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The Grim Reader [Kindle Edition]

Maura Spiegel , Richard Tristman
4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)

Print List Price: $23.00
Kindle Price: $14.39
You Save: $8.61 (37%)
Sold by: Random House LLC

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Book Description

   The fear of death, the pain of bereavement, the art of consolation, and the custom of mourning—these are experiences with which all mortals must reckon.  In The Grim Reader, editors Maura Spiegel and Richard Tristman have gathered the best classic and contemporary writing on mortality—from Montaigne to Monty Python—to produce an essential resource for the heart and mind. These idiosyncratic and always enlightening pieces are grouped into thematic parts in which a diversity of perspective on death are revealed.  From death in its most personal sphere to the major issues of death in the public realm, The Grim Reader offers a fresh and unmediated encounter with mortality and the many dimensions of grief and recovery.

   A compelling collection of poems, fiction, letters, historical documents, essays, and narrations from a wide variety of writers, including:

Vladimir Nabokov- John Ashbery- Samuel Beckett
Adam Smith- Simone de Beauvoir- Grace Paley
Giovanni Boccaccio- Bertolt Brecht- Roland Barthes
James Baldwin- Primo Levi- Anne Sexton
Luis Buñuel- Paul Monette- Jessica Mitford- Stanley Elkin
 




From the Trade Paperback edition.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

From the best-selling How We Die by Sherwin Nuland to our fascination with serial murders, from the AIDS epidemic to the concerns of our aging population, America continues to express a widespread curiosity about death and dying. In The Grim Reader, editors Maura Spiegel and Richard Tristman have gathered the best of the new writings on the subject of death along with classic statements on mortality to produce an essential resource for the heart and mind.

Historians tell us that death was once a public experience, circumscribed by religious ceremony, that gradually disappeared as our medical ability to forestall it grew more confident. This clinical capacity to mediate death-to postpone it with machines, to relieve its pain and suffering-has made it once more a public subject. Though death remains inevitable, denial, taboo, and shame have been banished in favor of reflection, candor, mutual aid, and acceptance. In their personal reckonings with death, these writers and thinkers wrestle with the indomitable fact, discover emotional insights and methods of coping unknown to them before the crisis of terminal illness. And in poems, eulogies, private expressions of love and loss, letters of condolences, we find inspiration and solace.

From the reflections of Grace Paley on the death of her mother to Jessica Mitford's sociology of American funeral customs, from Freud's musing on the transience of life to Milan Kundera's story of laughter at a funeral, The Grim Reader offers a fresh and unmediated encounter with mortality and its many dimensions."

From the Inside Flap

From the best-selling How We Die by Sherwin Nuland to our fascination with serial murders, from the AIDS epidemic to the concerns of our aging population, America continues to express a widespread curiosity about death and dying. In The Grim Reader, editors Maura Spiegel and Richard Tristman have gathered the best of the new writings on the subject of death along with classic statements on mortality to produce an essential resource for the heart and mind.

Historians tell us that death was once a public experience, circumscribed by religious ceremony, that gradually disappeared as our medical ability to forestall it grew more confident. This clinical capacity to mediate death-to postpone it with machines, to relieve its pain and suffering-has made it once more a public subject. Though death remains inevitable, denial, taboo, and shame have been banished in favor of reflection, candor, mutual aid, and acceptance. In their personal reckonings with death, these writers and thinkers wrestle with the indomitable fact, discover emotional insights and methods of coping unknown to them before the crisis of terminal illness. And in poems, eulogies, private expressions of love and loss, letters of condolences, we find inspiration and solace.

From the reflections of Grace Paley on the death of her mother to Jessica Mitford's sociology of American funeral customs, from Freud's musing on the transience of life to Milan Kundera's story of laughter at a funeral, The Grim Reader offers a fresh and unmediated encounter with mortality and its many dimensions."

Product Details

  • File Size: 567 KB
  • Print Length: 448 pages
  • Publisher: Anchor; 1 edition (June 16, 2010)
  • Sold by: Random House LLC
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B003F3PLOO
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #874,028 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

4.3 out of 5 stars
(3)
4.3 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Death In The Family? March 9, 2000
Format:Paperback
I bought this book out of a dark, morbid, meloncholic, curiousity. But that's just the way I am. Other people should buy this book if they are dealing with someone elses death or their own impending. It's, for the most part, a good read. Near the end it trails off, but the first few sections are amazing. The last chapter is "Hamlet: The Graveyard" so it ends well. There's Monty Python, George Orwell, Samual Clemons, Robert Luis Stephanson, John Keats, and Freud. Also about a hundred others. The Fear of Death and the fear of living after death (Someone elses) Are of the many topics addressed. I recommend it for anyone. This book of Death just might teach you how to live.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Great compilation January 7, 2013
By SB
Format:Paperback
I really enjoyed this book. There are wonderful excepts from many different authors and it gives a thoughtful and profound look into death and dying from some of the world's best writers. I would highly recommend this book to anyone who works in hospice, or wants a stronger grasp of the human condition. Truly beautiful and well thought out.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A good read in re death, for the dying or the ghoulish February 13, 2001
Format:Paperback
Here you have it: The definitive literary "Many Faces of Death"-From an essay on hospice care, to a Monty Python piece on a dead parrot to a Nabokov piece on time as a prison. Anyone having to deal with death, even if only in daily contemplation (which is what I imagine most readers of the book are) and not immediately up against the dire consequences they know must eventually befall them to those who are gazing over the precipice or have a loved one who is, this book has something for everyone. Passing strange, isn't it, that reading about one's mortality tends to make one more resigned to it?-I have to admit to having a favorite here: Robert Louis Stevenson's "Aes Triplex," perhaps my favorite essay anywhere, although it's only printed in part here. It does contain one of my favorite quotes on the subject of death and mortality, "a good meal and a bottle of wine is an answer to most standard works upon the question."-It's a positive thought on not trying too hard to resolve the unresolvable.-But there are essays here for those who want to do that too.-So, here's a book for the griefstricken and the ghoul, or for those that may be both. Enjoy.
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