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From Here to Eternity: Traveling the World to Find the Good Death

The best-selling author of Smoke Gets in Your Eyes expands our sense of what it means to treat the dead with dignity.Fascinated by our pervasive terror of dead bodies, mortician Caitlin Doughty set out to discover how other cultures care for their dead. In rural Indonesia, she observes a man clean and dress his grandfathers mummified body. Grandpas mummy has lived in the family home for two years, where the family has maintained a warm and respectful relationship. She meets Bolivian natitas (cigarette-smoking, wish-granting human skulls), and introduces us to a Japanese kotsuage, in which relatives use chopsticks to pluck their loved-ones bones from cremation ashes. With curiosity and morbid humor, Doughty encounters vividly decomposed bodies and participates in compelling, powerful death practices almost entirely unknown in America. Featuring Gorey-esque illustrations by artist Landis Blair, From Here to Eternity introduces death-care innovators researching green burial and body composting, explores new spaces for mourningincluding a glowing-Buddha columbarium in Japan and Americas only open-air pyreand reveals unexpected new possibilities for our own death rituals....

Title : From Here to Eternity: Traveling the World to Find the Good Death
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ISBN : 9780393249897
Format Type : Hardcover
Number of Pages : 248 pages
Url Type : Home » From » From Here to Eternity: Traveling the World to Find the Good Death

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From Here to Eternity: Traveling the World to Find the Good Death Reviews

  • Melora

    Some interesting stuff here, and Doughty is a convivial guide through the world of funeral practices. A forward thinking sort of mortician, Caitlin Doughty decides to see how death rituals are practiced in various cultures, both in the U.S. and around the world. With chapters on open-air pyre cremation (Crestone, Colorado); the Ma'Nene ritual, in which dead relatives are taken out for yearly family reunions (the Toraja people, in South Sulawesi, Indonesia); Dias de los Muertos (Mexico); a human ...more

  • Erin

    I was actually surprised I would Love this book as much has I did! From the first page I was engrossed! It had me like Do people really do these things with their deceased loved ones? It gave me a more cultural perspective on death and how far people will go to persevere that life. I finished this pretty quickly mainly bc I couldn't put it down. When i wasn't reading it I was thinking about it. Haha. I highly recommend this book!!

  • Victoria ♡

    This book was so interesting! It really got me thinking tbh. Recommend Caitlin's books to everyone they're so good!!

  • Karyl

    This is an absolute must-read. Here in America, we are so separated from death. It is something to be feared, kept away from, hidden behind expensive caskets and embalming and services in a "multisensory experience room" (p. 234). Our dead are basically ripped from us, held in morgues and funeral homes, with little transition from the state of living to being buried in a cemetery or being resigned to the flames during cremation.

    Doughty's point during this book isn't a tour of the world's strang

  • Rebecca Renner

    Few life events affect us more than the death of a loved one. At times, it can seem that grief is monolithic, but not every culture deals with death and grief in the same way. The death culture of the US endeavors to paint a pleasing facade over what we consider macabre. Embalmers camouflage the reality of the grave with chemicals and adornments. Cemeteries wall off the dead behind stone, concrete, and coffin wood. In her nonfiction book From Here to Eternity: Traveling the World to Find the G ...more

  • Emily

    Caitlin Doughty has done it again: dragged us death-phobic Westerners into the light of what grieving and death could (and maybe should) look like. In From Here to Eternity, Caitlin travels the globe and shares her first-hand experiences of getting up close and personal with death rituals from around the world.

    I found each section absolutely captivating, and although the Tana Toraja bit did give me a nightmare last night (seriously), I'm going to blame that on the arms-length (or maybe football

  • Petra X

    This is a brief tour of some of the world's strangest burial practices. In the epilogue, thanking people, Caitlin says, "Finally Landis Blair, who was an all-right boyfriend but is now a killer collaborator". And that feels like the key to this all-right, 3.5 star (at best) book.

    It feels like flushed with the deserved success of first book, Smoke Gets in Your Eyes: And Other Lessons from the Crematory, the author had decided to have a dual career as of funeral home proprietor and writer and had

  • britt_brooke

    This didn’t blow me away like her first book, but it was still a pretty fascinating read. The cool illustrations added a lot, and were, I would imagine, more pleasant than actual photos would have been. The writing was a little flat and research paper-ish, though. I really wanted more of Doughty’s wacky personality.