best available ritualized channels for mourning by offering specials or retrospectives about the individuals life,

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______________________________________________________________ the irony is that the parasocial friend does not die. We get to continue our relationship with the person through reruns of previously recorded materials the only means through with most audience members ever got to interact with the person in life.30 The relationship is frozen, rather than destroyed. In part, it is the potential and hope for increased intimacy that dies and the never to be face-to-face consummation of the relationship that is mourned.31 Personalized theme funerals not only mimic this form of mediated interpersonal communication that allows the audience member to more clearly interpret the expected spectator role and use the theme to smooth awkward conversation with family and friends of the departed, they also reflect the changing role of media in historical and environmental context. Media, as well as other technologies, shape how and what we communicate, how we relate to one another, our perception and our social organization. The introduction of media into an interaction shifts the balance of relationships and behavioral rules. When a person begins any encounter, he already stands in some kind of social relationship to the audience, and expects to stand in a given relationship to them when the encounter ends. Much of the activity on everyones part can be understood as an attempt to get through the occasion without casting any of the participants in an undesirable light and without disrupting their relationship.32 When mass media enter such relationships, the concepts of public and private are turned inside out. The magic of the media is that the audience feels as if we are hidden in Goffmans backstage region, privy to the secret lives of celebrities. Paparazzi notwithstanding, it is the very nature of the video lens and computer editing that causes us to feel this way. The world watches in close-up as Nancy Reagan makes what is billed as a final, private farewell to her Ronnie, and the more sensitive members of the audience feel like intruders at a private funeral, but keep watching anyway as the cameras fill the screen with evidence of her grief (and by extension, ours too?). As media technologies are incorporated into the death experience with video and internet technology, sacred space moves beyond the physical to the virtual world. The funeral ritual ceases to function as a snapshot in time but now becomes a recorded opus available for future review and examination. Even as television and movies bring violence and death, both fictional and factual, into our homes, the media decontextualize these deaths; grief is either absent or highly public and structured. And indeed, the funeral industry removes the details of death from the public even as it offers consumers more personalization services.33 Media shape both the lives of those within the box and those who observe from without. The printing press created a diverse, delocalized audience less bound in time, and electronic media extended the tendency exponentially. The mass audience grows increasingly less cohesive and predictable while simultaneously becoming more subject to

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______________________________________________________________ commercialization and deindividuation, transforming into an aggregate defined by a set of interests rather than as a social group able to act autonomously.34 Audiences are formed either through social processes (the geographic, ethnic or political community) or via media processes (fan groups or taste cultures loyal to a particular personality or medium). Fan culture unites a diverse social group primarily though a connection to a favored author or media text, and is often actively associated with product merchandising. Fandom, which attempts to make individual and shared meaning from popular or trivial materials, utilizes mass culture artifacts to construct identity in everyday life. The discursive constructions of fans transform the passive audience experience into a rich and complex participatory culture.35 Despite the popular image of the fan as an introverted eccentric, todays fan community has grown exponentially, primarily due to the internet. Fan communities allow for the transformation of formerly one-way media (such as television or books) into vibrant twoway conversations. Fandom not only appropriates cultural objects to the benefit of the fan, it also shapes the producing medium as authors respond to fan demands for content, products and interaction; fandom becomes a winwin scenario for everyone.36 In the fan community, individual interpretations are shaped through discussions with other fans; the barrier between reader and writer disappears: Fan culture is made by a new type of cultural community, where affiliation is voluntary and based on common patterns of consumption, common ways of reading and relating to popular texts, yet, one serving many of the traditional functions of folk culture.37 Fandom constructs group identification, articulates community, and defines ones relationship to the outside world. Indeed, online communities carry on fan relationships with celebrities who have died even as the members comfort one another.38 Personalized funerals are the ultimate in fan activity, pushing membership in a taste community beyond ones own death, searing the memory of ones self-identification deeply into survivors minds. Just as television personalities attempt to mimic personal face-to-face interaction, so too does the theme funeral attempt to provide a reciprocal interpersonal relationship. The dearly departed is transmuted into media personality - one with whom we can continue to interact in some limited way - and becomes even more the star of the day than before. Boorstin39 attributes the rise of planned, illusory events (pseudoevents) to the growth of mass media. A hero - a man or woman of great

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______________________________________________________________ deeds - becomes lost in the sea of celebrities, people who are famous for being famous. Not only do todays celebrities outnumber heroes, the mass of trivia we know about them outshines the rather generic image that heroes leave over time. Themed funerals turn everyday people, everyday heroes, into celebrities. A private death becomes part of the public sphere, even for private citizens. Rather than remembering the individual, themed funerals attach the person to some larger societal theme - sports, auto racing, cooking, gambling. In the guise of personalizing the memorial, themed funerals deindividuate the dearly departed, placing them as one of the masses forever. Placing the recently-passed individual into a media context not only eases our personal discomfort with a distressing ritual - not to mention making a deposit into the Warholian promise of our 15 minutes of personal fame - it also sets the context for continuing discourse about the person in a parasocial frame, permitting us to indulge in the illusion that, as with our media friends, our relationship with our loved one can continue in future replays.

Notes
1

P. Brown, In Death, as in Life, a Personalized Space, New York Times, 18 January 2007, p. F1. 2 C. McIlwain, Death in Black and White: A Study of Family Differences in the Performance of Death Rituals, Qualitative Research Reports in Communication, vol. 3 (1), 2002, pp. 1-6. 3 E. Goffman, The Presentation of Self in Everyday Life, Doubleday, Garden City, New York, 1959. 4 J. Queenan, Balsamic Dreams: A Short but Self-Important History of the Baby Boomer Generation, Henry Holt and Company, New York, 2001. 5 R Sinderbrand, Obits: May I Rest in Peace, Newsweek, 8 March 2004, p. 10. 6 M. Fischler, Funeral Home Webcast Allows Out-of-Town Mourners to Pay Respects, New York Times, 8 October 2006, p. CT-6. 7 P. Maresco, J. Welch and Z. Ahmed, Personalized Gravestones: Your Lifes Passion for All to See and Hear, Journal of Religion and Popular Culture, 13, University of Saskatchewan, Summer 2006, retrieved 6 June 2007, < http://www.usask.ca/relst/jrpc/index.html>. 8 C. Dolan, Burying Tradition: More People Opt for Fun Funerals, Wall Street Journal, New York, 20 May 1993, n.pag. 9 P. Brown, Eco-Friendly Burial Sites Give a Chance to be Green Forever, New York Times, 13 August 2005, p. A1.

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10

A. Finder, Colleges Offering Campuses as Final Resting Places, New York Times, 18 May 2007, p. A16. 11 L. Cullen, Remember Me, Collins, New York, 2006. 12 M. Roach, Stiff: The Curious Lives of Human Cadavers, W.W. Norton, New York, 2003. 13 E. Burt, Until Death Do Us Part, Er, Party, Kiplingers Personal Finance Magazine, Washington, October 2001, retrieved 6 June 2007, <http://findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_m1318/is_10_55/ai_78790284>. 14 Dolan, op.cit. 15 J. Kahn, Taking the grim out of reaper, The Boston Globe Magazine, Boston, Massachusetts, 29 September 2002, retrieved 6 June 2007, <http://www.keohane.com/TakingthegrimoutofreaperA.htm>. 16 Ibid. 17 Charles F. Dewhirst Family Funeral Home, Personalization and Memorialization, Andover, Massachusetts, 12 January 2005, retrieved 6 June 2007, <http://www.dewhirstfuneral.com>. 18 Funeral Depot, Theme Caskets, Davie, Florida. 17 January 2005, retrieved 6 June 2007, <http://funeraldepot.com>. 19 Art Caskets, Casket Designs, Ahoskie, North Carolina, 30 August, 2005, retrieved 6 June 2007, <http://artcaskets.com>. 20 Associated Press, Crazy coffins put fun into funeral, CNN London, 12 February 2007, retrieved 5 March 2007, <http://edition.cnn.com/2007/WORLD/europe/02/12/crazycoffins.ap/index.ht ml>. 21 C. Schottenstein, Its Your Rodeo - Er, Funeral. BW Online, New York, 16 December 2002, retrieved 14 January 2005, < http://businessweek.com/magazine/content/02_50/c3812012.htm>. 22 Kahn, op.cit. 23 A. Goldman, Funeral Home Adds Special Vegas Touch, in Vegas Mortuary, Las Vegas, Nevada, 25 September 2004, retrieved 6 June 2007, <http://www.goblinville.com/pages/writings/weird-stories/weird16.htm>. 24 Schottenstein, op.cit. 25 Death be not proud, Harpers Magazine, New York, 2002, retrieved 11 January 2005, <http://www.findarticles.com/p/artic;es/mi_m1111/is_1831_305/ai_9813597 2>. 26 Goldman, op. cit.

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______________________________________________________________
27

Quattlebaum-Holleman-Burse Funeral Home, Creating Meaningful Ceremonies, West Palm Beach, Florida, 12 January 2005, retrieved 6 June 2007, <www.quattlebaum.org>. 28 D. Horton & R. Wohl, Mass Communication and Para-Social Interaction: Observations on Intimacy at a Distance, Psychiatry, vol. 19, 1956, pp. 215229; D. Giles, Parasocial Interaction: A Review of the Literature and a Model for Future Research, Media Psychology, vol. 4, 2002, pp. 279-305; E Schiappa, P. Gregg and D. Hewes, The Parasocial Contact Hypothesis, Communication Monographs, vol. 72 (1), 2005, pp. 92-115. 29 J. Meyrowitz, No Sense of Place, Oxford University Press, New York, 1985 30 J. Jensen, On Fandom, Celebrity and Mediation, in Afterlife as Afterimage, S. Jones and J. Jensen, eds., 2005, Peter Lang, New York, pp. xv-xviii; S. Jones, Better Off Dead, in Afterlife as Afterimage, S. Jones and J. Jensen, eds., 2005, Peter Lang, New York, pp 3-16. 31 Meyrowitz, op.cit, p.120 32 Goffman, op.cit 33 C. McIlwain, When Death Goes Pop: Death, Media and the Remaking of Community, Peter Lang, New York, 2005; J. Thursby, Funeral Festivals in America, University Press of Kentucky, Lexington, 2006. 34 L. Strate, A Media Ecology Review, Communication Research Trends, vol. 23 (2), 2004, pp. 3-48. 35 H. Jenkins, Textual Poachers, Routledge, New York, 1992, p. 23. 36 M. Sella, The Remote Controllers, New York Times Magazine, 20 October 2002, pp. 68-73; L. Green and C. Guinery, Harry Potter and the Fan Fiction Phenomenon, M/C Journal, vol. 7 (5), 2004, n.pag.; J. Kapur, Free Market, Branded Imagination - Harry Potter and the Commercialization of Childrens Culture, Jump Cut: A Review of Contemporary Media, vol 46, p. 1-10. 37 Jenkins, op.cit, p. 272 38 Jones, op.cit.; J. Andsager, Altared States: Celebrity Webshrines as Shared Mourning, in Afterlife as Afterimage, S. Jones and J. Jensen, eds., Peter Lang, New York, 2005, pp. 17-29. 39 D. Boorstin, The Image: A Guide to Pseudo-Events in America, Harper Colophon, New York, 1961.

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Bibliography
Andsager, J., Altared States: Celebrity Webshrines as Shared Mourning, In Afterlife as Afterimage, S. Jones and J. Jensen, eds., Peter Lang, New York, 2005, pp. 17-29. Art Caskets, Casket Designs, Ahoskie, North Carolina, 30 August, 2005, retrieved 6 June 2007, <http://artcaskets.com>. Associated Press, Crazy coffins put fun into funeral, CNN, London, 12 February 2007, retrieved 5 March 2007, <http://edition.cnn.com/2007/WORLD/europe/02/12/crazycoffins.ap/ind ex.html>. Boorstin, D., The Image: A Guide to Pseudo-Events in America, Harper Colophon, New York, 1961. Brown, P., Eco-Friendly Burial Sites Give a Chance to be Green Forever, New York Times, 13 August 2005, p. A1. Brown, P. In Death, as in Life, a Personalized Space, New York Times, 18 January 2007, p. F1. Burt, E., Until Death Do Us Part, Er, Party, Kiplingers Personal Finance Magazine, Washington, October 2001, retrieved 6 June 2007, <http://findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_m1318/is_10_55/ai_78790284>. Charles F. Dewhirst Family Funeral Home, Personalization and Memorialization, Andover, Massachusetts, 12 January 2005, retrieved 6 June 2007, <http://www.dewhirstfuneral.com>. Cullen, L., Remember Me, Collins, New York, 2006. Death be Not Proud, Harpers Magazine, New York, 2002, retrieved 11 January 2005, <http://www.findarticles.com/p/artic;es/mi_m1111/is_1831_305/ai_9813 5972>. Dolan, C., Burying Tradition: More People Opt for Fun Funerals, Wall Street Journal, New York, 20 May 1993. Finder, A., Colleges Offering Campuses as Final Resting Places, New York Times, 18 May 2007, p. A16. Fischler, M., Funeral Home Webcast Allows Out-of-Town Mourners to Pay Respects, New York Times, 8 October 2006, p. CT-6. Funeral Depot, Theme Caskets, Davie, Florida, 17 January 2005, retrieved 6 June 2007, <http://funeraldepot.com>.

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______________________________________________________________ Giles, D., Parasocial Interaction: A Review of the Literature and a Model for Future Research, Media Psychology, vol. 4, 2002, pp. 279-305. Goffman, E., The Presentation of Self in Everyday Life, Doubleday, Garden City, New York, 1959. Goldman, A., Funeral Home Adds Special Vegas Touch, In Vegas Mortuary, Las Vegas, Nevada, 25 September 2004, retrieved 6 June 2007, <http://www.goblinville.com/pages/writings/weirdstories/weird16.htm>. Green, L. and C. Guinery, Harry Potter and the Fan Fiction Phenomenon, M/C Journal, vol. 7(5), 2004. Horton, D. and R. Wohl, Mass Communication and Para-Social Interaction: Observations on Intimacy at a Distance, Psychiatry, vol. 19, 1956, pp. 215-229. Jenkins, H., Textual Poachers, Routledge, New York, 1992, p. 23. Jensen, J., On Fandom, Celebrity and Mediation, In Afterlife as Afterimage, S. Jones and J. Jensen, eds., 2005, Peter Lang, New York, pp. xv-xviii. Jones, S., Better Off Dead, In Afterlife as Afterimage, S. Jones and J. Jensen, eds., 2005, Peter Lang, New York, pp 3-16. Kahn, J., Taking the grim out of reaper, The Boston Globe Magazine, Boston, Massachusetts, 29 September 2002, retrieved 6 June 2007, <http://www.keohane.com/TakingthegrimoutofreaperA.htm>. Kapur, J., Free Market, Branded Imagination - Harry Potter and the Commercialization of Childrens Culture, Jump Cut: A Review of Contemporary Media, vol 46, pp. 1-10. Maresco, P., J. Welch and Z. Ahmed, Personalized Gravestones: Your Lifes Passion for All to See and Hear, Journal of Religion and Popular Culture, 13, University of Saskatchewan, Summer 2006, retrieved 6 June 2007, < http://www.usask.ca/relst/jrpc/index.html>. McIlwain, C., Death in Black and White: A Study of Family Differences in the Performance of Death Rituals, Qualitative Research Reports in Communication, vol. 3 (1), 2002, pp. 1-6. McIlwain, C., When Death Goes Pop: Death, Media and the Remaking of Community, Peter Lang, New York, 2005. Meyrowitz, J., No Sense of Place, Oxford University Press, New York, 1985. Quattlebaum-Holleman-Burse Funeral Home, Creating Meaningful Ceremonies, West Palm Beach, Florida, 12 January 2005, retrieved 6 June 2007, <www.quattlebaum.org>.

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______________________________________________________________ Queenan, J., Balsamic Dreams: A Short but Self-Important History of the Baby Boomer Generation, Henry Holt and Company, New York, 2001. Roach, M., Stiff: The Curious Lives of Human Cadavers, W.W. Norton, New York, 2003. Schiappa, E., P. Gregg and D. Hewes, The Parasocial Contact Hypothesis, Communication Monographs, vol. 72 (1), 2005, pp. 92-115. Schottenstein, C., Its Your Rodeo - Er, Funeral, BW Online, New York, 16 December 2002, retrieved 14 January 2005, <http://businessweek.com/magazine/content/02_50/c3812012.htm>. Sella, M., The Remote Controllers, New York Times Magazine, 20 October 2002, pp. 68-73. Sinderbrand, R., Obits: May I Rest in Peace, Newsweek, 8 March 2004, p. 10. Strate, L., A Media Ecology Review, Communication Research Trends, vol. 23(2), 2004, pp. 3-48. Thursby, J., Funeral Festivals in America, University Press of Kentucky, Lexington, 2006.

Terri Toles Patkin is Professor of Communication at Eastern Connecticut State University in Willimantic, Connecticut, USA. She holds the B.A. from Arcadia University and the M.A. and Ph.D. from Cornell University.

The Use of Physical Objects in Mourning by MidlifeDaughters who Have Lost Their Mother Laura Lewis & Judith Belle Brown
Abstract This qualitative study, using a phenomenological approach explored the use of physical objects (possessions) in mourning by midlife women after their mothers expected deaths. This facilitated the acquisition of a deeper understanding and a greater knowledge of the daughters intentions and their lived experience. The study questions were: 1) How do midlife daughters understand the meaning of physical objects in their mourning process? 2) What relational significance becomes imbued in physical objects? Twelve midlife women participated in in-depth interviews which were audiotaped and transcribed verbatim. In the analysis, particular attention was directed toward understanding object descriptions and meanings. The analysis revealed four themes which defined more specifically the relational dimensions that were connected with mourning and physical object use. These dimensions of maternal relationship included: a) an everyday connection; b) special relatedness; c) mother and mother/daughter personality characteristics; d) generational significance. The use of objects in mourning revealed a creative and dynamic mourning response and also revealed important dimensions of the maternal relationship as it was experienced. It is suggested that object use assists mourning as the bereft daughter moves toward an internalized experience of her deceased mother.

Keywords Mourning, Mid-life, Maternal Loss, Physical Objects, Daughters, Linking Objects.

1.

Review of Literature The loss of a loved one challenges the emotional frontiers of a persons experience. Professionals working in the bereavement field have the privilege of bearing witness to this challenging journey of private suffering, as people forge forward with lives that have been dramatically changed by their losses. For many individuals who have known the love of another, moving forward with life is difficult, and the bereft can feel lost and barren in the shadow of their sorrow. In an effort to cope with the emotional turmoil individuals may embark on a creative search for solace in the physical objects

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______________________________________________________________ (possessions) that belonged to the deceased and particular objects may become increasingly important to the mourner. The significance and meaning of this object interest is worthy of investigative inquiry, as very little is known about the meaning of this behavior. A theoretical understanding of the use of objects specific to mourning can be found in the work of psychoanalyst Vamik Volkan who first identified the phenomenon wherein physical objects of the deceased became significant to the mourner.1 He coined his own terminology linking objects in his quest for meaning and understanding of this behavior.2 According to Volkan the use of objects in mourning was often a harbinger of a complicated mourning process.3 He noted that the physical object psychologically served to fortify the bereaved as the object served to provide a locus for externalized contact between aspects of the mourners self-representation and aspects of the representation of the deceased.4 He maintained that the adoption of a linking object served to keep what was a complicated grief process in a frozen and unresolved state, while at the same time the object protected the mourner from a massive depressive episode.5 He also maintained that when an object was kept at a safe distance this confirmed feelings of ambivalence towards the deceased. This contributed to the bereaved individuals denial of the death and inhibition of grief work.6 In summary, Volkans contributions suggested object use as a indicator of a complicated mourning experience that would require intervention for successful resolution. Volkan likened linking objects to two phenomenon from psychodynamic theory - the fetish and the transitional object of which the transitional object will be discussed here.7 Transitional objects are those things that become important to very small children in the process of separation from their mother (teddy bears, blankets and the like). Winnicott suggested that the object becomes a symbol of the union of two now separate things, baby and mother, at the point in time and space of the initiation of their state of separateness.8 Transitional objects provide a cushion against frustration, administer a soothing function and are representative of a tangible connection with an important person. It could be suggested that the use of physical objects in mourning may in some way be indicative of a regression that is summoning unconscious patterns set in infancy. Winnicott himself conveyed that a need for a specific object or a behavior pattern that started at a very early date may reappear at a later age when deprivation threatens.9 The understanding of linking objects from the psychodynamic understanding of transitional phenomenon does suggest that objects have a capacity to provide a tangible connection with the deceased other and may also illicit a self-soothing capacity. Challenges to Volkans assertions that physical objects are likely indicative of complicated mourning have been asserted in the literature.

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______________________________________________________________ Klass reported on the use of linking objects by bereaved parents and found that the objects provide solace to the parents during the grieving process, connecting them to their dead child.10 Similarly, Silverman, Nickman and Worden reported 77 percent of the bereaved children in their study had something personal that belonged to their dead parent and that these objects served as important links to the deceased.11 Wheeler also subsequently challenged Volkans statements and assumptions regarding object use in parental bereavement. A survey of bereaved parents found that the majority of respondents, particularly females had some kind of linking object.12 Wheeler described how the bereaved parents often had the object centrally located and interacted intimately with it as evidenced by sleeping with it, talking to it, smelling it. This finding challenged Volkans theoretical premise that the linking object was charged with feelings of ambivalence and inhibited grief work. The respondents to this study strongly identified that the object made them feel connected with their deceased child and also allowed the parent to feel connected to a happier time. Such objects were also identified as assisting in focusing mourning.13 It is important not only to theoretically consider object phenomena, but to also reveal current understandings regarding the influence of gender on the experience of maternal loss. Moss, Resch and Moss linked bereavement, gender, and the loss of a parent.14 Their research explored the gendered responses to the death of a parent and documented both the gendered similarities and differences evoked by such a loss. For women, their study revealed daughters as having maintained a stronger tie with either deceased parent (mother or father).15 Women were found to be more expressive in their emotional upset and more somatically affected by their losses.16 Overall, Moss et al., found that the gender of the adult child was strongly associated with the ways in which adult children responded to the loss of their elderly parents with females being more profoundly affected.17 Douglas study looked at gender and the long-term impact of parental death. In this study gender differences to loss were also notable. This study confirmed that for the women in their study, the loss was experienced as one of the biggest events of their lives.18 In keeping with the popular mythology about parental losses as being a normal part of the life cycle and as such not as significant as some other losses, none of the women in Douglas sample felt their loss was acceptable to them and reported prevalent feelings of isolation in their grief.19 In summary existing contributions from the literature orient the reader to two dynamic tensions that exist is our understanding of object use. They are, whether object use signals a complicated grief process as defined by Volkan or whether such use is self-soothing and provides a point of connection. The second dynamic tension relates to gender and the experience

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______________________________________________________________ of mourning for women specifically. It is apparent that gender influences the experience of maternal loss, and as such will also directly influence how these losses are psychologically and emotionally integrated. 2. Method The purpose of this qualitative study was to discover and explore the unique and common understandings of women in regard to their use of physical objects in their mourning experiences after the expected death of their mothers. Assuming an interpretive phenomenological approach, knowledge of the lived experience of these individuals and their intentions within their mourning processes was sought. A. Participant Selection In concert with qualitative methods, a purposive sample was recruited in order to capture depth and richness in the participants reflections rather than a representative sample of the larger population. Specific sampling inclusion criteria included; adult females who had experienced the death of their biological mothers at least two years previously. The reason for limiting the study to adult females was rooted in both the grief and human development literatures.20 Three recruitment sites in London, Ontario, Canada were used. These sites were known for their community bereavement services and the recruitment of potential participants was made in accordance with their own agency policy and procedures. In total, twelve midlife adult women ranging in age from 39 - 60 years of age were recruited for this study. The mean age of participants was 48 years. B. Data Collection Using a semi-structured in depth interview guide participants were asked to consider and describe their use of physical objects in their mourning process. The applicability of existing conceptual theories was considered by the researcher, while attention remained focused on new understandings and emergent themes emanating from the participants narrative accounts. The in- depth interviews were conducted in the comfort of the participants home and occurred at a mutually convenient time. The interviews were audio-taped and transcribed verbatim. C. Data Analysis The data analysis was one of immersion/crystallization.21 This analysis began with a line-by-line reading and re-reading of the transcripts. Emergent themes were identified and highlighted, along with expressive quotes that were exemplary in their content. The authors independently read

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______________________________________________________________ and analyzed each of the transcripts and then met to compare and contrast their analysis. Themes identified from the first few transcripts were utilized to make sense of subsequent narrative material, while the researchers also stayed open to constant revisions and expansions identified in subsequent interviews. Also, during the interviews member-checking occurred to ensure that emerging interpretations were consistent with the participants experience. Thus, the process of immersion/crystallization as an organizing style in the narrative analysis phase of the study involved both the researchers interpretive analysis and intuition, and reflexive feedback from the participants themselves.22 3. Findings An initial analysis of the narrative data revealed many mourning objects. Physical objects that were repeatedly identified for their significance to mourning processes included; jewellery, photographs, clothing, crocheted/knitted articles, furniture, blankets, china/figurines, food-related objects including cooking implements and more traditional mourning artefacts (cross). Although the articles may have been similarly identified there was no similarity in meaning when object meanings were compared. Therefore, identification of the same mourning object in no way predicted the dimensions of meaning that would be associated with the object. Each objected contained dimensions of meaning that were individualized to the daughters unique personality characteristics, her relationship with her mother, her mothers personality and personal history. An analysis of the participants responses and reflections illuminated how physical objects provided a means by which the adult daughter remained relationally connected with her mother. Four key subthemes emerged from the analysis describing the following relational connections: 1) An everyday connection with the deceased mother; 2) mother/daughter personality characteristics; 3) a special relatedness; and 4) a generational connection. An overarching theme was how object use and the emotional importance of the object evolved over time, with some objects gaining importance and centrality in the life of the daughter, and others diminishing in their significance over time. A. Everyday Connection with the Deceased Mother For some participants the object stimulated an everyday connection with the deceased mother. This frequency of contact with the object often mirrored the mother-daughter relationship where interactions in their relationship were of a daily nature. These items were diverse and unique to the lives they had shared.

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______________________________________________________________ For one participant a set of silverware was the most substantial thing she brought back with her from her mothers out-of-country residence. In the following quote the creation of a daily connection with mother through the use of the silverware is clearly identified. Also, her narrative reveals the tensions that existed in using the silverware at first, and how this evolved over time. She explained: Its a used set of silverware. It is knives, forks of actual silver. So I took that. That was actually the heaviest and the most substantial of all the things. You know we eat with it every day- a set of silverware I have every day. In the past I was also very concerned I would lose pieces of it, but now I dont care really. I even take a spoon into the garden even though its silver and I think Ive lost one at least in the garden. Though it is in the garden where she always was. She seemed to have spent her whole time in the garden. But the silverware thats a daily, a daily connection with her. I think its meaningful in that respect that I took the silverware because I am meaningfully connected to her every day.23 This example serves to illuminate how objects evolve in their use over time. It is also notable how at first the silverware was not allowed into the daughters garden for fear that she would lose pieces of it there. This protectiveness diminished significantly over time, allowing the silverware to be used where needed. B. Mother and Mother/Daughter Personality Characteristics As noted above, for some participants the presence and use of the object appeared to stimulate accessibility to defining personality characteristics of the mother. Of note, these particular personality characteristics were also characteristics that some of the women were beginning to identify in themselves. Thus the physical objects were particularly meaningful as a reflection of the interconnectedness or mutuality of the daughters and the mothers personality traits. For one daughter, a small round pink alabaster container allowed access to dimensions of her mothers personality which were very important to her. The participant described how this alabaster container represented her mothers sweetness, beauty, elegance and daintiness. Thus, her mothers way of being was evoked when she was with this container, and she attached herself to the container in a way that elicited mother within. She elaborated:

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______________________________________________________________ The containers more special because it is pretty and sweet like my Mom. It always sat on her dresser and she put her little jewelry in it. To me, it was always where Mom was. Its so typical of the colors she liked. To me its got a beauty - I wish it wasnt broken, but, it reminds me very much of Mom. To me it has a kind of elegance to it that would be her.24 Objects could also represent suppressed or unexpressed personality characteristics of the mother. One participant described how, upon the encouragement of an older sister, she had picked out a pin from amongst her mothers belongings. The pin was a delicate gold flower shape, set with sparkling magenta cut stones. For her, the pin had come to represent dimensions of her mothers personality that were not always accessible to this daughter, or indeed to her mother, because of the powerful influence of her mothers domineering and abusive husband. She stated: I think for me it reminded me of my Moms heart because in my Moms heart of hearts I think she was a very glittery woman, but that got lost along the way when you have 9 kids and you live with a very domineering man for 72 years. It reminded me of my moms heart, that special part in the middle where she just could have shone.25 When reflecting on her mothers potential glitter and capacity to shine, the pin not only allowed this participant access to these suppressed dimensions of her mothers personality, but it also became a symbol of her own desire to shine. The pin allowed the daughter access to the shining and lightness that were longed-for dimensions of her own personality, but which often remained elusive to her behind more powerful feelings of isolation and depression. She described how acquaintances would remark on how she would light up when she wore her mothers pin. Her experience of vibrance and freedom allowed her to define herself differently and these feelings were accessed through the pins presence. C. Special Relatedness Repeatedly, in the daughters interviews physical objects that elicited maternal memories of togetherness and relational capacity where highly valued. Often this relatedness was experienced as a child, although not exclusively. Therefore special relatedness with mother emerged as a key theme. Objects representative of this theme were very diverse. However many were linked in some way to either food preparation or food celebration. Thus, special relatedness with mother was often inextricably linked to food,

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______________________________________________________________ which was perhaps not altogether unusual when considering the mothers lives in a socio-historical cultural context. One participant shared: I have a container in my cupboard that was hers, a plastic container with icing sugar in it with a little tin cup, a one cup measuring cup. A very long time after Mom died I couldnt use that measuring cup. And I kind of had forgotten about it and then one day I needed icing sugar and I went up there in the cupboard and I brought it down and I started to cry. Because that cup, I always remember it being a part of my life with Mom. It was Moms cup. Ill never be in the kitchen with my Mom again, ever. That cup, when Im baking, Im with that cup, and its like Im baking with her again in the kitchen. Its like a little piece of that time can be revisited. That specialness, just because thats the cup she used all the time.26 The tin measuring cup was ever present in her life with her mother and continued to be ever present now in her life without her. It allowed her access to memorable times shared with mother and to a feeling of being with her Mom when she used it. Their special relatedness, their connection in the kitchen, was revisited through its use. The tin-measuring cup also reflected an evolution of object use. The participant identified how for a very long time after her mother died she could not use the measuring cup, however it had now become a measuring device which she used whenever she baked. Its significance evolved over time, becoming a treasured object with the passage of time. D. Generational Significance The analysis revealed a strong generational theme for several participants. The objects not only linked the daughters relationally to their mothers, but to their mothers ancestors as well. This sense of connection and lineage to ancestry influenced the significance of physical objects, giving certain physical objects prominence in the mourning process. For one woman this generational attachment was symbolized in a photograph of a rural homestead that had been her mothers childhood home. This photograph was prominently displayed in her hallway and was identified as a very important physical object to her. She shared: Thats where Mom was born. Its a beautiful big farm. It has big pillars out in front and a big circular driveway, and the property all around. There were horses. I can remember going there and having a wonderful time. The feelings that

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______________________________________________________________ come from that place are all the smells from the kitchen, the parlor. Mom was so happy there. Its all just a fascinating place. The picture brings me back to the wonderment of being a kid on a farm and having your Mom and Dad take you to this place. Mom laughed there, and I can see it was all just magical. The memories are of warm people, happy things and easier times.27 Another participant, a textile artist, confirmed the generational significance in a vest she had designed. She offered: So a lot of these bits that are embroidered onto this leather are from my Mom, my Grandmother, and my Mother-inlaw. There are pieces of jewelry that are from different women in my life here. There is a lizard on here that was my Mothers. She had this lizard in her cosmetic drawer and the lizard was just always there. So anyway, I brought the lizard more to protect it, or keep it constant I suppose. When I was creating this vest I thought, the lizard will go there [at the midpoint of the left side of the vest over the participants heart] I think this is the right place for it. Its at home. It belongs there.28 The vest also had glass beads sewn into it which were the participants maternal grandmothers. In addition, she had added ivory and jade which belonged to her husbands stepmother, along with other decorative items from her husbands grandmother and her husbands mother. It was described as a womens vest, an artistic work in progress. It was not a completed piece, because it was still being influenced by the generations of women who would come to be sources of attachment for this woman. She explained, Things are literally placed on here as attachments. Because thats the kind of piece it is. This narrative identifies this participants creation of a textile piece that symbolically incorporated and represented many of the significant women across generations who have influenced and sustained her life. It also identifies the meaning of maternal constancy which the lizard has come to portray. The meaning of the vest suggests a mothers constancy and a multiplicity of female generational attachments. 4. Discussion The present study was undertaken in order to explore the function and use of material objects (possessions) by midlife daughters who had lost their mother. The meaning of the use of objects in mourning processes was

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______________________________________________________________ sought. The analysis of transcribed interviews confirmed the existence of object use and that these objects played an important positive role in negotiating maternal grief thus challenging the notion that object use is often an obstacle in a mourning process or indicative of pathological complicated grief processes. There is much congruence between this studys findings and the existing contributions in the literature that address female development. The relational nature of the use of physical objects in mourning is in concert with the work of Jean Baker Miller and Nancy Chodorow who highlight the importance of womens contributions to the overall emotional and intellectual growth of others, and female development specifically.29 It can also be suggested that the mothers everyday presence, her creation of special relatedness, the influence of her own personality, and her honoring of her ancestry, are dimensions of relatedness that have influenced and profoundly shaped the daughters self-development. Thus, the fact that these dimensions of relatedness appear in the daughters narratives about object use in mourning is understandable as they mirror dimensions of what had been maternally offered through an interactive relatedness with her mother throughout a lifetime. Diane Lutovichs narrative account of midlife womens maternal losses also confirmed relatedness as an important dimension of female mourning at midlife. According to Lutovich some of the work of mourning is the construction of a relationship with the deceased that continues to meet the needs of the daughter who is left behind.30 Although this narrative account did not identify how the construction of this post-death relationship would be achieved, it is suggested that the use of relationally-associated objects in mourning may assist in the construction of this post-death relatedness which may ultimately assist women in the internalized transformation of their primary attachment bonds. In summary, the findings of this study support the use of physical objects for women who are mourning as it is evident that such use facilitates accessibility to internalized dimensions of maternal relatedness which are identified as comforting and soothing to the mourner. 5. Conclusion This study has provided illumination regarding the phenomena of object use in mourning for midlife women who have lost their mothers. The roles and meanings of physical objects were as diverse as the objects themselves, however the diversity of roles and meanings could be understood within the dimensions of relatedness that their use invoked. Indeed, the use of physical objects seemed to provide a means to access dimensions of maternal relatedness that otherwise remained elusive. In this manner physical objects seemed to provide a means for the continuation of relatedness now

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______________________________________________________________ psychically transformed. Physical objects vitally linked the daughters to their first primary relationship, a relationship that was gone in its former construction, and which was now demanding an internal psychic transformation and ultimate reconstruction. Indeed, there was a dynamic tension in the use of objects that existed within each of these participants. This tension was very much related to holding on and letting go. There were objects that were very much clung to in desperate attempts to symbolically cling to mother and objects that were ultimately released to the processes of internalization. All of object use was in the service of the daughters needs at the time and all were creative endeavors that temporarily supplied that which was psychically demanded. Ultimately, it seemed that for most participants the use of physical objects in mourning facilitated the construction and formation of a different maternal relatedness, a relatedness which primarily existed on the inside, where the maternal accessing, internal dialogue, and the internalized relationship continued. Of course, the former living relationship is gone, but in its place there emerges a new relatedness, a relatedness that for many of the women is shaped and guided by object use.

Notes
1

2 3 4 5 6 7 8

10

11

V. Volkan, Linking Objects and Linking Phenomenon: A Study of the Forms, Metapsychology and Therapy of Complicated Mourning, International Universities Press, New York, 1981, p. 20. Ibid, p. 20. Ibid, p. 26. Ibid, p. 20. Ibid, p. 90. Ibid, p. 25. Ibid, p. 367. D. Winnicott, Playing and Reality, Tavistock/Routledge Publications, London, 1994, p. 104. D. Winnicott, Collected Papers: Through Pediatrics to Psycho-Analysis, Tavistock Publications, London, 1958, p. 32. D. Klass, Solace and Immortality: Bereaved Parents Continuing Bond with their Children, Death Studies, vol. 17, 2003. p. 353-354. Silverman, P., S. Nickman and J. Worden, Detachment Revisited: The Construction of a Dead Parent, American Journal of Orthopsychiatry, vol. 62, 1992, p. 494-503.

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12

13 14

15 16 17 18

19 20

21

22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29

30

I. Wheeler, The Role of Linking Objects in Parental Bereavement, Omega, vol. 38 (4), 1999, p. 292-293. Ibid, p. 294. Moss, M., N. Resch and S. Moss, The Role of Gender in Middle-Aged Childrens Respnses to Parent Death, Omega, vol. 35 (1), 1997, p.43. Ibid, p. 55. Ibid, p. 55. Ibid, p. 59. J. Douglas, Patterns of Change Following Parent Death In Midlife Adults, Omega, vol. 22 (2), 1990, p. 123. Ibid, p. 136-137. Moss, M., N. Resch & S. Moss, The Role of Gender in Middle-aged Childrens Responses to Parent Death, Omega, vol. 35 (1), 1997. Crabtree, B. and W. Miller, Doing Qualitative Research, Sage Publications, London, 1999, p. 179. Ibid, p. 190. Participant # 4. Participant # 7. Participant #10. Participant # 6. Participant # 2. Participant # 9. J. Miller, Toward a New Psychology of Women, Beacon Press, Boston, 1986. p. 67; N. Chodorow, Feminism and Psychoanalytic Theory, Yale University Press New Haven, 1989, p. 29 D. Lutovich, Nobodys Child, Baywood, New York, 2002.

Bibliography
Chodorow, N., The Reproduction of Mothering: Psychoanalysis and the Sociology of Gender, University of California, Berkley, 1978. Feminism and Psychoanalytic Theory, Yale University Press, New Haven, 1989. Crabtree, B, and W. Miller, Doing Qualitative Research, Sage Publications, London, 1999. Cramer, D., Living Alone, Marital Status, Gender and Health, Journal of Applied Community Social Psychology, vol. 3, 1993, pp. 1-15. De Beauvoir, S., A Very Easy Death, Penguin Books, New York, 1969.

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______________________________________________________________ Deitrich, P., C. McWilliam, S. Ralyea, and A. Schweitzer, Mother-Loss: Recreating Relationship and Meaning, Canadian Journal of Nursing Research, vol 31, (2), 1999, pp. 77-101. Douglas, J., Patterns of Change Following Parent Death in Midlife Adult, Omega, vol. 22, 1990, pp. 123-137. Edelman, H., Motherless Daughters: The Legacy of Loss, Addison-Wesley Publishing Company, Mass, 1994. Lutovich, D., Nobodys Child, Baywood, New York. 2002. Miller, J., Toward A New Psychology of Women, 2nd edn., Beacon Press, Boston, 1986, Psychoanalysis and Women, Brunner/Mazel, New York, 1978. Moss, M., N. Resch, and S. Moss, The Role of Gender in Middle-age Childrens Responses to Parent Death, Omega, vol. 35, 1997, pp. 43-65. Moss, S., R. Rubinstein, and M. Moss, Middle-aged Sons Reactions to Fathers Death, Omega, vol. 34, 1997, pp. 259-277. Parkes, C., Guidelines for Conducting Ethical Bereavement Research, Death Studies, vol. 19, 1995, pp. 171-181. Popek, P., and A. Scharlack, Adult Daughters Relationship with their Mothers and Reactions to the Mothers Deaths, Journal of Women and Aging, vol. 3, 1991, pp. 79-95. Silverman, P., S. Nickam, and J. Worden, Detachment Revisited: The Childs Reconstruction of a Dead Parent, American Journal of Orthopsychiatry, vol. 62, 1992, pp.494-503. Stroebe, M., New Directions in Bereavement Research: Exploration of Gender Differences, Palliative Medicine, vol.12, 1998, pp.5-12. Volkan. M., More on linking objects, in I. Gerber, W. Alfred, A. Kutscher, D. Battin, A. Arkin, amd I. Goldber, eds., Perspectives on Bereavement, Arno Press, New York, 1979, pp.194-203. Volkan, V., Linking Objects and Linking Phenomenon, International Universities Press, New York, 1981. Wheeler, I., The Role of Linking Objects in Parental Bereavement, Omega, vol. 38, 1999, pp. 289-296. Winnicott, D., Transitional Objects and Transitional Phenomena, The International Journal of Psychoanalyis, vol. 34, 1953, pp.89-97 Collected Paper, Tavistock Publications, London, 1958. Playing and Reality, Routledge Publications, London, 1994.

Laura Lewis PhD is Assistant Professor at The School of Social Work, Kings University College, London, Ontario, Canada.

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Judith Belle Brown PhD works at The Department of Family Medicine, Schulich School of Medicine and Dentistry, The University of Western Ontario, and Kings University College London, Ontario.

Suffering, Suicide, Euthanasia

The Ethics of Physician Assisted Suicide: A New Approach Lloyd Steffen


Abstract The direct involvement of physicians in helping patients die, either through euthanasia or assisted suicide, is rarely authorized but heavily rule-governed when it is. This paper will argue that the rare and rule-governed practice of limiting but not absolutely prohibiting physician involvement in helping patients die evokes a practical approach to moral reflection and analysis that is best modeled in what is known as the just war tradition. Just war thinking, I argue, is a tradition that contains within it an actual ethic that the tradition itself has obscured. I extract this ethic to gain access to a practical mode of ethical reasoning and analysis that avoids problems associated with Kantian absolutism and utilitarian relativity regarding principles. The paper will look at how this ethic can be extracted and applied to the issue of physician assisted suicide. To bolster the case for the practicality of this ethical approach, I shall consider the Oregon Death With Dignity Act. This law, I argue, actually relied upon and implicitly appealed to this just war-related ethic in the development and presentation of the formal statute that functions today to guide an instance of legalized rare but rulegoverned physician assisted suicide.

