Life Writing and Death: Dialogues of the Dead

Clare Brant, James Metcalf, Jane Wildgoose

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


One thing in life we can be certain of: death. But how we talk about death—its inevitability, its causes and its course, its effects, or its places—is susceptible to changing cultural conditions. Reviewing a history of death that begins in prehistory, the distinguished historian of death Thomas Laqueur doubts it is possible to comprehend (in both senses) the topic: ‘Our awareness of death and the dead stands at the edge of culture. As such they may not have a history in the usual sense but only more and more iterations, endless and infinitely varied, that we shape into n engagement with the past and the present’.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1–18
Number of pages19
JournalEuropean Journal of Life Writing
Publication statusPublished - 6 Jul 2020


  • Life writing
  • Death


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