Lifting the Taboo: Women, Death and Dying
Sally Cline

Synopsis

Lifting The Taboo is the first major study of the sexual politics of death in the West. As such, it splits open the silence which both surrounds mortality and shrouds women's relationship to it. Illuminated by a profound yet humorous vision, Lifting The Taboo explores the specific relationship women of many colors, cultures, ages, and sexual orientations have to their own deaths, their attitudes towards loss, and their disposition to their role as primary care-givers to the dying. Lifting The Taboo weighs the implications of breast cancer and examines in detail Alzheimer's Disease which (contrary to popular myth) can in several significant ways be perceived as a woman's disease. Investigating mothers' response to children's deaths, Cline establishes that women's relationships to death are intricately connected to the experience of giving birth. They are, she argues, therefore psychologically and emotionally different from those of men. Cline goes on to examine women's roles and responses to AIDS and suicide, women's sexual relationships while dying, the ways widows are considered as leftover lives, and women's radical work in hospices and death therapy, as well as their roles as female funeral directors. Lifting The Taboo is a ground-breaking, benchmark publication of impressive scope and scholarship.



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