Keywords Just War Tradition, Just War Ethics, Physician Assisted Suicide, Death with Dignity Act.

The direct involvement of physicians in helping patients die, either through euthanasia or assisted suicide, is rare both in practice and as a matter of legal authorization. Where it is authorized, it is heavily rule-governed. This paper will argue that the rare and rule-governed practice of limiting but not absolutely prohibiting such physician involvement invokes a commonplace and eminently practical approach to moral reflection and analysis, one that is perhaps most familiar in what is known as the just war tradition. This paper will argue that if we examine the just war tradition we can find embedded within it an actual ethic that the tradition itself has obscured. That ethic gives structure and normative value to a more general rare but rule governed approach to moral reflection; and that ethic is, I claim, as an ethic, applicable to any moral issue or ethical inquiry. By extracting this ethic, we gain access to a practical mode of ethical reasoning

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______________________________________________________________ and analysis that avoids problems associated with Kantian absolutism and utilitarian ends justify the means susceptibility. The paper will look at how this ethic can be extracted and applied to the issue of physician assisted suicide. To bolster the case for the practicality of this ethical approach, I shall consider the Oregon Death With Dignity Act. This law, I argue, actually relied upon and implicitly appealed to this just war-related ethic in the development and presentation of the formal statute that functions today to guide an instance of legalized rare but rule-governed physician assisted suicide. 1. The Ethic Embedded in the Just War Tradition The just war tradition is familiarly known through various criteria that establish justice concerns around the application of force in conflict situations. The jus ad bellum criteria governing the justification for using force include: 1. legitimate authority 2. just cause 3. right intention and its announcement 4. last resort 5. reasonable hope of success and 6. preservation of values that otherwise could not be preserved. Two other criteria, proportionality in application of force (weaponry) and non-combatant immunity, govern conduct once use of force is applied - the jus in bello criteria. Although these criteria are related to justice, they do not of themselves constitute an ethic. Any ethic that would make claim to advancing goodness in accordance with the requirements of practical reason will necessarily attend to such concerns as impartiality, universality, benevolence, and the articulation of some set of normative principles. The just war criteria in and of themselves do not establish an ethic in these terms, but a simple adjustment and repositioning of the just war criteria can allow us to discern an ethic related to the use of force. The just war tradition can be said to make an implicit appeal to a normative idea , a foundational action guide, or what I like to call a moral presumption, which is not articulated in the tradition. Extracting this normative guide and positioning the criteria of justice in relation to it yields a coherent ethic, and I would articulate this foundationally critical moral presumption this way: War is bad. Resorting to force to settle conflicts is never an optimal choice, so that when considering conflict situations the normative action guide is this: force ought ordinarily not be used to settle conflicts. With this moral presumption articulated, the criteria of just war fall into place to guide moral reflection on possible exceptions to this widely accepted, normative - although not absolute-prohibition on - or presumption against - using force to settle conflicts. The just war tradition provides the exemplar for this distinctive way of moral thinking. Invoking a presumption necessarily eschews moral absolutes and the difficulties of moral absolutism, which arise in Kantian deontological thinking. Asserting a non-absolute yet principled normative

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______________________________________________________________ action guide at the core of this ethic also avoids the most difficult aspects of utilitarian thinking, including its question-begging position on establishing the good - whose good?; its proclivity to reducing ethics to majority rule, possibly tyrannical rule; and the difficult problems attendant to predicting consequences. The just war ethic begins formally by asserting that force ought ordinarily be used to settle conflicts, an uncontroversial normative claim acceptable to all reasonable people of good will. It then establishes justice concerns - the criteria - that serve to guide moral reflection as it considers the possibility that in certain situations the presumption against the use of force may be justifiably lifted. Resting the criteria of just war on the articulated moral presumption that force ought ordinarily not be used to settle conflicts allows us to talk about a just war ethic in distinction from the just war tradition. The just war tradition has focused on war and justifications for war, and it has been used at various times cynically and tendentiously to justify military action rather than assert than assert the value of preserving peace and upholding the value of constraining force. The just war ethic, on the other hand, rests on a practical, and universally acceptable, moral presumption that embodies benevolence and goodness. The ethic, as it affirms the value of preserving and advancing peace, then makes uses of force difficult exceptions to that rule - the rule that force ought not to be used to settle conflicts. This just war ethic has always been in the background of the tradition, but failure to articulate it has distorted the tradition. Reclaiming and articulating the ethic embedded in the just war tradition allows us to see a mode of moral reasoning that attends to concerns for non-absolutist universality, impartiality, benevolence and normative concerns. As such this ethic provides a model of moral reasoning that should be applicable to any issue or problem where moral meaning is at stake. That is, in fact, the case, and to support this claim and to demonstrate the applicability of this ethic beyond the issue of the use of force, I turn to the issue of physician assistance in helping patients die. 2. Euthanasia and Physician Assisted Suicide The kind of ethic modeled in what I here called the just war ethic distinguished, now, from the just war tradition - can be teased out by considering two practical realities related to physician involvement in helping patients to die. First is that such involvement is rare both in practice and as a matter of legal authorization. That only a few countries provide open and legal authorization for physician assistance in helping patients die - for example, Switzerland, Belgium, the Netherlands, and the State of Oregon in the United States - testifies to its rarity.1 Secondly is that empirical fact that where such involvement is authorized, it is heavily rule-governed.

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______________________________________________________________ That physician involvement is rare suggests a suppressed moral presumption akin in form to that in just war theory, but with respect to this issue, the normative but non-absolutist action guide might look like this: Physician involvement in helping patients dies ostensibly reflects a conflict between a physician acting in the best interests of the patient and the physicians traditional role as healer and professional dedicated to preserving and enhancing the lives of persons. Since the preservation of life is a preeminent, although not absolute, value for physicians, ordinarily physicians ought not participate in actions that directly lead to the deaths of patients. This establishes the moral presumption underwriting an ethic of just euthanasia or just physician assisted suicide. That such involvement is rare in practice - and even rarer as a matter of legal authorization - testifies to the prevailing strength of a moral presumption against physicians directly assisting patients to die. But this presumption is a presumption and not an absolute prohibition, so the next step in this construction of an ethic on this issue is to establish rule-governing action guides, conditions, or criteria that if satisfied would make an exception allowable. Although my concern here is moral rather than legal, I note that appeals to conditions and criteria - reflecting moral concerns - is familiar in law and legal cases. Let me note just two examples, which, being drawn from widely disparate cultures, at least suggest the universality of the ethic I am presenting. My examples are from the Netherlands and Japan. Holland legalized euthanasia in 2002, making the Netherlands the first country to allow doctors to kill terminally ill patients facing unbearable suffering. In the section of the statute dealing specifically with physician involvement, the law imposes on physicians the following conditions: a. the physician must be convinced the patients request is voluntary, well-considered and lasting. b. the patients suffering must be determined to be unremitting and unbearable c. the patient must be fully informed of the situation and prospects d. the patient and physician both conclude that no reasonable alternative is available e. another physician, at least one, must be consulted f. the procedure must be carried out in a medical appropriate fashion (Section 293 (2) of Dutch Criminal Code).2 A high court in Japan, to consider a second example, approved active euthanasia in 1962, but in a 1995 Yokahama District court case a doctor who helped a terminally ill patient facing imminent death die received a two year suspended sentence for murder. The court invoked conditions

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______________________________________________________________ under which euthanasia, and hence physician involvement in helping a patient die, would be permitted in Japan: 1. 2. 3. 4. the patient is suffering in unbearable physical pain death is inevitable and imminent all possible measures have been taken to eliminate the pain with no other treatment left open the patient has clearly expressed his or her will to approve the shortening of his or her life.

The Judge declared that the doctor in this case did not meet the conditions since the patient had presented no clear expressions about his physical pain nor about his will to approve euthanasia. The doctor's action cannot be viewed as euthanasia and represents illegal termination of the patient's life.3 Although these examples are presented in a legal context, both reflect a moral concern about informed consent, and patient autonomy and articulation of intentionality, and the occasion for even addressing the issue of physician involvement is the prospect of imminent patient death and intractable suffering. Attention is focused on physician responsibility, and implicit in these cases is the need to keep the moral presumption that physicians ordinarily ought not help a patient die unless the conditions which would make such an action permissible are transparently - and strictly - observed, which in the Yokahama judges view, was not the case. Failure to meet the criteria for a just physician involvement yields the consequence that action to bring about the patients death ought not be done. This is a moral conclusion that, in this case, coincides with the legal determination. 3. Just Physician Assisted Suicide (PAS) The State of Oregons Death With Dignity Act, controversial as it is, exemplifies in an extraordinary way how the just war ethic model applies to an issue beyond war and the use of force. The normative moral position that ordinarily physicians ought not participate in a patients suicide is apparent in the fact that in the United States only one of fifty states has provided legal guidelines to govern that possibility (PAS). The presumption against such involvement is glaringly present in the absence of legal statutes granting permission for physician involvement in any other state jurisdictions, and recognition of the presumption is apparent in the Oregon statute itself due to the large number of restrictive definitions and conditions placed on one who would pursue the PAS option under the Oregon law. There are at least 72 restrictions or conditions mentioned in the statute. A moral presumption against physician assisted suicide explains the widespread refusal to grant legal authorization for such involvement. The presumption against physician involvement in

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______________________________________________________________ actions leading directly to the deaths of patients can thus be said to be present, widely accepted, and operationalized by both professional expectations4 and guidelines and, in many jurisdictions, by explicit legal prohibitions. Were reasonable people of good will open to the possibility that the moral presumption against PAS could be overruled in certain cases, the conditions we might come up with as general headings of moral concern could take the following form: The presumption against PAS may be lifted in a specific case if: 1. 2. 3. 4. The patient makes the request fully informed of his or her situation and prospects. The patients condition is terminal and death is imminent to a medical certainty. The patients request is not prompted by depression, so that a psychological evaluation is necessary. The resources of palliative care will prove to be limited and not provide a dignified death or prove fully efficacious in the final period of the end stage. The patients autonomy is to be respected throughout and patients can withdraw the request for PAS at any point in the process. The physician who participates must be willing to participate and have no mental reservations about involvement. There must be no coercion placed on the physician or patient by relevant or interested parties: family, the State, other medical authorities, insurance companies. The actual means of dispatch must be swiftly acting and painless Laws must protect the physician who follows these guidelines from any prosecution for wrongful death, and the family of the patient must be protected from those who would seek to benefit from PAS, like an insurance company that will not pay a death benefit in case of a suicide. PAS must be approached as a last resort that is designed to preserve the value of autonomous decision-making in the face of imminent and intractably painful death.5

5. 6.

7. 8.

9.

This listing of criteria for a just PAS, to make connection with the just war ethical model, could be done differently. In other words, these general justice-related headings could be modified, edited and even streamlined, but my thought is that these conditions would provide general justice related headings under which the 72 different qualifications, restrictions, authorizations and conditions in the Oregon stature could fit. That the Oregon law yields a Just PAS ethic in the relevant sense I have been discussing could be made most explicitly by simply listing the 72

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______________________________________________________________ conditions, but this would lead to an extremely cumbersome ethics tool. In general, however, if one allows that a moral presumption governs PAS and that PAS is not subject to an absolute prohibition, as would of course be the case if argued from certain religious perspectives, then these criteria for just PAS specify conditions that both authorize and morally sanction PAS in those rare situations where the rules governing an allowable exception are satisfied. Recalling the court decision in Japan mentioned earlier, it is also worth noting that this ethic provides not only a framework but also tools for moral analysis, which then serve as the basis of critique for any act of PAS. Such criteria of just physician involvement were used in the Japanese case to analyze a failure to satisfy the test of just physician involvement, and although that case involved legal euthanasia, the process of critique would be the same were the issue under consideration PAS. This just PAS ethic establishes sufficient back-up and bureaucratic reporting on all the steps listed above that failure to meet any of the criteria above should put an immediate halt to any PAS project. Furthermore, this construction of an ethic of just PAS eschews absolutism, certainly that of a Kantian deontologist, yet is sufficiently qualified and conformed to moral constraints in light of a presumption against suicide as well as PAS, that it authorizes PAS only on condition that it be both rare6 and heavily rule-governed. It participates in a basic ethical approach, exemplified by the just war ethics model, that would allow that this way of construing PAS could certainly be offered as a universally appropriate way to think about PAS, one that could be offered impartially, aimed at benevolence and patient-centered care. It affirms and asserts a normative view that ordinarily PAS is not something a physician should engage in - and the presumption against such activity can only be lifted if justice criteria are satisfied, which, in the actual Oregon Death With Dignity Act, amount to 72 conditions, restrictions, guidelines and requirements. 4. Conclusion This way of approaching the ethics of PAS is controversial for those who are opposed to PAS absolutely or on principle, the same way a pacifist might object to the prospect of a just war. But if one eschews the possibility of moral purity and considers the moral life to be lived amid complexity, this mode of operation in the ethical terrain of difficult and tragic life and death situations, opens an approach to ethical reflection, analysis and evaluation that expresses practical reason in its full engagement. And more than that. The fact that conditions are articulated to constrain action and preserve the integrity of the normative moral presumption against PAS while offering the possibility that in certain cases PAS might be permissible, urges people into the realm of conversation, even the public forum, to deliberate the

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______________________________________________________________ permissibility of this particular criterion or to critique whether a particular criterion can be or actually was satisfied. In this sense the structure of this approach to moral thinking, rather than resolving particulars, invites deliberation. As a form of citizen engagement, this approach to moral deliberation reflects strength of democracy rather than debilitates it or shields persons from moral decision-making by the assertion of moral absolutes. Admittedly, this approach will not convince anyone who is already opposed to PAS on some absolutist principle. But the advantage of taking this approach is that, as the Oregon law shows, a way of moral thinking is advanced that makes the whole enterprise of moral thinking accessible and rational, while reflecting the reality that people, even Oregon lawmakers, actually rely on this way of approaching moral problems, even if the appeal is made implicitly in the practical task of devising a legal regulation. The fact is that the Oregon Death with Dignity Act conforms law to a mode of moral thinking, and the law that actually resulted reflect this mode of ethical thinking. Although my title says this approach to moral thinking is new, it is by now certainly clear that it is not new. But becoming aware of this way of thinking as a generally applicable mode of moral thinking applicable to any issue is, I think, not familiar. Extracting from the just war ethic a more universal and general ethical approach, making it available for development around other ethics issues and extending it beyond just war, may represent a new ethical approach for some. For ethical theorists, this approach to ethics serves as a reminder of an overlooked ethics tool in our traditions of thought, which to ignore or refuse to put to work in our ethics conversations in the public arena impoverishes the attempt to engage practical reason in the creative work of ethical reflection.

Notes
1

In the United States, only one state, Oregon, in a law passed in 1997 and affirmed by the Supreme Court in January 2006, authorizes physicianassisted suicide only; Switzerland in a 1941 law permits physician and nonphysician assisted suicide only; Belgium in 2002 authorized 'euthanasia' but does not define the method; and since April 2002 but permitted by the courts since l984, the Netherlands authorized voluntary euthanasia and physicianassisted suicide. 2 http://archives.cnn.com/2002/WORLD/europe/04/01/netherlands. euthanasia/ 3 http://www.religioustolerance.org/euth_wld.htm.

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4

Many professional medical organizations, including the American Medical Association, have explicitly stated opposition to physician assisted suicide. 5 Since I am arguing that this way of moral thinking is accessible, I share that these conditions are not drawn from a professional ethics resource but from undergraduate students in a Bioethics course I taught. The set up was to describe, first, the just war ethic-the criteria of just war attached to the moral presumption against using force. The in-class chore was to specify conditions on the moral presumption that ordinarily physicians ordinarily ought not agree to participate in the direct killing of a patient or a patients suicide. 6 See http://www.oregon.gov/DHS/ph/pas/docs/year9.pdf. Oregon reports about 30,000 deaths a year. In the eight years Oregon had this law, 292 individuals died under its terms. The Oregon Death With Dignity Act can be located at this site on the web, although the source used in this paper is The Oregon Death With Dignity Act, in T. A. Mappes and D. DeGraza, Biomedical Ethics, 6th edn, Mc-Graw Hill, Boston, 2006, pp. 420-25.

Bibliography
Angell, M., The Supreme Court and Physician-Assisted Suicide: The Ultimate Right, New England Journal of Medicine, January 2, 1977, Re-printed in Taking Sides: Clashing Views on Bioethical Issues, 12th edn, Ed. C. Levine, McGraw-Hill, Dubuque, IA, 2007, pp. 88-97. Mappes, T. A., and D. DeGraza, Biomedical Ethics, 6th edn., Mc-Graw Hill, Boston, 2006. Steffen, L., Life/Choice: The Theory of Just Abortion, The Pilgrim Press, Cleveland, 1994.

Lloyd Steffen is Professor of Religion Studies and University Chaplain at Lehigh University in Bethlehem, PA, 18015 USA. He is author of six books, most recently Holy War, Just War: Exploring the Moral Meaning of Religious Violence (Lanham, MD: Rowman & Littlefield, 2007).

When People Choose to Die: Does It Matter What We Call It? Gavin J. Fairbairn
Abstract Our media are awash with stories about people who want to arrange their deaths with the blessing of the legal system. The wishes of these people are important, because they concern the balance between life and death; suffering and release; care and its lack; the public good and the private will, and between liberty and constraint. Most authors in this area tend to focus on the philosophical and ethical differences between those who believe in the value of life so much that they cannot conceive of a situation in which a life could cease to have positive value, and those who believe that the value of life must be determined by those living it (or dying it). By contrast, I focus on language, arguing that it not only matters what we call it when people choose to die, but what we call it when they act in ways that look as if they may have wanted to die, even if they did not, in fact, intend to do so. After that I argue against the use of the term assisted suicide to refer to occasions where people take steps to arrange their deaths.

Keywords Language, Ethics, Suicide, Assisted Suicide, Euthanasia, Cosmic Roulette, Gestured Suicide.

I want to raise some questions about two human phenomena - suicide and euthanasia, in which people choose to die and take steps to arrange their deaths. I have had a little experience of situations in which people wanted to die to avoid the dreadful deaths they foresaw for themselves as the result of painful terminal illness. Indeed it was meeting such a person, who was subsequently helped to arrange her death both by her partner and by the health worker who provided the necessary medication that first persuaded me to move away from a position that was totally opposed to euthanasia. Though conservative by the standards of many of those who argue in favour of the right to euthanasia, my view which I have discussed elsewhere, allows that in some very extreme circumstances euthanasia is not only morally permissible, but morally required;1 however, I am against its legalisation. However, my interest in euthanasia has arisen largely as a result of philosophical exploration of real and imagined situations in which people

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______________________________________________________________ (including myself and those that I love) suffer interminably in circumstances in which medicine cannot help, except by means that would harm their autonomous personhood. By contrast, my interest in what suicide is, in the meanings it can have, and in the human experiences that can motivate a person to behave in ways that are intended to result in his death, have their roots in my experience as a practitioner in mental health. As a teacher in child and adolescent psychiatry, and as a social worker in adult psychiatry, I had significant contact with people who successfully ended their lives sometimes after a number of failed attempts to do so, and with others who tried to kill themselves, but failed to do so. In one case a service user with whom I was working was surprised to discover, after surviving a suicide bid, that she was glad to be alive (actually, in this case she survived because I intervened in rather a dramatic way in her very serious attempt to kill herself, even though, truth to tell, I thought at the time that she would have been better off dead). I also worked with many people who acted at times in ways that looked as if they were intent on dying, but who always survived sometimes so frequently that I developed the idea that perhaps, after all, death was not really their aim. Though my interests in suicide are rooted in practice and in life, they are philosophical in nature. I am, for example, interested in the range of intentions that can underpin actions that might look suicidal to others, even when they do not constitute acts by which a person intends to take his own life. I am also interested in the importance - both personal and professional, of the language that we use to label and describe such acts - both for those who engage in them, and for those who care for or support such people, and especially in the ethical importance of getting the language right. These linguistic issues are central to what I want to say in this chapter. Many years ago a friend2 and I were discussing some ideas that later appeared in my book Contemplating Suicide: the language and ethics of selfharm3 in which I began to develop a natural history of suicide and other related phenomena. My friend - a psychotherapist, was sceptical about my aim to elucidate the conceptual landscape of suicidal self-harm, and to develop a richer language for speaking about the destructive acts that people perform with themselves as targets. After all, he said, It doesnt much matter whether you call suicide, suicide or cotton socks, its still the same thing. He was mistaken in thinking that my business amounted to little more than playing with words. He was also mistaken in thinking that it made no difference, because the way in which we think about suicide and other selfharming acts is affected, both by the labels we use to refer to them, and by the expectations to which such labels give rise. In any case what I am concerned with is only partly about sorting out the labels. More importantly, it is about encouraging clinicians and lay people alike to explore the wide range of possibilities, both moral and psychological, for meanings and

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______________________________________________________________ reasons and intentions that might underpin each individuals self-harm or suicide 1. The Language of Suicide and Suicidal Self Harm Suicide is devastating. It is an assault on our ideas of what life is about; that is why we find it so difficult to contemplate the possibility that someone we love or care about could want to end everything by arranging his death. For the person who dies, suicide solves the problems he is experiencing. However, it does so at the expense of his ability to experience anything at all. Importantly, it also so at the expense of pain to those he leaves behind, because suicide inevitably harms those who survive the suicide of a loved one.4 Suicide creates emotional and ethical ripples that affect everyone who knew the person who dies. Some of whom may suffer the adverse effects of closeness to his self inflicted death for many years and perhaps even forever. It is important to note that the circle of those who are affected by a suicide is not limited to family members and close friends and associates, but spreads rather wide, taking in individuals whose acquaintance with the deceased person was much less close. I have seen, at first hands, the effects that suicide can have on others, and I know from personal experience and from experiences shared by friends, colleagues, students and workshop participants, that dealing with the aftermath of a suicidal death is unpleasant and distressing, not only for the relatives, but also for the professionals who are involved. It is because of the pain that suicide typically causes others that I think, in general, that it is not only a bad idea, but morally wrong. And yet a growing number of people in this country and in others, argue in favour of the right to assist another in suicide, and more importantly, for the right of those who wish to die, to be assisted in suiciding. Or at rate that is what seems to be the case. Actually, I think that for most of those involved, to talk of assisted suicide is a mistake, and the right for which they campaign, is in fact the right to euthanasia. One of the reasons that connoisseurs of any area of human experience can understand and appreciate that area better than those who do not share their expert knowledge and understanding, is that as connoisseurs they have access to its meanings and values, through its specialised language. This allows them not only to taste, look, touch, listen, feel, experience and appreciate in different and more precise ways, but to communicate more clearly about their area of connoisseurship. That is why a connoisseur of fine wine, antique English furniture, art or music is likely to be able to convey her opinion of a glass of Chablis, a Chippendale chair, a painting by Chagall or a Charpentier Chorale more succinctly and more precisely than someone whose acquaintance with these things is more slight. And it is why those

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______________________________________________________________ who do not have access to an areas specialised vocabulary are likely to be forever cut off from understanding it in the same way that its initiates can. There are very few connoisseurs of suicide - even, strangely enough, among clinicians and others whose work regularly brings them into contact with suicide and other acts of self-harm that are not aimed at death, though they may look to outsiders as if they were, and may have been enacted with the intention in mind that others would see things in this way. In the case of lay people, this is hardly surprising, since being able to discriminate between different varieties of life endangering self-harm is not, for them, a high priority. However, in the case of those whose work makes contact with suicide and other related phenomena more likely, this thinness of language is more surprising. It is also a source of both practical and ethical concern, because having an inadequate language in terms of which to speak and think about suicide and related phenomena means that our ability to understand and relate helpfully to those who engage in such acts, is significantly reduced. Unless we learn to speak in more nuanced ways about the destructive acts that people perform with themselves as targets, whether they end up alive or dead, we are in danger of misunderstanding both them and their acts, and thus of acting towards them in ways that are inappropriate and hence unethical. We have available only a few words in which to speak of the whole range of lethal and potentially lethal self harming acts in which people engage. Other than suicide we have words and phrases like parasuicide; failed suicide and threatened suicide. Though parasuicide began life as a label for a particular species of non-fatal suicidal action, some people now use it as a generic term for occasions when a person apparently tries to kill himself, which are sometimes labeled as failed suicide, but are more often referred to using the unsatisfactory term attempted suicide. A number of other authors agree both that there is a need to refurbish the conceptual landscape and terminology with which we approach the problems of suicide and other related phenomena, and that attempted suicide is a problematic term. For example, Kreitman5 writes: there are conceptual issues which arise at the very beginning of any study of suicidal behaviour and which must be clarified if any progress is to be made. Even a term like suicide is by no means free of ambiguity; the position is far worse with that form of behaviour which is still widely, loosely and regrettably designated as attempted suicide. There is no doubt that some people who end their lives, intended to do so because life for them was so bad, that they came to a conscious decision that

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______________________________________________________________ they would rather be dead. I am convinced that this was true of the mother of a client I worked with many years ago, who set fire to herself in the garden while her family ate the lunch she had just served; it was true, also, of another client who threw herself in front of a car, because she could not see a way forward with her life, separated as she was, from her daughter who lived with her father. And it was certainly true of a teenager whose story is related by Marr and Field.6 This teenager, who had been bullied, spun a coil of the copper wire that she used in making junk jewellery and, attaching it to a metal bracelet on her wrist, threw it over the 24,000 volt electric line at a nearby railway station, dying as the result of 75% burns. However, since it is clear that at least some of the apparently suicidal acts in which people engage are not aimed at death, it is important to remain aware of the possibility that a person might die as the result of his own deliberate and intentional act, and yet not be a suicide. Such a person, as I have pointed out, might have intended no more than to gesture at suicide as a way of drawing the attention of others to his distress, whether to engage their sympathy and thus enlist their support in ways that they might not have given it otherwise, or to punish them for some real or imagined offence. It is because it is clear that many people who act in apparently suicidal ways were not attempting to kill themselves, but rather to change their lives, that I think the overworked, tired and unhelpful term attempted suicide, should pensioned off and replaced by others that more accurately fit the human acts in question. A. Gestured Suicide I am thinking, for example, of the use of the term gestured suicide to refer to occasions when an individual feigns suicide by acting in a way that looks like it was aimed at death, in the hope and expectation that others will come to his aid in ways that they might not have done otherwise. Laurie Lee refers to just such a situation in his book Cider with Rosie, demonstrating remarkable insight, not only about the fact that certain people who act in what seem to be suicidal ways do not intend to die, but merely to have an effect on others, but about the fact that some people act in such ways as a matter of habit: He committed suicide more than any other man I know but always in the most reasonable manner. If he drowned himself, then the canal was dry; if he jumped down a well, so was that: and when he drank disinfectant there was always an antidote ready, clearly marked to save everybody trouble7.

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______________________________________________________________ A suicide gesture is like a one person play in which the actor creates a dramatic effect, not by killing or even attempting to kill herself, but by feigning an attempt on her life. A suicide gesturer does not aim to achieve her death, but to change her life, by changing the ways in which others act towards her. Such situations are often referred to somewhat disparagingly as if they are no more than cries for help and no doubt sometimes they are. However, it is important to realise that the actions of those who gesture suicide can be underpinned by a wide range of motivations and intentions, and that the distress of an individual who survives such an act, might be just as severe as that of a person who survives an act that was aimed at bringing death. Where a person who gestures suicide, dies as a result of his behaviour, his death is not a suicide, but a self inflicted death by accident. B. Cosmic Roulette/Cosmic Gambling I am thinking, also, of the use of the terms cosmic roulette and cosmic gambling to refer to occasions when a person acts in a way that has some possibility of ending his life, though he neither intends to live nor to die, but rather to take a gamble on the wheel of life and death. Cosmic gambles resemble suicide and may be physically identical with it. However, they have an entirely different set of possible meanings. In effect, the cosmic gambler turns to either God or the cosmos and says Do what you will. With luck he will win, whatever the outcome dead or alive. If he ends up dead, he wins, because he will no longer be suffering whatever pain and problems in living have taken him to the point of his gamble. If he ends up alive, on the other hand, he may well win, because as a result of his gamble other people are likely to rally round to support him and to offer him help; in other words, if he survives the cosmic gambler may end up better off, because rather than ending his life he improves it, by changing for the better the ways in which those with whom he lives, act towards him. The rationale behind a cosmic rouletters act is roughly this: If I die, that will be fine, because at least I wont suffering anymore, but if I survive everyone will know how I feel and maybe then theyll do something to help, so that will also be OK. Cosmic roulette comes in a number of forms. For example, in suicidal cosmic roulette the protagonist tips the odds towards the likelihood that he will die, while in whimsical cosmic roulette he does not think too carefully about the odds that his chosen method and circumstances will lead to death, but simply acts on impulse.

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______________________________________________________________ It is easy to imagine how some people might view cosmic roulette as a win-win option. However, it is important that any potential cosmic gamblers who might be reading this chapter should take account of the possibility that cosmic roulette can go horribly wrong, and that when it does the love and help and support that is attracted from others might not altogether compensate a protagonist for the fact that his act has resulted in significant and lasting physical problems. In part the problems caused by our limited lexicon for suicide and related acts, arise because too little heed is usually paid to the intentions that underpin the actions of those who act in ways that could be viewed as an attempt to kill themselves. Emphasis tends to be placed on the physical facts of the matter. That is why a person who has died as the result of a suicide gesture that has gone wrong may mistakenly be judged to have suicided, especially, for example, if she has written an apparent suicide note. It is also, incidentally, why someone whose suicide bid was unsuccessful might be viewed as having made a cry for help, rather than as having failed in a serious attempt to end his life. This might happen, for example, if his chosen method of ending his life seemed destined to fail - if, say, he chose to overdose but ingested a relatively small quantity of drugs that realistically had no chance of killing him. The point is that just because the chosen method could not succeed, this does not mean that the intention to die was not a true one. I have even known of people who have taken an overdose of vitamin pills in a serious attempt to end their lives. The words we use are ethically important, because they can affect our beliefs and understandings, and the ways in which we care for one another. Lack of clarity can lead to mistaken clinical and personal judgements. Both misconstruing (and hence mislabelling) and mislabelling (and hence misconstruing) an apparent suiciders actions can lead to inappropriate and unhelpful treatment. This is a matter of real ethical significance, because unless we develop a more sophisticated language in which to discuss the potentially self destructive acts in which people at times engage, we may mistreat those who need help as the result of their own suicidal or apparently suicidal, self-harming actions. In other words, we may treat them in ways that are unhelpful and hence unethical. It is clearly unhelpful for clinicians, or for family members, friends and colleagues, to treat a person who has acted in a way that has caused him harm, as if he intended to end his life, if he did not actually intend to do so. 2 Suicide, Assisted Suicide and Euthanasia The ongoing debate about euthanasia and assisted suicide has come to the forefront of public consciousness increasingly frequently in recent years, as more and more people who are dying dreadful deaths or anticipating doing so, publicly express their wish, not only to die sooner

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______________________________________________________________ rather than later, but to do so with the blessing of the legal system. The wishes of these people are important, because they concern the balance between life and death; between suffering and release; between care and its lack; between the public good and the private will, and between liberty and constraint. Some of those who successfully arrange their deaths, along with some of those who dont, achieve heroic status through media coverage of their stories. One example is Diane Pretty,8 a 43 year old woman suffering from Motor Neurone Disease, who went to the European Court of Human Rights in the attempt to win the right for her husband to assist in arranging her death. Mrs Pretty died in May 2003, a few days after the Court rejected her case. There is now a ready source of help in dying - in the form of the Swiss organization Dignitas, and arranging ones death seems to be becoming fashionable9 for at least some people who are suffering painful and distressing illnesses. In the UK there has been great public interest in those who take steps to arrange their death, including Reginald Crew,10 who died with Motor Neurone Disease in January 2003; Dr Anne Turner,11 from Bath, who had supranuclear palsy, a progressive and incurable degenerative disease, and died in January 2006, and Robert and Jane Stokes,12 who died with the help of Dignitas in April, 2003, causing considerable controversy, because neither was suffering from a terminal illness. Most people who discuss euthanasia and assisted suicide focus on the legal situation, and on disputes between those who believe in the value of life so much that they cannot conceive of a situation in which a life could cease to have positive value, and those who believe that the value of life must be determined by those living it (or dying it). And so what I want to say may surprise you. For example, though I intend to talk about individuals who aspire to arrange their deaths, whether or not they receive, or hope to receive help from others in doing so, I do not intend to talk about particular cases in which people have asked for euthanasia or assisted suicide. Nor do I intend to offer detailed arguments, either in favour of or against the idea that people have the right to arrange their deaths, whether by killing themselves; arranging that someone else does so, or arranging that their death is precipitated in some other way. Rather, I want to say a little about the use of the term assisted suicide to refer to an act by which a person who is suffering greatly as the result of a terminal illness hopes to achieve his death, which I think is deeply regrettable, because it blurs the distinction between suicide and euthanasia, which we might characterise like this: In suicide a person arranges his death in order to avoid a life that he does not wish to live.

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______________________________________________________________ In euthanasia a person arranges his death in order to avoid a death that he does not wish to die.

Most people with whom I share this way of distinguishing between suicide and euthanasia seem ready to accept it. Occasionally, however, I meet with questions about why I have chosen to characterise euthanasia in a way that excludes both non-voluntary and involuntary euthanasia. The reason, simply put, is that I take euthanasia to be about a good and peaceful death, and I dont believe an arranged death can be a good one unless it is decided on by the person who dies. And so what some people would refer to as involuntary or non-voluntary euthanasia, I would refer to more simply as homicide. Whereas the aim of those who suicide or want to suicide is typically to escape from life, those who enact or wish to enact euthanasia would usually prefer to continue living, but do not want to do so at the expense of suffering a death that is full of pain, indignity and distress caused by disease, or by dreadful injuries. A. Why use the term assisted suicide rather than the term euthanasia? So why would anyone use the term assisted suicide to refer to euthanasia, thus muddling these two very different human acts? Two possible explanations suggest themselves. First, it is clear that some people do so, because they do not understand the difference. This is understandable on the part of lay people who have no reason to think deeply about these things. Things are different in the case of highly qualified professionals, such as the senior doctor I recently heard on radio characterizing the difference between suicide and euthanasia in terms of who does the killing, with no mention at all of the meaning of the act for the individual who dies, or of the intentions and motivations that underpin it. Part of the problem is that people associate euthanasia with individuals who are unable to act on their own behalf. But of course it is perfectly possible for a person to be the instrument of his own death by euthanasia, just as it is possible for a person to suicide through the act of another person (whether she is driving the train that kills him, or pulls the trigger that unleashes the bullet). As my definitions of suicide and euthanasia make clear, what matters in each case is why the person wants to die, not how he dies. I first realised that euthanasia need not involve anyone other than the person who dies about twenty years ago, when I was watching a television chat show in which the audience were being given the opportunity to share their views about euthanasia. Mid-way through the discussion a young man who was living with AIDS, said that he intended to choose euthanasia when the time was right for him, and that his chosen route to death would be drugs.

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______________________________________________________________ He did not want to die slowly and suffering. His one regret was that given the state of the law, he would have to die alone, because he did not feel that it would be sensible for his family and other loved ones to be with him when he took the drugs that would kill him, or to stay with him while he died, for fear that they might be prosecuted. The second possible explanation for the use of assisted suicide to refer to occasions when euthanasia would be more appropriate, begins with the twentieth century pre-occupation with freedom, autonomy, choice and self determination, which have become central values in most developed countries. As a result of the popularity of these values some people for whom euthanasia remains tainted with thoughts of the Holocaust, might view suicide in a more positive light, because it can be viewed as the ultimate expression of these values. Given this, those who want to legalise arranged deaths would certainly have a reason to conflate euthanasia with suicide by using assisted suicide as if it was a synonym for euthanasia. B. So does it matter what we call it when people choose to die? In the early part of this chapter I drew attention to some of the problems that can be caused by the labels we use to refer to self harming acts of different kinds. In doing so I showed that it matters what we call it when people act in ways that look as if they may have wanted to die, even if they did not, in fact, intend to do so. In drawing to a close, I want to suggest that it also matters what we call it when people actually choose to die. In spite of my belief that some people who wish to die should be helped to arrange their deaths, I believe that it would be a mistake to legalise arranged dying. That is why I am unhappy about the conflation of assisted suicide and euthanasia. Not only do I think that the fashion for arranging ones death has probably been enhanced by the conflation of these two terms, I fear that it might somehow help to ignite a wave of enthusiasm - a fashion even, for the idea that choosing suicide is a good thing, whether one is ill or not, simply because it is the ultimate expression of ones right to choose and to determine the course of ones life.

Notes
1

G. J. Fairbairn, 'Enforced Death: Enforced Life, Journal of Medical Ethics, vol. 17, (3), 1991, pp.144-50. 2 J. M. M. Mair, Personal Communication, 1992. 3 G. J. Fairbairn, Contemplating Suicide: The Language and Ethics of SelfHarm, Routledge, London, 1995.

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______________________________________________________________
4

A. Wertheimer, A Special Scar: The Experiences of People Bereaved by Suicide, Routledge, London, 1991; K. Hill, The Long Sleep: Young People and Suicide, Virago, London, 1995. 5 N. Kreitman, ed., Parasuicide, John Wiley, London, 1977, p. 4. 6 N. Marr and T. Field, Bullycide: Death at Playtime, Success Unlimited, Didcot, 2001. 7 L. Lee, Cider with Rosie, Vintage, London, 2002, p. 181. 8 Diane Pretty dies, retrieved 7 September 9 2007, <http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/health/1983457.stm.html> 9 It is important to make clear that though I do not want to offend those who are asking for, or in the past have asked for, help in dying - or their families, whose situation and experience I take seriously, I really do believe that choosing to die, or campaigning for the right to be allowed to choose death, is becoming fashionable for at least some people. 10 Britons assisted suicide goes ahead, retrieved 7.September 2007, <http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/england/2674429.stm.html> 11 Clinic assists doctor's suicide, retrieved 7 September 2007, <http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/health/4625538.stm.html> 12 UK couple die at suicide clinic retrieved 7 September .9 2007, <http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk/2948365.stm.html>

Bibliography
Britons assisted suicide goes ahead, retrieved 7 September 2007, < http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/england/2674429.stm.html>. Clinic assists doctor's suicide, retrieved 7 September 2007, <http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/health/4625538.stm.html> Diane Pretty dies, retrieved 7 September 2007, <http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/health/1983457.stm.html> Fairbairn, G. J., Contemplating Suicide: The Language and Ethics of Self-Harm, Routledge, London, 1995. Fairbairn, G. J., Enforced Death: Enforced Life, Journal of Medical Ethics, vol. 17, (3), 1991, pp.144-50. Fairbairn, G. J., Enforcing Death and Enforcing Life: A Reply to Saunders and Singh, Journal of Medical Ethics, vol. 17, 1992, no. 3. Hill, K., The Long Sleep: Young People and Suicide. Virago, London, 1995. Kreitman, N., ed., Parasuicide. John Wiley, London, 1977.

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______________________________________________________________ Lee, L., Cider with Rosie, Harmondsworth, Penguin, 1959. Marr, N. and T. Field, Bullycide: Death at Playtime, Success Unlimited, Didcot, 2001. UK couple die at suicide clinic, retrieved 7 September 2007, <http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk/2948365.stm.html> Wertheimer, A., A Special Scar: The Experiences of People Bereaved by Suicide, Routledge, London, 1991.

Gavin Fairbairn is Running Stream Professor of Ethics and Language at Leeds Metropolitan University. He describes himself as a jobbing philosopher, whose concern with applied ethics arose from his career as a social worker and teacher in mental health and learning disability, long before he became a professional ethicist.

Intentional Death: Stoicism and the Debate on Suicide Petra Benske


Abstract: In this paper I analyze one form of intentional death: suicide. Judging suicide as right or wrong is more ambiguous than generally accepted. It is my position that Hellenistic philosophy revaluates archaic traditions concerning death and suicide, which are more embedded in heroic forms of intentional death. This revaluation, especially in Stoicism, reflects two aspects: firstly, the commitment Stoic philosophers place on living the good, moral life, personal integrity, and their willingness to face death as an effect of that commitment; and, secondly how the Stoics concept of suicide is also a political tool that can be used to preserve personal freedom in the face of political tyranny. For the Stoic, death is liberation, and offers the oppressed not only a means of escape, but is also the highest expression of moral freedom. Thus, for the Stoic, suicide is more than a deliberate act of dying for purely individualistic reasons disassociated from any altruistic motives: it becomes the example of personal integrity and freedom; and good, moral living.

Keywords Intentional Death, Suicide, Greek and Roman Stoicism, Seneca, the Wise Man, Values.

The manner of our dying, especially when confronted with suicidal acts, is always a matter of public debate. Questions and doubts arise not only from the act itself, but also from the individual and social consequences that such an act implies. A suicidal death makes us not only aware of the individual, but also of the social reaction to such a death. Thus, suicide is never a private act alone, but also a public one. Suicide must be understood as a social phenomenon because it is not the individual but a society that defines acts of suicide as moral or immoral, right or wrong, good or evil. In our society today suicide is viewed as wrong and immoral and, on the condition of the soul, as evil. A suicidal act is always seen as egoistic and cowardly, as an inability to face the consequences of ones actions. A suicide is judged as an escape from personal and social responsibility instead of an acceptance thereof. But not all societies and cultures have or had this negative attitude towards suicide, for example classical Roman or modern Japanese society.

