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Mortal Remains: Death in Early America Hardcover – November 12, 2002


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 264 pages
  • Publisher: University of Pennsylvania Press (November 12, 2002)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0812236785
  • ISBN-13: 978-0812236781
  • Product Dimensions: 9.1 x 7.1 x 1.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #5,681,291 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

"An important book that introduces new methods of analyzing death in early American history. . . . The book illustrates the profound ways that experiences with death and the imagery associated with death influenced not only religion but also other issues—national politics, gender politics, and race relations—that are easy to relate to our contemporary concerns. Isenberg's and Burnstein's work makes a significant contribution to the discussion of death and dying in American history and its value for interdisciplinary study."—Journal of the American Academy of Religion



"These 12 short, highly focused essays analyze how experiences with death and the imagery associated with it influenced US culture before 1860. . . . Recommended."—Choice



"Mortal Remains has set an impressive standard for scholarship on death in early America."—Journal of American History



"Mortal Remains, a collection of twelve essays on death in English-speaking America from the late 1600s to the middle decades of the 1800s, offers a sampling of current cultural historical scholarship and concerns."—Pennsylvania Magazine of History and Biography

About the Author

Nancy Isenberg and Andrew Burstein are coholders of the Mary Frances Barnard Chair in Nineteenth-Century American History at the University of Tulsa. Isenberg is the author of Sex and Citizenship in Antebellum America, winner of the 1999 SHEAR book prize. Burstein is the author of several books, including America's Jubilee.

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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Justin Holcomb on August 28, 2010
Format: Hardcover
I taught "Death and Dying" at the University of Virginia for 7 years and used this book every time.

This is an important book that introduces new methods of analyzing death in early American history. Those interested in early America, from 1620-1860, will find much of value, as will those interested in death and dying. This book argues that in an attempt to make sense of their suffering and loss while imagining a future of cultural permanence and religious vitality, early Americans crafted metaphors of death in particular ways that have shaped the national mythology. Early Americans reveal that mortality was inseparable from national self-definition and that experiences with corpses, death, and dying had an early effect on the American collective consciousness.

The goal of Mortal Remains is to emphasize America's beginnings in terms that are different from the way the story is generally told. To accomplish this, the essays cover a variety of subjects relating to individual and community experiences with death during the formative period in America's history. To describe the profound ways in which experiences with death and images associated with death became enmeshed in American society, politics, and culture, the book incorporates interdisciplinary approaches toward studying death and offers a survey of the latest methodologies used by social, cultural, and art historians, as well as literary and material culture scholars.

The book is a collection of conference essays arranged in four parts covering collective loss, politics, corpses, and the after life. Part 1 starts with chapter 1, "The Christian Origins of the Vanishing Indian," which investigates America's preoccupation with the image of the vanishing Indian. Laura M.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Very interesting information in these scholarly articles. I bought this book for research purposes and was very pleased with the content.
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