Saturday, June 4, 2011

Review: Catherine Tuey on The Matter of Death

Jenny Hockey, Carol Komaromy and Kate Woodthorpe, eds., The Matter of Death: Space, Place and Materiality. New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2010, 272 pp. $US 85.00 hardcover (978-0-230-22416-2).

The Matter of Death: Space, Place and Materiality is an apt title to this edited collection on death, dying and disposal. The editors play on the concept of “matter” in order to present multiple perspectives on the meaning, management, and especially the materiality of death. Their central argument is that the absence, or “hidden” nature of death materializes its presence and so challenges the idea that the sequestration of death contributes to peoples’ fear of it and its taboo status. This collection is a welcome addition to the death studies literature because it provides novel ways to think about death, dying and disposal.  Read more