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______________________________________________________________ In some cases suicide is a social expedient; as a form of capital punishment or as a necessary sacrifice in social crises such as war. In these cases the absolute prohibitive attitude towards suicide is relaxed and it is admitted that some virtue can be found in suicide. Thus, not all suicides are immoral, wrong or evil from a social viewpoint and are sometimes accepted as a form of taking social and personal responsibility. In these cases social and individual values and value systems may coincide; as in the choice to suicide instead of undergoing public execution, loss of property and privilege as in the classical Roman legal system (libertas mori), or to willingly and knowingly sacrifice ones life in defence of ones country or loved ones. It is only when personal, individual values do not coincide with social norms and value systems that ethical problems arise. Stoicism is a philosophy intensely connected to matters of death and suicide. Stoic ethics emphasize a willingness to face death which does not necessarily conflict with living a good moral life; particularly for the Wise Man who has developed a virtuous disposition, and who is able to connect individual moral values with social duties and civic laws. Stoicism accepts that we must overcome our fear of death, to accept it as an integral part of leading a dignified, virtuous life, and as the liberator of the soul. Within the concept of death, suicide is viewed only as a possibility when it is rationally acceptable. Acceptable reasons for suicide are, for example, on behalf of ones country or friends and in circumstances of intolerable pain or incurable disease. The Stoics do not at first view suicide as the ultimate form of personal freedom. This perspective develops in the late Roman Stoic philosophy of Seneca. For the early Greek Stoics suicide is viewed as an incidental privilege, a tool that a Wise Man may use in his pursuit of wisdom. Yet it is a privilege that many Stoics acted upon: Zeno, Cleanthes, Cato and Seneca all committed suicide. On the manner of Catos death Cicero comments that: [he], now, in departing this life was delighted at having a reason for dying. The god who rules within us forbids us to depart hence without his orders. But when the god himself gives a just cause, as he has once done to Socrates, and now to Cato, and often to many others, I assure you that the wise man will gladly escape from this darkness to the light. Suicide is only acceptable if and when the gods permit it, until then our duties are towards earthly concerns. Explicit in Ciceros statement is also that the Stoics recognize suicide as an appropriate action for the Wise Man, but that such a possible action is not necessarily valid for the nonwise. It is only the Wise Man who can rationally discern if and when suicide is morally acceptable, that is, when the gods permit it. Cicero explains that:

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______________________________________________________________ For the Stoics good and evilare a subsequent outgrowth, whereas the primary things of naturefall under the judgement and choice of the Wise Man, and form so to speak the subject-matter, the given material with which wisdom deals. Therefore the reasons both for remaining in life and for departing from it are to be measured entirely by the primary things of nature aforesaid. For the Stoic view is that happiness, which means life in harmony with nature, is a matter of seizing the right moment. So that wisdom her very self upon occasion bids the Wise Man to leave her. Hence, as vice does not possess the power of furnishing a reason for suicide, it is clear that even for the foolish, who are also miserable, it is appropriate to remain alive if they possess a predominance of those things which we pronounce to be in accordance with nature. And since the fool is equally miserable when departing from life and when remaining in it, and the undesirability of his life is not increased by his prolongation, there is good ground for saying that hose who are in a position to enjoy a preponderance of things that are natural ought to remain in life.1 Only the Wise Man knows when to seize the right moment of his death, because he has learned to subjugate his ordinary will to live to higher demands of thought, and has achieved a universal, objective perspective wherein his specific individuality and his emotions become irrelevant. Stoic philosophy views wisdom as an attempt to live a virtuous life that is in harmony with the nature of its inner and outer self, that is, with personal integrity and virtue harmonizing with the existing social value system. Integrity of the self, which is synonymous with ones soul, is preserved by the strength of ones rational abilities, by serenity and harmony; the three ingredients upon which decisions should be made. Rationality, serenity and harmony are achieved by a virtuous disposition which Rist defines as a fixed disposition of the ruling part of the soul, a power produced by reason.2 Cicero explains that of all the faculties we as humans possess, that of moral virtue is the facultyof the highest intrinsic worth and should be desired for its own sake. The result will be that: [] excellence of mind will be rated higher than excellence of body, and the volitional virtues of the mind will surpass the non-volitional; the former, indeed, are the

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______________________________________________________________ virtue specially so called, and are far superior, in that they spring from reason, the most divine element in man.3 A man who chooses and develops his faculty of moral virtue acquires a virtuous disposition based on reason, the highest virtue a man can possess. Such a man will always act virtuously, for the power of virtue will guide all his actions. The degree of moral virtue acquired depends on the individual and his/her virtuous disposition, which is intrinsically good and leads to happiness. But a virtuous disposition is only significant if it lasts a lifetime. A Stoic Wise Man is an individual who has properly developed his natural tendency towards virtue, has matured and formed his character on the moral education he has received. From the moment this is achieved, the Stoic Wise Man becomes responsible for his actions; his reaction to situations lies in his power alone. The power of virtue and vice is intrinsic in all human beings. But not everyone progresses towards virtue to the same degree. It is not only those defiled by vice, but also those men who though pious and upright in their lives have not yet attained ideal and perfect wisdom.4 Some appropriate actions, undertaken for inadequate reasons, may be judged evil. Seneca states: This resemblance has forced us to watch carefully and to distinguish between things which are by outward appearance closely connected, but which actually are very much at odds with one another; and in watching those who have become distinguished as a result of noble effort, we have been forced to observe what persons have done some deed with noble spirit and lofty impulse, but have done it only once. We have marked one man who is brave in war and cowardly in civil affairs, enduring poverty courageously and disgrace shamefacedly; we have praised the deed but we have despised the man.5 Nevertheless, all who earnestly pursue virtue improve as their vices and errors are reduced. The endeavour for perfect wisdom is a lifetime effort, an ideal that one always desires, yet never quite attains. Yet once virtue is achieved it can never be lost. In spite of this there are some situations when even the Wise Man is not in control of his intentions or actions. Such situations are, for example, when the mind and the will are affected by great illness. Actions resulting from great illness are irrational and must be seen as resulting out of the illness that caused them. In these circumstances the Wise Man is neither master of his intentions nor his actions. But if a Wise Man is capable of evaluating such a situation before it occurs, then he has the right to

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______________________________________________________________ suicide by virtue of his reason, to prevent such irrational action and to preserve the integrity of his soul. All that Stoicism requires is that all actions, including suicide, be undertaken in accordance with ones nature, guided by virtue and reason. When Stoicism became popular in the Roman Empire, their ideas found an environment greater than the earlier Stoics could ever have expected. In Imperial Rome, the Stoic concept of death and suicide became an integral part of Roman civil law transforming what the Stoics considered to be an individual moral virtue into a socially acceptable moral norm, albeit only for the upper class. Roman society viewed suicide as a tool that reflected the Roman ideal of self-fulfilment and free will: thus it was permitted as an aristocratic means of preserving dignitas (honour) and potentia (power). The lower classes, especially the slaves, were excluded from this privilege. They were considered the property of their masters and therefore did not possess the right to determine their lives nor their deaths. This social dichotomy between the free and privileged class and the unfree and enslaved class had great bearing on the Stoicism of Seneca. Senecas distinctly Roman concept of Stoicism embarks on the development of the free will as an independent category from reason and a natural attribute of all men. Fate and free will are connected and, as human beings, we have the moral choice to follow fate willingly or unwillingly. [T]he willing soul Fate leads, but the unwilling drags along Cleanthes states, and Seneca agrees: Here is your great soulthe man who has given himself over to fate; on the other hand, that man is a weakling and a degenerate who struggles and maligns the order of the universe6 Free will is categorized as an impulse, but the origin of that impulse is grounded in reason. Reason and free will, though distinct, complement each other. Reason is the driving force that impels us to act freely. In this context, suicide as the highest power of autonomous action is equated with absolute freedom.7 According to Rist Seneca supplies a new emphasis on the value of suicide: that of free will. The problem of suicide now becomes a problem of free will. Suicide is now viewed as a supremely free act that neglects the requirement of the divine as mentioned above by Ciceros account of Catos death. Yet Rist does not mention that Seneca not only departs from the traditional Stoic constraint that suicide is only the prerogative of the Wise Man; but that he also departs from the Roman law that privileges suicide as an act only for the upper classes. In his concept all now have the right to preserve their personal integrity if reason demands it. Senecas concept of

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______________________________________________________________ suicide as an expression of free will places individual moral values over and above social norms and laws. In his Epistles Seneca gives innumerable examples of circumstances that permit suicide as an appropriate action for all men. He describes how gladiators, barbarians, and criminals who face death willingly and defiantly leave examples from which subjects of tyrannical powers can take courage. On a higher level he praises Cato the Youngers suicide as not only a success over destiny, but as the highest triumph of the human will, by asserting his right to die when, where and how he pleased, Cato had expelled rather than dismissed, that noble soul which had been so defiant of all worldly power.8 Senecas Stoicism places the moral responsibility of the condition of the soul on the individual without exception. This responsibility includes dying as one of lifes duties: It is not an important matter to live; all your slaves live, and so do all animals; but it is important to die honourably, sensibly, bravely [] It makes no difference at what point you stop. Stop whenever you choose; only see to it that the closing period is well turned.9 Personal integrity, the highest moral good a Stoic aims to sustain, is the one condition upon which this absolute autonomy rests. Personal autonomy and integrity are interconnected; the one is not possible without the other, and an expression of both is the right to suicide. An individual free to choose death under certain circumstances is an individual who cannot be forced to evil or immoral acts by external causes, which also can be associated to social norms that conflict with the individuals personal values. Death, as life, has in itself no moral value for the early Stoics. Therefore, it is regarded as an indifferent. Indifferent things are those things which have no direct connexion either with happiness or with unhappiness.10 Because death is by its nature morally indifferent we should not fear it, but meet it bravely. Thus Zeno argues No evil is glorious; but death is glorious; therefore death is no evil.11 Seneca refutes Zenos argument as illogical because a glorious death cannot be an indifferent: Nothing that is indifferent can be glorious; death is glorious; therefore death is not an indifferent and redefines this fallacy as mere death is, in fact, not glorious; but a brave death is glorious.12 Indifferent things for Seneca are sickness, pain, poverty, exile and death because none of these are intrinsically glorious. What we morally evaluate is how the individual reacts to indifferent things. Thus it is not poverty, pain, exile or death that is praised, but the man who is not humbled, neither coerced nor confounded by these indifferents. All these are in themselves neither honourable nor glorious but are only made thus by virtue or wickedness that bestow [] the name of good

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______________________________________________________________ or evil.13 Death is not an evil, but may have the appearance of evil because of our instinct for self-preservation and death as the great unknown. Therefore it is natural to fear death and, although it is categorized as an indifferent it cannot be so easily ignored. In the presence of these observations Seneca concludes: [] how can brave endurance of death be anything else than glorious, and fit to rank among the greatest accomplishments of the human mind? For the mind will never rise to virtue if it believes that death is an evil; but it will so rise if it holds that death is a matter of indifference.14 A man torn between completing an act and being restrained from acting is not emotionally detached or indifferent enough and thus acts only halfheartedly. Such a man has lost the glory of his act. For virtue accomplishes its plans only when the spirit is in harmony with itself. There is no element of fear in any of its actions.15 Fear is an emotion that leads to unhappiness and interferes with living a morally good life. There are two elements to fear: the fear of future suffering, and the recollection of past suffering.16 Neither past nor future suffering concerns the Stoic. The Stoic should only resist suffering when he/she is in the midst of it; when it is the present case. Then he should fight against [it] with all his might: if he once gives way, he will be vanquished; but if he strives against his sufferings, he will conquer.17 A good life is won by overcoming its hardships not by attempting to flee from them but by confronting them. Seneca states: So let us also win the way to victory in all our struggles;-for the reward is not a garland or a palm or a trumpeter who calls for silence at the proclamation of our names, but rather virtue, steadfastness of soul, and a peace that is won for all time, if fortune has once been utterly vanquished in any combat.18 In this sense, Stoicism encourages an attitude of steadfastness and inner resistance to all forms of fear and oppression and provides a concept based on individual responsibility and self-reliance beyond socially integrated norms. Senecas concept upholds the complete autonomy of the individual will to the degree that suicide is preferred rather than to surrender ones free will. The right to suicide is a necessity for preserving the integrity of the soul against worldly corruption, especially that of political tyranny, if no other escape is possible. Thus, if there is a conflict between the individual and the

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______________________________________________________________ social value system, Senecas version of Stoicism defends individual autonomy over and above any socially decreed moral norm. For Seneca, the essence of philosophy as a training for death must always include the personal freedom to choose death, if political circumstances demand it, for life, if the courage to die be lacking, is slavery.19 Suicide, although a seemingly private act, also has public consequences that not only effect family and friends, but society as a whole. It is society that determines the moral evaluation of the term suicide as good or evil, right or wrong, desirable or undesirable. Joseph Fletcher in his essay Attitudes towards Suicide points out that the moral value of any human act is always contingent and dependent on the Situationsethik or shape of the action in the situation.20 Thus the situation determines the morality or the immorality of an act, and the intrinsic21 morality, imposed by state or religion as universal doctrine, becomes erroneous. Stoicism manifests itself against this unexamined form of intrinsic morality by examining the situation and what the individual sees as a rationally relevant action in that given situation. It is the personal situation of the individual that should determine the outcome of a suicidal action or not; and only the individual who desires to suicide is in full command of that situation at that moment, even though the repercussions of a suicidal act is felt by all. It is in the consequences of a suicidal act that individual action and social reaction interconnect. Even though the Stoic is autonomous in his/her decision, he/she still has a duty towards family, friends and society to choose, if possible, the manner of his/her death in accordance with the existing social norms. Thus Seneca sets the example of Tullius Marcellinus who conducted his suicide under Stoic guidance by removing the risk of being indicted for murder from his household, distributing gifts to servants and slaves, putting his affairs in order and dying by his own hand in a tub of hot water.22 But a suicidal death that does not neglect its duty toward family and friends is only socially acceptable when individual and social moral values coincide. In a society that implicitly condemns suicidal action as a whole, such a duty will always be incriminating. Suicide in itself is neither good nor evil in the same way that life and death are neither in themselves good nor evil. The value attached to suicide, be it permitted or a right, is always a socially defined value. The moral value of suicide cannot be generalized, but must remain within the individual situation in which it is contemplated. For the Stoic, the right of the individual to choose his/her ultimate destiny is an integral part of living the morally good life. Ultimately, freedom begins with the individual, including the freedom to die. For the Stoic it is immoral to relinquish the responsibility of ones death to another; it is not only a right but also a duty that should remain with the individual. Therefore living a morally good life must always include the right to determine ones own death, the highest expression of moral freedom.

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______________________________________________________________ In order for a state to function properly some point of agreement must be found between individual and social moral values. Otherwise, communal existence would be impossible. A balance must be sought between individual integrity and autonomy, and social responsibility. Stoic ethics is an attempt to find a method of confronting and evaluating the problem of suicide from a social and individual perspective, although there is no single rule for settling the question. What Stoicism provides is different conditions of typical situations whose relevance is to be decided upon by the individual; thus leaving the individual, not a society, to take responsibility for the appropriate action.

Notes
1

M. T. Cicero, De Finibus Bonorum et Malorum William Heinemann, London, 1931, Book III, 60, pp. 279-281. 2 J. M. Rist, Stoic Philosophy, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, 1969, p. 199. 3 Cicero, De Finibus, Book V, 38, p. 435. 4 Cicero, De Finibus, Book IV, 64, p. 371. 5 Seneca, Epistles, William Heinemann, London, 1953, Ep. 120, p. 387. 6 Seneca, Ep.107, p. 229. 7 J. M. Rist, Stoic Philosophy, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, 1969, p.130. 8 Seneca, Ep. 70, p. 59. 9 Seneca, Ep. 77, pp. 173, 181. 10 Seneca, Ep. 82, p. 246n. 11 Ibid., p. 245. 12 Ibid., p. 247. 13 Ibid., p. 249. 14 Ibid., pp. 252-53. 15 Ibid., p. 253. 16 Seneca, Ep. 78, p. 191. 17 Ibid., p. 191. 18 Ibid., p. 191. 19 Seneca, Ep. 77, p. 177. 20 J. Fletcher, Attitudes towards Suicide, in Suicide: Right or Wrong?, ed., J. Donnelly, Prometheus Books Ltd, Amherst, 1998, p. 58. 21 Ibid., p. 58. 22 Seneca, Ep. 78, pp. 172-73.

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Bibliography
Cicero, M. T., De Finibus Bonorum et Malorum, William Heinemann, London, 1931. Tuscullan Disputations, ed. and trans. A.E. Douglas, Aris & Phillips, Warminster, 1985. Fletcher, J., Attitudes Towards Suicide, Suicide: Right or Wrong?, ed. J. Donnelly, Prometheus Books, Amherst,1998. Long, A. A., D. N. Sedley, eds., The Hellenistic Philosphers, vol. I, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, 2005. Minois, G., History of Suicide: Voluntary Death in Western Culture, Johns Hopkins University Press, London, 1999. Morford, M., The Roman Philosphers: From the Time of Cato the Censor to the Death of Marcus Aurelius, Routledge, London, 2002. Plato, Symposium and the Death of Socrates, Wordsworth Classics of World Literature, Wordsworth Edition, Ware, 1997. Rist, J. M., Stoic Philosophy, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, 1969. Seneca, Ad Lucilium Epistulae Morales, vols. I, II, III, William Heinemann, London, 1930, 1934. Sharples, R.W., Stoics, Epicureans and Sceptics: An Introduction to Hellenistic Philosophy, Routledge, London, 1996.

Petra Benske is a PhD research student in Philosophy at The National University of Ireland, Galway, Republic of Ireland.

The Death of God and Suicide (Why, Why Not) in Modernist Literature T. Chandler Haliburton
Abstract Noticing the shocking number of modernist artists that committed suicide, Alvarez posits that [t]he casualty-rate among the gifted seems out of all proportion, as though the nature of the artistic undertaking itself and the demands it makes had altered radically. This paper considers these radical alterations. Specifically the focus here is on the terrifying spiritual freedom that followed the Death of God and the subsequent burden this liberty placed on writers. However, as telling are the instances of suicide among these artists (and their characters), the cases of writers who survived are equally revealing. The latter directly confronted the modernist collapse of meaning, and in turn, condemned suicide as also necessarily meaningless.

Keywords Suicide, Modernism, Literature, The Death of God, Durkheim, Flaubert, Kafka, Eliot.

God is dead. This much quoted statement from Friedrich Nietzsche was - and remains - a blanket characterization of the modern condition. It appeared in The Gay Science, the most famous passage being from section 125, The Madman: God is dead. God remains dead. And we have killed him. How shall we, murderers of all murderers, console ourselves? [] Must we not ourselves become gods simply to be worthy of it?1 This was not a direct attack on the Christian God, but rather an assertion that the idea of God was no longer capable of acting as a source of absolute morality or concrete teleology. In Twilight of the Idols, Nietzsche recognized that [b]y breaking one main concept out of Christianity, the faith in God, one breaks the whole.2 This whole was not just the Christian religion. Rather, the whole belief in order and universal meaning(s) born out of the enlightenment would ultimately collapse. This became the driving force and defining characteristic of modernism - a period of mourning not only over the Death of God, but the death of the universe as it was believed to have been. Overcoming or at least coming to terms with this nihilism was the task facing modernist writers. When unsuccessful, several fell into tragic

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______________________________________________________________ states of despair, and many modernist authors and poets ultimately took their own lives. Alvarez observed that The casualty-rate among the gifted seems out of all proportion, as though the nature of the artistic undertaking itself and the demands it makes had altered radically.3 This paper considers first these radical alterations. Specifically, the terrifying spiritual freedom that followed the Death of God and the subsequent burden placed on writers to reestablish meaning will be explored and linked to the increase in suicide observed by Alvarez and others (Durkheim, Sheppard). However, as telling are the instances of suicide among writers (and their characters), the cases of writers who survived are equally revealing. The latter were the first to directly confront the modernist collapse of meaning in their work. They subsequently condemned suicide as also necessarily meaningless. This effectively pushed their writing towards the realm of the avant-garde and postmodern. Nietzsche saw the Death of God as an opportunity to start anew, but feared the science of the time would emerge as a new form of religion with a similar belief in order and rationality.4 Newtonian science had made the universe seem comprehensible and even divinely ordered. However, the work of Einstein and his contemporaries contradicted this by, among other things, destroying the perceived regularities of time, space, and motion. The universe became seen as decentred, fluctuating, and not subject to rules of causality - opposing the notion of divine order. Thus, modern science did not replace religion in the manner Nietzsche had feared, but actually served to help kill God. Just as the universe was defying definition, the Victorian notions of man suffered a similar crisis. Man had been seen as moral and possessing the ability to control himself and understand his world through the use of reason and rationality. Nietzsche, however, argued in The Birth of Tragedy that human nature - and the world itself - was Dionysian. Belief in order and rationality had led to an existence oblivious to this. However, as seen, modern science began to complement Dionysian principles. Modern man became seen as irrational, emotional, and driven by inner forces; and again, the world as unpredictable and chaotic. As Spears states, If any god personifies modernism, it is Dionysus.5 This influenced psychoanalysis. Freud argued that human nature is driven by opposing forces of life (Eros) and death instincts operating at the level of the unconscious, mysterious and uncontrollable. Thus, the realm of the unconscious is fundamentally Dionysian, and just as Nietzsche spoke of the risk of denying Dionysian principles, Freud saw the repression of the unconscious forces as being dangerous. As Gottfried Benn would write, There is no other reality, there is only human consciousness.6 With this, the self could be the new god of creation - a liberating, yet terrifying responsibility.

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______________________________________________________________ If Dionysus personified modernism, then the city was the complementary antagonist to that personification. The city was fundamentally Apollonian - a society of individuals who subscribe to an ideal or rational order. However, while the city is isolating and alienating, it also offers a liberating anonymity, and in this way, the modern city provided the individual an amount of personal and spiritual freedom.7 However, this is not necessarily enjoyable. The conundrum of the metropolis is that the individual is seen as worthless while the self is all important. In this way, for Spears, the city constitutes and symbolizes the modern predicament: of mass man, anonymous and rootless [] anxious and insecure [] left by the disappearance of God with a dreadful freedom of spiritual choice.8 This disappearance of God, along with war and suicide, changed the significance of death. Traditional Christian notions of death placed it as the defining moment of life - a spiritual transition. In modernism, the present was all that was left to define life and it offered no metaphysical significance. The horror of World War One made death appear random and meaningless. In Thoughts for the Time on War and Death, Freud argues that although man may try to suppress his psychic turmoil by distracting himself with religion, culture, and the pursuit of knowledge, this was ultimately ineffective. Devoid of any divine significance, how could one attribute meaning to modernist death? To the extent that one could not, this situation was supremely troubling. Modern man had almost become a god himself [but] does not feel happy in his Godlike character.9 While death became more random and awful, it at the same time became less frightening. This was reflected in modernist literature where death became less tragic, empty, unpredictable, or even elided. In Virginia Woolfs To the Lighthouse, for example, death is only mentioned in passing and in parenthesis. It also occurs only in a section aptly titled Time Passes as though that is the only meaning that can be attached to death. Neither Faulkners As I Lay Dying nor Tolstoys The Death of Ivan Ilych depict death in the present, but rather begin after the death has already occurred. The remainder of each story portrays the struggle to find meaning in the deaths. What is in evidence is that Modernist death - the thing - was not to be feared, only the meaninglessness of it. Writing in 1916, MacKenna commented that fear of death was man made and without it the gateway to suicide would be thrown open.10 Suicide could provide a means of regaining control of death and offering a new form of spiritual transition. Of course, faced with the meaninglessness of life, modernist writers did not immediately choose death as the only alternative. Their initial goal was to reach new depths of human experience and in so doing transcend the modernist condition. Form and style also changed. The stream-of-conscious narrative that emerged was heavily influenced by psychoanalysis. Plots became fragmentary if not entirely replaced by merely events or perspectives.

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______________________________________________________________ However, most importantly, modernist literature was no longer merely a duplication of social reality, but the result of an activity that responds to a reality that is experienced as inadequate.11 Similar styles and themes were evolving in all artistic forms: Vincent Van Gogh reflecting the growing fascination with the human psyche, Picasso and the Cubists experimenting with fragmentation and perspectivebased realities, et cetera. Fritz Langs film Metropolis explores the relationship between man and machine in the modern city. Returning to literature, Sheppard identifies nihilism as the most negative response to the perceived crisis of modernism.12 He argues this contributed to the significant number of modernist artists who went insane, committed suicide, or died in despair.13 Recalling Alvarezs similar observation, this would seem to suggest that the nature of the artistic undertaking itself and the demands it makes had altered radically.14 The alteration came, as noted above, in that literature became not just a reflection of modernism, but a response to it. Again, the burden of creating a new reality and coping with the Death of God fell on those responsible for creating culture - the artists. As a result, modernist literature represents a diagnosis of the modern man; it is a concentrated cry of despair that is not counterbalanced by any religious affirmation.15 The pre-eminent modernist scholar of suicide, mile Durkheim, saw suicide as a social phenomenon - an act that was product of its stage. Given the diagnosis of the modern man, one could say the stage was set. In On Suicide, Durkheim defined suicide as death resulting directly or indirectly from a positive or negative act, carried out by the victim himself, which he was aware would produce this result.16 He ultimately concluded that when religion weakens, suicide increases. However, it was not faith that prevented suicide, but rather the social institution of religion itself: If religion protects man against the desire for self-destruction, it is not that it preaches the respect for his own person to him with arguments sui generis, but because it is a society.17 As Kirilov argues in Dostoyevskis The Possessed, Man has done nothing but invent God so as to go on living and not kill himself.18 Furthermore, Durkheim also recognized the role of modernist learning concluding, Man seeks to learn and man kills himself because of the loss of cohesion in his religious society.19 The link between modernist thinking, the death of God, and the collapse of religion is clear. Durkheim added a final connection: between the collapse of religion and suicide. It was in this condition that modernist poets and authors were writing. It is not surprising then that death and suicide became an issue within the texts, for as Glicksberg asserts, When the spiritual health of a culture declines the suicidal obsession as voiced in literature grows strong.20 While this paper does not take a biographical approach to texts, it cannot be denied

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______________________________________________________________ that the same circumstances acting on modernist writing was simultaneously acting on the writers themselves. The number of modernist writers to commit suicide makes it impossible to consider all of them. They include French Dadaists Ren Crevel, who gassed himself, and Jacques Vach, who overdosed on opium. Jacques Rigaut, who among his few works are The General Suicide Agency fictional advertisement selling arranged suicides, and the fictional autobiography which recounts the numerous times he successfully committed suicide In typically Dadaist fashion, he perfected his self destruction with the aid of a ruler, measuring the precise location of his heart before shooting himself. Austrian Georg Trakl and Pole Ernst Toller are the best known Expressionists to have committed suicide. The former did so by a cocaine overdose, while the latter hanged himself. The German Expressionist writer who wrote most about suicide was Alfred Lichtenstein (though he was killed in the First World War). Suicide is explicitly alluded to in his poems The Drunkard, Falling in the River, and most obviously The Suicide. In Kunos Nocturne, Lichtenstein presents suicide as Kunos offered solution: I know a secret remedy / That can extinguish all suffering.21 Finally, in Lichtensteins short story The Suicide of the Pupil Mueller, Mueller also kills himself explaining that without recourse to Gods there comes a universal protest against living.22 The most famous modernist suicide is of course that of Virginia Woolf. After repeated failed attempts she finally killed herself by drowning. The most notable depiction of suicide in her writing is that of Septimus in Mrs. Dalloway. In many ways, his death is a critique of war and the medical system. Many critics see Woolfs suicide in a similar light. Gough goes so far as to suggest Woolfs suicide was in many ways influenced by the suicide culture of her modernist environment.23 Many of these suicides were acts of resigned protest. However, other authors handled the issue of suicide differently. Gustav Flaubert was writing at the beginning of the modernist movement and years before its height, wrote, The words religion or Catholicism on the one hand, progress, brotherhood, democracy on the other, no longer satisfy the spiritual demands of our time.24 Similarly, in Mme Bovary, Emma Bovary tried religion, reading, passion, and love and found in their insufficiency the insufficiency of God.25 While his heroine ultimately killed herself, Flaubert credited two things for being able to overcome his own condition: the first is science and medicine; the second is what he called force of will.26 The latter he described as taking life, ones passions, and ones self as a subject for intellectual consideration. Spencer suggests that suicide, when it occurred to [Flaubert], was a temptation and not a way out. Life [] although detestable, was significant, and it possessed

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______________________________________________________________ meaning in a patter that was meaningless.27 This notion would later be prevalent in several quintessential avant-garde works. Themes of the meaninglessness of life and a general pessimism are two characteristics often attributed to the work of Franz Kafka. His writing both fictional and personal - is ridden with gloom. In his diaries, Kafka exhibited the darkest of inclinations: The joy again of imagining a knife twisted in my heart.28 In a letter to Max Brod, he even admits to pondering jumping out of the window.29 Much has been made of Kafkas spirituality or lack there of. Hibberd writes of a young Kafka who liked to think that he disproved the existence of God,30 while close friend and biographer Max Brod argued that Kafka merely emphasised the eternal inability of man to ever understand God.31 Regardless, spiritual desolation and/or ambiguity remains as Kafkas most significant commentary on the modernist condition, and his general vagueness reflects an inconcreteness of divine meaning. Despite the parallels between his life and his writing,32 one must avoid taking a biographical approach to Kafkas work. Unlike Bendemann in The Judgement or Joseph K. in A Dream, Kafka did not commit suicide. Perhaps his is a case of the author exercising their own suicidal desire on their surrogate hero; perhaps Kafka was enchanted just by the thought of suicide. Still, this would not explain the death of Gregor Samsa in Metamorphosis (another character who has been biographically linked to Kafka).33 While Gregor does not actively will his own death, he does so in a passive manor by starving himself. He is not driven to death by an unseen authoritative force as Kafkas other suicide victims, but rather resigns himself entirely to his fate and appeals to no force for intervention. There is no God to whom any of Kafkas heroes call, nor is there much to suggest Kafka himself appealed to God. His characters are trapped by their own doings or their inability to do what is needed to live - a typical Kafkaesque double bind and what Zelechow calls the paradox of freedom. For Kafka, suicide would be a Flight from freedom and this flight is the source of our sickness.34 That is why suicide, though occasionally offered as a conclusion, is never offered as a (re)solution. While Kafka found much to loath in the world, he ultimately found the fault not in himself and resolved that the important thing is not suicide, but the conviction that the world deserved suicide.35 Both Kafkas life and his writing promote a confrontation with the absurdity of existence. Interpretations of Thomas Stearns Eliots work could conclude that Eliot also felt that the world deserved suicide. Kermode cites a contemporary review of The Waste Land that asked why, if the world was as bad as Eliot seemed to think, did not the poet just commit suicide?36 However, as Eliot saw it, the world was effectively killing itself after the death of God. In Thoughts after Lambeth he wrote, The World is trying the experiment of attempting to form a civilized but non-Christian mentality. The experiment

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______________________________________________________________ will fail.37 Modernism was in the midst of this failure, but he asserts that Faith would ultimately save the World from suicide.38 Throughout The Waste Land though, Eliot uses allusions to suicide to reflect the desperate and desolate condition of the universe. The poems epigraph is taken from the story of Satyricon in which the prophetess Sibyl sees the future and declares that she wants to die. In the poems second section, A Game of Chess, a distraught upper class woman is compared to Cleopatra and Dido - who both committed suicide. This is followed by the story of a lower class woman, Lil, that concludes by echoing Ophelias suicide speech in Hamlet.39 The most direct allusion to the death of God comes in the fifth section, What the Thunder Said. Eliot writes, He who was living is now dead / We who were living are now dying.40 All that remains are ruined cities and a decaying empty chapel41 and the poem concludes without salvation, only the ending Shantih shantih shantih.42 Eliot translates this passage as The Peace which passeth understanding.43 Eliots The Death of Saint Narcissus also contains significant suicidal elements, and like The Waste Land, draws from classic mythology. In Ovids Metamorphosis, Tiresias declares that Narcissus shall live to be old only if he does not come to know himself. The poem begins with the reader invited to see Narcissus as a corpse, confirming that he did in fact come to know himself. The wind makes Narcissus aware of his limbs, his eyes become aware of themselves, and his hands become aware of his fingers. This is symbolic of the modernist emphasis on self-awareness, but at the same time evokes images of tainted innocence and paradise lost. Still, once consciously aware, Narcissus was Struck down by such knowledge / [and] He could not live mens ways.44 As if trying to escape, Narcissus existence becomes mutable and unstable. He recalls being a tree, a fish, then both victim and perpetrator in a scene depicting a young girl caught in the woods by a drunkard. Eliot presents the irony of the modernist subjective approach. Narcissus hopes that complete subjectivity can make his identity whole, but subjectivity inherently makes his identity and his world infinite and undefined.45 Narcissus is faced with the horrifying condition of solitary selfhood devoid of divine attachment - absolute freedom. His only salvation is to become a dancer to God and readily embrace the arrows that kill him.46 It is a difficult conclusion to interpret when considering Eliots later writing. At best, Narcissus is a metaphor for the suicidal modernist world Eliot observed. However, his transcendence seems incomplete given the dark image of his bloody, gray corpse that begins the poem.47 This is because Narcissus does not seem genuine in his appeal to God. It is a last resort and an empty attempt at justifying a suicide that is the result of an inability to cope with spiritual freedom and akin to the Kafka-esque hero crucified by self-consciousness. Suicide for Eliot was absurd, but not because of

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______________________________________________________________ religious reasons. His writing was modernist and progressive, despite his traditional beliefs. Ironically, though Eliot genuinely was Waiting for God if you will, his work stretched modernist thinking rather than retracting it. A conundrum existed: even if suicide was the supreme act of absurdity, in the modernist condition, [t]he absurd man knows that in living he keeps the sense of the absurd alive.48 Ultimately, as modernism advanced to extremes, the hero and traditional suicide were left behind. Tragedy was antithetical to the modern spirit and postmodern consciousness and an impossibility in the world of the absurd.49 In The Myth of Sisyphus, Albert Camus discusses whether or not that absurd and meaningless world deserved suicide. He concluded that suicide is avoidance, and instead one must confront the absurdity. He argued, The struggle itself is enough to fill a man's heart.50 Furthermore, he stated that The final conclusion of absurdist reasoning is, in fact, the repudiation of suicide and the acceptance of the desperate encounter between human inquiry and the silence of the universe.51 It is not surprising then that for Samuel Becketts characters, suicide is never presented as a feasible alternative. When Estragon attempts to hang himself by his belt in Waiting for Godot, the tree limb breaks and he is humiliated when his trousers fall. Becketts characters are so enmeshed in absurdity that the act of suicide is not even possible.52 For Beckett, there are no absolutes; life, death, time, God, and meaning are all scattered. Yes, God was dead. No, killing oneself was not a solution. This is the climax of modernism - the modernist avant-garde.

Notes
1

F. Nietzsche, The Gay Science: With a Prelude in Rhymes and an Appendix of Songs, Random House, New York, 1974, p. 182. 2 F. Nietzsche, Twilight of the Idols/The Anti-Christ, Penguin Books Ltd., London, 1990, p.72. 3 A. Alvarez, The Savage God: A Study of Suicide, Bloomsbury, London, 2002, p. 259. 4 B. Magnus and K. Higgins, The Cambridge Companion to Nietzsche, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, 1999, p. 36. 5 M. K. Spears, Dionysus and The City: Modernism in Twentieth-Century Poetry, Oxford University Press, New York, 1970, p. 35. 6 As cited in I. Howe, The Idea of the Modern, Irving Howe: Selected Writings, Harcourt Brace Jovanovich Publishers, New York, 1990, p. 142. 7 G. Simmel, The Metropolis and Mental Life, Course Reader prepared by R. Murphy for Theorising Modernism, University of Sussex, 2006, p. 418.

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______________________________________________________________
8 9

Ibid., p. 74. S. Freud, Civilization and Its Discontents, WW Norton & Company, New York, 1989, pp. 44-45. 10 R. W. MacKenna, The Adventure of Death, Murray, London, 1916, p. 25. 11 P. Brger, Theory of the Avant-Garde, University of Minnesota Press, Minneapolis, 2004, p. 8. 12 R. Sheppard, The Problematics of the European Modernism, Course Reader prepared by R. Murphy for Theorising Modernism, University of Sussex, 2006, p. 33 13 Ibid., p. 33. 14 Op. cit., p. 259. 15 C. I. Glicksberg, Modern Literature and the Death of God, Nijhoff, The Hague, 1966, p. 20. 16 . Durkheim, On Suicide, Penguin Books, Ltd, London, 2006, p. 19. 17 . Durkheim, Durkheim on Religion, Scholars Press, Atlanta, 1994, p. 56. 18 F. Dostoyevsky, The Possessed, Fawcett Publications, Inc., New York, 1966, 617. 19 . Durkheim, Op. Cit., 1994, p. 55. 20 Ibid., p. 88. 21 A. Lichtenstein, The Verse of Alfred Lichtenstein, Project Gutenberg, Etext No. 4369, 2003, last updated 4 August 2002, retrieved 21 November, 2006 < http://www.gutenberg.org/dirs/etext03/alvrs10.txt>. 22 A. Lichtenstein, The Prose of Alfred Lichtenstein, Kessinger Publishing, USA, 2005, p. 29. 23 V. Gough, A Responsible Person Like Her, Virginia Woolf: Turning the Centuries, Pace University Press, New York, 2000, p. 188. 24 G. Sand and G. Flaubert, Letters of George Sand and Gustave Flaubert, Duckworth & Co, Ltd., New York, 1921, p. 353 25 A. Ronell, Crack Wars: Literature Addiction Mania, University of Nebraska Press, Lincoln, 1992, p. 74. 26 G. Sand and G. Flaubert, Op. Cit., 353. 27 P. Spencer, Flaubert: A Biography, Faber and Faber Ltd., London, 1951, p. 250. 28 F. Kafka, The Diaries: 1910-1923, Schocken Books, New York, 2000, p. 101. 29 As cited in M. Brod, The Biography of Franz Kafka, Secker & Warburg, London, 1947, p. 74. 30 J. Hibberd, Kafka: In Context, Studio Vista, London, 1975, 17. 31 M. Brod, The Biography of Franz Kafka, Secker & Warburg, London, 1947, p. 131.

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32 33

J. Hibberd, Op. cit., p. 7. See for instance R. H. Lawson. Franz Kafka, Ungar, New York, 1987, p. 29. 34 B. Zelechow, The Rejection of Tragedy in Kafkas Theological Modernism, Journal of Literature & Theology, vol. 5 (4), December, 1991, p. 379. 35 A.P. Foulkes, The Reluctant Pessimist: A Study of Franz Kafka, Mouton, The Hague, 1967, p. 23. 36 In F. Kermode, Why Didnt He Just Commit Suicide? London Review of Books, vol. 26 (21), 4 November 2004, p. 30. 37 T. S. Eliot, Selected Essays, Harcout Brace, New York, 1950, p. 342. 38 Ibid., p. 342. 39 Hamlet, Act 4, Scene 5. 40 T.S. Eliot, The Complete Poems and Plays of T.S. Eliot, Faber and Faber, Norfolk, 1969, ll. 328-329. 41 Ibid., l. 388. 42 Ibid., l. 433. 43 Ibid., p. 80. 44 Ibid., p. 605. 45 P. Murphy, Suicide of Selfhood - The Death of Saint Narcissus, T. S. Eliot's Postmodernist Complaint, Postpressed, Australia, 2003, p. 47. 46 T.S. Eliot, op. cit., 1969, p. 606. 47 Ibid., p. 605. 48 C.I. Glicksberg, op. cit., p. 93, 96. 49 B. Zelechow, op. cit., p. 375. 50 A. Camus, The Myth of Sisyphus and Other Essays, Knopf, New York, 1969, p. 123. 51 From The Rebel as cited in A. Cismaru and T. Klein, The Concept of Suicide in Camus and Beckett, Renasence, vol. 28 (2), 1976, p. 106. 52 A. Cismaru and T. Klein, op. cit., p. 108.

Bibliography
Alvarez, A., The Savage God: A Study of Suicide, Bloomsbury, London, 2002. Beckett, S., Waiting for Godot and Endgame, Macmillan, Basingstoke, 1992. Brod, M., The Biography of Franz Kafka, Secker & Warburg, London, 1947.

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______________________________________________________________ Brger, P., Theory of the Avant-Garde, University of Minnesota Press, Minneapolis, 2004. Camus, A., The Myth of Sisyphus and Other Essays, Knopf, New York, 1969. Cismaru, Alfred and Klein, Theodore. The Concept of Suicide in Camus and Beckett. Renasence, vol. 28 (2), 1976, pp. 105-110. Durkheim, ., Durkheim on Religion, Scholars Press, Atlanta, 1994. Durkheim, ., On Suicide, Penguin Books, Ltd, London, 2006 Eliot, T. S., The Complete Poems and Plays of T.S. Eliot, Faber and Faber, Norfolk, 1969. Foulkes, A. P., The Reluctant Pessimist: A Study of Franz Kafka, Mouton, The Hague, 1967. Freidman, A. W., Fictional Death and the Modernist Enterprise, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, 1995. Freud, S., Thoughts for the Time on War and Death, The Standard Edition of the Complete Psychological Works of Sigmund Freud, Volume XIV (1914-1916), Radom House, London, 2001. Freud, S., Civilization and Its Discontents, WW Norton & Company, New York, 1989. Flaubert, G., Madame Bovary, Penguin Classics, New York, 2002. Glicksberg, C. I., Modern Literature and the Death of God, Nijhoff, The Hague, 1966 Gough, V., A Responsible Person Like Her, Virginia Woolf: Turning the Centuries, Pace University Press, New York, 2000. Hibberd, J., Kafka: In Context, Studio Vista, London, 1975. Howe, I., The Idea of the Modern, Irving Howe: Selected Writings, Harcourt Brace Jovanovich Publishers, New York, 1990, pp. 140-66. Kafka, F., The Diaries: 1910-1923, Schocken Books, New York, 2000. Collected Stories, Knopf, Possneck, 1993. Kermode, F., Why Didnt He Just Commit Suicide? London Review of Books, vol. 26 (21), 4 November 2004, pp. 30-32. Lawson, R. H., Franz Kafka, Ungar, New York, 1987. Lichtenstein, A., The Prose of Alfred Lichtenstein, Kessinger Publishing, USA, 2005. The Verse of Alfred Lichtenstein, Project Gutenberg, Etext No. 4369, 2003, last updated 4 August, 2002, retrieved 21 November, 2006, < http://www.gutenberg.org/dirs/etext03/alvrs10.txt> MacKenna, R.W., The Adventure of Death, Murray, London, 1916 Magnus, B. and K. M. Higgins, The Cambridge Companion to Nietzsche, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, 1999.

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______________________________________________________________ Murphy, P., Suicide of Selfhood - The Death of Saint Narcissus, in T. S. Eliot's Postmodernist Complaint, Postpressed, Australia, 2003, pp. 4256. Nietzsche, F., The Birth of Tragedy, Doubleday, Garden City, 1956. The Gay Science: With a Prelude in Rhymes and an Appendix of Songs, Random House, New York, 1974. Twilight of the Idols/The Anti-Christ, Penguin Books Ltd., London, 1990. Ronell, A., Crack Wars: Literature Addiction Mania, University of Nebraska Press, Lincoln, 1992. Sand, G. and G. Flaubert, Letters of George Sand and Gustave Flaubert, Duckworth & Co, Ltd., New York, 1921. Sheppard, R., The Problematics of the European Modernism, Course Reader prepared by R. Murphy, 2006, pp. 1-51. Simmel, G., The Metropolis and Mental Life, Course Reader prepared by R. Murphy for Theorising Modernism, University of Sussex, 2006, pp. 409-424. Spears, M. K., Dionysus and The City: Modernism in Twentieth-Century Poetry, Oxford University Press, New York, 1970. Spencer, P., Flaubert: A Biography, Faber and Faber Ltd., London, 1951. Zelechow, B., The Rejection of Tragedy in Kafkas Theological Modernism, Journal of Literature & Theology, vol. 5 (4), December 1991, pp. 375-87.

T. Chandler Haliburton completed degrees in English and Economics at Saint Mary's University and has a Master of Arts in Modern and Contemporary Literature, Culture and Thought from the University of Sussex.

PART FOUR THE ARTS

The Art of Dying

The Temples at Burning Man Lori Van Meter


Abstract There are many descriptions of the Burning Man project, all of which seem true but incomplete: an art festival, a circus, a camp-out, a sociological experiment, a rave, a ritual, a Bacchanalia, druid puke. Amid this enigmatic occurrence stands a temple, solemn and serious, dedicated to the memory of the deceased. Every year, thousands of people at Burning Man find a way to intertwine an unusual celebration of life with an unusual commemoration of death. This paper examines the roots, traditions, and meaning behind the annual creation and destruction of the temples at Burning Man.

Keywords Temples, Burning Man, Memorial Art, Dedicate, Grief, Mourning, Communal, Healing, Widow.

1.

This Thing Called Burning Man To fully appreciate the temples at Burning Man, one must consider their setting. These elaborate shrines are built entirely by volunteers in a city that does not really exist, and then are purposely destroyed by fire just before the city itself disappears again. The populace witnesses, even anticipates the burning, yet nobody acts to save the beloved structures. Dedicated to the memory of the deceased, these temples serve this strange civic entity in much the same way that traditional temples have served traditional communities for millennia - except, maybe, for the burning. The Burning Man project originated within the San Francisco Bay Areas eclectic counterculture during the early 1980s. Free-loving hippies from the East Bay, affluent yuppies from the North Bay, and inventive techies from the South Bay converged on Baker Beach in the shadow of the Golden Gate Bridge. One particular woman held annual solstice parties, and built driftwood sculptures that would become firewood when dinnertime approached. In 1986, she did not arrange such a gathering, so Larry Harvey did. He enlisted a friend to build a sculpture (arbitrarily choosing the human figure), then they took it to the beach for the party. About 20 friends showed up. Some beachcombers stopped by who had nothing to contribute except for a song, which they offered as a gift to the party. As the eight-foot wooden Man began to burn, a nearby woman ran up to hold his hand. Through the spontaneous participation of these and other strangers, the small group of

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______________________________________________________________ friends grew larger, and closer, than ever before. It was natural to want to do it again the following summer. Their burn-parties persisted at Baker Beach until 1990, by which time the crowd had grown to nearly 800 people and the Man to almost 40 feet tall. Police decided that burning the sculpture on the public beach was no longer safe, so Larry stored the Man until some friends told him about the Black Rock Desert. In northern Nevada, less than a days drive from the bay area, rests a dry ancient lakebed 4,000 feet above sea level - a playa nearly devoid of plant or animal life. The weather there on a summer day might offer searing heat, abrasive dust clouds, hail and thunderstorms, or all of them in turn. It was already an alternative playground for some imaginative and self-reliant campers: yuppies played giant croquet games using their monster-trucks as mallets, techies designed and operated flame-throwing artillery, and hippies bathed nude in the nearby hot springs. That August, about a hundred adventurous people trekked to the Black Rock Desert for Burning Man, toting everything they might need to sustain and entertain themselves.1 The annual party on the playa evolved over the next several years, eventually becoming a full-fledged (if ephemeral) city with named boulevards, streetlamps, suburbs, nightclubs and eateries, art galleries, charity drives, peacekeepers, a motor vehicle registry, a Department of Public Works, an official U.S. Post Office, and even taxation (in the form of ticketed admission). Organizing the event has become a year-round job for a small corporate staff, but otherwise volunteers create virtually every part of Burning Man. The infrastructure, the services, the entertainment, and the art are all gifts from the attendees (the citizens) to each other. This gift economy comes to fruition every August, and then the participants disperse back into the default world.2 The phenomenon known as Black Rock City boasted a population of nearly 40,000 citizens in 2006, and was the fifth largest city in Nevada during that week. The Black Rock Rangers are a voluntary team that provide services such as peacekeeping and search-andrescue. One of the original Rangers, Michael Michael (known on the playa as Danger Ranger) explains the city this way: Theres nothing here except what we bring to it, and in this barren place we build a community - a city. And then after we experience it, we wipe the slate clean. Theres nothing left, physically. Theres nothing left except information information, and the experiences of the people who have been here. 3

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______________________________________________________________ Peoples experiences at Burning Man are influenced greatly by ten guiding principles that were developed to help promote the projects ideals. These principles are: Inclusion (the welcoming of strangers, without prerequisites) Gifting (without expectation of credit or exchange) De-commodification (no sponsorship, advertising, or vending) Self-reliance (depending upon ones inner resources) Self-expression (the unique gifts of an individual or group) Communal effort (cooperation and collaboration) Civic responsibility (safety and sensibility) Leaving no trace (pack it in, pack it out) Participation (being more than a spectator) Immediacy (paying attention to here and now)4

These principles have fostered, among other trends, a flourishing art scene in Black Rock City. Professional and amateur artists from around the world carry ponderous quantities of materials to this city where they cannot sell their work, and where most of them will burn whatever they create there. Though select pieces will escape the flames to be permanently installed elsewhere, most of the art exhibited at Burning Man is forever inaccessible to the default world. This purposeful destruction of significant contemporary art is anathema to collectors, since their approach is rooted in holding on to all things valuable. However, the Burning Man approach is rooted in letting go. 2. The Temples Memorial art appears everywhere among the innumerable installations presented by the Black Rock citizenry. Widely varied individual and collaborative sculptures, shrines, and temples offer tribute to public tragedies, private loss, and many facets of grief and recovery. A nationwide group of volunteers simply called The Temple Crew builds the most prominent temples on the playa. At every stage, from each temples conception to its fiery demise, the Temple Crew uses Burning Mans changing annual theme to explore questions about death and dying. The crew did not originally intend for their first structure in 2000 to be a memorial piece. They had conceived it as just another art installation on the playa. David Best, a professional artist, was designing the Temple of the Mind, a pagoda made from the by-product of a toy company in Washington State. The toymakers cut the pieces for their model-making kits from standard four-foot by eight-foot plywood sheets. The riddled sheets, when no longer usable to the toymaker, were a valuable raw material for the artist.

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______________________________________________________________ Best and his friends were less than two weeks away from installing their pagoda at the festival when a close friend, Michael Hefflin, tragically died in a motorcycle crash. The group was devastated, and almost cancelled their plans to attend Burning Man that year. However, as artists, they saw an opportunity to express their grief by dedicating the Temple of the Mind to Michael and offering it to others who grieved also.5 Using the salvaged plywood negatives, the bereaved group built their memorial temple on the open plain that occupies the centre of the donutshaped city. This span is over mile wide (1.3 km), a distance that insulated the temple from the noise and revelry of the city. The cutouts in the wood made the building appear as if constructed of lace, filtering the sun and dappling everything inside. The crew gave it another title, The Mausoleum, placing Michael Hefflins photograph on an altar inside and writing messages for him on the smooth wood surfaces. They encouraged visitors to leave their own dedications too. Thousands of small scrap-wood blocks were available, intended for use as extra writing pads. Mourners inscribed messages to dead people and pets, declarations of forgiveness, admissions of regret, existential questions, and even comic relief. In the nooks and crannies, they placed mementoes: photographs, flowers, prayer flags, paintings, letters, lyrics, and possessions of the dearly departed. All of it would burn with the temple. On the night that the pyre was lit, people instinctually gathered in a wide circle around it, watching as the smoke and flames consumed their personal dedications. Each also saw, beyond the blaze, the flickering faces of so many like themselves, as griefs isolation melted away from them. It was the last stage in a metamorphosis from private grief to public mourning to shared release. David Best was moved by the profound experiences people had at The Mausoleum. The serious art that he produced in the default world was among the collection of the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, yet that professional success felt less significant than helping to heal thousands of souls on the playa. Thirty years of working and your piece is in the basement [of the museum]. Build a structure in the desert where someone has a spiritual experience and its not going to get put in a basement. Ironically, the very destruction of the temples often secures their permanence in the mind of someone who mourns there, according to Best. Its a truly moving experience for that person, so that part of my work in the desert is, I think, more permanent than the object.6 Thus inspired, the circle of friends returned to the playa in 2001 to build the Temple of Tears. This title accorded with Burning Mans theme that year, The Seven Ages. The Burning Man theme drew upon a Shakespearian soliloquy about mans seven predictable ages.7 Our last age is not unlike our first: at death, as at birth, we are helpless, afraid, and tearful. The Temple of Tears was more elaborate than The Mausoleum, with decorated buttresses,

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______________________________________________________________ upswept eaves, and a high central spire. The layout included a detached structure housing another artists work, which was a life-size coffin fabricated from flattened donated firearms. This intricate piece was a powerful symbol, especially for those whose bereavement involved gunrelated death. Best was realizing how his work impacted people at Burning Man. It dawned on me: what Im asking people to do is take the heaviest burden in their life drag it out into the desert, and drop it on this temple. He also noted that people were not just releasing emotions, but that they brought tangible symbols to burn. Its not spiritual; its physical. People are actually physically dumping something.8 They were bringing items that had belonged to the deceased as well as art they had made during their grieving process, the burning of which meant truly letting go. The Temple of Joy was David Bests idea for 2002. The Burning Man theme that year was The Floating World, alluding to Joseph Conrads description of a perilous voyage through a dark and stormy night: In its vastness your ship floats unseen under your feet, her sails flutter invisible above your head.9 So it is with life and death. Our course seems unpredictable, our vessel guided by a mysterious helmsman. Fittingly, the Temple of Joy looked like an ark floating on the playa, tall and stout, with high round openings that resembled giant portholes. Best described it as an embarkation place for voyages to the Great Unknown.10 To create the huge memorial ship, a nationwide team of 4,000 volunteers had worked throughout the winter carving the wood. It had taken two weeks for another team of one hundred volunteers to assemble the parts on the playa. Collectively, they had become The Temple Crew and their growing multitude testified to the projects magnetism. Most of the volunteers wanted to give back, or pass along, the gift they had received from the preceding Crew. The next year, 2003, the Burning Man theme was Beyond Belief, an invitation to reach beyond traditional belief systems. David Best and the Temple Crew produced the soaring Temple of Honor, the turrets of which seemed suspended by skyward moorings. Its construction utilized many patterns of black and white paper over a wood and cardboard frame, instead of the familiar cut-out plywood. The Temple of Honor was a place to honor each other, the earth, our families, ancestors and communities. There was also a space for dishonour. Just as we need a place to honor those things and people we hold most high, so too we need a space to deal with those people and ideals we have dishonored, including ourselves.11 Inside all of David Bests temples, the central altar has been devoted to suicide. As Best explained, Its one of the harder things for a lot of people to figure out how to resolve, or to forgive, or understand. This altar took on even greater significance for Best when someone left an old suicide note

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______________________________________________________________ there. Imagine having a suicide letter in your drawer for years and putting it in a temple where people read it. And then [] its burned.12 The more intensely people responded to the temples, the more vigorously the Temple Crew responded to the people. Returning in 2004 with the familiar cut-out plywood material, David Best offered the Temple of Stars. Both the temples name and the Burning Man theme, the Vault of Heaven, referenced a Thomas Hardy writing about the infinite size of the universe: There is a size at which dignity begins [] further on there is a size at which grandeur begins [] a size at which solemnity begins [] a size at which awfulness begins; further on, a size at which ghastliness begins. That size faintly approaches the size of the stellar universe.13 The Temple of Stars stretched unbelievably up and out: from the 100-foot tower, walkways extended -mile onto the playa, like the arms of a galaxy. There were seemingly infinite places to leave messages and mementoes. A massive temple stretching into the vast playa beneath an endless sky perfectly suggested Hardys description. The task had been enormous, and David Best needed a break. But what would become of the Temple Crew? They were familial by then, and a very competent working team as well. The cohesion of the group was of utmost importance, and Best wondered who else might lead the crew. While out on the playa that year, he spotted an artist building miniature Japanesestyle pagodas. That artist, Mark Grieve, still remembers Davids words to him: Mark, do you want to increase your scale?14 Thus tempted, Grieve worked with the crew on the Temple of Stars. Like all the other Temple Crew members, he returned to the default world having exhausted both his body and his funds, but having rejuvenated his spirit. He was honoured by the opportunity to give back so much to society by participating in the project. So, in 2005, Mark Grieve designed the Temple of Dreams for the Burning Man theme of Psyche. This theme explored the ability of our minds to both seek the truth and obscure it from ourselves. We wonder (cautiously) about a bigger reality that we know of but do not know. In dreams, we can reunite with our lost loved ones without the limitations of common consciousness. The Temple of Dreams provided a place in waking life for such reunions. It was a grouping of pagoda-style buildings, with various sized shrines arranged around a larger central temple. His layout was more horizontal than vertical, and the overall aesthetic was serene - a departure from the visual exuberance of David Bests designs. The similarity was in the way people used the space: they still wrote, drew, and otherwise deposited their burdens there, then watched them burn.

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______________________________________________________________ Grieve returned in 2006 with the Temple of Hope, in response to the Burning Man theme Hope and Fear: the Future. This design had a similar horizontal layout, consisting of many towers varying from five to thirty feet high, surrounding a Buddhist-type stupa (a raised platform) in a large central courtyard. Some towers were made of whitewashed wood panels and others of soft white jersey stretched over skeletal wooden frames. As usual, there were boxes filled with scrap-wood pieces for people to use. Visitors reached the central courtyard by threading through the encircling towers, creating a feeling [of] density and furthering the illusion that you have taken an adventure into another land.15 For people enduring the throes of grief, it can indeed feel like being in a strange land. This author crossed into that unfamiliar territory in the midsummer of 2006, when my husband died in an accident. 3. One Widows Perspective Previously I had never even heard of the temples, though I had heard of Burning Man itself. My scarce knowledge of the event was limited to the more festive aspects, thus it was odd to receive an invitation to it while at my husbands funeral. On the other hand, everything in my life seemed odd at that time. Moreover, the 2006 Burning Man theme beckoned, evoking my personal hopes and fears for the future. When I first saw the temple, it was early in the week. There was still space between individual dedications, and thus differentiated, each begged for consideration. I wandered among them, feeling slightly voyeuristic but somewhat liberated by the commonality of our angst. Still, I hesitated to leave myself so emotionally exposed by writing there. What eventually emboldened me was knowing that I had received a gift, and that I might return it in kind: I had come to the temple feeling alone and confused, but had realized that death bewilders us all, and that my confusion was a densely populated state. Perhaps I could help someone else realize it too. Equipped with a pocket full of felt pens, I began by leaving questions about where dead people go and whether they remember us, then by offering prayers for help on their journeys and ours. I bared my greatest hope and fear on the side of a tower: I hope I can go on without you. I fear that I will. Finally, I drew my husbands new logo on a scrap of wood and laid it atop the central platform.16 Before I left, something happened which exemplifies the profundity of the temples effect on people. As I stared at a poster that portrayed someone elses story of loss, I felt a man embrace me from behind. I didnt even look to see who it was, because the very gesture stunned me. The comefrom-behind hug was one of my husbands usual ways of greeting me, so for a moment I thought I was back at our kitchen sink and not memorializing him at a desert shrine. Upon recovering from my flashback, I turned to face the

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______________________________________________________________ hugger expecting to see some familiar friend. Instead, it was one of the Temple Crew who simply had seen that I could use a hug. He was thanking me, explaining that what he received from the temples was whatever he could give, and that to lighten someones burden was why he joined the crew. Lightening accomplished. Countless fires were sparked that week, both mentally and materially. With the burning of the Man on Saturday, there had been all-out merriment for everyone. In contrast, when the Temple burned on Sunday night the crowd was smaller and more sombre. As in any city, not everybody follows the art scene, so not everybody even knows that the Temple exists. Some relocate back to the default world right after Saturday nights festivities. But in those people who stayed, a noticeable change had occurred. We, who only Saturday had loudly celebrated Mans impermanence, mourned the same idea in near silence on Sunday. Both times, we were letting go.

Notes
1 2

B. Doherty, This is Burning Man, Dallas, BenBella, 2006, pp. 19-81. Citizens of Black Rock City use the term default world to describe place and time outside of Burning Man. 3 R. Roberts, dir., Gifting It: a Burning Embrace of Gift Economy, R3 Productions, 2002. 4 The Burning Man Project, LLC, Black Rock City, retrieved 12 May 2007, <http://www.burningman.com/>. 5 D. Glynn and A. Blake, dirs., The Temple Builder, Purple Productions / Gone Off Deep Productions, 2006. 6 Ibid. 7 W. Shakespeare, As You Like It, Act II scene 7. 8 Glynn, op. cit. 9 J. Conrad, Nostromo: A Tale of the Seaboard, Part 1 chapter 1. 10 The Burning Man Project, op. cit. 11 Ibid. 12 Glynn, op. cit. 13 T. Hardy, Two on a Tower, Chapter 4. 14 M. Grieve, Interview with author, California, June 2007. 15 The Burning Man Project, op. cit. 16 Johns flight-instructor logo consisted of a single footprint with wings. When he and his tandem student, Travis, died together in a paragliding accident, I changed the logo to two footprints with wings ( ).

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Bibliography
Brown, D., dir., Burning Man: Beyond Black Roc,. Gone Off Deep Productions, 2005. The Burning Man Project, <http://www.burningman.com>. Conrad, J., Nostromo: A Tale of the Seaboard, Part 1 chapter 1. Doherty, B., This Is Burning Man, Dallas, Benbella, 2006. Glynn, D, and A, Blake, dirs., The Temple Builder, Purple Productions / Gone Off Deep Productions, 2006. Grieve, M., Interview with the Author, California, June 2007. Hardy, T., Two on a Tower, Chapter 4. Roberts, R., dir., Gifting It: a Burning Embrace of Gift Economy, R3 Productions, 2002. Shakespeare, W., As You Like It, Act II scene 7.

Lori Van Meter lives in California and is currently pursuing an Associate of Arts degree. Thanks are due to the Temple Crew for their help with this work, which is dedicated to John and Travis.

The Art of Dying Helen Ennis


Abstract This paper is concerned with photographic works produced by the dying and those closely associated with them. The photographs, originally included in the exhibition Reveries: Photography and Mortality, are from Australia and New Zealand and date from the last three decades, roughly coinciding with the emergence of the international death awareness movement. A context for the discussion is provided by psychologist Robert Jay Liftons identification of five modes of symbolic immortality - that is, the biological, theological, eternal nature, the creation of works and experiential transcendence. Issues raised centre on portraiture and self-portraiture, consent and agency. Notions of portraiture are extended to encompass the possibility of the dissolution of self. Key points include the predominance of imagery of the natural world and the domestic environment, and the recurring depictions of intimate, caring relationships. A particular focus is on the phenomenon of doubling or pairing, in which two different states of being are brought together. These states co-exist, gaining meaning from their interaction with each other. The paper is a visual presentation with photographs by Olive Cotton, Max Dupain, David Moore, Anne Noble, Craig Potton, William Yang and others. The approach is inter-disciplinary, drawing from photographic and art history, biography, autobiography, psychology and sociology.

Keywords Reveries, Photography, Death, Dying, National Portrait Gallery, Australia, New Zealand.

How do the dying choose to represent themselves in the last phases of their lives? What issues are raised by photographs produced both by the dying and those closely associated with them? This paper is based on my research for an exhibition presented by the National Portrait Gallery of Australia in Canberra.1 Reveries: Photography and Mortality is concerned with death of self, death of other, and reflections on mortality prompted by ones own experiences, such as serious illness or the death of a loved one. Today I will be considering a small number of photographs from the exhibition, identifying their shared concerns and preoccupations. The photographs are by prominent Australian

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______________________________________________________________ and New Zealand photographers and date from the last three decades, a period in which attitudes to dying and death have changed significantly. The reasons for this are complex but include the growing influence of the death awareness movement and reactions against the excessive medical and technological interventions into the dying process that have characterized modern death. Also crucial have been the impact of the HIV/AIDS crisis in the 1980s and the gay communitys development of new, highly personalised forms of ritual around dying and death. The photographs I am presenting are very personal, the sum of an individuals lived experience, but it is the links between the different bodies of work that I will focus on. The most conspicuous linkages or patterns are: the predominance of imagery of the natural world and the domestic environment; the centrality of human relationships and the use of metaphor. Also significant is the phenomenon of doubling or pairing in which two different states of being - such as, inside and outside, self and other, light and dark - are brought together. These states co-exist, gaining meaning from their interaction with each other. My discussion of the photographs is informed by the work of American psychologist Robert Jay Lifton. In The Broken Connection (1979) Lifton argues that in response to our knowledge of death, human beings have developed a perpetual need for an assurance of eternal survival of self - in other words, a sense of immortality. Many others have written of this phenomenon but Liftons argument is particularly useful because he identifies five modes of symbolic immortality that can be seen in the photographs I have selected. In short, they comprise the biological (living on through ones offspring); the theological (the belief in spiritual power including life after death); eternal nature (the human is survived by nature itself); the creation of works that ensure an individuals contribution lives on; and a state of experiential transcendence so intense that while immersed in it time and death disappear. Lifton suggests that this latter state of ecstasy, rapture, of losing oneself, can occur through a range of practices that include religious or secular mysticism, sexual love, athletic effort, the contemplation of works of artistic or intellectual creation and so on.2 How appropriate then that the experience of losing oneself and losing time,3 occurs at two unconnected but crucial points - the making of the photographs and our viewing of them. Photographers who have chosen to work with natural imagery in the last stage of their lives, encompassing Liftons categories of eternal nature and the theological, include David Moore (Australias best known photojournalist who died in 2003). Moores last photographs were of the moon; elegant, abstract images in which everything extraneous was eliminated (these were taken by leaving the shutter open and moving the camera, effectively writing with the light of the moon). Indigenous artist

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______________________________________________________________ Michael Riley, a Wiradjuri-Kamilaroi man who died in 2004, was ill with kidney failure when he created the digital images for Cloud, his last completed work, which is characterised by its ethereal presence and charged spiritual quality. The symbols of colonialism and Christianity, represented here by the Bible and the statue of the angel, appear alongside the iconic symbol of Aboriginal culture, the boomerang.4 Each object is equalised in visual terms, occupying the same position at the centre of the composition and sharing the same expansive visual field of a blue sky touched with wispy white clouds. It seems to me that these photographs of the moon, sky, trees and birds underscore the photographers desire to create a space in their works that is not earthbound, that is neither determined by nor governed by the material and mundane aspects of everyday life. As in Olive Cottons The Soaring Bird and Vapour Trail taken in the last years of her life, the horizon line is often abandoned, or at best given only a minor role in the lower section of a composition. Collectively such works also have a bearing on ideas about portraiture, extending the boundaries to encompass the possibility of the dissolution or dispersal of self - that is, the visual representation of an individual that is not dependent on any signs of a physical or embodied presence. The prevalence of domestic imagery that is evident, for instance, in Ruth Maddisons The Beginning of Absence (1996), is in part a reflection of the physical circumstances of those involved. Illness and immobility force a retreat from the external or public spheres in which photographers and their subjects may have been active previously. But the significance of domestic imagery goes much further than this, for it represents home in the most fundamental sense, as the centre of the real.5 In the photographs of or by the dying, home has a multi-dimensional presence. It functions as a physical site personalized by material objects, a domain for ritual, and an emotional field in which intimate relationships are conducted and the most private thoughts, feelings and actions are expressed. These photographs by Jack Picone from 1998 are of Andrew Knox being cared for by his family; in his teens he contracted the HIV virus through a blood transfusion and later developed a form of dementia. Bathing calmed him. His family nursed him to the end. A common reaction to modern death that typically occurs in hospital has been the desire to die at home; this has been widespread for decades. The yearning for home gives added poignancy to Carol Jerremss photograph of her hospital bed and the little shrine of personal mementoes she constructed around it during her long hospitalization prior to her death in 1980. Within the close personal relationships represented in the photographs, touch, whether literal or implied, is brought to the fore,

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______________________________________________________________ associated with care, intimacy and even grace. In his extended series of photographs of his friend Allan, William Yang wrote of the unexpected moment of grace that followed an extremely simple gesture. Allan, he recalled, lifted up my hand and when it was at the level of his face he lightly dropped his forehead on it.6 This elevation of touch, of gesture has a broader significance, countering the situation in which the dying are alienated from others because of taboos around the expression of strong feelings and awkwardness about the physical displays of affection and tenderness.7 At this point I would like to elaborate on New Zealand photographer Anne Nobles installation In My Fathers Garden (2001), which combines still photographs, fold-out books and video images. When Nobles father died suddenly from a heart attack a few days before Christmas her family was presented with a dilemma: should they ask everyone to come home early for the funeral or wait until everyone had arrived as planned? The decision was made to wait. Charles Noble was laid out on a bed in his favourite room and family life continued around him. In the photographs Noble took during the week she underlined the familial relationships of which her father had been a vital part, thus reiterating another of the symbolic modes of immortality identified by Lifton, that of biological continuity. She also poetically enunciated her own position on death, as part of life. This concern with continuity is manifest in Craig Pottons series of photographs of his wife which he has titled Beverly, My Wife Dying of Cancer (2001-05). In Pottons triptych Beverly is flanked by portraits of her mother and sister. Care and love are expressed through the act of photography, a means of keeping Beverly, and the memory of her, in the world. In the hours after his wifes death Potton set up a final family portrait in which he and son Michael posed with her body within their own living room, filled with the abundant detail of their domestic life together. This is an intensely felt, autobiographical project but from Pottons perspective, the photographs of his wife relate to more than their own circumstances. It is, I would suggest, no coincidence that Potton is an environmentalist. A few months after Beverly died, he commented that: to me [the photographs] have something important to say about the human condition, which is that no matter how many things can go wrong, and how much suffering exists, and in spite of the damage we do to the natural world, there is something fundamentally good about human existence.8 Within the home environment objects have an important role, depending on whether they are invested with meaning by those who are living or those who are dying. The last negatives taken by Australias best

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______________________________________________________________ known modernist photographer, Max Dupain, include a number of interior shots of his home in Sydney which depict the rich accumulation of objects over a lifetime. Curiously, David Moores final proof sheet c.2002 also includes a modest domestic sight. In amongst his sublime images of the moon (the mode of eternal nature) are two negatives of the most mundane subject matter - cooking pots drying in the dish-rack. On the face of it the simultaneous appearance of natural imagery and domestic imagery may appear incompatible and yet it is reiterated across different photographers work. Axel Poignant, for example, made very deliberate choices on the last roll of film he exposed; he had been diagnosed with a neurological condition which he knew would prevent him from being able to photograph in the future. Most of the negatives were of his wife Roslyn and her activities around their home but he also took a self-portrait in his bedroom mirror and photographed the setting sun from his bedroom window. The metaphorical associations are obvious. I would suggest that such juxtapositions are in no way contradictory for they represent the realms in which meaning is most commonly made. In her book The Year of Magical Thinking (2005) Joan Didion noted that there was nothing inconsistent in the fact that she could find meaning in the vast indifference of geology as well as in the intensely personal nature and repeated rituals of her life as a wife and mother.9 This brings me to the phenomenon I have described as doubling or pairing which recurs throughout photographs of and by the dying. It is expressed in incredibly diverse ways: Rod McNicol photographed a terminally ill patient holding a photograph of her younger self, while Melbourne artist Peter Kennedy has created self-portraits in which his doubled image is formed by his own ghosted body and his cancer body. The cancer cells, represented in disturbingly vibrant and fluorescent colours, rough out Kennedys form but are not completely bound by it, floating seductively in the space between his cancer body and his real body, his ghost. In Anne Nobles final portrait with her father, she juxtaposed her living presence with his dead body, already as white as marble. And yet, despite their different states and positions on either side of the composition, father and daughter are not separated from each other. It is the spatial ambiguity at the centre of the image, where black and white meet, that brings them together. Ambiguity is also evident in Carol Jerremss 1979 photograph taken in the empty hospital corridor where it is not possible to tell whether the light is receding, progressing, or doing both simultaneously. Another variant of doubling can be seen in Olive Cottons last photograph, Moths on the Windowpane (1995), taken when she was 83 years old. It is an interplay between different states of being, between inside and outside, light and dark, self and the world. The windowpane is the invisible

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______________________________________________________________ point of transition between two worlds, offering a passage from the interior world of the home, which is lit, to the outside where the spectral gum tree stands silently in the dark. In photographs such as this one state is not subordinated to the other. In Peter Kennedys words: To allow both to coexist on equal terms is to remain faithful to their importance. Such a view may enable us to look beyond dissonance, discontinuity and fragmentation, and understand that everything is connected.10 There is a point to be made here about the lyricism and state of resolution or synthesis evident in the Australian and New Zealand photographs I have discussed (is it culturally specific in its references to the natural environment?) I found little late work of the kind Edward Said examined in the last phase of his life, for example, by Beethoven and Giuseppe di Lampedusa, which did not achieve a state of reconciliation or serenity. My final illustration is in effect a limit case because it tests the boundaries of portraiture and representation itself. It is not of a dying or dead subject, dealing instead with another stage or reality beyond death. Sydney artist Anne Ferran photographed her fathers ashes being thrown into the air, creating an image that incorporates many of the elements I have outlined in my paper and that relate to the categories identified by Robert Jay Lifton. The setting is entirely natural: a creek, trees, or what we would call the bush and sunlight. The ashes are suspended in a state of indeterminacy; they rise and fall at the same time, and have both a physical and immaterial presence. The photographers I have discussed do not belong to any school or group but their work can be seen as part of an ongoing challenge to a society often characterised as death denying. These photographs offer an alternative point of view based loosely on a unitary philosophy, or secular humanism, that aims to reintegrate life and death. Or, to think of it another way, they propose a view of the world that is interdependent, integrated and ecological.11

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Notes
1

Reveries: Photography and Mortality was exhibited at the National Portrait Gallery in Canberra from April to August 2007. See H. Ennis Reveries: Photography & Mortality, National Portrait Gallery, Canberra, 2007. 2 R. J. Lifton, The Broken Connection: On Death and the Continuity of Life, Simon and Shuster, New York, 1979, pp. 1825. 3 Ibid, p. 34. 4 B. L. Croft, Up in the Sky, Behind the Clouds in Michael Riley: Sights Unseen, B. L. Croft, National Gallery of Australia, Canberra, 2006. 5 J. Berger, and our faces, my heart, brief as photos, Writers and Readers, London, 1984, p. 56. 6 William Yang, inscription on number 16 in the series Allan, from the Monologue Sadness, 1988-90. 7 N. Elias, The Loneliness of the Dying, Basil Blackwell, Oxford, 1985, p. 28. 8 Grant Smithies, Profile: Friend of the earth, Sunday Star Times, 11 December, 2005, p. 27. 9 J. Didion, The Year of Magical Thinking, Fourth Estate, London, 2005, p. 190-191. 10 Peter Kennedy in conversation with Les Walkling, Photofile, no. 66, 2002, pp. 16-17. 11 J. L. Hockey, Experiences of Death: An Anthropological Account, Edinburgh University Press, Edinburgh, 1990, p. 62.

Bibliography
Aris, P., The Hour of Our Death, Oxford University Press, New York, 1981. Western Attitudes towards Death: from the Middle Ages to the Present, John Hopkins University Press, Baltimore, 1974. Barthes, R., Camera Lucida: Reflections on Photography, Jonathan Cape, London, 1982. Clarke, G., ed., The Portrait in Photography, Reaktion Books, London, 1992. Clendinnen, I., About Bones, in Agamemnons Kiss: Selected Essays, Text Publishing, Melbourne, 2006. De Beauvoir, S., A Very Easy Death, Penguin Books, England, 1987. Didion, J., The Year of Magical Thinking, Fourth Estate, London, 2005. Dollimore, J., Death, Desire, and Loss in Western Culture, Routledge, New York, 2001.

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______________________________________________________________ Gott, T., ed., Dont Leave Me This Way: Art in the Age of Aids, National Gallery of Australia, Canberra, 1994. Jalland, P., Australian Ways of Death: a Social and Cultural History 1840 1918, Oxford University Press, Melbourne; New York, 2002. Changing Ways of Death in Twentieth-century Australia: War, Medicine and the Funeral Business, University of New South Wales Press, Sydney, 2006. Kellehear, A., ed., Death and Dying in Australia, Oxford University Press, South Melbourne, 2000. Lifton, R. J., The Broken Connection: On Death and the Continuity of Life, Simon and Shuster, New York, 1979. Michaels, E., Unbecoming: An AIDS Diary, Empress Publishing, Rose Bay, New South Wales, 1990. Nuland, S. B., How We Die: Reflections on Lifes Final Chapter, A. A. Knopf, New York, 1994. Rugg, L. H., Picturing Ourselves: Photography and Autobiography, University of Chicago Press, Chicago, 1997. Said, E. W., On Late Style: Music and Literature Against the Grain, Pantheon, New York, 2003. Schwass, M., Last Words: Approaches to Death in New Zealands Cultures and Faiths, Bridget Williams Books with the Funeral Association of New Zealand, Wellington, 2005. Helen Ennis is Associate Head, Undergraduate, and Senior Lecturer in Art Theory at The Australian National University School of Art.

Representations of the Infamous or Anonymous Dead: Gerhard Richters Photopaintings and Jeffrey Silverthornes Photographs Randall K. Van Schepen
Abstract Siegfried Kracauer suggests that photographs attempt to banish death by ripping a fragment out of reality in order to fix it, embalming the moment. Photographys dialectical relationship to death becomes particularly acute, however, when the subject of the photograph is itself a dead body. This paper compares two artistic representations of the dead, Gerhard Richters photopaintings of the infamous Baader-Meinhof terrorists, 18.Oktober 1977 (1988), and a set of 1970s public morgue photographs of anonymous corpses by Jeffrey Silverthorne. The Baader-Meinhof groups public suicidal deaths and the anonymous accidental deaths of the public morgue corpses provide case studies for artistic representational choices about the dead. Richters images, derived from press photographs, reveal his desire to empathically identify with subjects physically and psychologically distant from him. Silverthornes knew little about the public morgue corpses he shot but they were very physically and personally present. Thus, Richter personalizes the tragedy of the Baader-Meinhof group suicide by bringing the viewer closer to them, while Silverthornes photographs allow the viewer to identify with his position as an artist, by giving increasing evidence of his bodily presence and expressive and symbolic effects.

Keywords Photography, Death, Anonymous, Infamous, Gerhard Richter, Jeffrey Silverthorne, Baader-Meinhof.

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Richter, Gegenuberstellung 3, 1988, oil on canvas. Gerhard Richter 1.

Silverthorne, Boy Hit by Car, 1977, sliver gelatin print.

Introduction In 1927, Siegfried Kracauer addressed the intimate and dialectical relationship between photography and death in modern experience: What the photographs by their sheer accumulation attempt to banish is the recollection of death, which is part and parcel of every memory image. In the illustrated magazines the world has become a photographable present and the photographed present has been entirely eternalized. Seemingly ripped from the clutch of death, in reality it has succumbed to it.1 The specific point made by Kracauer about photographys death effect is also, he says, part of every memory image. But the poignancy evoked by representations futile grasp at eternity is made a point of by the way that photography indexically carries forward an image of the past while it also points to the pasts irretrievability.

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______________________________________________________________ I will be analyzing the work of two contemporary artists that depict photographically-based scenes of death, Gerhard Richter and Jeffrey Silverthorne. The very death-effect of photography is doubled by the subject matter of death found in work of these artists. My focus is on how Richter and Silverthorne represent two problematic dead subjects, the infamous and anonymous dead. Through an exploration of their artistic choices, I hope to demonstrate how Richters work, especially his 15 painting series, 18 Oktober 1977 of 1988, attempts to resolve the difficulties of representing the death of infamous figures and how Silverthornes public morgue photographs taken in the 1970s articulate the pressure that anonymity brings to bear on representations of the dead. On the surface, each faces a polar opposite dilemma, the over-familiarity of Richters subjects and the anonymity of Silverthornes. As I will demonstrate, however, their essential dilemma is the same - how to achieve an aesthetically empathetic response to their dead subjects. Facing the doubling of Kracauers death effect by depicting dead subjects, Richter and Silverthorne each negotiate a lived aesthetic experience with their photographically derived dead subjects. 2. Richter and the Infamous Dead

Richter, No. 648-2, 1988, oil on canvas. Gerhard Richter

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______________________________________________________________ Varied in approach, from representational painting to abstraction to photographs, Gerhard Richters work has become emblematic of postmodern stylistic diversity.2 Because Richters paintings employ a virtual catalogue of traditional and twentieth century styles, critics such as Benjamin Buchloh consider his work to be a demonstration of the death of painting as a valid contemporary artistic medium.3 Buchloh suggests that Richter paints in an ironic or critical mode only in order to level a sustained critique of paintings viability in the late twentieth century. It is through his rehearsal of supposed dead painting styles and his dependence on aesthetically dead mundane photographic source images that Richters work is most associated with death in the literature on him.

Richter, Collateral Images from Atlas for Gegenuberstellung. Gerhard Richter But the subject of death is also explicitly present in a surprising number of Richters works, the most prominent of which is his series of paintings of the Baader Meinhof terrorist group. This radical leftist subject matter was still very loaded for Germans even a decade after the events depicted. The works are examples of what Richter calls photopaintings and are derived from photographs of the Red Army Faction supplied by

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______________________________________________________________ authorities, newspapers and family members. This leftist group, born out of the crucible of the post-WWII East/West conflict in Germany and also out of the broader generational conflict that characterized 1960s counter-culture elsewhere in the West, was composed of educated, disaffected middle class youth. It became a kind of Rorschach test for German identity, a radical hope to their sympathizers and a cynical, violent terrorist group to their more numerous critics. In quick succession, RAF supporters failed to free the imprisoned Baader-Meinhof members through a series of unsuccessful acts, including kidnapping and hijacking. These failures led to the simultaneous group suicide of three remaining imprisoned members on the so-called Death Night of October 17, 1977. Many leftists continue to suspect that the West German government murdered them.4

Richter, Erschossener 2, 1988, oil on canvas. Gerhard Richter In other words, there are few deaths that Richter could have chosen from recent postwar German history as weighted with Cold War ideological baggage as those of the Baader-Meinhof group (as the controversy over the 2005 Berlin exhibition of RAF memorabilia demonstrated once again).5 Richter recognized that the biggest danger in representing this subject was that the paintings would devolve into mere propaganda, solipsistically nursing the viewers pre-existing political points of view. If Richter were to depict the troubled and violent youth as martyrs on the one hand, or pure

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______________________________________________________________ villains on the other, he risked having no one attend to the images or reengage with his notorious subject matter. He could made the subject available by representing it in line with historic artistic representations of martyrdoms and heroic victims. But, although Richter does draw some iconographic and emotional resonance from this tradition (Richters painting of the postsuicide body of Andreas Baader clearly draws from Davids Death of Marat), the series lack of narrative coherence provides no broader meaning that would sustain such a heroic reading.6 Heroicizing or villainizing the subject would have allowed the viewer to move quickly from new aesthetic perception to a familiar and safe political position vis--vis the groups guilt or innocence.

Richter, Confrontation 2, 1988, oil on canvas. Gerhard Richter

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______________________________________________________________ Richter employs four primary strategies to avoid feeding preexisting conceptions of his work. The first thing Richter does to mitigate the subjects infamous reputation is to wait. If Time heals all wounds is one of the most common post-mortem comments, Richter seems to allow for some healing to take place before addressing the loaded subject by completing his cycle of paintings more than a decade after the last depicted events took place. The decade lapse before the series was painted was not devoid of RAF activity or violence; but it was enough time that a practical response to the suicides was no longer necessary and at the same time not so long as to prevent viewers from seeing it as still contemporary. Secondly, Richters use of mundane and journalistic quality images serves to make the notorious Baader-Meinhof group accessible in their ordinary humanness. Thirdly, Richter moves beyond his dead subjects notoriety through his construction of the evasive narrative structure of the series. There is no logical progression from one image to another and no strict narrative context that provides them with coherent meaning. For example, despite the title, the time frame of the images is not simply the 18th of October, but extends from as far back as a student photograph of Ulrike Meinhof and as far forward as the October 27th funeral of Baader, Ensslin, and Raspe. The filmic quality of the images, which feel as if they have been excised from a coherent narrative to which we no longer have access, seems to stutter, to pause and to reverse temporal flow while at the same time to head inexorably toward the final tragic deaths. Perhaps most evocatively, Richter employs the characteristic blurriness of his photopainting method to cause the viewer to attend closely to the individual lives and deaths of these subjects. Slowing perception to the point that the viewer temporarily suspends his political judgment, Richters out-of-focus images evoke the temporal distance of the original events, the fading of our memories and the ambiguity of subsequent interpretations. In contrast to the black and whiteness of their sources, the grayness of Richters paintings works as a unifying scrim that makes palpable the space between the viewer and the original. As Robert Storr suggests, Richters childhood experiences of war and East Bloc communism gave him a deep sensitivity to the tragic dimension of the twentieth century. The grey indistinctness of Richters grisaille emblematically speaks to what he calls anguished uncertainty about historical truth as well as of a principled refusal to take sides in a contest of destructive absolutes.7 Straining to make out the particulars, looking through and into the paint, the viewers perceptual tools are taxed, which distances him and yet increases his psychological engagement. Richters cool detachment and perceptual distance is dialectically inverted into a psychological and aesthetic closeness.8 The works aestheticizing distance allows the viewer to transform its subjects back from infamous ideological symbols into accessible human subjects.

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______________________________________________________________ Finally, Richter overcomes the notorious reputation of his subjects through evoking an emotionally engaging sense of fate. He juxtaposes a before picture such as Jungenbildnis, based on Ulrike Meinhofs student photograph, with an after picture such as Tote 2, the painting of her postsuicide profile. Our more complete knowledge and experience of the traumatic human wreckage at the end of this sequence of events infuses the relative innocence of the earlier pictures with an aching pathos. Through all of these artistic devices, Richter encourages a new and creative encounter with his infamous and fated dead subjects, humanizing them without the hyperbole of innocent victimhood.

Richter, Jungenbildnis, 1988, oil on canvas. Gerhard Richter

Richter, Tote 1, 1988, oil on canvas. Gerhard Richter

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______________________________________________________________ 3. Silverthorne and the Anonymous Dead

Silverthorne, Old Man, 1986, Cibachrome print. One might say that, in contrast to the poignant sense of fate evoked by Richters before/after images, Jeffrey Silverthornes photographs of public morgue corpses are all after.9 If Richter overcomes political infamy, Silverthorne faces the challenge of the anonymity of his subjects. If we know anything of the before lives of the individuals in these pictures, it is found in the brief description of the means of their deaths found in the titles. Death is the beginning rather than end of our aesthetic relationship with these corpses and we have no prior experience that allows the pathos of fated death to be invoked. What we see, for example, in the photos such as Summer Death or Old Man, is the beginning of the decaying process of a corpse, in all of its gruesome and yet perversely beautiful color and texture. As one life has evacuated the body, other life invades it, moving it toward its eventual dissolution. Like the bacteria feeding on the corpse, and like the unblinking eye of the police camera, we too begin our relationship with this subject after the end. Unlike the morgues objective police photographers, who cannot afford to emotionally empathize with victims, we are asked to risk emotional stress through aesthetic identification. We do so despite the fact that the corpses anonymity works against this, objectifying them in a visual field of clinical analysis.

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Silverthorne, Boy Hit by Car, 197274, silver gelatin print.

Silverthorne, Woman Who Died in Her Sleep, 1972-74, silver gelatin print.

Silverthorne began photographing cadavers in a public morgue in the 1970s.10 While these photographs might seem like a variation on Diane Arbuss shocking subjects, Silverthornes work confronts us with basic rather than marginal human conditions. The particular anonymity of the corpses becomes a sign for the eventual transformation of everyones body from subject to object. Photography thus seems a particularly appropriate medium to evoke this horror and fascination. Painting always manages to elevate its subjects, even when it is critical of them, by transforming its subject in a seemingly organic material into yet another syntactical unit in the grammar of Western art. Photography, on the other hand, equalizes its representations by flattening the hierarchies of space, time and class into a paper-thin, photographable, and manageable present. As seen in these images and the next, one of the ways that Silverthornes work moves beyond the taboo outlandishness and cold-hearted objectivity of the corpse is by depicting the bodies with a surprising emotional tenderness.

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Silverthorne, Beating Victim, 1972-74, silver gelatin print. The corpses often seem to sleep as much as they seem deceased. The frontal nature of the photos, the tightness of the shots, and the framing of the face or upper torso are all conventions derived from portraiture, a form that encourages the viewer to measure the figures emotional and psychological engagement. But as we do so with these figures, we come up short, and become self-conscious about forming an emotional connection to a dead

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______________________________________________________________ body. There is a resulting tension between our knowledge of the corpse as material object and our intuitive desire for a person-to-person response that is elicited through posture, tenderness of gesture, facial expression, or through more explicitly artistic effects, such as the out-of-focus halo around the boy in Boy Hit by Car.

Silverthorne, Lovers, Accidental Carbon Monoxide Poisoning, 1972-74, silver gelatin print. In Lovers, Accidental Carbon Monoxide Poisoning, Silverthorne introduced another way that he moves the viewer from the shock of encountering anonymous dead bodies to a more sympathetic identification. In that image and in his Elvis and Jesus, Silverthorne employs a form of self-conscious image-making that makes a point of the complicity of the photographer and viewer in the creative product. Silverthorne increasingly allows himself into the image, as with his leg and foot in Lovers and his hand in Elvis and Jesus; the viewer becomes aware of the photographers position and begins to identify with him. In Lovers, Silverthorne is precariously poised, standing on the open doors of the body storage cabinets that line the morgue walls in order to take the picture. The photographers athletic picture-taking position also becomes our point of viewwe as much as he are visual vultures hovering above the corpses. The placid regularity of the black and white field is aggressively interrupted by the diagonal form of the photographers foot, a

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______________________________________________________________ phallic intrusion in the rectilinear grid running counter to the diagonal pattern of the flooring.

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Silverthorne, Elvis and Jesus, 1986, Cibachrome print.

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______________________________________________________________ Elvis and Jesus shows the photographer in a more collaborative engagement with his dead subjects through his holding of the postcard prop. Even the title no longer indicates the manner of death but weds the particularity of a single death to a cultural mythos or to the memento mori tradition. It is through his introduction of explicit artistic effects and a degree of self-consciousness that Silverthorne opens up the possibility for viewers to be more than disgusted by inert, anonymous corpses. Certainly, there is no guarantee that viewers will do so. The anonymity of Silverthornes subjects places a tremendous amount of pressure on these images and it is the violation of this anonymity through our emotional engagement as much as the violation of access to their bodies as photographic subjects that sometimes seems too much to bear.

Richter, Tote 2, 1988, oil on canvas. Gerhard Richter

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______________________________________________________________ 4. Conclusion While never nave about the disturbing effect of representations of the dead, Richter and Silverthorne both fight its inherent sensationalism by encouraging an aesthetic experience of their subjects. Infamy vs. anonymity: the primary challenge for both artists is to transform the viewers experience from that of seeing the dead body as a repulsive external object of horror and disgust to experiencing it as an internal object, in the psychoanalytic sense one that is creatively part self and part other. Only through this internalization can the viewer use the visual object for a productive purpose. Through ambiguous layers of paint, compositional sophistication and the introduction of the subjective presence of the artist himself, these two artists turn representations of the shocking and most profoundly limiting human condition of death into artistically engaging meditations on fate, idealism and pathos. I think that it would be fair to say that Silverthornes project faces a greater artistic risk than Richters. The notoriety, even infamy, of Richters subjects immediately provides the viewer with a context for understanding the dead - even if Richter rightly realizes that this context can often be shallow or misleading. But the anonymity of Silverthornes subjects requires that the viewer rely almost entirely on the aesthetic experience of the subject. What both artists attempt to provide the viewer in these pictures is a means to consider their own end. It is an opportunity not all will wish to take, but which each of these artists in their own way felt that they could not refuse.

Notes
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S. Kracauer, Photography, (1927) in The Mass Ornament: Weimer Essays, trans. T. Levin, ed., Harvard University Press, Cambridge, MA, 1995, p. 59. Of course another photography theorist who proposed this intimate connection between photography and death is Roland Barthes in Camera Lucida, Vintage, London, 2000: the Photograph (the one I intend) represents that very subtle moment when, to tell the truth, I am neither subject nor object but a subject who feels he is becoming an object: I then experience a micro-version of death (of parenthesis): I am truly becoming a specter. The Photographer knows this very well, and himself fears (if only for commercial reasons) this death in which his] gesture will embalm me. As if the (terrified) Photographer must exert himself to the utmost to keep the Photograph from becoming Death [] Ultimately, what I am seeking in the photograph taken of me (the intention according to which I look at it) is Death: Death is the eidos of that Photograph, pp. 14-15.

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2

Many examples could be given in support of Richter as a signature postmodern artist, such as K. Wilkin, Gerhard Richter at MOMA, The New Criterion, vol. 20, no. 6: Richters paintings could be described as the ultimate embodiment of postmodern cool, p. 34. 3 Benjamin Buchloh fixates on how Richter might support his reading of modern painting as progressively withering away in relevance, withdrawing itself from the ability to convincingly represent anything: the prohibition of representation itself has become an irreversible historical reality that can only be ignored at the price of mythicizing painting, or, again, what is convincing in Richters Skulls and Candle paintings is their character as grotesques: they brilliantly perform the pure technical availability of these pictorial types while at the same time they publicly invalidate any actual experience once conveyed by this genre; in B. Buchloh, A Note on Gerhard Richters October 18, 1977, October, vol. 48, 1989, p. 103. Because Buchloh favors Richter, his only critical choice when espousing a Hegelian notion of the passing viability of media is to interpret Richter engagement with the past historical forms and styles of pass painting as a form of cynical gamesmanship, as if he were playing with the now-dead stylistic possibilities available to him. Buchlohs interpretation seems entirely at odds with numerous statements made by Richter over the years, including this recent one to Robert Storr: Painting is the only positive thing I have. Even if I see everything else negatively, at least in the pictures I can communicate some kind of hope. I can at least carry on, in The Day is Long, Art in America, vol. 90, no. 1, January 2002, p. 121. The most notorious critical dissonance between Buchloh and Richters interpretations of his work occurs in Buchlohs famous interview of Richter, reprinted in G. Richter, Gerhard Richter: The Daily Practice of Painting, ed. H-U. Obrist, Thames and Hudson, New York, 1995, pp. 132-66. 4 These successive events included the kidnapping of an industrialist and former-Nazi, Hanns-Martin Shleyer, which failed to bring the German government to the table to negotiate the release of Red Army members. The unsuccessful threats on Schleyers life were followed by the desperate hijacking of a Lufthansa plane originally headed from Palma de Mallorca to Frankfurt to Mogadishu Somalia. The consequent freeing of the planes hostages by German commandos and the group murder/suicide of BaaderMeinhof members in Stammheim prison resulted, finally, in the execution of Schleyer, whose body was found in a car trunk the day after the suicides. For a more complete account of the Baader-Meinhof gang in relation to Richters art see, R. Usselmann, 18. Oktober 1977: Gerhard Richters Work of Mourning and its New Audience, Art Journal, vol. 61, (1), pp. 4-25; see

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______________________________________________________________ also, Robert Storrs catalogue essay, which was part of the first display of the 18. Oktober 1977 series after it was purchased by The Museum of Modern Art, in October 18, 1977, The Museum of Modern Art, New York, 2000. This essay is now also included in his more recent book on Richter, Gerhard Richter, Doubt and Belief in Painting, The Museum of Modern Art, New York, 2003. 5 See electronic flux corporations website <http://www.eflux.com/displayshow.php?file=message_1106847732.txt>, retrieved 15 March 2007, for a summary of this exhibition. The show displayed work that addressed the issues of the Red Army Faction and included works by Joseph Beuys, Dara Birnbaum, Jorg Immendorf, Sigmar Polke, Gerhard Richter, Thomas Ruff, and Thomas Schutte, among many others. It was organized by Klaus Biesenbach, Ellen Blumenstein, and Felix Ensslin for public display on January 29-May 16 2005 at the Kunst-Werke Institute for Contemporary Art in Berlin. 6 Buchloh suggests that Richters Funeral is consciously modeled after Courbets Burial at Ornans and his Dead Woman after Manets Dead Torreador, in A Note on Gerhard Richters October 18, 1977, p. 93. 7 R. Storr, Gerhard Richter, Doubt and Belief in Painting, p. 6. 8 Not everyone finds Richters blurring of detail appropriate for such a loaded historical image. Leftists in particular seem to wish to recover the heroism of the Baader-Meinhof group, which is difficult to do on the basis of the limited information that Richters images provide. One critic sympathetic to the aims of the RAF wrote that, Revelation is needed, not mourning or the overpainting of that which remains unclear, but the opening of wounds. Not clemency Art has to confront these distortions of reality, should reveal not conceal, in H. Heyme, Trauerarbeit der - Kunst muss sich klarer geben, Art: Das Kunstmagazin, vol. 4, April 1989, p. 15. Even Usselmann (cited above) suggests that the images need to be supplemented by extensive text for a full experience. 9 See J. Silverthorne, Directions for Leaving: Photographs 1971-2006, Photographic Center, Copenhagen, 2007, for a more representative range of his past and current work. 10 Silverthorne in conversation with author, September 2006.

Bibliography
Barthes, R., Camera Lucida: Reflections on Photography, trans. R. Howard, Vintage, London, 2000.

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______________________________________________________________ Buchloh, B., Divided Memory and Post-Traditional Identity: Gerhard Richters Work of Mourning, October, vol. 75, 1996, pp. 61-82. Gerhard Richters Atlas: The Anomic Archive, October, vol. 88, 1999, pp. 117-145. A Note on Gerhard Richters October 18, 1977, October, vol. 48, 1989, pp. 88-109. Heyme, H., Trauerarbeit der - Kunst muss sich klarer geben, Art: Das Kunstmagazin, vol. 4, 1989, p. 15. Hustvedt, S., Double Exposure, Modern Painters, vol. 15 no. 2, 2002, pp. 48-57. Kracauer, S., The Mass Ornament: Weimer Essays, ed. and trans., T. Levin, Harvard University Press, Cambridge, MA, 1995. Nestegard, J., Gerhard Richter: The Art of the Impossible, Astrup Fearnley Museum, 1999 Olso,. Rainbird, S. and J. Severne, eds., Gerhard Richter, The Tate Gallery, London, 1992. Richter, G., Gerhard Richter: The Daily Practice of Painting, H-U. Obrist,ed., Thames and Hudson, New York, 1995. War Cut, published by Hans-Ulrich Obrist and Suzanne Page, Walther Knig Publishers, Cologne, 2004. Silverthorne, J., Directions for Leaving, Photographic Center, Copenhagen, 2007. Storr, R., The Day is Long, Art in America, vol. 90, (1), 2002, pp. 66-75, 121. Gerhard Richter: Doubt and Belief in Painting, Museum of Modern Art, New York, 2003. Gerhard Richter: Forty Years of Painting, Museum of Modern Art, New York, 2002. Usselmann, R., 18. Oktober 1977: Gerhard Richters Work of Mourning and its New Audience, Art Journal, vol. 61, (1), pp. 4-25. Wilkin, K., Gerhard Richter at MOMA, The New Criterion, vol. 20 (9), 2002, pp. 34-9.

Randall K. Van Schepen is Assistant Professor of Art and Architectural History in the School of Architecture, Art and Historic Preservation at Roger Williams University, Bristol, Rhode Island, USA. His research interests include formalist art criticism, modernist theory, Frankfurt School analysis, the intersection of religious and aesthetic theory, and collecting.

Literature and Death

Death, Mourning, and the Problem of Repetition Francisc Szekely


Abstract Mourning has always a narrative structure to it. This narrative-ness rests on the ability of the mourner to put together, in a logical and readable form, disparate moments from the life he is remembering. But because it uses memory, which is an extremely unreliable tool for re-makings, the representation we receive or create might suffer from imperfection. This is because mourning disembodies, just like death. We dis-order and re-order the dead persons life through abstractions, through sublimations. A series of aspects restrict our re-creation to such an extent that we are, in fact, forced to create a patchy image of weak recollections sewn together to form a hybrid, a monstrous creature, a Frankenstein. The only difference is that the image we create through mourning is made up of fragments of beauty. We remember only what used to be beautiful in the dead friend. Our sublimations retain only those aspects which are convenient to a happy story with an ending which is made to sound happy too. This is the great paradox of mourning: that it gives us the illusion of a happy-ending to a narrative which is necessarily sad.

Keywords Mourning, Repetition, Recollection, Commemoration, Chronology, Narrativeness, Re-creation, Dis-embodiment. 1. Introduction Through its system of overseeing, every society manages to know the identity of those who inhabit or have inhabited it. The act of mourning must contain at least one such reference; otherwise, it will not be an act of mourning in the true sense of the word. One important aspect which must be repeated in an act of mourning is the name. In discussing the dialectics of the relationship between the host and the foreigner, Derrida regards the demand for the name as the supreme proof of the fact that societies need the regimentation of their subjects. The city requests the names of the barbarians just as it requests the names of its dead. His definition of the foreigner is: This is someone to whom you put a question and address a demand, the first demand, the minimal demand being: What is your name? or then In telling me what your name is, in responding to this request, you are responding on your own

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______________________________________________________________ behalf, you are responsible before the law and before your hosts, you are a subject in law.1 Is not the deceased a foreigner who is revisiting us through the act of mourning? Is not the mourner the court clerk assuring the city of the foreigners fitting into the expectations of the local law? In the biblical account of Davids lamenting the loss of his son, Absalom, the mourning is done entirely through the agency of the name. O my son Absalom, my son, my son Absalom! Would God I had died for thee, O Absalom, my son, my son!2 The name of the mourned one stands apart. It is scanted; it is made audible to the crowds. Its repetition is requested by the need for identification. The deceased must have an identity, because he also has social and political significance. O my son Absalom, my son, my son. By repeating the name, the mourner makes recognition possible. The name is repeated three times, in the form of a public announcement. The audience is summoned to gather in the public place to participate in the collective process of mourning. The individual is invited to commemorate, to remember together, to weep along with others. The others partake in the experience which is the poets experience: the experience of the one who mourns. The calling of the name is, therefore, a public notification. Yet more important than the name is the quality of the dead person: the significance of his relationship to the mourner. Simple arithmetic: in Davids account, the name is repeated three times, while the principal quality of Absalom (my son) is uttered five times. What makes the act of mourning significant is, undoubtedly, the quality of this relationship between the mourner and the mourned. Without a close connection between the two, the act of mourning does not stand on safe grounds: it would seem insincere, unbelievable, untrustworthy. The act of mourning repeats a relationship which used to be active, non-mediated, and personal, and transforms it into a symbol of itself. For David, the bereavement is made possible by the parental relationship he had with Absalom. We believe him because he expresses a fathers bereavement. In The Iliad, Achilles mourns for the death of Patroclus from the position of the best friend, and we are made aware that it is this relationship that imports.3 The entire world is limited to it, and only the movements of Patrocluss spirit can move Achilles to take action, after having spent a long time refusing to fight: He said, Tis true, Olympius hath done me all that grace, / But what joy have I of it all, when thus thrusts in the place / Loss of my whole self in my friend?4

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______________________________________________________________ 2. Life and Repetition In Hamlet, the last scene finds Horatio facing the almost sacred duty of retelling the story of his friend who has just died. Fortinbras, entering the scene ignorant of what has happened, longs for an explanation. He must understand what lies behind the gruesome image of the entire royal family slaughtered, lying dead on the floor of the castle of Elsinore. O good Horatio, what a wounded name, Things, standing thus unknown, shall live behind me! If thou didst ever hold me in thy heart, Absent thee from felicity a while, And in this harsh world draw thy breath in pain, To tell my story.5 The friend will become a mourner, in that he will perform a reconstruction, a re-telling of the story of his friends life. He will recompose the body of his friend from scraps of memory and scraps of imagination returning continuously to a time when the present body was alive. Horatios accepting to tell the story of Hamlet arouses many questions in the readers mind. On the one hand, we must not forget that the perception we have had of Hamlet throughout the play has been an incomplete one. Most of his image is made up of his outwardly behaviour, of what is seen, and not of what is thought. The soliloquies do not clarify too much of his mind, which, to us, remains a nebulous map. On the other hand, throughout the play we are induced to believe that Horatio knows more than we know, that he knows things we would like to ask him about, if we were Fortinbras. And we sometimes have the funny feeling that the time will come when we will find out what has been missing. Horatio knows intimately Hamlet; he has access to his privacy. He has always been his companion. After Hamlets death, he is the only one who can tell us about all these gaps in knowledge. Repetition is, thus, made necessary. The mourner always tells things that are intimately known only by him and by the deceased friend. He has the authority of being the last bearer of the knowledge. In Lycidas, which is primarily a poem commemorating Edward King, who died by drowning in 1637, Milton speaks of the moments of enjoyment when he used to be alone with his friend. For we were nurst upon the self-same hill, Fed the same flock, by mountain, shade and rill. Together both, ere the high Lawns appeard Under the opening eye-lids of the morn, We drove afield, and both together heard What time the Gray-fly winds her sultry horn.6

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______________________________________________________________ Miltons narrative abounds in details of this type. Through them, the friend becomes a personal event, and the mourning - a memory of this experience, a repetition. The great merit of Milton is that he realized, while writing Lycidas for a collection of commemorative poems7, that, sooner or later, the poet as mourner will acknowledge the fact that he is only one of those who have known the dead friend, and that the acts of recollection performed by the others might be different from his, and equally personal. Therefore, he stresses the singularity of this experience, separating it from any other possible discourse. This awareness is not unknown to others. Derrida writing the funeral oration for Louis Althuser, says: What is coming to an end, what Louis is taking away with him, is not only something or other that we would have shared at some point or another, in one place or another, but the world itself, a certain origin of the world his origin, no doubt, but also that of the world in which I lived, in which we lived a unique story.8 What is really important is the present recollection, the hic et nunc of the narrative time; the mourner claims the audiences attention to this and no other recollection. For Kierkegaard, any repetition is a reversal of the dialectics of time, because it is about the now of the present operation, which must be looked for in the before of the event, but through an after of the chronological projection towards that now of the present utterance. If it is a simple revisitation (which does not change anything) this act is not repletion but recollection, which, as Kierkegaard says, can only make us unhappy.9 The act of mourning is (and must always be) a personal experience that is being shared with an audience. No matter how much of this is felt or thought by the others, the actual mourning is the mourners intellectual property, the copy-right he has for the reproduction of a memory whose further circulation is forbidden to others. The mourner is always this Horatio who has accompanied Hamlet in the most intimate moments of his life, and who knows what others know, but also something in addition. And this gives him pre-emption. Every subsequent story must start from his story, and the laws of copy-right will be there, to assure him of his authority: the authority of grief. In On the Death of Mr. William Hervey, Abraham Cowley stresses the same uniqueness of the experience which had been the object of Miltons account:

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______________________________________________________________ Say, for you saw us, ye immortal lights, How oft unwearied have we spent the nights, Till the Ledaean stars, so famed for love, Wonderd at us from above!10 In another epitaph, On the Death of Mr. Jordan, Second Master at Westminster School, Cowley is even more explicit about what personal experience means in mourning. Hence, and make room for me, all you who come Only to read the epitaph on this tomb!11 And a few lines further down Come hither, all who his rare virtues knew, And mourn with me: he was your tutor too.12 The mourning is reserved exclusively to those who have known the deceased. They form a club, an esoteric sect, which rejects all outsiders, by virtue of their acquaintance. They are the only ones who can re-compose his life, because they have been close to his privacy. Thus, the enclosure of Mr. Jordans privacy is re-stated in his commemoration: no outsider is invited to the feast of memory, which revolves around itself in a continuous narrative spin. The memory must remain pure, unaltered by the intervention of the barbarian, of the outsider. This is a territory exclusively reserved to the hosts. It is the territory of his heart; the place where the mourner can assert his ownership. If thou didst ever hold me in thy heart, Hamlet says. Once again, this is the necessary condition for an individual to be a mourner. He must have the dead friend within his heart, to acknowledge, as Derrida suggests, that he is the one who is left to carry the grief. He must be the possessor of the deceaseds image: the picture of his life. And, unfortunately, to mourn is a privilege and a torture in the same time. To know a friend, to look at him, to follow him with your eyes, to admire him in friendship, is to know in a more intense way, already injured, always insistent, and more and more unforgettable, that one of the two of you will inevitably see the other die.13 Yet not everything in this exclusion of the non-initiated has a negative connotation. In fact, the personal relationship between the mourner and the mourned makes it easier for the former to become a protector of his audience (which is one of the many positive outcomes of mourning). Once the readers

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______________________________________________________________ agree to appropriate the tone suggested by him, they leave their own grief, partaking into the grief of the other. This dialectics of transference is therapeutic in its intension. My lonely anguish melts no heart but mine, Thomas Gray says.14 The audience is excluded from any psychological suffering. The grief belongs entirely to the mourner, who has a cathartic role. 3. Death and Repetition Mourning is repetition in that it retells not only the story of the life but also the story of the death of the friend. As long as the death aims at becoming significant, or worthy of praise, its data must be mentioned in the narrative told by the mourner. Thus, it is re-enacted, or repeated. It is particularly the heros privilege to have his death retold, because his acts have had a direct effect on the audience which will mourn for him. Thomas Gray, in his Epitaph on Sir William Williams (who died at the siege of Belleisle, in 1761) fulfills exactly this type of requirement. Here, foremost in the dangerous paths of fame, Young William fought for Englands fair renown; His mind each Muse, each Grace adorned his frame, Nor Envy dared to view him with a frown. At Aix uncalled his maiden sword he drew, (There first in blood his infant glory sealed); From fortune, pleasure, science, love, he flew, And scorned repose when Britain took the field. With eyes of flame and cool intrepid breast, Victor he stood on Belle Isles rocky steeps; Ah gallant youth! This marble tells the rest, Where melancholy Friendship bends and weeps.15 The poems last couplet develops a curious form of irony,16 by relying on the readers knowledge of the destiny of Sir William Williams. So far, the reader has become gradually acquainted with several worthy deeds performed by the Captain of the Dragoons, who is seen almost enwrapped in a light of splendid glory. The battle of Belle Isle is also mentioned up to the moment when the captain was still victor. Then, the account stops suddenly and the text takes a different turn: This marble tells the rest. The text has a destiny similar to the commemorated hero. This is because the narrative of the latters life is always equivalent to the text. Whenever the narrative changes, the text also changes; when the hero dies the text reaches its end. The text is disembodied, in the same way in which the dead friends body decomposes. There is always an end to the

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______________________________________________________________ text: a limit beyond which it becomes silent. Narrators are always aware of this dead end, just like any human is aware of death as the only certitude in life. Once the limit of life is transgressed, the friend separates from the text of his life and enters the discourse of his death. Similarly, the text becomes the narrative of silence, which is the opposite of textual utterance. Just as the body continues its symbolic existence in an after-life, the text continues in an after-text (in the message conveyed by the marble stone on the tomb). Milton, who Gray imitates in many respects, does the same thing in Lycidas. The poem follows a clear path of recollection, only to shift the entire mood and narrative in the last lines. In Miltons case, what has been related as disappearance is suddenly seen as the rise to heavens. So Lycidas sunk low, but mounted high, Through the dear might of him that walkd the waves17 This is another illustration of the Kierkegaardian belief that repetition is always an alteration. It cannot be the imitation of the same instant, because, as in the statement of Heraclitus, we cannot walk twice through the same river. The river is not the same, and even we are changed, by the passage of time. An important thing which characterizes repetition is the role of the mourner. To be concise: the mourner is an observer. Being an observer is a gloomy business, and it can make one as melancholy as a policeman. But when an observer does his work well, he is like a spy in a higher service, for the art of the observer is to disclose something that has been hidden.18 The mourner is not only a narrator, but also an intruder: one who has had the experience of sharing in the secrecy of his friends life, only to disclose everything at the end of the journey. Thus, the possession of knowledge, which was once a privilege, is now a form of sin: sinning against the vow of friendship, but confirming the ineluctable reality of it. Treacherous as it may seem, this disclosure also has a therapeutic value to it. Apart from helping his audience to recover from grief, the mourner is also helping himself. Let us not forget Freud! His distinction between mourning and melancholia is given by the way in which the rapport to the world is created and maintained.19 Based as it is on what Kierkegaard called recollection, melancholia is internal, intrinsic, introvert. It belongs inside the ego. Mourning, on the other hand, is external, centrifugal, extrovert. It is a manifestation of the super-ego, which the ego addresses in order to rid itself of all its anxieties and all its frustrations. Melancholia will always remain personal: the public sphere cannot

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______________________________________________________________ touch it, because the melancholic retires into his self and will never let go to the interiority whence he emerged and to which he returns. This is why it gives birth to pathological manifestations; this is why it becomes object to psychoanalysis. Mourning, on the other hand, is non-psychoanalyzeable, because it escapes the coercions of the self. It is public domain in the strictest sense of the phrase. It is projection, that is, purification. This cathartic role of mourning is, once again, what makes it take the outer form of poetry. Mourning rests on repetition because it deals with eternity; and eternity is that which is being stated without interruption. Death is eternal, just like all that time before our birth. Our lives are compressed between these limits; and these limits are, in themselves, unlimited: the eternity before and the eternity after. What is in between is exactly this now of our existence, which happens to be identical to the now of mourning. It is, therefore, the irony of our lives that we inhabit this temporality and spatiality, while being surrounded by territories of outer-time and outer-space. And more than anything else, this is why we need repetition in order to survive. If we were components of those eternities that surround our lives, we would have been entirely melted into the continuum, and, consequently, we would have needed no repetition. But the way in which we are designed does not give us this privilege. We try to imitate eternity by repeating. Eternity is one single statement, so big it encompasses space and time, and goes beyond any limitation. Eternity does not need interpretation or representation; it does not mean anything: it simply is. Our lives, on the other hand, need to be endowed with meaning. We are not capable of uttering a statement which is unrepeatable. No matter how far we reach with our statements, they will find their end, that is, the moment when they become mutable, when they return to themselves in order to regenerate themselves. What remains is the vain attempt to conceal this limitation; to pretend that as long as we keep repeating one thing it does not reach its limits. A simulacrum. We face unrepeatability with continuity. We mourn.

Notes
1

J. Derrida & A. Dufourmantelle, Of Hospitality, Stanford University Press, Stanford, 2000, p. 27. 2 The Holy Bible, the King James Version, 2 Sam.18:33, Kingjbible.com website, retrieved 5 June 2007, <http://kingjbible.com/2_samuel/18.htm>. 3 Homer, The Iliad, ed. G. Chapman, John Russell Smith, London, 1865. 4 Ibid., Bk. XVIII, ll.71-73.

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J. P. Kemble, ed., Shakspears (sic!) Hamlet, Prince of Denmark, a tragedy, revised by J.P. Kemble. And now first published as it is acted by Their Majesties servants of the Theatre Royal, Drury Lane. September 16th, 1800, London, 1800, Act V, sc. II, p. 91, Eighteenth Century Collection Online, Gale Group, retrieved 5 June 2007, <http://galenet.galegroup.com.ezproxy.auckland.ac.nz/servlet/ECCO>. 6 J. Milton, Lycidas, in R. Flannagan, ed., The Riverside Milton, Houghton Mifflin, Boston, 1998, p. 101, ll.23-28. 7 Lycidas was published in 1638, in the Cambridge memorial volume for Edward King, Justa Edwardo King Naufrago (In memory of Edward King, shipwrecked). It is not entirely clear whether Milton was asked to contribute to the collection or if he volunteered. 8 J. Derrida, The Work of Mourning, ed. P.-A. Brault and M. Naas, University of Chicago Press, Chicago, 2001, p. 115. 9 S. Kierkegaard, Repetition: An Essay in Experimental Psychology, Oxford University Press, London, 1946. 10 A. Cowley, On the Death of Mr. William Hervey, in A. Quiller-Couch, ed., The Oxford Book of English Verse. Clarendon Press, Oxford, 1919, p. 376. 11 A. Cowley, On the Death of Mr. Jordan, Second Master at Westminster School, in J. Aikin, ed., The Works of Abraham Cowley, G. Kearsley, London, 1806, p. 34. 12 Ibid. 13 J. Derrida, 2001, p. 107. 14 T. Gray, Sonnet on the Death of Mr. Richard West, Thomasgray.org website, retrieved 5 June 2007, <http://www.thomasgray.org/cgibin/search.cgi?collection=english+poems&term s=Sonnet+on+the+death+of+Mr.+Richard+West&find=all+the+words&case=in sensitive&display=on&sortby=results>. 15 Ibid. 16 And irony is what makes the necessary detachment possible (Kierkegaard, op. cit.). 17 J. Milton, op. cit., ll.72-73. 18 S. Kierkegaard, op. cit., p. 118. 19 S. Freud, Mourning and Melancholia, in The Standard Edition of the Complete Psychological Works of Sigmund Freud, The Hogarth Press, London, 1957, vol. XIV, pp. 238-258.

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Bibliography
Aikin J., ed., The Works of Abraham Cowley, G. Kearsley, London, 1806. Chapman, G., ed., The Iliad of Homer, John Russell Smith, London, 1865. Cowley, A., On the Death of Mr. William Hervey, A. Quiller-Couch, ed., The Oxford Book of English Verse, Clarendon Press, Oxford, 1919, pp. 376-379. Derrida, J., The Work of Mourning, ed. P.-A. Brault and M. Naas, University of Chicago Press, Chicago, 2001. Derrida, J. and A. Dufourmantelle, Of Hospitality, Stanford University Press, Stanford, 2000. Flannagan, R., ed., The Riverside Milton, Houghton Mifflin, Boston, 1998. Freud, S., The Standard Edition of the Complete Psychological Works of Sigmund Freud, The Hogarth Press, London, 1957, vol. XIV, pp. 238258. Huber, A., ed., The Thomas Gray Archive, retrieved 5 June 2007, <http://www.thomasgray.org/>. Kemble, J. P., ed., Shakspears (sic!) Hamlet, Prince of Denmark, a tragedy, revised by J.P. Kemble. And now first published as it is acted by Their Majesties servants of the Theatre Royal, Drury Lane, September 16th, 1800, London, 1800, Eighteenth Century Collection Online, Gale Group, retrieved 5 June 2007, <http://galenet.galegroup.com.ezproxy.auckland.ac.nz/servlet/ECCO>. Kierkegaard, S., Repetition: An Essay in Experimental Psychology, University Press, Oxford London, 1946. Francisc Szekely is a postgraduate student in the English Department and the Comparative Literature Programme at the University of Auckland, New Zealand.

Half in Love with Easeful Death: Death in The Loved One and Love Among the Ruins Elisa Morera de la Vall
Abstract Death, which had inspired rites and cultures from the beginning of time, acquired with Christianity a transcendental meaning as the door to Heaven or Hell. The novelist Evelyn Waugh, a convert to Catholicism, was concerned by the new paganism that was displacing traditional beliefs. While he was staying in Southern California in the late 1940s, he was taken around an amazing cemetery, Forest Lawn. The visit prompted Waugh to write The Loved One, a satire about a decadent society that has to find euphemistic words and concepts to veil the crude aspects of death that it cannot face. In the novel, Forest Lawn becomes Whispering Glades, a necropolis where a dead person is referred to as the loved one and eternal happiness is offered to its denizens as part of the undertaking service. When Waugh wrote Love Among the Ruins a few years later, his mood had become much grimmer. This novelette is one more dystopia in a disillusioned age that produced a good number of them. The society depicted here is bleak, people are devoid of hope and as a result death has been devalued and is gladly welcomed as an end to the unbearable burden of life.

Keywords Death, The Dead and the Bereaved, Burial Customs, Euthanasia, Suicide.

The thought of death has inspired rites, myths and cultures from the beginning of time. With Christianity death acquired a new transcendental meaning. It was the door to either eternal punishment or eternal joy. Heaven and Hell were not to be taken lightly, dismissed or embellished. This was the view held by Evelyn Waugh who, as a convert to Catholicism, was concerned about the new paganism that was displacing traditional beliefs in the Western world. This new paganism also implied an inversion of values and the degradation of art which was making the human being its goal instead of God. The novelist was persuaded that, after the First World War, the human race had lost its spiritual way and had suffered, metaphorically speaking, a

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______________________________________________________________ second Fall. When he wrote The Loved One (1948) and Love Among the Ruins (1953) he had witnessed a Second World War that had reaffirmed his sombre views about any possibilities of recovery. His pessimism is particularly noticeable in the case of Love Among the Ruins, the latter of the two works, in which he creates the bleakest possible society in the New Britain of a near future. The Loved One, set in Southern California in the late 1940s, depicts Americans as rootless, with no individuality, sterile like their civilization. The image of the stoneless peaches that they favour acts as a mirror of their eagerness to suppress the sting of death which surely, in the novelists beliefs, only Christ could remove. Their funeral customs were particularly vulnerable to the writers corrosive satire. In 1946 Evelyn Waugh travelled to California to discuss a possible film version of Brideshead Revisited and he was invited to visit an amazing necropolis, Forest Lawn. His visit was a most thorough one, and he even had lunch with its creator, Dr. Eaton, The Dreamer. Waugh was both fascinated and amused by Forest Lawn where he envisaged a literary gold mine; yet, at the same time, he was eminently critical of the philosophy that informed it. The impact impelled him to write his novel, The Loved One. It was preceded by an article, Half in Love with Easeful Death: An Examination of Californian Burial Customs, which throws some light on the workings of the novel.1 Whispering Glades, the grandiose cemetery in The Loved One, is a replica of Forest Lawn. Slumber Rooms, morticians, cosmeticians, tombs, urns, symbols, evergreens and background music, even the Dreamer, all pass from reality into the pages of The Loved One. For a work that has death as its gravitational point, the title is misleading. It is eventually made clear that the expression the loved one is merely a euphemism to refer to a dead person. The decadent society that has produced Whispering Glades has to find euphemistic words and concepts to veil the crude aspects of death that it cannot face. Thus, a Mortuary Hostess offering alternatives for the disposing of a corpse, will formulate the choices in these words: Normal disposal is by inhumement, entombment, inurnment or immurement, but many people just lately prefer insarcophagusment.2 To tell his story, Waugh makes use of a character in the tradition of the mock heroic, the Englishman Dennis Barlow, an inverted version of the innocent abroad, capable, because he is an outsider, of judging Americans and the American way of life with detachment. While ironically critical of it, Dennis is fascinated by Whispering Glades and by one of its cosmeticians, a girl who is imbued with the idea that her ministrations to the corpses are works of sheer Art (in capital letters). Her name is revealing of her personality and her fate: Aime (Loved One/Dead One) Thanatogenos (Born of Death). Ian Littlewood says of Aime: her imagination has conjoined Art,

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______________________________________________________________ Love and Death in a perverted trinity.3 Aime confides to Dennis that when she goes alone to the imitation Lake Island of Innisfree all she thinks about is just Death and Art.4 In her confused and rather hollow mind Death and Art have taken the place of religion. I am progressive and therefore have no religion,5 she writes to her bogus Spiritual Director, a drunken journalist who goes by the exotic name of Guru Brahmin. Death and Art are served by Aime as something sacred in a sacred place, Whispering Glades, where she performs her labours like a nun6 under the priest-like figure of Mr Joyboy, the chief embalmer. Very aptly Dennis calls her nautch girl and vestal virgin of the place.7 Given her exaltation regarding Death and Art, Aime is an easy prey when Dennis courts her with the magic of Keats lines, which poor Aime attributes to her suitor: For many a time I have been half in love with easeful Death, Calld him soft names in many a mused rhyme To take into the air my quiet breath; Now more than ever seems it rich to die, To cease upon the midnight with no pain8 Towards the end of the novel she will fulfil her yearning for easeful Death and will become for ever a Loved One. The manner of Aimes exit is coherent with the satirical tone of this novel. No embalmer will preserve her body and give her an aseptic smile, no cosmetician will attend to her nails, make-up or hair; and she will disgracefully be smuggled out of the shrine where she has worked so reverently, and be burned cheaply in The Happier Hunting Ground, the pet crematorium run by Dennis. Having served a bogus religion in a bogus sanctuary where man and not God is served, she is reduced to the final indignity of being referred to as a dog wagging her tail,9 thus illustrating Waughs dictum, reproduced by Jeffrey Heath, that man without God is less than man.10 The rich and idle society of Southern California is depicted as somehow deprived of God. The void is filled by a pseudo religiosity that was hateful to Waugh. His orthodoxy rejected the manner in which Whispering Glades, like Forest Lawn, induced people to believe that by engaging its services they were buying eternal happiness at the same time. He had written of Dr. Eaton: [He] is the first man to offer eternal salvation at an inclusive charge as part of his undertaking service.11 Waugh protests not only against the impudence of this claim but also against the presentation of death as a poetic return to innocence. The claim that Whispering Glades offers art to its denizens is also contested. Jeffrey Heath, in an essay on The Loved One, comments:

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______________________________________________________________ Waughs view, already emphatically dramatized in Brideshead Revisited, is that no art which serves only man can be either lasting or great. Aimes art, painted on the very face of death, is Waughs gruesome symbol for all art which serves change and decay rather than God.12 In the novel there is a great deal of irony concerning Aimes art. She takes it very seriously but it is in reality a sham and what it produces is grotesque, as exemplified in the caricature of Sir Francis Hinley - Denniss friend who has hanged himself - that emerges from her hands. The sight of it drives Dennis to compose a mock poem in which he not only ridicules the new look of Sir Francis, a painted whore,13 but also kicks at the parody of immortality created by the embalmers by describing him as shrimp-pink incorruptible, not lost nor gone before.14 A resentful Aime complains to her spiritual mentor about Dennis: Take the Works of Art in Whispering Glades Memorial Park he is often quite irreverent about them which I think an epitome of all that is finest in the American Way of Life.15 But the reader knows that the so called Works of Art are only copies of the originals, and is not very faithful at that. Despite the moral depth of the novel, its author never sounds like an old moralist with a grudge and a gloomy sermon to preach and this is because his sense of comedy is irresistible. Waughs alter ego, Dennis Barlow, is so cut down to size that nobody can accuse his creator of setting himself or his persona as a model of virtues. Dennis, like Waugh, feels repulsion towards Whispering Glades, but unlike him, has no consistent faith and is not ashamed, for instance, to reproduce in The Happier Hunting Ground some of the features from Whispering Glades, or rather a parody of them. His contempt for the plagiarism of works of art is understandable, yet he has no scruples in appropriating some of the best poems of the English language while courting Aime. Although he professes to love Aime, his reaction to her suicide is so callous that the reader realizes that Dennis is no innocent after all. Planning his return home, Dennis feels happy because he has only had to pay a small price for the artists load, a great, shapeless chunk of experience that he is carrying back.16 The price?: A bit [] that had long irked him, his young heart17 The description of a human heart as an irksome bit is Waughs last wink of complicity before we close his novel. When the novelist wrote the later work, Love Among the Ruins, his mood had become much grimmer and his amused glance had turned sour. The result was a satire so scathing that much of the entertainment is lost. This Romance of the Near Future, as the subtitle reads, is yet one more dystopia in a disillusioned age that produced a good number of them. In The Loved One, while deploring the absurdities and hollowness of Western civilization, as exemplified by the treatment of death in California,

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______________________________________________________________ Waugh at least was deriving some amusement from them. By contrast, it is difficult to detect the authors sense of fun in Love Among the Ruins. The society depicted in this novelette is too bleak, the atmosphere too dismal and devoid of hope. It is as if, in Waughs eyes, mankind had never recovered from the metaphorical Second Fall of the two World Wars and had finally become prefabricated and soulless. To understand the attitude to death in any society one must reflect on the values held by that society. In The Loved One, although important values are inverted or confused, some concept of what is ethical still exists. In fact Aime is driven to an absurd suicide by her misdirected sense of ethics. In the imaginary society of Love Among the Ruins, however, there is no sense at all of good and evil, and personal responsibility has been eliminated. The New Penology has established that there are no criminals, only victims of bad social services who must be helped. Thus, the anti-hero with the suggestive name of Miles Plastic, an arsonist who has already caused several deaths, is treated most benevolently as a maladjusted person and a victim of the inadequacies of the Welfare State. Perverted as he is, Miles Plastic is considerably less perverted than the state that has made him. Paraphrasing Hamlet we could remark that something is rotten in a state that can say to an individual, as Miles Plastic is told: This little pile of papers is You.18 Famous works of art filled the extensive gardens of Whispering Glades, if only in copy, but somewhere else the originals existed. In Satellite City, in Love Among the Ruins, there only exist copies of a couple of painters, which are present everywhere. There is no creativity, only destructiveness. In Love Among The Ruins the representative of the female sex, Clara, has made of art, in the form of dancing, a god, upon whose altar she is prepared to sacrifice her fertility. As the result of an operation to make her sterile Clara grows an incongruous beard, perhaps as a premonition of a hybrid race in the future. When, despite the operation Clara becomes pregnant, she disposes of the life that she has conceived and her beard is removed to be replaced by a synthetic rubber face, something quite inhuman, a tight, slippery mask, salmon pink.19 If the hero of the romance is a plastic soldier the heroine has been turned into a synthetic rubber puppet dancer. Just as Miles is staring in horror at her new face, the music of an old Christmas Carol comes mockingly from the bedside television: O tidings of comfort and joy, comfort and joy, O tidings of comfort and joy.20 In The Loved One, Waughs criticism had centred on the coy presentation of death and the manipulation of the dead, yet bogus values were better than none. Death in Love Among the Ruins is much more sordid. It is devalued. No sugar sweetens its taste, and yet it is gladly welcomed to end the unbearable burden of life. No pomp, no funeral service, no embalmers, no

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______________________________________________________________ graves or urns amidst evergreens. Only some legal papers to sign, as befit people who are only piles of papers. There are long queues to go into the gas chamber and the furnace. In this society that has obliterated all traces of God, the individual is finally treated as an animal and burned cheaply, thus following en masse Aimes fate. Suicide cases were accepted denizens of Whispering Glades but quite obviously they were not the majority. In Satellite City, on the contrary, the only Department that functions reasonably well and is expanding is the Department of Euthanasia, which could just as well be called, less euphemistically, Department of Mass Suicide. Life in Satellite City has become a kind of slow death and there is no belief in anything beyond to make it meaningful. Hence people opt for the quick escape in this dystopia. If death is debased in Satellite City, so are the dead: only a few papers record their passing away. The bereaved do not exist. At most, the dead are a source of grim satisfaction for Dr. Beamish (wonderfully adequate name!), the insane director of the Department. Jeffrey Heath discusses the ending of the novelette which, he says, suggests that Miles commits suicide. He cites Robert Murray Davis who sees Miles as unregenerate and rebellious, finally turned into an arsonist and remarks: Given the society, destruction is itself a creative and laudable act.21 Apparently, in the first draft of the book, Miles is indeed about to become a pyromaniac. The second draft is more ambiguous. Heath prefers to believe in Miless suicide, arguing that Miles presses the catch of his lighter - while it is still in his pocket.22 For Heath when a society perverts distinctiveness and love, and fosters no awareness of a divine alternative, it becomes a prison. And the only way out of that prison is through suicide.23 But surely Waugh would not condone suicide. A third possibility - given the adjective hymeneal that qualifies the flame in Miless lighter - is that what he has in mind is the combustion of the gruesome Miss Flower, whom he has been pressed to marry. In any case Miless fate is darker than that of Dennis Barlow. Denniss positive experience and his return to an ancient shore are not possible for Miles. In 1947 there still existed an ancient shore to go back to. In the New Britain of the near future the past is only ruins and there is no ancient shore to return to. Heath says that Waugh was convinced that unless civilization is animated by correct religious values, it turns into a shadowy, insubstantial fraud.24 If the civilization depicted in The Loved One could be described in those terms, they fall short of qualifying the civilization in Love Among the Ruins which has gone so hollow and grim that it has become a substantial fraud.

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Notes
1

E. Waugh, Half in Love With Easeful Death: An Examination of Californian Burial Customs, in A Little Order, ed. D. Gallagher, Eyre Methuen, London, 1977, pp.153-160. 2 E. Waugh, The Loved One, Penguin, London, 1948, p. 37. 3 I. Littlewood, The Writings of Evelyn Waugh, Blackwell, Oxford, 1983, p. 57. 4 Waugh, The Loved One, p. 77. 5 Ibid., p. 101. 6 Ibid., p. 57. 7 Ibid., p. 111. 8 J. Keats, Ode to a Nightingale, in Keats Poetical Works, ed. H. W. Garrod, Oxford University Press, London, 1972, pp. 207-208, qtd. by E. Waugh in The Loved One, p. 77. 9 Waugh, The Loved One, p. 127. 10 J. Heath, The Picturesque Prison: Evelyn Waugh and His Writing, Weidenfeld & Nicholson, London, 1982, p. 195. 11 Waugh, Half in Love With Easeful Death, p. 159. 12 Heath, op.cit., p. 194. 13 Waugh, The Loved One, p. 69. 14 Ibid. 15 Ibid., p. 82. 16 Ibid., p. 127. 17 Ibid. 18 E. Waugh, Love Among the Ruins, Chapman and Hall, London, 1953, p.13. 19 Ibid., p. 40. 20 ibid. 21 Heath, op. cit., p. 208. 22 Ibid., p. 208. 23 Ibid., pp. 208- 209. 24 Ibid., p. 34.

Bibliography
Bradbury, M., Writers and Critics: Evelyn Waugh, Oliver & Boyd, Edinburgh & London, 1964. Heath, J., The Picturesque Prison: Evelyn Waugh and His Writing, Weidenfeld & Nicholson, London, 1982. Littlewood, I., The Writings of Evelyn Waugh, Blackwell, Oxford, 1983.

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______________________________________________________________ Pierce, J., Literary Converts: Spiritual Inspiration in an Age of Unbelief, HarperCollins, London, 1999. Waugh, E., Half in Love With Easeful Death: An Examination of Californian Burial Customs, in A Little Order, ed. D. Gallagher, Eyre Methuen, London, 1977, pp.153-160. Waugh, E., The Loved One: An Anglo-American Tragedy, Penguin, London, 1948. Waugh, E., Love Among the Ruins: A Romance of the Near Future, Chapman & Hall, London, 1953. Waugh, E., A Little Order: A Selection of His Journalism, ed. D. Gallagher, Eyre Methuen, London, 1977.

Elisa Morera de la Vall is Public Relations Officer at the Australian Studies Centre of the University of Barcelona, where she was formerly Associate Teacher for a number of years.

Familiarising Death in Fiction: Utopia, Time and Transcendence in Jim Craces Being Dead and Graham Swifts Last Orders Caroline Edwards
Abstract How does Utopia encounter the final negativity of death? Is death the end or the beginning of storytelling? This paper will look at Utopian treatments of death in fiction as transcendable both materially and symbolically in Jim Craces Being Dead (1999) and Graham Swifts Last Orders (1996). By exploring the role of storytelling in these two novels this paper will look at the ways in which the threatening otherworldliness of death can be positively reconstructed through narratives of comfort. The relationship between storytelling and death explores culturally naturalised attitudes towards death as hidden, sanitised and silenced. Sociological theories of death reveal how political and cultural constructions of death, dying and bereavement in late modernity have contributed to a denial of death. This paper will explore how these two novels neutralise deaths threatening potential to overturn social and symbolic order, refiguring the dead body as the site of mediations between nature and culture that can outlive the absoluteness of death through narrative. In this way, it will be argued that these two novels familiarise dying in fiction, enacting a Utopian construction of subjective agency that transcends the temporality of death through storytelling.

Keywords Storytelling, Utopia, Jim Crace, Graham Swift, Atheism, Transcendence, Journeys, Memory.

Death, as the literary critic, Terry Eagleton, writes, reveals to us the ultimate unmasterability of our lives.1 Through confronting death, we are forced face-to-face with the proximal actuality of our own non-being, we risk destroying our fragile sense of subjective identity. Yet this ultimate interrogation with non-being reveals a chiastic conjunction with moments of futurity or Utopian possibility. As Eagleton writes:

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______________________________________________________________ The non-being at the heart of us is what disturbs our dreams and flaws our projects. But it is also the price we pay for the chance of a brighter future. It is the way we keep faith with the open-ended nature of humanity, and is thus a source of hope.2 What literary and cultural critic, Fredric Jameson, has called the essential relationship between Utopia and death3 therefore touches on mans fundamental experience of being, of maintaining optimism in the face of the nullifying absoluteness of death. Although it radically threatens the Western secularised and ideological apparatus for enjoying life - witness todays gerontological attempts to prolong both actual life and the appearance of youth - death is, at the same time, crucially the source of Utopian production. The French philosopher, Georges Bataille, argues that in destroying our discontinuity as individual beings, death leaves intact the general continuity of existence outside ourselves.4 Death, he writes: does not affect the continuity of existence, since in existence itself all separate existences originate; continuity of existence is independent of death and is even produced by death.5 One way we might approach the building of such a model of transgenerational continuity is through the practice of storytelling. Here, we find that death also plays a central role: as philosopher, Hannah Arendt, writes, we can only glean the full meaning of a persons life once it has ended.6 Similarly, Walter Benjamin famously states: Death is the sanction of everything that the storyteller can tell. He has borrowed his authority from death.7 Storytelling can thus operate as a way of coming to terms with the frightening facts of life that lie beyond our power. This paper will draw on these recurring themes of Utopian possibility, storytelling and death in two novels by award-winning contemporary British writers: Jim Craces Being Dead (1999) and Graham Swifts Last Orders (1996). I would like to explore these two novels familiarisations of death through moments of narrative transcendence as a way of offering a rapprochement of death within cultural practice, countering what Michael C. Kearl has called our cultures death-denial orientation.8 Thus, the sequestration of death from contemporary discourse - with its political and cultural constructions of dying and bereavement as hidden, sanitised and silenced - is reconfigured through these novels reversal of such naturalised attitudes by representing death as both positive and familiar. Death, then, is figured as positive in the novels in a double sense. On the one hand, it provides the novels characters with a means of

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______________________________________________________________ overcoming discontinuous and isolated individuality: through death, therefore, the continuity of transgenerational human existence is affirmed. At the same time, however, death represents the ultimate threat to human optimism in a post-theological framework, and is portrayed as transcendable both materially and symbolically through the bodys organic continuity with the natural environment. I would therefore like to analyse the ways in which the threatening otherworldliness of death can be positively reconstructed through narratives of comfort.9 This paper will argue that these two novels familiarise dying in fiction, gesturing towards the Utopian potentialities of memory and continuous, organic existence that can transcend the temporality of death. 1. Sex, Death and Nature: Atheistic Transcendence and the Affirmation of Continuous Existence in Being Dead In interview, Jim Crace has conceded that he set out in Being Dead to write a narrative of comfort for atheists,10 to redress atheisms lack of transcendence and spirituality and mysticism:11 The old fashioned atheism was a political position, whereas it seemed to me that the post-scientific, post-Darwinist, twenty-first century atheism needed to provide narratives of comfort and explanations of the universe in the way the old religions did. So I set out to see if I could come up with a narrative of comfort in a world in which death ends everything, a world without gods.12 This powerful world without gods is assiduously achieved through meticulous attention to local detail - so minute, even, to encompass the bugs and insects of the sand dunes where one of the novels timeframes is situated. Craces narrative verisimilitude is paralleled by the profession of his two main characters, Joseph and Celice, who, as zoologists, recognise that insect life offers a world in reassuring microcosm.13 As the narrator notes: Zoologists have mantras of their own: change is the only constant; nothing in the universe is stable or inert; decay and growth are synonyms; a grain of sand is stronger and more durable than rock.14 The synonyms of decay and growth are provocatively explored in the novel through the recurrent troping of the relationship between sex, or reproduction, and death. At the level of plot, Joseph and Celice first had sex as students on a field trip whilst, unknown to them, one of their colleagues was dying in a fire at their cabin. The day they die - the main event and

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______________________________________________________________ timescale in the novel - they are revisiting the site of that first lust and attempting to repeat their past, having sex in the sand dunes they visited in their youths. Their adult daughter, Syl, returns when she is informed her parents are missing, and conquers her fears that they are dead by sleeping with a man she has recently met in her parents house. Syl justifies her appetite for men, telling herself: You cant make mayhem when youre dead.15 As Joseph and Celice revisit the site where their colleague died in the fire, Celice is consumed with guilt and the feeling that their passion was to blame: Passion such as theirs, brief as it was, was strong enough to shake the balance of the natural world, and test its synchronicity. Where there is sex, then there is death. They are the dark co-ordinates of one straight line. Grief is death eroticized. And sex is only shuffling off this mortal coil before its time to plummet to the post-coital afterlife.16 Craces unambiguous coupling of sex and death here points towards eroticism and desire as stimulating reproductive growth, organically portrayed in the novel as generative of a continuity with nature that transcends the death of any one individual. The burned cabin is not, as Celice has feared and expected, a barren wasteland overlaid with ghosts, but lush and fertile: She should have known - a doctor of zoology - that vegetation would have buried all the past, that death would be absorbed.17 This absorption of death is the underlying motif in the novel, as Joseph and Celices undiscovered corpses gradually rot and decay in the dunes. The grotesque materiality of their deaths - by murder - and subsequent putrefaction is variously depicted by Crace as beautiful, cruel, touchingly human, callously organic, transcending deaths finality, as well as failing to leave any trace on the landscape unjust and unnoticed. Crucially, Joseph and Celice sink into the organic world as a vital source of energy for the plants, animals and insects in the dunes: Celices hair within an hour of her death, began to seem more lively than it ever had in life.18 Their bodies silvered19 by a storm, Crace juxtaposes the naturalness and beauty of Joseph and Celices return to nature with heightened, poetic language, describing the surface of their skin as: A dazzling filigree of pine-brown surface veins, which gave an aborescent pattern to the skin. The blossoming of blisters, their flaring red corollas and yellow ovaries like rock roses.20

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______________________________________________________________ Crace does not, however, dwell on romanticised or elegiac language to elevate Joseph and Celices deaths, stating brutally: No one transcends. There is no future and no past. There is no remedy for death - or birth - except to hug the spaces in between. Live loud. Live wide. Live tall.21 It is Joseph and Celices daughter, Syl, who embodies this view, and whose confrontation with the brutality of her parents deaths is remarkably uplifting. After viewing their bodies in the forensic tent, Syl, touched by the gentle nakedness and disposition of her parents,22 is exhilarated: There isnt anything beyond me now, shed told herself, that afternoon, outside the Mission Church. There isnt anything I cannot do or say. So she climbed the railings, dropped down on to the sodden plant beds and sprinted off into the dark, sprinted off as she had always wanted to, euphoric and untouchable.23 Craces spiritualised language of atheism, then, his attempt to construct a non-religious narrative of comfort, draws on love as its chief transcendent element. As Syl sits in a church, having just returned from identifying her parents murdered bodies, she recalls her fathers singing as far more moving than the hymns she hears from her pew: Love songs transcend, transport, because theres such a thing as love. But hymns and prayers have feeble tunes because there are no gods.24 One of the most haunting and uplifting images in the novel is that of Josephs hand holding Celices leg as he dies, only moved at the end of the novel as they are separated into their individual coffins. Joseph and Celice thus transcend deaths finality through this image of their abiding love, which in life had been portrayed as banal and even questionable. Exceeding the parameters of their lives through Syls fixed memory, Joseph and Celices bodies also overcome the discontinuity of isolated individualism through the very nature of their deaths: they die together, their bodies touching, materially transcending the finality of death to become a part of the natural landscapes ever-evolving continuity of growth and decay. Crace, however, dos not allow any romantic sentimentalisation of their deaths to overpower his starkly realist narrative tone:

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______________________________________________________________ Do not be fooled. There was no beauty for them in the dunes, no painterly tranquillity in death framed by the sky, the ocean and the land The universe could not care less.25 By refusing to offer us death as a fine translation to a better place,26 Crace forces his readers to confront the most frightening and unfamiliar aspects of death, normally sanitised, managed by professionals, and hidden from view. The everending days of being dead27 thus offer the reader a positive yet realist configuration of death. This mode of transcendence rejects the religious or sentimental articulation of a journey to a better place in two ways: firstly, the novels multiple narrative temporalities serve as a form of overcoming death, revivifying Joseph and Celice through the backward-running time28 of memory, produc[ing] a version of eternity29 that looks forward to the futurity of their condition of being dead. Secondly, Crace repositions dying as a continuous process throughout our lives. Celice, in her university lecture on senescence and thanatology, thus lyrically muses that: Our births are just the gateway to our deaths They who begin to live begin to die.30 Being dead thus refers to the continuous and vegetative process of senescent degeneration and decay of the human body, a process that transcends the event of a persons death in its organic continuity with the natural environment. The binarism of growth and decay, sex or reproduction and death, and the dead bodys dissolution into the natural environment thus familiarise dying to offer us a starkly realist language of natural transcendence that can generate optimism in the face of death. 2. Storytelling as Bridge: Familiarising Death through the Journeying of Identity Graham Swifts Booker Prize-winning novel, Last Orders, narrates the story of four men carrying the ashes of their close friend, Jack Dodds, to Margate to be scattered at sea. Their journey from Bermondsey to Margate, via the Chatham war memorial and Canterbury Cathedral, is collectively narrated by each of the characters, circulating around the correspondences between storytelling, identity and journeys. In interview, Swift has commented on the importance of the relationship between location and spatial practices or journeys in storytelling: our existence is intimately bound up with our familiar neck of the woods - places, rooms, neighbourhoods, daily journeys and routines.31

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______________________________________________________________ The French thinker, Michel de Certeau, writes famously of the spatial organizations of everyday storytelling as a way of mediating between familiar and unknown experiences: Stories are actuated by a contradiction that is represented in them by the relationship between the frontier and the bridge, that is, between a (legitimate) space and its (alien) exteriority.32 I would like to suggest that Graham Swifts treatment of the journey, of travelling as a vehicle for constructing identity and belongingness, apprehends deaths alien exteriority through the bridging process of storytelling. Navigating between the familiarity of the local and the alien experience of new or foreign places - represented ultimately by the absolute unknowability of death itself - Swift familiarises dying through his characters everyday practices and habits. Despite the solemnity of their task, these men quarrel, drink and scheme, at times seemingly oblivious to their pilgrimage, unable to curb their ordinary behaviours and grievances. As Swift observes in interview: Time and time again this happens: in the wake of death, people do nonetheless make silly mistakes. They do forget the ashes. They do want to have one extra drink.33 The characters journey to Margate is special not only because of the sombre sense of duty that has initiated it, but also because these four men do not travel far ordinarily: And we all feel it, what with the sunshine and the beer inside us and the journey ahead: like its something Jack has done for us, so as to make us feel special, so as to give us a treat. Like were off on a jaunt, a spree, and the world looks good, it looks like its there just for us.34 Unsure of the etiquette and precedence requisite for such an outing, Ray, Lenny, Vic and Vince - all of whom have been intimately connected with each others families over the courses of their lives - are forced to reflect over actions in their pasts and the different people they may have been. Their mourning, deep-seated regrets and resentments, as well as their incessant jockeying for power, pits them into a journey of transformation. As Ray notes:

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______________________________________________________________ Its like we arent the same people who left Bermondsey this morning, four blokes on a special delivery. Its like somewhere along the line we just became travellers.35 Travelling and identity are explicitly connected in the novel: elsewhere, Mandy recalls coming to London as an adolescent runaway, and the pre-eminence of the roads transformative effect on her sense of self over her actual arrival in the metropolis. Analogously, Jacks wife Amy thinks of herself in terms of travel and the sense of belonging and duty that have shaped her life around the contours of in-between spaces, neither at home nor at work: This is where I belong, upstairs on this bus. It seems to me that for years now Ive been more at home on a number 44 than I have been anywhere else. Neither here nor there, just travelling in between.36 Death itself is rarely referred to directly in the novel, euphemistically associated with journeying to another place: going,37 pop[ping] off38 or hurr[ying] off.39 Significantly, journeys in the novel do not progress in linear fashion towards pre-determined ends. In apogee, Jacks chosen resting place, scattered at sea from Margate pier, negates any sense of a completed journey, establishing rather a ceaseless journeying, an essential restlessness. Ray observes that Margate pier doesnt look like the end of the road: It doesnt look like journeys end, it doesnt look like a final resting-place, where youd want to come to finish your days and find peace and contentment for ever and ever. It aint Blue Bayou.40 But more than the piers inappropriateness as a final resting-place with its out-of-season decrepitude, is the striking image of the restless sea, variously described as the colour of desertion,41 smelling like memory itself,42 associated with the poor dream of recapturing seaside childhood memories. Swifts troping of the sea significantly establishes Jacks death as universally shared. As Vic insists, theres only one sea:43 Jacks not special, hes not special at all And it doesnt do when you remember the others not to spare a thought for the ones you never knew. Its what makes all men equal for ever and always.44

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______________________________________________________________ The sea, then, establishes what de Certeau has called a frontier, which organises and articulates everyday stories by distinguishing the subject from its exteriority or environment.45 As both a geographical elsewhere, ceaselessly in flux, and a cosmological beyond metonymic for deaths otherworldliness, the sea in Last Orders represents death as bridging the ultimate unknowability that articulates and limits our lives. De Certeau identifies the role of storytelling as an act of delimitation, or transcendence of limits,46 and in this sense we can identify death in the novel as a vehicle for apprehending not only the cosmological enigmas that threaten the characters frangible senses of identity, but also a way of bringing them into continuity with the universal, transgenerational processes of humankind. As Terry Eagleton writes: Death is both alien and intimate to us, neither wholly strange nor purely ones own. To this extent, ones relationship to it resembles ones relationship to other people, who are likewise both fellows and strangers.47 Batailles theorisation of death as destroying our discontinuity as individual beings, bringing us into community with the existence of humankind and of nature, can therefore be identified when Ray scatters Jacks ashes: the ash that I carried in my hands, which was the Jack who once walked around, is carried away by the wind, is whirled away by the wind till the ash becomes wind and the wind becomes Jack what were made of.48 Jacks subjective disintegration into natural elements, the dissolution of his discontinuous individuality that divides him from humankind and the natural environment, is ironically foreshadowed at the beginning of the novel. Ray reflects on the coffee flask that contains his ashes, wondering: Whether its all Jack in there or Jack mixed up with bits of others, the ones who were done before and the ones who were done after. So Lenny could be holding some of Jack and some of some other fellas wife, for example.49 Thus, in death Jack has achieved a continuity of existence that bridges his isolation as a subjective individual through the universality of death. In telling the story of their journey to Margate, his friends are given the opportunity to overcome the alien unfamiliarity of death in a way that is touching and yet retains a strong sense of the everyday and the comic. Their ridiculous pantomime fights and struggles for power are thus centred around

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______________________________________________________________ the strong visual symbol of the coffee flask containing Jacks ashes, the Jack in a box50 described as a badge of authority,51 a trophy won in a fight.52 Although the purpose of the journey to Margate is to solemnize a death,53 the characters mundane and comic relationships with each other, their power struggles, resentments and memories, cannot be interrupted even by grief. Jacks death thus offers them the chance to reflect on the remainder of their own lives, motivating their decisions to make amends, contacting long-lost relatives or overcoming their grief by looking towards their futures, to turn life into living again.54 Jacks dissemination into the restlessness of the sea is thus familiarised and prefigured through the novels connections between journeying and identity, and the finality of death as event bridged through the curative act of storytelling. 3. Conclusion The social act of storytelling in these two novels, that is, the selfconscious narrative revivification of the dead characters through memory and recollection, can thus be identified as providing comforting familiarisations of death. As the cultural anthropologist, Michael Jackson, persuasively argues storytelling allows the symbolic restructuring of traumatic events, which threaten to overwhelm our sense of identity and control over our own lives.55 At the same time, however, death provides the totalised framework requisite to articulating a story. What I have analysed here as moments of transcendence, of Utopian potentiality or glimpses of futurity, are thus produced by the threatening non-being and finality of death. Without death, as Maurice Blanchot writes, everything would sink into absurdity and nothingness.56 Similarly, Terry Eagleton notes that death is one of the inner structures of social existence itself.57 Deaths frightening unknowability, its threat to our understanding of identity and being, is therefore diametrically connected in a binarism with hope and futurity. Thus the possibility of complete nullification gives shape to our Utopian desires, to the possibility of imagining a future beyond death in which our lives can offer meaning in the face of nothingness. These two novels therefore challenge Westernised cultural assumptions about the finality of death as event, emphasising the processes of continual ageing and dying beyond the transformative moment of death. Joseph and Celices decay in the sand dunes and the scattering of Jacks ashes into the sea, thus both gesture towards a future beyond death in continuity with the natural environment. Moreover, the narratives treatments of the multiple temporalities of memory and remembrance signal the dead characters abiding subjective existences, their lives handed on through the social act of storytelling. Rehearsing for their own inevitable deaths, the grieving characters in the novels are uplifted by confronting the process of dying as a universally-shared and transgenerational continuity among all life-

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______________________________________________________________ forms. Thus, as Eagleton writes: The absolute self-abandonment which death demands of us is only tolerable if we have rehearsed for it somewhat in life.58 Jim Craces Being Dead and Graham Swifts Last Orders are, in this sense, rehearsals for that absolute self-abandonment: without religion, without sentimentalism and without despair.

Notes
1 2

T. Eagleton, After Theory, Penguin, London, 2004, p. 213. Eagleton, p. 221. 3 F. Jameson, The Seeds of Time, Columbia University Press, New York, 1994, p. 122. 4 G. Bataille, Eroticism: Death and Sensuality, trans. M. Dalwood, City Lights Books, San Francisco, 1986, p. 21. 5 Ibid., p. 21. 6 H. Arendt, The Human Condition, 2nd edn, The University of Chicago Press, Chicago, 1998, p. 192. 7 W. Benjamin, Illuminations: Essays and Reflections, trans. H. Zohn, ed. H. Arendt, Schocken Books, New York, 1968, p. 94. 8 M. Kearl, Endings: A Sociology of Death and Dying, Oxford University Press, Oxford, 1990, p. 6. 9 D. Weich, Jim Crace Peels Off the Labels, Powell's City of Books Website, retrieved 6 September 2007, <http://www.powells.com/authors/crace.html>. 10 A. Lawless, Jim Crace in Interview - The Poet of Prose, Three Monkeys Online: The Free Current Affairs and Arts Magazine website, retrieved 6 September 2007, <http://www.threemonkeysonline.com/article3.php?id=196>. 11 Weich, op. cit., <http://www.powells.com/authors/crace.html>. 12 Ibid. 13 J. Crace, Being Dead, Penguin, London, 2000, p. 80. 14 Ibid., p. 87. 15 Ibid., p. 101. 16 Ibid., p. 149. 17 Ibid., p. 154. 18 Ibid., p. 39. 19 Ibid., p. 105. 20 Ibid., pp. 108-9. 21 Ibid., pp. 170-1.

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______________________________________________________________
22 23

Ibid., p. 167. Ibid., pp. 190-1. 24 Ibid., p. 170. 25 Ibid., p. 11. 26 Ibid., p. 67. 27 Ibid., p. 210. 28 Ibid., p. 3. 29 Ibid., p. 5. 30 Ibid., p. 41. 31 An Interview with Graham Swift, The Penguin Readers Group Website, retrieved 6 September 2007, <http://readers.penguin.co.uk/nf/shared/WebDisplay/0,,213822_1_10,00.html >. 32 M. de Certeau, The Practice of Everyday Life, trans. S. Rendell, University of California Press, Berkeley, Los Angeles, 1984, p. 126. 33 S. Rosenburg, Glowing in the Ashes: An Interview with Graham Swift, Salon.com website, retrieved 6 September 2007, <http://www.salon.com/weekly/swift960506.html>. 34 G. Swift, Last Orders, Picador, London, 1996, p. 18. 35 Ibid., pp. 193-4. 36 Ibid., pp. 228-9. 37 Ibid., pp. 74, 182, 267. 38 Ibid., p. 252. 39 Ibid., p. 111. 40 Ibid., p. 269. 41 Ibid., p. 284. 42 Ibid., p. 287. 43 Ibid., p. 143. 44 Ibid. 45 de Certeau, pp. 122-3. 46 Ibid., p. 123. 47 Eagleton, op. cit., p. 211. 48 Swift, op. cit., pp. 294-5. 49 Ibid., pp. 3-4. 50 Ibid., p. 49. 51 Ibid., p. 107. 52 Ibid., p. 193. 53 Rosenburg, op. cit. 54 Swift, op. cit., p. 128.

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55

M. Jackson, The Politics of Storytelling: Violence, Transgression and Intersubjectivity, Museum Tusculanum Press, Copenhagen, 2002, pp. 14-15. 56 M. Blanchot, The Work of Fire, trans. C. Mandell, Stanford University Press, Stanford, California, 1995, pp. 323-4. 57 Eagleton, op. cit., p. 211. 58 Ibid.

Bibliography
An Interview with Graham Swift, The Penguin Readers Group Website, 2004, retrieved 3 December 2007, http://readers.penguin.co.uk/nf/shared/WebDisplay/0,,213822_1_10, 00.html Arendt, H., The Human Condition, 2nd edn., The University of Chicago Press, Chicago, 1998. Bataille, G., Eroticism: Death and Sensuality, trans. M. Dalwood, City Lights Books, San Francisco, 1986. Benjamin, W., Illuminations: Essays and Reflections, trans. H. Zohn, ed. H. Arendt, Schocken Books, New York, 1968. Blanchot, M., The Work of Fire, trans. C. Mandell, Stanford University Press, Stanford, California, 1995. Crace, J., Being Dead, Penguin Books, London, 2000. De Certeau, M., The Practice of Everyday Life, trans. S. Rendell, University of California Press, Berkeley, Los Angeles, 1984. Eagleton, T., After Theory, Penguin Books, London, 2004. Jackson, M., The Politics of Storytelling: Violence, Transgression and Intersubjectivity, Museum Tusculanum Press, Copenhagen, 2002. Jameson, F., The Seeds of Time, Columbia University, New York Press, 1994. Kearl, M. C., Endings: A Sociology of Death and Dying, Oxford University Press, Oxford, 1990. Lawless, A., Jim Crace in Interview - The Poet of Prose, 2005, Three Monkeys Online: The Free Current Affairs and Arts Magazine Website, retrieved 3 December 2007, http://www.threemonkeysonline.com/article3.php?id=196 Rosenburg, S., Glowing in the Ashes: An Interview with Graham Swift, Salon.com Website, retrieved 3 December 2007, http://www.salon.com/weekly/swift960506.html Swift, G., Last Orders, Picador, London, 1996.

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______________________________________________________________ Weich, D., Jim Crace Peels Off the Labels, 2001, Powell's City of Books Website, retrieved 3 December 2007, http://www.powells.com/authors/crace.html

Caroline Edwards is a PhD Candidate in the Department of Critical Theory and Cultural Studies at The University of Nottingham. Her research interests include critical theory, Marxism/post-Marxism, contemporary British fiction and theories of Utopia.

Life without a Trace: Transforming Pain into a Poem Julieta C. Mallari


Let me see. [Takes the skull.] Alas, poor Yorick! I knew him [] a fellow of infinite jest, of most excellent fancy: he hath borne me on his back a thousand times; and now, how abhorred in my imagination it is! Hamlet, Act 5, Scene 1, Lines 190-194 Abstract This paper aims to analyze Life without a Trace by Jose Gallardo. The poem is an existential evocation of selfhood by a poet being confronted with death. Gallardo, known for authenticating the folk cultural tradition of his province, Pampanga, and for actively promoting the homogenizing effect of communal literature, suddenly made a radical departure from his romantic view of life. At deaths door, the poet had only himself to present - an empty solitude that could not be mediated by normal social relations. Pessimistic utterances about the futility of life reverberate in the poem; horrid visual images are projected. This shift in worldview is suggestive of the writers marginalized status relative to his art. His individuality is vicariously translated into his poem from which comes the lasting tension of his personal predicamenthis psychic and emotional trauma. The traditional alignment of Self and Society is disrupted by the existential anguish of the poet: the experience of dying ultimately undermines social cohesion. The poets brooding cynicism in his poem no longer blends in harmony with his previous creative reflections. On the other hand, this crisis sparked off a modernist space for Gallardo resulting in his literary innovation.

Keywords Kapampangan Literature, Folk Tradition, Communal, Death, Modernist Space.

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______________________________________________________________ 1. Introduction The highly complex and subtle question of the actual sting of death has universal dramatization in various kinds of literary pieces. Profoundly explored by writers from all over the world, every aspect of death is inexhaustibly interpreted, crystallizing from generation to generation in tireless poetical anguish and lamentations. Whether in contradictions or in harmony, in fact or in legend, in truth or in imagination, the drama of confronting the inevitable fate of humankind is heightened by literary skills. Sometimes with conceited sophistication, sometimes with romantic idealization, sometimes with strict realism - with one means or another, every writer who summons up remembrance of human mortality paradoxically unravels an unfading truth of life. And this truth that usually hurts is linked with the deepening of its philosophical associations. What else could be read but existential pain and grief bursting out on the pages? This paper aims to analyze the poem Life without a Trace written by a Kapampangan poet, Jose Gallardo. To be underscored will be the layers of alteration of the writers view of life when he became critically ill and confronted the naked reality of death. It ought to be mentioned that Gallardo was a folk poet of Pampanga, a province in the northern part of the Philippines. Thus, he produced works marked by a strong sense of communal consciousness which drove him toward unity with society rather than toward individuality. Moreover, he always followed the romantic literary tradition of his province, and his poetry was primarily tied to the old oral culture of indigenous writers. At deaths door, however, the poet experienced a radical change in his perception. He was alone as he struggled, and his communal ties were shed in the creative process of transforming his pain into a poem. In a sense, he bypassed his tradition in his moment of seclusion as well as articulated his personal reaction to the complex phenomenon of death. 2. Background of Gallardos Folk Tradition Gallardos literary heritage practically opened his eyes - and, consequently, clutched his soul - to the beauty of his language. His formative stages as a writer were marked by joyful memories of poetic performances, strong literary influences of Pampangas outstanding writers, and promising moments of his own creative act. All these had a decisive impact on Gallardo, much more a lasting one. Jose Gallardo was born in Candaba, Pampanga on January 20, 1918. Eugenio Gallardo, his father, paved the way for the writing career of his son as he introduced the latter to the theatrical world. Eugenio was a popular kumidya (comedy) writer who directed his own works. In the presentation of his fathers works, Jose often acted as an apuntador (prompter) when he was barely six years old. At the age of thirteen, Jose Gallardo was already a

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______________________________________________________________ popular participant in bulaklakan (literally a game of flowers) - a folk performance during funeral wakes. Coming from a very poor family, Gallardo never had formal schooling above the elementary level, yet he emerged an outstanding poet of his time. He became a prolific and versatile writer, an eloquent declaimer, and a dedicated propagator of the Kapampangan language. The Kapampangan folk customs, constantly maintaining Gallardos self-adjusting equilibrium in his development as a writer and practices, were inextricably linked with his thought processes. These customs and practices governed almost all phases of life - birth, courtship and marriage, social gatherings and death - particularly in rural areas like Candaba. Gallardos art, therefore, possesses an integral connection with the life process in a rural community. Its very essence lies in the galvanizing energy of peoples activities and communal existence. By virtue of his own adaptation to his rural habitation, his environment imposed a determinate folk value system upon him while he developed his adaptive artistic patterns accordingly. By the same token, his artistic vision was acquired only within the range of his given visual field of folk sensibility, and, wittingly or unwittingly, he set the standard for a possible aesthetic exploration still by the organic folk tradition governing all activities of rural life. Like the primitive artists who painted with the basic assumption that everything had a clearly marked frontier or outline, Gallardo also produced definitive works since the clear-cut Kapampangan verbal art forms constituted his major interest. This makes sense because as a poet, he used the expected forms and associations to communicate more rapidly. Like any other stream, his stream of literature sought the easiest channels - the pure convention. His basic creative impulse was in conformity with his folk worldview of pamakiabe (to share oneself with others or to be part of a group). His cultural context was sufficiently homogenous, in which the social function of the poet figured prominently; he, in turn, preserved the integration of his society by incorporating himself into it through his participatory and communal compositions. Folklore, with all its inherent functions - evoking humor, validating culture, instructing moral values, and maintaining conformity - was, therefore, the center of Gallardos imaginative experience and the organizing principle of his literary forms. He was favorably prone to the natural taste of spontaneous creative folk tradition and enjoyed his close association with his audience. In his youth, and even later in his life, his participation in verbal jousts was not just indicative of his close ties with his society or pamakiabe but was characteristically his own interest in folk Kapampangan recitative performance, with humor as an essential feature. His Kapampangan comic temperament or fun-loving nature found its creative expression in verbal jousts.

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______________________________________________________________ Gallardo attempted to pass on what he probably experienced as the sweetness and usefulness of communal art in the form of verbal jousts such as the bulaklakan and the crissotan. The former is a form of communal art which is ultimately involved with the whole process of using versified ideas in binding the participants and audience - of which the bereaved family is part - set over against the tragedy of death. A sense of closeness accompanies the sense of sadness: bulaklakan is dedicated to comfort, and the interactive verbal exchange among the participants assuming roles of personified flowers and fruits/trees is a type of charm where the rhythm and the thoughts include some form of affectionate identification with the mourners. Crissotan, on the other hand, is a verbal joust that involves versified debate. It is usually a form of entertainment staged during town festivities and election time; or it is aired over the radio to be enjoyed by rural folks usually after a days work in the farm and by the elderly who simply want to amuse themselves. The acclaimed poet laureates could be pitted against one another, and the champion is called Ari ning Crissotan (King of Crissotan). Performing crissotan, therefore, encouraged the leading but aging poets of Pampanga to continue their literary tradition. They used to pride themselves on the fact that Kapampangan is most sonorous and declaimers must prove themselves worthy of their language. Thus Kapampangan poets are expected to recite authoritatively and theatrically to make their audience feel and savour the beauty of their language. A crissotan allows the local bards to exhibit their abilities as deklamadors (declaimers). Both bulaklakan and crissotan exemplify the basic characteristics of orally based thought and expression. And Gallardo most remarkably sustained mastery of both forms. He consciously developed his art by adhering most naturally to the oral characteristics of Kapampangan verbal compositions. It is interesting to suppose that he derived much pleasure in observing communal literary patterns being filled up with the most felicitous words of the Kapampangan language. His use of linguistic as well as literary devices allowed him to recreate works continually even through colloquial speech. In fact, the texture of his discourse was enhanced by the employment of such colloquial speech, aligning himself with the audiences sense of humor (in bulaklakan) or frame of mind (in crissotan.). The declaration of Gallardo as Ari Ning Crissotan in 1952 was, therefore, to be expected. He was well-received by his audience who congregated in plazas to be amused by his fluency, fulsomeness, and volubility. The comic element Gallardo incorporated in his performing poetry ultimately lightened the issues he dealt with and, at the same time, garnished his arguments, reinforcing his intimate attitude to the audience. Gallardos perpetuation of the oral tradition did not only manifest in his performing poetry but also in the actual performance of another popular literary form - the zarzuela (musical-dramatic) theatre, and in his long

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______________________________________________________________ narrative poems. The communal world of the Kapampangans during his time was fading in the urban areas, although still intact among the rural people, enjoying the convention o reciting, singing, and listening. Zarzuela as a dramatic form was valued primarily because of its very nature - ritual-like community affair. The genre is integral to the Kapampangan literary ethos: sentimental, moralistic and romantic. In the same vein, his novels called nobela poesia (novels in verse) also weighed down heavily on the folk end: still feeding on the persistent nostalgia for metrical romances and for a live and participative audience. Folk wisdom and worldview, orally based thoughts and formulary-expressions, the old communal world and its homeostatic harmonies - all these were sustained by Gallardo, with the assurance provided by his attachment to his audience as well as his literary assumptions characteristic of earlier poets. But the province of Pampanga began to modernize, interrupting such romantic fixation. To some extent, Gallardo was caught in the crosscurrents of history, pulling apart the monolithic and standardized literature of the Kapampangans. With no genuine sense of newness, the local literature ceased to be anchored in its evolving natural environment which was already characterized by rapid social and economic changes. Kapampangan literature in Gallardos time subsisted artificially and precariously in a parochial nursery of conventional poets, estranged from reality. Significantly, reversals to customary folk expectations rarely commanded the attention of the urbanizing Kapampangans; stale literary conventions occasioned no curiosity among the potential writers in the province. 3. Death and Existential Crisis: Creating a Modernist Space for Gallardo Interestingly enough, Gallardo, wittingly or unwittingly, at a crossroad in his life, unexpectedly transcended such homogenizing effect of communal literature. A breakthrough of self, so to speak, suddenly occurred in which his experiential perception came in a totally different mode. When he became ill and suffered tremendously as he encountered the reality of death, his crisis sparked off introspection, putting forward a kind of counterculture which he embodied in a poem. His hopeless despair expressed in the poem marks a verbal discrepancy between his usual folk lyricism and his self-discovered angst, making out a modernist space for the poet and investing with substance his literary innovation. It could only be conjectured that at a point when he was full of anxieties and fears, his cognitive way of coping was to transform such threatening experience into a subliminal expression rather than retreat to the dream world of romance. Thus, the subjective consequence was the vicarious translation of his individuality in his poem Ing Bie Alang Bakas (Life without a Trace) from which comes

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______________________________________________________________ the lasting tension of his psychic and emotional trauma. The disturbance is reflected in his poetical musings that pose some problems of alienation. In his most existential moments, Gallardo lapsed into such a lament. Perhaps his modernism is accurately manifested in this reflective poem: his own experience comes to be invested with substance and depth as it is expressed in a certain richness of agony. This makes his self-consciousness refracted and transparent - an inwardness confronting the ontological problem of existence and death. With a discursive strategy of interrogation, he seems to be representing the modernist experience of a Kapampangan individual as well. Gallardos existential anguish is primarily articulated in the verses that meditate on psychic or social dispossession or dislocation. His selfreflection makes out the modernist space from which the language of despair emerges and then lingers on to reverberate the impotent act leads to nothingness (ing baug a dapat muli ngan king ala). The introspection also develops such a space of enunciation through which the poets intimation of reality is revealed, making way for his other sentiments to be poetically expressed. Ing Bie alang Bakas, besides being refreshingly different from the moonlight and roses theme that seems to be a common property of his contemporaries1 assumes autonomy of individual consciousness. This existential evocation of selfhood exhibits deviation from the naturally cohesive communal world of Kapampangan literature, including Gallardos. Suddenly, a space of consciousness which marks a point of presence of an individual person looking inwardly is clearly recognizable. The traditional alignment of Self and Society is disrupted by the agonizing rumination of the poet/speaker: Ing Bie Alang Bakas Miras ku king wakas ning kanakung landas nanu ing disan ku? Kutkutan yang paldas. Ing bukud nang bakas ning bie ku milabas: dildil yang merunut; anino yang lubas. Nanan ke mang liswan king kakung miralan, ala kung malino bungang pipagalan. Pane ngang kabigwan ing makalarawan karing bilunga na ning bye kung melakwan.

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______________________________________________________________ Makanyan palanda ing mye king masala ing baug a dapat muli ngan king ala. Ing bukud mung tanda king bye mung mewala bungu yang e ra man daklutan, ipala. A Life Without A Trace2 I have reached the end of the road, what do I find? A grave in a black shroud. The only mark. My life has left: A body in decay, a naked shadow. No matter how I look into my life, I find that my labors have been in vain All has been failure. So this is life in this world the impotent act leads to nothingness The only mark of ones past life is a skull nobody would even bother to pick up and cover with earth. The poem, a personal testimony of the author, was written in 1974 while he was critically ill and confined at the Quezon Institute. Confronting death and the naked reality of existence, he poses an enigmatic question: I have reached the end of the road, what I do find? To this loaded question where the psychic dimension ultimately undermines communal cohesion, the poet himself responds with a sense of morbidity: A grave in a black shroud. The image of death comes in the form of the grave - symbol of mans mortality. And in Gallardos portrayal a kind of surrealistic bleakness is envisaged in the black shroud. At deaths door, the poet has only himself to present - an empty solitude that could not be mediated by normal social relations. By and large,

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______________________________________________________________ the usual communal world of the poet ceases to be felt since his attention is totally focused on the privacy of his death bed. Pessimistic utterances about the futility of life reverberate; horrid visual images of death are projected. A body in decay, a naked shadow, a skull nobody would even bother to pick up and cover with earth - these are the only mark of his past life. Gallardos perception of the vanity of existence is felt most poignantly as it is stamped by the character of his own individual consciousness. His sensibility became the context within which to deploy his considently adverse images suggestive of the anguish beating upon him with merciless intensity. The concept of nothingness and the feeling of desperation pervade the associations of his memory. A disgruntled pessimist, like the ancient sage Solomon who came to the conclusion that life is vanity, the poet-speaker stresses that his life is without a trace: it has produced nothing of ultimate value. The full import and impact of his message is realized in an ironic visual transcription of the skull nobody would even bother to pick up and cover with earth. This line echoes Hamlet speaking about Yoricks skull indicating the inevitability of death. Thus, the dissonant note of desperation is struck at the very heart of the poem. It was at the moment of agony that Gallardo made a radical departure from his romantic view of life. His brooding cynicism in the poem no longer blends in harmony with previous creative reflections. There is no exultantly enchanted vision of the folk; there is only the tragic viewing of the painful destiny of a time-bound creature. Perhaps a look into Gallardos biography could provide an insight into his shifting worldview. It may be worth noting that Gallardo spent the prime of his life is an urban setting, first in Manila and later in Angeles City, Pampanga. Because of poverty he had to live in a slum area when he was in Angeles City. He pursued his literary endeavors just like most writers do: bereft of financial resources and afflicted with tuberculosis. His ability to write and to declaim made him famous, but not rich. The crushing burden of this truth he had to bear particularly when he got seriously ill. Given the context of an unstable environment of the city, his conditioned modes of thought, which used to be attuned to the rhythms of the pastoral world of Candaba were, at that point, breeding ground for inevitable disillusionment. The consoling formula of his folk orientation most probably ceased to subsist in his complex urbanized experience. Hence, he might have slowly plunged into the abyss of existential dilemmas as he began to lose his hold on the original substance of his romantic being. The shifting ambiguities and tragedies of unidealized existence are too oppressively real for Gallardo to maintain the folk worldview. When the shadow of death haunted him, he understood that death corresponds to the blasted world of a temporal creature whose life, in the end, he reckoned as without a trace. While he harbored the germs of sickness subjecting him to

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______________________________________________________________ the sting of death, Gallardo lost contact with the world he originally imagined. On the other hand, the idea of death, which takes away the sheltering cover of romance and reveals deep levels of perception, allowed the poet to preserve himself by means of his inherent creative force. He transforms his pain and suffering into a literary product. His poem, paradoxically enough, becomes the trace of his life in its profound and inspiring form. Thus, like a double-edged sword, the concept of death in Life without a Trace powerfully pierced and divided Gallardos poetic sensibility.

Notes
1

R. Icban-Castro, Literature of the Pampangos, University of the East Press, Philippines, 1981, p. 124. 2 Ibid., pp. 125-126.

Bibliography
Castro-Icban, R., Literature of the Pampangos, University of the East Press, Philippines, 1981. Francisco, J., Some Notes on Folklore and Social Criticism in Philippine Humanities Review, ed. M. Rosal and A. Santos, UP Press, Quezon City, 1984. Gallardo, J., Diwa, Mepa Press, Angeles City, 1982. Ong, W., Orality and Literacy, Methuen, Co. Ltd., New York, 1982. Shakespeare, W., Hamlet, ed. B. Mowat and P. Werstine, Washington Square Press, New York, 1992.

Julieta C. Mallari is Director of the University of the Philippines Extension Program in Pampanga. She holds a Ph.D. in Comparative Literature.

Memorial and Mourning: Eli Mandel and the Yizkor Books Christian Riegel
Abstract This paper examines the relationship of the work of mourning - as literary textual construct and as grief process - to the role of text as a public memorial. Taking Canadian poet Eli Mandels long poem, Out of Place, as its textual focus, the paper outlines how the work of mourning, as conceived by Sigmund Freud, Jacques Derrida, as well as later thinkers, is integral to the poems purpose. This purpose is then linked to the formal and generic characteristics that identify the text as drawing from the Jewish tradition of yizkor, or memorial, books. Mandels private grief process is then tied to a more public and communal process. Though the communities that Mandel writes about are not destroyed by the Holocaust, as is typical of the communities that are the focus of most if not all yizkor books, Mandel nevertheless writes of places that no longer exist as they once did, and he signals his memorial purpose by borrowing and adapting the conventions of the yizkor form.

Keywords Mourning, Work, Memorial, Yizkor Books, Eli Mandel, Poetry.

This paper examines the relationship of the work of mourning - as literary textual construct and as grief process - to the role of text as a public memorial. In his book-length long poem, Out of Place,1 Canadian poet Eli Mandel represents a mourning process that results in a text that serves as memorial to the lost Jewish communities in the southern part of the province of Saskatchewan and that serves as a chronicle of how the work of mourning unfolds. Out of Place traces Mandels journey through the abandoned sites of the Jewish communities he knew growing up and reflects his feelings of loss as he recollects and writes about the journey; the resulting book is a textual site of memory, loss, and memorial. The text employs and recasts generic attributes of the yizkor (memorial) books that primarily arose out of the destruction of the Holocaust, and can thereby be situated as a personal and communal monument to what is lost. Out of Place recounts a return trip to southern Saskatchewan by the

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______________________________________________________________ author and his wife, Ann, as they explore various places that Mandel knew in his youth. These are places that are associated with the Jewish settlement of parts of southern Saskatchewan in the late 19th and early 20th century. It is a book that examines migrations - the migration of ancestors from middle Europe to the plains of southern Saskatchewan, the migration of the poet himself from rural Saskatchewan to the city of Regina, and then to the province of Ontario - and the remnants of those migrations. Central to Out of Place is the self-reflexive contemplation of writing about the experience of returning to sites of the past - literal sites and recollected ones. Within the space of this contemplation is loss, deep, recurring and un-consoled loss that requires Mandel to work at, to attempt, resolution, what I consider as a work of mourning. In his return, Mandel struggles with the paradoxes of being simultaneously in place and out of place; of being rooted and uprooted; of confronting the absences of the places he used to occupy; of reflecting upon what it means to be out of place even while physically situated; of what it means to be from a place and to explore the resonances of ancestry in that place; of what it means to trace these things across a landscape that no longer contains any of the people of your past; and, of how the resulting text can have a monumental and memorial status so that it stands as more than the texts of one individuals experience of loss. Out of Place is divided into four parts that, through invention, photographs, documents (such as letters), and memories, attempt to tell the story of the Jewish migration to and settlement of the southern part of the province; thus, the role of language and communication becomes integral to understanding how the book functions. As Mandel notes in the Acknowledgements: This poem records a series of journeys. It is fiction not fact though it originates in an attempt to give some form to experiences ranging from a return to the country of the poem to memories and rumours about the past, especially stories told me of the Jewish settlement of southern Saskatchewan in the late years of the 19th century and early years of the 20th, stories yet to be told in their true and full dimension, heroic tales.2 The poems tell stories of a world that is largely gone, that is in fact present only in ruins, and as Mandels comments indicate, nearly lost altogether. As he discovers, words, text, aesthetics, can never hope to even approximate the existence of those who are dead or the objects that are lost. To mourn is to live the paradox of needing a tangible relationship with he who, or that which, is gone beyond retrieval, and the impossibility of that relationship ever occurring. But the attempt is made nonetheless, whether it is in textual

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______________________________________________________________ or other form. Of course, the goal of recuperation itself cannot be achieved. To move into place, Mandel discovers, is to be made aware of absence and loss, to be out of place and to find only language as a means to cope. With the emotionally laden need - in fact, requirement - to grieve the lost one(s) or lost object(s), the work of mourning functions to attempt an always impossible resurrection. Recent commentary illuminates the tensions inherent in the notions of work and mourning.3 Jacques Derrida has written significantly about loss and about the role that work has in mourning in the essays that comprise his book The Work of Mourning. Derrida takes his cue from Sigmund Freud, particularly from his seminal essay Mourning and Melancholia, published in 1917, where Freud argues that mourning is a form of mental labour or work that the grieving subject needs to slowly and determinedly work through in order to be freed from the loss.4 In German, the word for mourning is Trauerarbeit, which literally is mourning-work. For my purposes, it is useful to note that in the German the word operates as a noun and as a verb, thus the work of mourning is both an object - such as a poem that deals with grief - and the process that is carried out in response to loss. For Freud, there is a rather strong emphasis on the idea of working through and past grief, but for Derrida, the work of mourning is a multi-dimensional process that deeply involves and affects all aspects of the mourning subjects life and it is not particularly something that ever ends - and this is what will become important for my discussion of Mandel in a moment. Derrida writes: Work: that which makes for a work, for an oeuvre, indeed that which works -- and works to open: opus and opening, oeuvre, and ouverture: the work or labor of the oeuvre insofar as it engenders, produces, and brings to light, but also labor or travail as suffering, as the engendering of force, as the pain of one who gives. Of the one who gives birth, who brings to the light of day and gives something to be seen, who enables or empowers, who gives the force to know and to be able to see - and all these are powers of the image, the pain of what is given and of the one who takes pains to help us see, read, and think.5 This work of mourning is a labour that can do nothing to bring back the dead; it can do no more than assert its own existence as the writing of a poem, the active working of grief. Text becomes memorial, even monument, but it does not and cannot become that which has been lost. Nevertheless, in Out of Place, as in the yizkor books, text6 becomes the only tangible and meaningful signifier of the lost past. Running through the opening poem in Out of Place, which deals

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______________________________________________________________ with a complex mix of elements, including the speakers memories of the places he is visiting and his wife Anns photographs, are various currents of mourning, work, and memorial: and all the ghostly jews of estevan praying in the synagogue of the valley in the covenant of coal mines in these pictures of estevan and omens windows facing inward an ideal inserted into the plane we call reality words warning this is the place you reach to name remember and recite7 The line breaks and language reinforce the sense of a memorial practice being engaged in. The Jews of the town of Estevan are only ghosts and must thus be imagined in place by the poet, and as they are imagined in prayer the enjambed lines, in the synagogue/ of the valley, reflect a literal and an imagined synagogue. The poem represents the actual and now lost synagogue but also recreates textually a space for prayer to occur; the poem thus establishes a covenant of prayer and memorial, which becomes a turning inward: the space of mourning is the place of memorial, and can only achieve the status of remembrance-poem in the recitation of its language. As the poem makes clear it is the attempt to cause a displacement of place with language that is central to the book, and that process can usefully be considered within the currents of the work of mourning. Out of Place should not be seen as the end result, the product of a consoling work of mourning, even while it is physically a complete work bound by two covers, but rather as exemplary of the active work of mourning - of the movement of the emotions associated with loss - of the process of composing within the complexity of the grief that inhabits Mandels mind and body, and ultimately his existence. This idea of process becomes important to understanding the

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______________________________________________________________ books underpinnings as a memorial text. In the next poem, called near Hirsch a Jewish Cemetery, the idea of loss and of mourning is reinforced as is the notion that the poet and his wife are the only ones who can somehow attempt to at least recover some of the history that is indicated by the cemetery, but that is outside the realm of general public knowledge. There is a feeling of urgency to their task. The cars that pass by on the road are full of ignorant people: no one there/ casts a glance at the stone trees.8 The language reinforces the sense of stasis, of death not only of the interred but also of their memories. The trees are no longer growing, the stones erected as memorials are themselves also dead. Mandel describes the gravestones as the unliving forest of Hebrew graves.9 But Mandel too is limited in his ability to understand what he encounters: The Hebrew puzzles me, he states. Graveyards are sites where community and settlement are indicated, but this one has become disconnected from its community and thus also needs to be memorialized. The resonance of the cemetery is amplified elsewhere in the book with the inclusion of the photographs of the gravestones taken by Ann. Ann is an actor in the poem, for Eli notes her photography, Ann is taking pictures again,10 and presumably her mode of interface with the graveyard is akin to his contemplation and composition of the poem. That we then later encounter her photos, after being made witness to her actually taking them, self-reflexively points to the process of active mourning that both are engaged in. They both have their ways of mediating what they encounter, and they both feel compelled to create an artefact of that engagement. The sense of communal mourning indicates a larger purpose to Out of Place than the reading I have presented so far. Out of Place operates as a memorial text to the communities that Mandel explores with his wife, and the generic attributes of his text reinforce his framing of the volume as a memorial specifically to the lost Jewish communities of southern Saskatchewan. In the Jewish tradition, the first memorial books, termed yizker-bikher, emerged in the middle ages as a response to the killing of Jews across Northern Europe. The purpose was to record the names of the dead, places and dates of the killings, which aided in religious memorial services. The tradition was revived in the early twentieth century as a response to the Ukrainian pogroms in the period 1918 and the early 1920s, and then was most fully developed in the post-Holocaust period to remember and memorialize what was lost, and the yizkor book re-emerged as one of the most important elements in Jewish literary endeavor for a whole generation.11 As Hall remarks: The Yizkhor books have their origins in two forms of Jewish written documentation: the Pinkas Kehilot, the local record book documenting the social, economic and cultural

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______________________________________________________________ features of Jewish community life, and the Yisker-bukh (or Memorbuch), used in Eastern Europe from the 17th century onwards to record the names of pogrom victims.12 Over 700 books were produced, primarily from the 1950s through to the 1970s, most of which can be accessed online through a digital collection of the New York Public Library as well as in print in the library itself, in the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, as well as in other places.13 While the magnitude of loss in the communities that Mandel writes about is clearly less than those destroyed during the Holocaust, he nevertheless employs similar textual strategies to the yizkor books. Other poems in Mandels corpus signal the integral place of the Holocaust in his poetic imagination. The necessity to mourn and commemorate places that were once vibrant - as Mandel remembers from his childhood - but that now comprise largely forgotten ruins is imperative to his return journey. Thus, the places named either no longer exist or exist in very different ways, such as the Hoffer colony, the Jewish Cemetery near Hirsch, and the Jewish community in Regina (there is currently a Jewish community in Regina, but it is largely unconnected to the Jews that Mandel knew in his youth). Out of Place is concerned with finding ways to record what is lost, even in places where not even ruins exist, as he notes in a poem titled rabbi berners farm.14 As with the memorial books, a function of his text is to find a way to bring together fragmented aspects of a community, as Kugelmass and Boyarin remark about the yizkor books: The memorial books represent . . . a resurgence of feeling, an assertion of belief in the existence of community, however fragmented, and an insistence on the need and possibility for communication.15 The text of mourning that Mandel produces then, has an amplified significance, for it reflects his own labouring at mourning, and its resulting textual representation; but the text also carries the larger significance of a communal memorial, so that the act of writing the experience of revisiting the communities and his memories of them provide a function that is greater than is typical of lyric poetry. In yizkor books, the individual gaze is turned to the communal, so that the communal is served by the production of the book, as is noted by Kugelmass and Boyarin: The covenant sealed by the publication of a memorial book is with the dead: to sustain their memory, and to be sustained by their memory in turn.16 The lines from the opening poem to Out of Place - ghostly jews/ of estevan- are worth repeating here, for it is clear that Mandel establishes in the first lines of his book that his text is be both private and personal, as he copes with grief, and public and communal, as he inserts himself and his words into cultural and religious traditions of remembering. Mandels volume, of course, is not a true yizkor book, as it employs the requirements of individually driven lyric poetry, alongside some elements

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______________________________________________________________ of the yizkor books. Mandel does more, however, than just gesture to the tradition of the yizkor book. He reflects the communal necessity of the form by incorporating the photographs that Ann takes as they travel to the various sites, a letter from a former resident of the Hoffer Colony, an excerpt from the centennial (1967) project history of Estevan, Estevan: The Power Centre, a letter from the Jewish Colonization Association in London sent to a local member of parliament, and a list of names for an imaginary cenotaph. The latter is, Kugelmass and Boyarin note, at the core of the commemorative effort in yizkor books.17 In so doing, Mandel disrupts the individuallycentred force of the work of mourning - so evident in much elegy, for example - and recasts it in terms of communal loss. This sense of communal loss is guided by his religious and cultural background, so that the text that emerges out of his work of mourning fulfills the basic conventions of the yizkor books in offering a marker to the lost and in establishing a concrete space for the continued remembrance of those who are gone and for the places that they occupied. As Kugelmass and Boyarin note about the yizkor books: The memorial books are the fruit of the impulse to write a testament to future generations. They constitute an unprecedented, truly popular labor to record in writing as much as possible of a destroyed world.18

Notes
1 2

E. Mandel, Out of Place, Press Procepic, Erin, Ontario, 1977. Ibid.,, p. 75. 3 I discuss the notion of the work of mourning further in Writing Grief: Margaret Laurence and the Work of Mourning, University of Manitoba Press, Winnipeg, 2003, and in my introduction to Response to Death: The Literary Work of Mourning, University of Alberta Press, Edmonton, 2005. 4 S. Freud, Mourning and Melancholia, in S. Freud, A Metapsychology: The Theory of Psychoanalysis, The Standard Edition of the Complete Works of Sigmund Freud, Vol. 17, trans. J. Strachey, Hogarth, London, 1960, pp. 107122. 5 J. Derrida, The Work of Mourning, ed. and trans. P.-A. Brault and M. Naas, University of Chicago Press, Chicago and London, 2001, p. 142. 6 The notion of text in this context includes visual images. 7 Mandel, pp. 13-14. 8 Ibid., p. 20. 9 Ibid. 10 Ibid.

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11

About Yizkor (memorial) Books, New York Public Library, New York, retrieved 1 June, 2007, <http://www.nypl.org/research/chss/jws/aboutyizkor.html>. 12 K. Hall, Jewish Memory in Exile: the Relation of W. G. Sebalds Die Ausgewanderten to the Tradition of the Yizkor Books, in Jews in German Literature Since 1945: German-Jewish Literature?, ed. P. ODochartaigh, Rodopi, Amsterdam and Atlanta, 2000, p. 153. 13 For a fuller discussion of the origins of the yizkor books see J. Kugelmass and J. Boyarin, From a Ruined Garden: The Memorial Books of Polish Jewry, ed. and trans. J. Kugelmass and J. Boyarin, Schocken Books, New York, 1983, p. 7; About Holocaust Memorial Books, New York Public Library, New York, retrieved 1 June 2007, <http://www.nypl.org/research/chss/jws/aboutholocaust.html>; I would like to thank Daniel Magilow, of the University of Tennessee Knoxville, and Research Fellow at the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, for generously sharing a bibliography of yizkor books. 14 Mandel, op. cit., p. 21. 15 J. Kugelmass and J. Boyarin, op. cit., p. 18. 16 Ibid. 17 Ibid. 18 Ibid. p. 12.

Bibliography
Derrida, J., The Work of Mourning, ed. and trans. P.-A. Brault and M. Naas, University of Chicago Press, Chicago and London, 2001. Freud, S., Mourning and Melancholia, in S. Freud, A Metapsychology: The Theory of Psychoanalysis. The Standard Edition of the Complete Works of Sigmund Freud, Vol. 17, trans. J. Strachey, Hogarth, London, 1960. Hall, K., Jewish Memory in Exile: the Relation of W.G. Sebalds Die Ausgewanderten to the Tradition of the Yizkor Books in P. ODochartaigh, ed., Jews in German Literature Since 1945: GermanJewish Literature?, Rodopi, Amsterdam and Atlanta, 2000. Kugelmass, J., and Boyarin, J., eds., From a Ruined Garden: The Memorial Books of Polish Jewry, Schocken Books, New York, 1983. Mandel, E., Out of Place, Press Procepic, Erin, Ontario, 1977. New York Public Library, About Holocaust Memorial Books, New York Public Library, retrieved 1 June, 2007, <http://www.nypl.org/research/chss/jws/aboutholocaust.html>.

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______________________________________________________________ New York Public Library, About Holocaust Memorial Books, New York Public Library, retrieved 1 June, 2007, <http://www.nypl.org/research/chss/jws/aboutholocaust.html>. Riegel, C., ed., Response to Death: The Literary Work of Mourning, University of Alberta Press, Edmonton, 2005. Riegel, C., Writing Grief: Margaret Laurence and the Work of Mourning. University of Manitoba Press, Winnipeg, 2003.

Christian Riegel is Associate Professor and Head of English at Campion College at the University of Regina. His recent books include, Writing Grief: Margaret Laurence and the Work of Mourning, Response to Death: the Literary Work of Mourning, and Twenty-First Century Canadian Writers in the Dictionary of Literary Biography.

Cinema and Death

Not a day has gone by in my life when I havent thought about death - Ingmar Bergman Ananya Ghoshal
Abstract In my paper I aim to explore the representation of death and dying in the cinema of Ingmar Bergman. Almost the entire canvas of Bergman is replete with either an acceptance of the certainty of Death or a metaphysical fear of it, though altogether they compose a continuing essay on mans relationship with God in the context of the problem of evil. It is perceived that Bergman, throughout his work is concerned with a common set of themes, situations, feelings and images regarding death, as he probes the question of whether life offers either mercy or meaning, and it should therefore, be possible to give an account of Bergmans work that focuses on these common elements uncovering the essential philosophic, narrative and filmic foundations and the final choices they offer. For this paper, Ill be looking in detail, two of Bergmans movies - The Seventh Seal (1957) and Winter Light (1963) as I discuss a filmmaker who had dared to ask perhaps the most rhetorical question available to human beings, why live at all?

Keywords Ingmar, Bergman, Cinema, Death, Evil, Meaning of Life, The Seventh Seal, Winter Light.

Bergman began his career as a scriptwriter for Svensk Film Industri in March, 1943, when he was 24. In his first film Prison (1949), Paul, a former teacher of the director Martin Grand, proposes a film in which the Devil rules the world and Paul assertsAfter life, there is only death. Thats all you need to know. The sentimental or frightened can turn to the church, the bored and indifferent can commit suicide God is dead or defeated or whatever you call it. Life is a cruel but seductive path between life and death. A huge laughing masterpiece, beautiful and ugly, without mercy or meaning.1 In the 36 films that Bergman made after Prison, he comes back to this theme over and over again.

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______________________________________________________________ Does this mean Bergman believes in a life without mercy or meaning? Or does Bergman looks forward to this struggle of finding meaning in life which also becomes the reason of ones living? Jesse Kelin2 has given a concise overview of Bergmans career and the way he has developed his themes. Kelin proposes that Bergmans work falls into three major parts. The first period is dominated by films of the 1950s in which the central filmic images he will be remembered for are formed and life is portrayed not as unforgiving, but as always offering rebirth and restoration. This period has three phases: a more austere beginning that leads to Naked Light (1953) and culminates in the mid and later 1950s with The Seventh Seal, Wild Strawberries (1957) and Smiles of a Summer Night (1955). A long struggle from the late 1950s into the 1960s will sustain the heart of the vision which he will end with The Silence in 1963. Though despair and suicide are often central themes here, these films end with a resolve to continue on in the face of lifes adversities, failures, humiliations, abandonment and finally death. Characters see themselves as who they are, realize their lost potentials but still grasp that some measure of life and love that is still possible. They also realize the difficulty of finding these moments and also their impermanence. But the hope found, even if muted or only temporary never seems hollow. This fragile hopefulness is however transformed by the central films of the 1950s into a more comprehensive and archetypal picture of life that celebrates the cycles and rhythms of love and youth and age; and the discovery of a second chance against oblivion. Each individual story is part of a great narrative scheme and grief and suffering are seen only as mere moments in a larger schema of existence. In these works, there is a joy and lyricism palpable that even borders on rhapsodic and as films, and one can say that they are in love with life. This synopsis first gets formed in Waiting Women 1952 one of Bergmans unknown and neglected masterpieces and culminates in Smiles of a Summer Night. Even though the lyrical in Bergman is positioned right next to the brooding and the ugly, the hopelessness becomes interestingly difficult to maintain and ultimately forced as his career progresses. With The Magician in 1958 and the Virgin Spring in 1960, begin a period of rapid decline in which Bergman struggles to maintain and reaffirm the basic narrative of second chance and rebirth of the 1950s in the face of his growing doubt and despair. The era of the great synopsis, which had occupied him for nearly 20 years, is brought to an end with the metaphysical trilogy of Through a Glass Darkly (1961), Winter Light (1963) and The Silence (1963). What develops after this time through Shame (1968), and Scenes from a Marriage (1973) is very much a cinema of ruins and remnants on one hand and replacements and substitutions on the other. There is a feeling that one can

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______________________________________________________________ only disengage from the turmoil and devastation engulfing everyone and look back in sadness that nothing ever turned out the way it could have. Films like Face to Face (1976) and Autumn Sonata (1978) find a growing internal disturbance and dis-ease of the soul, until Bergman is able to make a valiant attempt to reassert his optimism and essential goodness of the world portrayed in the films of the great synopsis of the 1950s through Fanny and Alexander (1982)3. It is perceived that Bergman, throughout his work is concerned with a common set of themes, situations, feelings and images as he questions whether life offers either mercy or meaning, and it should therefore, be possible to give an account of Bergmans work that focuses on these common elements uncovering the essential philosophic, narrative and filmic foundations. For this paper, Ill be discussing in detail, two of Bergmans movies-The Seventh Seal (1957) and Winter Light (1963). 1. The World Within: The World Without The Seventh Seal In The Seventh Seal Bergman uses the figure of death to think over human existence. The knight, Antonius Block carries within himself doubts and desires held by the director himself. The inner conflict of the knight, who has just returned from a holy crusade and has paradoxically lost his faith for the same God he fought for, is looking for the knowledge to explore his faith and achieve a peaceful center. The meeting with death serves this purpose, and that is why perhaps Bergman himself admitted that this movie was not about death, but the fear of it. Contemplating the passage of man upon the earth, Berman uses the prototypical literary form of a journey of a quest, as his crusader returns from the holy land and at every step of his journey, travelling becomes much more claustrophobic and frustrating providing him with dark epiphanic revelations. The film opens with the passage of revelation from which it has taken its title and follows a circular pattern as towards the end Blocks wife Karin, surrounded by memories and death and quotes these same lines: When he broke upon the seventh seal. There was silence in heaven for about half an hour.4 The very choice of the title tells us that the silence in heaven or Gods silence will be a major theme in Bergmans schema of filmic vision. And yet, in The Seventh Seal, the journey from the Requiem Mass, a prayer for the dead undercuts through to The Gloria, the praise of God as merciful creator, involving within it a whole range of associations. Amidst existential dread and apocalyptic fears, the knight takes a quest to retrieve the essentials of life that have been lost and Bergman weaves this story with the fabric of a

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______________________________________________________________ medieval allegory. Set in fourteenthcentury Sweden, his characters signify tortured doubt, simple faith and even defiant disbelief. However the portrayal of this allegory exudes the freshness of a modern sensibility that manages to erode the strong religious stricture associated with them. Bergman has chosen his key dramatic images from medieval art and drama like-a knight playing chess with death and death coming for the living, leading away men and women in a morbid procession in a dense macabre etc. Yet, the religious structure associated with these images has battered. In a fourteenth century danse macabre,5 death might appear as an emissary from God beckoning men to judgment and the afterlife. In Bergmans film, death appears as an enigmatic presence who illuminates the unknown depths in human psyche, which humans otherwise would choose not to confront. We meet here a simple player named Jof and his wife Mia and their infant son Mikael, diminutive forms of the names Joseph and Mary, immediately reminding us of the holy family. And yet, one should not seek a religious interpretation of their love, over which always hovers a brightness of grace. Jof dreams that their son will achieve the impossible; that is, to make the juggling balls stand still in the air. This simple faith is foregrounded further by Bergman, as their story begins with the awakening of Jof witnessing, a glorious human being who bespeaks a human afterlife of heaven and hell, Virgin Mary. While to the knight, who desperately longs to know if God and heaven are real, the spiritual world remains inaccessible. He confronts only death whose existence offers him no assistances about what may be after life. He even wishes at one point that he might meet the Devil, if he would tell him about God, but nobody answers him. Torn between his inability to believe and his dissatisfaction with unbelief, block rants against Gods frustrating elusiveness. A theme developed brilliantly in a long dialogue, a confession between the knight and Death: The knight is kneeling before a small altar. It is dark and quiet around him. The air is cool and musty. Pictures of saints look down on him with stony eyes. Christs face is turned upwards. His mouth open as if in a cry of anguish. On the ceiling beam there is a representation of a hideous devil spying on a miserable human being. The knight hears a sound from the confession booth and approaches it. The face of Death appears behind the grille for an instant but the knight doesnt see him. Knight - I want to talk to you as openly as I can, but my heart is empty.

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______________________________________________________________ Death doesnt answer. Knight - The emptiness is a mirror turned towards my own face. I can see myself in it, and I am filled with fear and disgust. Death doesnt answer. Knight - Through my indifference to my fellow men, I have isolated myself from their company. Now I live in a world of phantoms. I am imprisoned in my dreams and fantasies. Death - And yet you dont want to die. Knight - Yes I do. Death - What are you waiting for? Knight - I want knowledge. Death - You want guarantees? Knight - Call it whatever you like. Is it so cruelly inconceivable to grasp God with the senses? Why should He hide himself in a mist of half -spoken promises and unseen miracles? Death doesnt answer. Knight - How can we have faith in those who believe when we cant have faith in ourselves? What is going to happen to those of us who want to believe but arent able to? And what is to become of those who neither want nor are capable of believing? The Knight stops and waits for a reply, but no-one speaks or answers him. There is complete silence. Knight - Why can't I kill God within me? Why does He live on in this painful and humiliating way, even though I curse Him and I want to tear Him with out of my heart? Why, in spite of everything, He is a baffling reality that I can't shake off? Do you hear me? Death - Yes, I hear you.

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______________________________________________________________ Knight - I want knowledge, not faith, not suppositions, but knowledge. I want God to stretch out His hands towards me, reveal Himself and speak to me. Death - But He remains silent. Knight - I call out to Him in the dark, but no one seems to be there. Death - Perhaps no one is there. Knight - Then life is an outrageous horror. No one can live in the face of death, knowing that all is nothingness. Death - Most people never reflect about either death or the futility of life. Knight - But one day they will have to stand at that last moment of life and look towards the darkness. Death - When that day comes Knight In our fear, we make an image, and we that image we call God.6 But, though struggling with doubts about Gods existence, Block also resists death in the hope of performing a single meaningful act before dying, that of saving the family of Jof, Mia and Mikael. The significance of this scene, where Block briefly shares in the peaceful existence of this family, enjoying a simple meal of wild strawberries and milk, underscores this quest for the meaning in life: Knight-Faith is a torment, did you know that? It is like loving someone who is out there in the darkness but never appears, how loudly you call. Mia: I dont understand what you mean. Knight- Everything Ive said seem meaningless and unreal as I sit here with you and your husband. How unimportant it all becomes suddenly.

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______________________________________________________________ He takes the bowl of milk in his hands and drinks deeply from it several times. Then he carefully puts it down and looks up, smiling. Mia: Now you dont look so solemn. Knight - I shall remember this moment. The silence, the twilight, the bowls of strawberries and milk, your faces in the evening light. Mikael sleeping, Jof with his lyre. Ill carry this memory between my hands, as carefully as if it were a bowl, filled to the brim with fresh milk. He turns his face away and looks out towards the sea and the colourless grey sky. And it will be an adequate sign-it will be enough for me.7 This scene, however has great Eucharist overtones, as the bread and wine are supplemented by milk and wild strawberries to point away from the Christian celebration rather than towards it. It is interesting that, the film depicts Jofs visions and his simple faith, but also depicts in straightforward terms, Blocks encounter with death. The whole process, thus does neither affirm Gods existence nor endorses Jofs faith. Perhaps, Bergman wants to evoke the experience of simple faith in a sympathetic and nostalgic way, but by allowing Blocks world to exist side by side with Jofs, he underlines the immanence of death in life too. Though the central themes-the silence of God and the horror of death are essentially religious one, The Seventh Seal does not really deal with religion or God as such, but with the place of God and religion in the human heart and human society, thus with an equally strong account of God as immanent and identical with the spiritual in man, reminding the weary crusader who says, my whole life has been a meaningless search that he might be seeking fulfillment in the wrong places in the transcendental, whereas human warmth was and is the answer to his search.

2.

How Light is Darkness? -Winter Light We must live, says the pastor in Bergmans Winter Light to a man (Jonas), contemplating suicide. Why must we live? retorts the man. The pastor says nothing and lowers his eyes. In 1959, Bergman told his apprentice Vilgot Sjman during the production that he along with his wife he had gone to say hello to the pastor who had married them. On the way, in the village shop, they saw his wife

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______________________________________________________________ talking very seriously to a girls father who had just committed suicide. The pastor had had several conversations with him earlier, but of no avail. From such a small incident Bergman had woven the fabric of his tale, in which one mans suicide induces a grave spiritual crisis for a pastor. Austere and grey, the second film of Bergmans religious chamber series - Winter Light is a transitional film, both thematically and conceptually. It makes Bergmans final explorations of religious faith and serves as a prelude to the human relational drama of his subsequent work. The fundamental essence of the story is: Gods silence. But the movie also takes it beyond the metaphysical concepts, asking concrete questions whether religion does have any relevance in a world where the nuclear threat hangs indiscriminately over mankind. Winter Light unfolds in a rigorous time span of just a few hours, from Sunday morning communion in one church to the start of an afternoon service replete with an idiom and imagery drawn from established church. But it explores human relationships with a frankness that goes way beyond Christianity. As the film opens, the order of mass is methodically being deferred before a diminishing congregation and of a figure coughing. As the pastor, Tomas delivers his sermon Holy, Holy, Holy, the earth is filled with the glory of GodThy will be done, there are several shots of a fevered, anguished Tomas juxtaposed against a sculpture of the crucifixion. Tomas is sick too, as we come to know a little later. Perhaps there is something in man that is diseased like the dead exteriors of snow and cold outside the church. The ritual holds no significance, either for the pastor or for the very few communicants. When the anxious fisherman, Jonas comes to him for reassurance, as he can do nothing but depress him still furthering in lamenting his own situation rather than comprehending the fishermans. The pastor even admits to Jonas that he does not himself believe in Gods existence and when his unfortunate parishioner has left the church, he turns to Marta and says, with shocking complacency now Im free, only to cough so severely that he sinks until his head touches the floor before the cross. Through these random references Bergman paints Tomas as a man, who is out of touch with men as well as God. Love for him does not include commitment beyond condition as Marta describes their past My sores disgusted youI understand youthe disease broke out on my hands and feet and that was the end of our affair. Ingrid Thulins reading of Martas letter to Tomas is an extraordinary scene as human face becomes the focus of Bergman projecting every nuance of the words she is reciting that actually reveals the soul of Tomas. She says to him through tears, I cant see you without my glasses.8 It is significant to understand that, in the tradition of European meditative poems of Donne, Herbert and the terrible sonnets of Gerard

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______________________________________________________________ Manley Hopkins, Bergman situates his pastor in a place with a complete sense of historical reality. He provides us with a self-reflection of the pastor, that in turn becomes a vivid analysis of the socio-cultural-political reality of the milieu and an acceptance of not being able to go forward and ask for a communion with goodness (here the divine). The only dialogue that takes place is with nothingness. Apart from the occasional references of children in the shots, this movie overtly does not provide any communion with joy and innocence.9 In the end, Tomas does find a little solace in Marta and returns to the sanctity of the ceremonial mass. There is no comfort , no solace and yet, however what seems striking here, is an openness that enables one to find and recognize a guiding vision and remain persistent in turning toward them, for instance, in different ways by both Marta and Tomas in Winter Light. Marta by her refusal to abandon Tomas to his loneliness and self-pity and Tomas by his continuance with the forms of the church i.e. the rite of communion as a kind of prayer and hope. In Bergman, the encounter with death does not direct one back to his or her actual life, as Bergman himself had experienced. His lifelong terror of death diminished, he says, after anesthesia for a surgery rendered him unconscious for several hours. If this is what death is like, he says, he remembers thinking afterward, it is nothing to be afraid of.Though existentialism, as a coherent and important philosophical perspective should be able to illuminate quite significant chunks of his filmic work, we need to think twice whether Bergmans portrayal of a renewed appreciation and sense of being alive is really the point for Heidegger or Sartre or for that matter any other existentialist. Bergman in all his movies raises the question of self and sees the revelation of ones being as the moment of judgement in which one is not yet dead and so given a second chance. And thus, it perhaps reinforces Bergmans sense of both the finality of our finiteness and the immanence of any of lifes measures.

Notes
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J. Kalin, The Films of Ingmar Bergman, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, 2003, p. xiv. 2 Ibid., preface. 3 Ibid., p. xiii-xviii. 4 Rev 8:10. 5 Dance of Death, also variously called Danse Macabre (French), Danza Macabra (Italian and Spanish) or Totentanz (German), is a late-medieval

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______________________________________________________________ allegory on the universality of death: no matter one's station in life, the dance of death unites all. La Danse Macabre consists of the personified death leading a row of dancing figures from all walks of life to the grave - typically with an emperor, king, pope, monk, youngster, beautiful girl, all skeletal. They were produced to remind people of how fragile their lives were and how vain the glories of earthly life were. Its origins are postulated from illustrated sermon texts; the earliest artistic examples are in a cemetery in Paris from 1424. 6 I. Bergman, The Seventh Seal, trans. L. Malmstrm and D. Kushner, Lorrimer Publishing, London, 1984, pp.27-28. 7 Ibid., pp.54-55. 8 There are many film makers who forget that the human face is the starting point in our work. To be sure, we can become absorbed by the esthetic of the picture montage, we can blend objects and still lifes into wonderful rhythms, we can fashion nature studies of astonishing beauty, but the proximity of the human is without doubt the films distinguishing mark and patent of nobilityIn order to give the greatest possible power to the actors expression, the movement of the camera must be simple and uncomplicated, in addition to being carefully synchronized with the action. The camera must appear as a completely objective observer and should only on rare occasions participate in what is going on. We must also consider that the actors finest means of expressions in his eyes.-Ingmar Bergman, Varje film r min sist film. 9 For Bergman, in this movie, the concern is also the failure of people to communicate with each other, which is further developed in the novels of Milan Kundrera, especially Identity. Even when Tomas arrives at the riverside, the incessant sound of the river drowns his conversation with the police.

Bibliography
Bergman, I., The Seventh Seal, trans. L. Malmstrm and D. Kushner, Lorrimer Publishing, London, 1984. Kalin, J., The Films of Ingmar Bergman, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, 2003. Kaminsky, S. M. & Hill, J. F., eds., Ingmar Bergman: Essays in Criticism, Oxford University Press, New York, 1975.

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______________________________________________________________ Ananya Ghoshal is an M. Phil student at the English and Foreign Languages University (EFLU) in Hyderabad, India.

I am Dead: Notes on Cinema's Refutation of Time Jan Holmberg


Abstract In the first movie review ever, on December 30th 1895, a reporter of the Paris paper La poste claimed that when these contrivances [meaning the cinmatographe] are in the hands of the public, then death will no longer be absolute, final. From this excited expectation to the ghost-like appearance of the deceased Marlon Brando in Superman returns (2006), runs a line of instances in cinema where the seemingly irreversible states of death and dying are questioned, even refuted. By examining a few of these peculiarly numerous occasions, this paper will try to demonstrate that the impossibility of being dead and simultaneously claiming it, fits well with the paradoxical temporality of cinema, challenging the most fundamental of human conditions: that our existence, with Heidegger's term, is a being-to-death.

Keywords Cinema, Temporality, Oxymoron, Poe, Bergson, The Crow.

A man staggers into a police station, walks into the lieutenants office and says that he wants to report a murder. Hardly looking up, the weary lieutenant replies: Whos been murdered? to which our heros response is: Me. Even with film noir standards, the opening of D.O.A (Rudolph Mat, 1950) is particularly suggestive. Uttering the phrase I am dead is of course an example of the kind of proposition known as oxymoron, when two linguistic elements are in conflict. The subject I cannot have the predicate dead, since this refutes the possibility of an I. If I am dead, then I have not lived to tell. But if the semantic of an oxymoron is impossible, it does not mean that it is not communicable: we all know, for example, what the sensation of bittersweet feels like. If language, with Emersons words, is fossil poetry,1 then the poetic effect of the oxymoron, in the case of the word bittersweet, is rigid enough for us not to notice the paradox, but we do react when hit by the power of impossibility: I am dead. Is, then, the protagonist of D.O.A. a ghost, a phantom haunting us with uncanny wordings? No, the plot is completely plausible. The man has been given a poison irrevocably taking his life, and in a few hours he will die. Hence, he is not dead when he says so; rather, he is using the present tense to

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______________________________________________________________ describe a future state. His purpose is poetry if you will, much like when the most famous poet has his hero, fatally wounded, exclaim: Horatio, I am dead; / Thou livst; report me and my cause aright / To the unsatisfied.2 In this paper, I would like to trace a few examples of this kind of temporal paradoxes in cinema. As we shall see they are common, and I would claim that this is no coincidence. I believe that an oxymoron such as I am dead is telling of the paradoxical conception of time that is cinemas own. But let me first continue with an example from literature. When Edgar Allan Poe lets one of his characters utter these words, the meta-literary aspect of it is probably unintentional; however, the example tells us something about literature itself. It is in the story The Facts in the Case of M. Valdemar from 1845 that Poe allows himself to the oxymoron which is the title and subject of my paper. The plot is as follows. Mr. Valdemar, dying of tuberculosis, lets himself be hypnotised on his deathbed, in the consolation that the limbo between sleep and awakeness of hypnosis shall offer death some resistance. The event is being witnessed by a few close friends, including the narrator of the story. The hypnotiser fulfils his task, and the patient claims himself to have no more pain. A few hours later, Valdemar dies, or rather: he is displaying all known signs of being dead. For as the corpse is about to be taken away, the witnesses, much to their horror, hear a sound from Valdemars mouth, a sound such as, according to the storys narrator, it would be madness in me to attempt describing: I mean to say that the sound was one of distinct - of even wonderfully, thrillingly distinct, syllabification. M. Valdemar spoke - obviously in reply to the question I had propounded to him a few minutes before. I had asked him, it will be remembered, if he still slept. Now he said: Yes; - no; - I have been sleeping - and now - now I am dead.3 It is the Swedish critic Horace Engdahl who in an essay has brought my attention to the possibility of interpreting Poes story as self-reflexive. To quote Engdahl: When Poe lets someone or something which is no longer an I speak in first person, he reveals the nature of writing. [] The existence of the text is conducive of its being able to say I even after the person the word originally was referring to is gone. [] The voice of the deceased Mr. Valdemar is an allegory of Poes own text, of the text itself. Nobody is there, and yet it speaks, from afar, as if from the non-existent interior of the book page.4

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______________________________________________________________ Many other examples of these temporal paradoxes in literature could be cited; including, for instance, Franz Kafkas The Hunter Gracchus (1917). It almost seems as if fiction returns to its paradoxes because it needs them, like a kind of self-therapy to cope with the strange occupation of creating other characters, other worlds, other realities. In Poe and Kafka (and, to be sure, in many others), we find examples of literary plots so curiously constructed that one wonders if not the whole objective of the project was for the author to create the paradoxical situation of being dead and alive at the same time. But even if literature is not in lack of examples, it seems to me as if another medium displays even more of these temporal paradoxes: perhaps cinema has an even greater need for the chock therapy of the oxymoron. I will say a few words about why I think that is - why cinema is so obsessed with death, its own death as it were - and then I will provide a few examples. Already Louis Lumire, one of the inventors of cinema, stated that his and his brothers new apparatus was an invention with no future. What he probably was referring to was the very newness of the new medium; he simply thought of it as a fad, a short-lived phenomenon. Perhaps he was right: the question whether cinema is currently dying is still open for debate; well simply have to see. But he was definitely right in a sense he couldnt possibly know of, something having to do with the fragile material of his invention. In the first moment of a film prints coming to life, it is starting to being torn, ripped to pieces. The film projector at once magically brings the celluloid alive, and, with its sharp claws, simultaneously kills it. After a few screenings, the deterioration is already visible to the audience (scratches, ellipses at the ends and beginnings of the reels); after 100 screenings, the print is usually discarded. There are good reasons then, that only about 15% of the first thirty years of cinema has been preserved. The small share speaks for itself, but is even more telling compared to media of the more distant past such as copper, marble or even ceramics, since artefacts of these materials is still being dug up by archaeologists thousands of years after they were manufactured. Cinema, by way of comparison, has a more dismal prognosis. Now, these precarious conditions of the film medium seem to be challenging the popular notion of the work of art, specifically a masterpiece, as being immortal. I suppose that the idea of the immortality of the work of art is that the more an object is being used or consumed (seen, read, thought of, whatever), the more immortal it would be. This would be the logic of canonisation. Cinema, however, is particularly ill-suited for this kind of metaphysics: even Citizen Kane is disturbingly mortal. So, cinema seems to know that its being is a being-to-death, an attribute otherwise described by Martin Heidegger as a specifically human

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______________________________________________________________ condition. The final point Id like to make as to why cinema is so obsessed with death, has to do with the mechanics of the medium, the peculiar way in how it is giving movement to still photographs on a film strip. This kind of resurrection or reanimation of the immobile frames is somehow paradoxical, and I will demonstrate this by turning to the possibly first philosophical analysis of cinema, undertaken by Henri Bergson in his 1907 treatise Creative Evolution. Now to be clear, Bergson was no fan of the movies. In fact, the philosopher claimed that the new medium was a perfect example of Mans intellectual shortcomings. What is interesting with Bergsons dismissal, however, is that whereas his peers might have sneered at this form of low entertainment because of the content of the films, Bergsons criticism was rather directed against the technological conditions of the medium. By projecting still photographs at a certain pace, the spectator is provided with an illusion of movement. This illusion, for Bergson, is typical for our incapability of understanding movement; with our limited mental capacities, we cannot understand the flux of time as anything else but as a series of static moments, although this is false. Thus, our way of understanding the course of time, is similar to the projected filmstrip, and this is why Bergson is referring to this misconception of movement as consecutive immobile sections, mysteriously given time, as the cinematographic error: Instead of attaching ourselves to the inner becoming of things, we place ourselves outside them in order to recompose their becoming artificially. We take snapshots, as it were, of the passing reality. [...] We may therefore sum up [...] that the mechanism of our ordinary knowledge is of a cinematographical kind.5 As evidence for our inability to understand movement, Bergson cites the intuitive power of Zenos paradoxes from the 5th century, B.C. Take the one about the arrow, for instance. Zeno claims that an arrow being shot from a bow is in fact not moving at all. Because at every given moment, the arrow occupies a part of space equal to its own size. During this moment, the arrow cannot be moving, since this would mean that the moment is dividable, and since a moment by definition is an undividible element of time, it follows that the arrow needs to be moving between the different moments, i.e., out of time, which is absurd. Q.E.D. With reference to Zeno, Bergson says that philosophy, always has known that it can never reach satisfying knowledge of movement and change per se. Zenos paradoxes are about adding movement to a distance being covered, assuming that what is true for the distance, is also true for the movement. Movement and time cannot be divided conditionally in the same

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______________________________________________________________ way as a line, or a distance. Zenos trick on us is being performed by confusing time with space, attributing spatial qualities to temporal processes. But the error, according to Bergson, is human, and not only that: it is the only means at our disposal of understanding the mystery of time. Having tried to establish the material and mechanical conditions for cinemas obsession with time and the end of time (death, that is), I will now turn to my examples. From here on, I'm a fucking dead man! This particular exclamation belongs to the character David Ferrie in Oliver Stone's JFK (1991), but as anyone who has seen more than a few gangster movies will testify, the case of a man claiming that he is dead abound in the genre, particularly in cases like the one just cited, when someone is called to witness against powerful evildoers. However, even if the phrase I am dead is being pronounced, the line represents the most common - and banal - use of the oxymoronic utterance we are investigating. Rather than a philosophical crux, it is way of formulation. But there are other examples. In one of the most cited scenes in Vertigo (Alfred Hitchcock, 1958), the character Madeleine is standing in front of a cross section of a cut-down sequoia. Notes by the circles indicate the age of the tree by stating decisive years such as that of The battle of Hastings by one of the inner circles or Declaration of Independence by one of the outer. As we see her gloved hand in close-up pointing to first one circle, than another right next to it, Madeleine says in a trance-like voice: Somewhere here I was born. And here I died. It was only a moment to you, you took no notice. To anyone who has not seen it, I refuse to give out the premise of the film that I hold to be the greatest ever, and so I cannot explain why she utters this seemingly impossible phrase. Suffice it to say that Vertigo is more than merely a sophisticated psychological thriller, but a philosophical treatise on time, and, like Poes The Facts in the Case of M. Valdemar, a meditation on the (im)mortality of its creator. Given his near obsession for the concept of time, Jorge Luis Borges constantly returned to Zenos paradoxes. Not because he believed them to be true, but like Bergson, Borges found them illustrating the incomprehensibility of time. There is a concept, he writes in an essay, which corrupts and upsets all others. I refer not to Evil, whose limited realm is that of ethics; I refer to the infinite.6 Borges proceeds by going through the most famous solutions to Zenos paradoxes, and admits that although refutable, the paradoxes still have an immense intuitive power. Let us admit what all idealists admit, he writes, - the hallucinatory nature of the world. But he goes on: Let us do what no idealist has done - let us search for unrealities that confirm that nature.7 Borges never falls for the temptation to denying the existence of time; the unrealities he searches are no refutations but rather

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______________________________________________________________ problematisations of vulgar common sense notions. In another essay with precisely the ironic title of A New Refutation of Time, he famously concludes: Denying temporal succession, denying the self, denying the astronomical universe, are apparent desperations and secret consolations. Our destiny is not frightful by being unreal; it is frightful because it is irreversible and iron-clad. Time is the substance I am made of. Time is a river which sweeps me along, but I am the river; it is a tiger which destroys me, but I am the tiger; it is a fire which consumes me, but I am the fire. The world, unfortunately, is real; I, unfortunately, am Borges.8 I am dead - an impossible phrase. We cannot be alive and dead at the same time. Or can we? When the Lumire brothers presented their innovation of the cinematographe in December 1895 in Paris, a reporter for the newspaper La poste stated that when these contrivances are in the hands of the public, then death will no longer be absolute, final.9 In his excitement over the moving photographs (known for a long time as living or animated pictures), the reporter of La poste did not differentiate between real people and their black and white, silent images on the screen. Nevertheless, he foresaw the archival task of cinema: to register and preserve what once was. Given the ephemary nature of the medium described earlier, this will to preserve is rather futile, but still. Death will no longer be final as profetised by an excited report on the cinematographe in 1895. Almost exactly a century later, we see the premiere of a film called The Crow. A man and his fiance are brutally murdered on Devils night. But death proves not to be final, because a year later the man returns from his grave to seek vengeance on his killers: a common task for ghosts as we all know. But tragically enough, the theme of the The Crow was further emphasised by an accident. During the shooting of the film (a horrifically apt metaphor), a mistake is being made and a gun is being loaded with live ammunition, rather than blanks. The shot is fired, hits and kills the star of the film, Brandon Lee. Being almost completed, the producers decide to finish the film anyway. For the scenes with Lee still not recorded, they use a body double, whose face is digitally exchanged for Brandon Lees. Finally, The Crow opens, and the audience gets to see a dead man still alive playing a dead man still alive. Death, it seems, is no longer final. In one scene, the protagonist ghost is facing a police officer, pointing his gun to him. Move and youre dead! the officer shouts, to which the ghost replies: And I say Im dead. And I move.

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______________________________________________________________ Movement and death: these seemingly contradictory states are the dubious foundations of the film medium. Thus, when Brandon Lee says I am dead, he does not lie: the impossible phrase finally has become possible.

Notes
1

R. W. Emerson, The Poet [1844], in V.B. Leitch et al, eds., The Norton Anthology of Theory and Criticism, W.W. Norton & Company, New York/London, 2001, p. 731. 2 W. Shakespeare, Hamlet [1623], ed. G. R. Hibbard, Oxford University Press, Oxford/New York, 1987, Act 5, Scene 2, p. 351. 3 E. A. Poe, The Facts in the Case of M. Valdemar [1845], in The Works of Edgar Allan Poe, Vol. 2, A.C. Armstrong & Son, New York, 1884, p. 198. 4 H. Engdahl, Skrivandets ABC. En ess om rsten och litteraturen [ABC of Writing: An Essay on the Voice and Literature], Albert Bonniers frlag, Stockholm, 1994, p. 70. 5 H. Bergson, Creative Evolution [1907], trans. A. Mitchell, Dover, New York, 1998, p. 332. 6 J. L. Borges, Avatars of the Tortoise, in D. A. Yates and J. E. Irby, eds., Labyrtinths: Selected Stories & Other Writings, New Directions Publishing, New York, 1964, p. 202. 7 Ibid. 8 J. L.Borges, A New Refutation of Time, in op. cit., p. 223. 9 La poste, 30 December, 1895.

Bibliography
Bergson, H., Creative Evolution [1907], trans. A. Mitchell, Dover, New York, 1998. Emerson, R. W., The Poet [1844], in V.B. Leitch et al, eds., The Norton Anthology of Theory and Criticism, W.W. Norton & Company, New York/London, 2001. Engdahl, H., Skrivandets ABC. En ess om rsten och litteraturen [ABC of Writing: An Essay on the Voice and Literature], Albert Bonniers frlag, Stockholm, 1994. Borges, J. L., Avatars of the Tortoise, in D.A, Yates and J.E. Irby, eds., Labyrtinths: Selected Stories & Other Writings, New Directions Publishing, New York, 1964. A New Refutation of Time, in op. cit.

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______________________________________________________________ Poe, E. A., The Facts in the Case of M. Valdemar [1845], in The Works of Edgar Allan Poe, Vol. 2, A.C. Armstrong & Son, New York, 1884. La poste, 30 December, 1895. Shakespeare, W., Hamlet [1623], ed. G. R. Hibbard, Oxford University Press, Oxford/New York, 1987.

Jan Holmberg holds a Ph.D. in Cinema Studies from Stockholm University and is Associate Professor of Culture and Media at the School of Arts and Communication, Malm University College, Sweden.

A Chance to Live Forever? Cloning and Personal Survival in The 6th Day Rudolph Glitz
Abstract This paper draws some generalising conclusions from the conceptions of death and personal identity that underlie the Hollywood blockbuster The 6th Day (2000). It focusses on the villains highly conspicuous indifference towards his own violent demise. This indifference, as the film makes clear, is due to his pre-arranged physical and mental duplication and revival, which in turn, like the plot of the entire movie, is based on the assumed feasability of human cloning. Before this science-fictional background, I will approach the villains attitude philosophically. More precisely, I will approach it in terms of Derek Parfits influential comments on questions of death and personal identity. In addition, there is a more broadly sociological dimension to the death-defying indifference of the villain, who clearly represents the latest type of the IT and media-savvy corporate wiz-kid. Perhaps, as I will argue in the final part of my discussion, which also briefly touches on the filmic medium of The 6th Day, the film makers thanatological decisions and the largely absent critical response to them in contemporary reviews of the film indicate a shift of popular intuitions with regard to death that can be meaningfully described as post-modern.

Keywords Cloning, Death, Survival, Personal Identity, Hollywood, Parfit, Postmodernism.

For reasons I dont need to expand on here, Hollywood blockbusters are unlikely to offend any deeply held beliefs of their targeted mass audiences. This might have many aesthetic disadvantages, but also makes them more broadly representative of Western consumer culture than perhaps any other medium of fictional entertainment. Produced by, and starring, the then aspiring actor-politician Arnold Schwarzenegger, the science-fiction action thriller The 6th Day is no exception in this regard.1 But what - you might wonder - has this movie to do with our conference topic? In what way can it help us make sense of death and dying? After all, when the film was first released in 2000, it claimed contemporary relevance mainly for its concern with genetic engineering. The title of The 6th Day constitutes a direct

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______________________________________________________________ biblical reference to the book of Genesis2 which appeared on advertising posters and is spelled out several times during the film: On the sixth day, God created man. If anything, this quotation leads us to expect a questioning of scientists right to tamper with natural forms of reproduction - along similar lines as in the slightly earlier Gattaca, for example, of 1997. As it turns out, however, The 6th Day takes a different direction. Even though the broader nature-vs.-science debate is indeed repeatedly touched on in the film, the selective modification of DNA plays only a minor role. In the opening credits, the movies central science-fictional premise is presented as in a line with the famous real-life Dolly, the sheep and the successful completion of the human genome project. Yet, as the viewer soon realises, genetic cloning as such forms only part of a more complex technology, a technology that allows for the replication not just of cell structures, but of entire individuals. In order to make plausible the replication of human individuals, the film presupposes, first of all, that its possible to create an identical copy of a particular human body. This is where genetic cloning comes in, combined with, less conspicuously, accelerated cell growth and surgery. Physical replication, however, is only half the job. In addition, secondly, the individuals psychological make-up and experiential knowledge need to be reproduced, which in practice means his or her memories. In this regard, the film further presupposes the feasibility of complete and accurate brain scans, whose results can be stored and subsequently superimposed on the blank brains of the physical duplicates. Its thus the combination of physical and psychological replication in the film that allows for the possibility of human cloning - of human cloning in a broader and at the same time more rigorous sense than usual, namely not just of cell clusters, bodies, or foetuses, but of full-grown individuals with their own mental histories. Now, what makes this fictional technology relevant to our topic of death and dying is the way its employed by the master villain who controls it in the film. For this villain - his name is Michael Drucker - isnt interested in duplicating individuals per se. Instead, he uses his technology for financially lucrative post-mortem resuscitations. Basically, as we learn in the course of the movie, Drucker grows and stores embryonic clones of people, has regular snapshots of their memories taken, and, in case they should die for one reason or another, revives them by way of combining their physical backup copies with their psychological ones, by creating and animating fullgrown replicas of them, who can then continue to live their lives as if these had never been interrupted. In a way, as Drucker puts it towards the end of the film, he offers people the chance to live forever - or does he? In fact, as some of you may have noticed already, the survival through cloning promoted by Drucker depends on assumptions that arent necessarily shared by most people. And I dont mean those regarding technological feasibility. The most interesting issues in the plot of The 6th

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______________________________________________________________ Day are actually philosophical rather than technological, and they pose a serious challenge to traditional conceptions of personal identity. Is being replaced by a physical and psychological replica of oneself really the same as personal survival? And, if not, is such a replacement as good as personal survival or should it be feared like death? These questions arent easy to answer, even though Drucker seems anything but doubtful. His reaction, near the end of the film, to being shot through the stomach in his own clone factory clearly reveals his philosophical commitment. Ill be dead in twenty minutes, tops, he predicts coolly, before hinting at the reason for his coolness: But what better place, right? Entirely unperturbed by the prospect of reincarnation, Drucker only panics when Schwarzeneggers character starts to destroy the entire cloning facility. In his eyes, obviously, being replaced by a physical and mental duplicate counts pretty much as ordinary survival. As some of you might know from the occasional news headline, theres currently a real-life cult movement, the Ralians, whose vision of personal afterlife resembles in many respects Druckers survival by cloning. Yet since their reflections are at best superficial and at worst delusional - you can find them on the internet if youre interested - Ill quickly move on to a much more thoroughly argued contribution to the subject: Derek Parfits 1984 study Reasons and Persons.3 Parfit argues, as the philosophers among you might know, for a morally significant change in our attitude towards personal identity, and his argument takes frequent recourse to imagined scenarios of death and survival. As it happens, Druckers survival-throughcloning technique mirrors in all essential points Parfits teleportation scenario, in which the philosopher imagines himself being destroyed and fully recreated elsewhere on the basis of a transmitted blueprint.4 Furthermore, Parfits position as to personal survival in this process seems quite compatible with Druckers beliefs about cloning. Unlike the movie character, naturally, the philosopher spells out both his reasons and the wider implications of his views outside the realm of science fiction. Yet since we dont have time to rehearse either - they amount to a good 150 pages of painstaking explication in Parfits book - lets simply stick to his basic claims here. With regard to persons, firstly, Parfit argues for what he calls the reductionist view, which maintains that a persons existence just consists in the existence of a brain and body, and the occurrence of a series of interrelated physical and mental events.5 This definition would be readily accepted by Drucker since, just like him, it doesnt discriminate between clones and their originals. By contrast, Parfits definition somewhat jars with the outlaw-status of human clones in the film world as well as with Druckers opponents marked concern about the soul and the direct involvement of God in peoples creation - about an additional component of personhood, in

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______________________________________________________________ other words, that is separate from and irreducible to those listed by Parfit. The various non-reductionist alternatives to Druckers position in the film are revealing as to their surprisingly blatant inconsistencies, which riddle even the views of the Schwarzenegger character and heroic everyman whom the viewer is supposed to identify with. But since theres no time to discuss them in detail in this talk, lets move on to how, secondly, Drucker conceptualises personal identity. A person continues to exist, according to Parfit, if and only if a) theres psychological continuity, b) this continuity hasnt taken a branching form, and c) it has the right kind of cause.6 Considering these criteria one by one and applying them to a clone successfully assembled by Drucker, we find that the criterion of psychological continuity, a), is quite naturally met by the complete transfer of memories to the clone and thus unproblematic. The nonbranch-line criterion, b), is met whenever the original human does not survive together with its duplicate - for example when Drucker resurrects his thoroughly exterminated henchmen. Yet while branching lives are by no means part of Druckers plan, they can and do happen by accident, namely in Gibsons as well as Druckers own case. This means that, according to Parfit, Gibson and Drucker are no longer numerically identical with themselves after their cloning and thus no longer the same persons. Whereas Gibson learns about his duplication after the fact and hence cannot react to the prospect of it, Drucker initiates his with perfect equanimity and thus qualifies once more as a Parfitian.7 For as will be clear from Parfits next major claim, there is no need for him to anticipate the ensuing loss of personal identity with dread. But before moving on to this claim, we still need to consider c), the right kind of cause. The term right calls for further specification, of course, but here Parfit remains deliberately undecided. The normal cause of psychological continuity would be physical continuity - most importantly of our brains and if we insist on this narrow criterion, no clone of ours can, strictly speaking, be described as us. If, however, we regard as the right kind of cause not just the normal but any, or at least any reliable, cause of psychological continuity, the very same cloning event can also be described as an instance of personal survival. Judging by the way Drucker speaks about his resurrections (which might of course always be loosely metaphorical or strategically motivated), he seems to lean towards the broader understanding of right and therefore regard himself and his clients as actually surviving. But even if he doesnt, this wont put him at odds with Parfit, according to whom theres little to choose from between these different positions. Complete replication, Parfit argues, would in any case be as good as ordinary survival, even if we dont call it that.8 Like Druckers equanimity towards breaking the non-branch-line clause, this last point is linked to the third major claim of Parfits that needs

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______________________________________________________________ to be discussed here. This claim is a valuation. As Parfit demonstrates in much detail, the relation that matters both morally and rationally isnt actually our traditional and linguistically entrenched concept of personal identity with the already mentioned criteria a), b), and c). Instead, the relation we have reason to care about is psychological continuity with any cause - a difference whose full realisation can profoundly affect our thinking about death, our future, and ethics more generally, even though in our everyday lives the two relations usually hold together. So, to sum up, and answer our guiding questions: according to Parfit, being replaced by a clone might or might not be the same as personal survival - depending ultimately on our linguistic preferences. It is, however, in any case as good as personal survival, which is all that matters in Parfits eyes. Druckers behaviour in the film is largely compatible with this position. Using the language of personal identity and perhaps initially convinced of the identity-preserving nature of his resurrection method, he still doesnt flinch when his own identity is about to break down through temporary co-existence with his own clone. From this moment at the latest, its quite obviously merely the preservation of psychological continuity that matters to him. Despite a few justified lapses, Druckers general attitude towards cloning is supported by Parfits study and thus to an impressive extent rational and consistent.9 Of course, the relative rationality and consistency of a position by no means guarantees its widespread acceptance by filmmakers and audiences. The persuasive powers of these qualities might well be outweighed by problems of understanding, religious faith, habit, personal dislike, cultural politics, etc. As Parfit himself says about his views, the truth is very different from what we are inclined to believe. Even if we are not aware of this, most of us are Non-Reductionists. If we considered my imagined cases, we would be strongly inclined to believe that our continued existence is a deep further fact, distinct from physical and psychological continuity, and a fact that must be all-ornothing. This is not true.10 Parfit wrote this assessment of popular opinion in the early 1980s. What - Id finally like to ask in this paper - does the way in which Drucker is characterised in The 6th Day tell us about its ongoing validity? First of all, theres no denying that, overall, the movie confirms Parfits assessment. For even though, on the level of argument, Druckers Parfitian views are never properly challenged by his less articulate opponents, they are still continually and systematically tainted through their association with his character.11 This character is clearly demarcated as evil, of course, by his various criminal activities, which, apart from cloning

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______________________________________________________________ humans, include bribery, kidnapping, blackmail, and several cold-blooded murders. Furthermore, over and above the generic traits of the Hollywood corporate baddie, the filmmakers have given Drucker a distinctive set of qualities that also turn him into a well-known cultural type. These qualities emerge most clearly when contrasted with their counterparts in the character of Adam Gibson, the hero were supposed to sympathise with. Whereas the sturdy, middle-aged Gibson is characterised as conservative and old-fashioned from the beginning, the youngish, more dynamic Drucker appears thoroughly progressive and fashionable. They might both embrace modern technology, but while for Gibson this means controlling mechanical hardware - planes, cars, power tools, and the like Drucker surrounds himself with the latest in digital communication equipment and simulations such as holograms or computer generated oil paintings. In addition, of course, theres Druckers wholesale commitment to high-tech biotechnology, a pursuit that starkly contrasts with Gibsons school-boyish testing of explosive chemicals near the middle of the film. Here, especially, Gibson appears nostalgically stuck in the past compared to Drucker, who on his part has clearly internalised the late twentieth-century shift in dominance from the physical to the life and information sciences.12 The culturo-historical opposition between the two characters is also established through their private lives. That Gibsons conforms to the American ideal of the traditional nuclear family is hammered home by clich after clich: there are the bedroom scenes and flirtatious bickerings between a husband and wife still as much in love as ever, the surprise birthday party complete with neighbours and friends, the tragic death of the much-loved family pet, the cute little daughter and her school recital, and the final family hug with conspicuously displayed wedding band. Druckers private life, by contrast, is conspicuous by its absence. His sexual inclinations remain unspecified, though certain scenes and jokes and about him and his clone hint at homosexuality and an extreme auto-eroticism, both diametrically opposed, of course, to Gibsons blatant heterosexuality. Besides these uncertainties and suspicions of unconventionality, the fact that we see Drucker almost exclusively within public or professional settings is likely to colour our thinking about the things he says. When Adam Gibson speaks his relatively simple mind to his friends, family, and even enemies, it never clashes with what weve seen or heard in the movie. Not least because of Schwarzeneggers vocal and facial limitations, we barely think him capable of anything but authenticity. Drucker, however, is presented from the outset as a consummate rhetorician and manipulator of language, who has evidently no qualms about adapting his professed beliefs to whatever will help his immediate cause. This sort of pragmatic flexibility naturally distracts from the intrinsic merits his various claims may have including his Parfitian attitude towards personal survival. Furthermore,

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______________________________________________________________ though, it, like all the attributes Ive mentioned so far and more, is highly symptomatic of the much-debated cultural phase or phenomenon that we know as postmodernity. Famously celebrating hybridity, virtuality, pragmatism, rhetoricity, the breakdown of clear-cut distinctions, and surfaces without deep realities underneath, postmodernism in general is demonised in The 6th Day as the cultural provenance of the chief villain Drucker, who, at the end of the film, dies in the form of an unfinished, nightmarish-looking clone breaking through the glass roof of a futuristic skyscraper. Druckers Parfitian attitude towards personal survival can be seen as included in this cultural criticism by their association in the movie but also since there are indeed some points of contact between it and postmodernism. Contrary to postmodernist practice, Parfit unhesitantly bases his claims on the authority of rational argument and truth. Yet his devaluation of personal identity as the concept that matters in questions of death and survival shows nonetheless some similarities to what postmodernists say on the subject. Consider, for example, the postmodernist conception of personal identity as described by the theorist Seyla Benhabib: The subject is replaced by a system of structures, oppositions and diffrances which, to be intelligible, need not be viewed as products of a living subjectivity at all. You and I are the mere sites of such conflicting languages of power, and the self is merely another position in language.13 Using a different terminology than Parfit, and a different theoretical background, the postmodernist view still resembles the philosophers conclusions at least superficially in that, like them, it reduces personal identity to a merely linguistic entity, as opposed to a separately existing further fact. If, in The 6th Day, Parfits philosophical views are implicitly linked to postmodernism as a whole, this might have an effect on their acceptance by viewers. Therell always be those in the audience who resist Schwarzeneggers Republican agenda of establishing - and associating with himself - the nostalgic myth of a natural, authentic, family-friendly, and Godgiven modernity that needs to be protected from the artificial, glibly persuasive, ego-centred, and blasphemous trends of contemporary science and culture. The occasional complaints by reviewers about the sentimental and domestic scenes in the movie might be indications of such resistance.14 As might be the general lack of criticism regarding Druckers belief in survival by cloning.15 If we were indeed as strongly inclined against Parfits reductionist view as he suspected in the 1980s, wouldnt we consider Druckers indifference to his own death followed by cloning utterly

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______________________________________________________________ unrealistic or misguided? The fact that we dont shows an increasing openness towards Parfits stance that alienates us from the hero of the film and its general philosophical message. Of course, this isnt necessarily due to philosophical arguments. Our habitual intuitions regarding personal identity might be gradually weakening due to our constant handling of virtual objects on the internet. And theres not least the filmic medium of The 6th Day, where personal identity is established visually and orally, and one and the same actor plays a whole series of consecutive clones. Rationally speaking, this shouldnt affect our belief in their identity, of course, but subliminally it almost certainly does. From all this and my own discussions with fellow cinemagoers, Id personally conclude that there might at least be the chance that, in The 6th Day, the anti-Parfitian Schwarzenegger is fighting a rearguard action.

Notes
1

R. Spottiswoode, dir., The 6th Day, Columbia Pictures, 2000. Quotations are from the DVD version and referenced throughout in hours, minutes, and seconds separated by colons. That The 6th Day constitutes indeed a successful blockbuster can be gathered from the Worldwide Box Office Grosses archives (www.boxofficeguru.com/intlarch1.htm), according to which it had already generated $101.5m by January 31, 2001 (34% of which came from the US and Canada and 66% from other countries). This number obviously excludes later DVD, VHS, and TV sales. 2 Genesis, 1: 27-31. 3 See Part Three: Personal Identity, in D. Parfit, Reasons and Persons, Clarendon, Oxford, 1984. 4 Ibid, p. 199f. 5 Ibid., p. 211. 6 Cf. ibid, p. 208. 7 Druckers earlier comment on the duplicated Gibsons unique perspective might even suggest that he appreciates the philosophical import of his state. 8 Cf. Parfit, op. cit., p. 208f. 9 Considerably more so, by the way, than that of the Ralians. Failing to adopt Parfits devaluation of personal identity in favour of mere psychological continuity, their vision of immortality is vulnerable to several strong philosophical objections. 10 Parfit, op. cit., p. 281. 11 Both of these claims can be supported by evidence from the film, though there is no time/space to provide this here.

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12

Information technology has become famously integral to the probabilitybased life sciences. As to the latters dominance: according to a leading article in Nature titled Biology versus Physics (vol. 391, January 1998, p. 107), there is a tendency for biology to dominate perceptions of science at the expense of support for other disciplines. [] From their dominant positions at the heart of the science-industrial-government corpus during the middle decades of this century, physicists are now reduced to justifying their continuing existence on the coat-tails of another discipline. This opinion piece also refers to a recent assertion of President Bill Clinton to the effect that the past 50 years have been the age of physics, whereas the next will be very likely characterized predominantly as the age of biology. 13 From S. Benhabib, Situating the Self: Gender, Community and Postmodernism in Contemporary Ethics, Polity, Cambridge, 1992, p. 209. Cf. also C. Butler, Postmodernism: A Very Short Introduction, Oxford University Press, Oxford, 2002, p. 51. 14 See, for example, J. Liebermans 2006 article on Ruthless Reviews (www.ruthlessreviews.com/reviews.cfm/id/630/page/the__th_day.htm l) or Michael Atkinsons Past Action Heroes; Insane Clone Posses on The Village Voice (November 2000; www.villagevoice.com/film/0047, atkinson, 19 997,20.html). 15 Tor Thorsens review on Reel.com even describes Drucker as a villain with pretty convincing pro-cloning arguments (http://www.reel.com/ movie.asp?MID=131322&buy=open&Tab=reviews&CID=13#tabs) and Paul Malcolms on LA Weekly points out the movies inability to muster an even remotely convincing argument against human cloning (Total Rehash: Cloning Arnold Schwarzenegger, November 2000; www.laweekly.com/film+tv/ film/ total-rehash/5268/).

Bibliography
Anonymous, Biology versus Physics, Nature 391, January 1998, p. 107. Benhabib, S., Situating the Self: Gender, Community and Postmodernism in Contemporary Ethics, Polity, Cambridge, 1992. Butler, C., Postmodernism: A Very Short Introduction, Oxford University Press, Oxford, 2002. Liebermann, J., The 6th Day, on Ruthless Reviews, Los Angeles (USA), 11 March 2006, retrieved May 2007, <http://www.ruthlessreviews.com/reviews.cfm/id/630/page/the__th_day. html>.

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______________________________________________________________ Malcolm, P., Total Rehash: Cloning Arnold Schwarzenegger, on LA Weekly: Film/TV, Los Angeles, 14 November 2000, retrieved May 2007, <http://www.laweekly.com/film+tv/film/total-rehash/5268/>. Pandya, G., ed., no place, World Wide Box Office Grosses: Archives, 1 May 2007, retrieved May 2007, <http://www.boxofficeguru.com/intlarch1.htm>. Parfit, D., Reasons and Persons, Clarendon, Oxford, 1984. Spottiswoode, R., dir., The 6th Day, Columbia Pictures, 2000. Thorsen, T., The 6th Day, on Reel.com, Hollywood Entertainment Corporation, Los Angeles (USA), no date 2007, retrieved May 2007, <http://www.reel.com/movie.asp?MID=131322&buy=open&Tab=revie ws&CID=13#tabs>.

Rudolph Glitz was until recently assistant professor of English and British Studies at Harlaxton College, the British Campus of the University of Evansville, and has just taken up a position as University Lecturer in English and Interdisciplinary Studies at the University of Amsterdam.

Notes on Contributors
Cara Bailey, RGN, MN, is a PhD candidate at the School of Nursing, The University of Nottingham. Petra Benske is a PhD research student in Philosophy at The National University of Ireland, Galway, Republic of Ireland. Judith Belle Brown PhD works at The Department of Family Medicine, Schulich School of Medicine and Dentistry, The University of Western Ontario, and Kings University College London, Ontario. Joanna Coast is Professor of Health Economics at the University of Birmingham Kate Coleman-Brueckheimer is a PhD student at the Centre for Behavioural and Social Sciences in Medicine, University College London. Caroline Edwards is a PhD Candidate in the Department of Critical Theory and Cultural Studies at The University of Nottingham. Her research interests include critical theory, Marxism/post-Marxism, contemporary British fiction and theories of Utopia. Helen Ennis is Associate Head, Undergraduate, and Senior Lecturer in Art Theory at The Australian National University School of Art. Joanne Garde-Hansen is senior lecturer in Media Theory in the Faculty of Media, Art and Communications, University of Gloucestershire, UK. She is a member of the Women, Ageing and Media (WAM) research group. Gavin Fairbairn is Running Stream Professor of Ethics and Language at Leeds Metropolitan University. He describes himself as a jobbing philosopher, whose concern with applied ethics arose from his career as a social worker and teacher in mental health and learning disability, long before he became a professional ethicist. Nikos Falagkas is a PhD candidate in Modern Greek studies at Kings College London and the title of his thesis is Intimate writing: toward a generic definition of the Greek private diary (c. 1890-1960). Ananya Ghoshal is an M. Phil student at the English and Foreign Languages University (EFLU) in Hyderabad, India.

368 Notes on Contributors ______________________________________________________________ Korina Giaxoglou is completing her thesis in the field of sociolinguistics with the support of Greek State Scholarships Foundation (SSF) under the supervision of Dr Georgakopoulou at Kings College London. Rudolph Glitz was until recently assistant professor of English and British Studies at Harlaxton College, the British Campus of the University of Evansville, and has just taken up a position as University Lecturer in English and Interdisciplinary Studies at the University of Amsterdam. T. Chandler Haliburton completed degrees in English and Economics at Saint Mary's University and has a Master of Arts in Modern and Contemporary Literature, Culture and Thought from the University of Sussex. Jan Holmberg holds a Ph.D. in Cinema Studies from Stockholm University and is Associate Professor of Culture and Media at the School of Arts and Communication, Malm University College, Sweden. Georgia Kalogeropoulou is a PhD candidate in philosophy at the Ecole des Hautes Etudes en Sciences Sociales (Paris) and the title of her thesis is The philosophical tradition of representation and Freuds theory of consciousness. Laura Lewis PhD is Assistant Professor at The School of Social Work, Kings University College, London, Ontario, Canada. Julieta C. Mallari is Director of the University of the Philippines Extension Program in Pampanga. She holds a Ph.D. in Comparative Literature. Lori Van Meter lives in California and is currently pursuing an Associate of Arts degree. Thanks are due to the Temple Crew for their help with this work, which is dedicated to John and Travis. Michael P. Parker is a Professor of English at the United States Naval Academy. With Professor Timothy Raylor of Carleton College, he is currently working on an edition of the poetry of Edmund Waller for Oxford University Press. Terri Toles Patkin is Professor of Communication at Eastern Connecticut State University in Willimantic, Connecticut, USA. She holds the B.A. from Arcadia University and the M.A. and Ph.D. from Cornell University.

369 Notes on Contributors ______________________________________________________________ Rossella Pisconti is PhD candidate, at the University of Bari (Italy), Faculty of Political Science, Department of History and Social Science. Liran Razinsky is a PhD candidate in the Psychology Department at The Hebrew University of Jerusalem. Christian Riegel is Associate Professor and Head of English at Campion College at the University of Regina. His recent books include, Writing Grief: Margaret Laurence and the Work of Mourning, Response to Death: the Literary Work of Mourning, and Twenty-First Century Canadian Writers in the Dictionary of Literary Biography. Ciara-Marie Shevlin has completed a BA in English & Drama and MA in Medieval Studies at Queens University Belfast. Lloyd Steffen is Professor of Religion Studies and University Chaplain at Lehigh University in Bethlehem, PA, 18015 USA. He is author of six books, most recently Holy War, Just War: Exploring the Moral Meaning of Religious Violence (Lanham, MD: Rowman & Littlefield, 2007). Eileen Sutton is a Research Associate at the Medical Research Council, Health Services Research Collaboration. Francisc Szekely is a postgraduate student in the English Department and the Comparative Literature Programme at the University of Auckland, New Zealand. Randall K. Van Schepen is Assistant Professor of Art and Architectural History in the School of Architecture, Art and Historic Preservation at Roger Williams University, Bristol, Rhode Island, USA. His research interests include formalist art criticism, modernist theory, Frankfurt School analysis, the intersection of religious and aesthetic theory, and collecting. Elisa Morera de la Vall is Public Relations Officer at the Australian Studies Centre of the University of Barcelona, where she was formerly Associate Teacher for a number of years. Mark Wehrly is completing his PhD in the Irish local newspaper industry from 1885 to 1927 at the National University of Ireland, Maynooth. He has also worked as a freelance journalist in Ireland since 2001.