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Understanding Dying, Death, and Bereavement 8th Edition

Michael R. Leming | George E. Dickinson

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  • ISBN-10: 1305559258
  • ISBN-13: 9781305559257
  • STARTING AT $27.99

  • STARTING AT $33.49

  • ISBN-10: 1305094492
  • ISBN-13: 9781305094499
  • Bookstore Wholesale Price $157.50
  • RETAIL $209.95


Using a social-psychological approach, the new edition of this book remains solidly grounded in theory and research, while also providing useful information to help individuals examine their own feelings about-and cope with-death and grieving. The well-known authors and researchers integrate stimulating personal accounts throughout the text, and apply concepts to specific examples that deal with cross cultural perspectives and the practical matters of death and dying.

Michael R. Leming, St. Olaf College

Michael R. Leming is professor emeritus of sociology and anthropology at St. Olaf College in Minnesota and co-director of the college’s Spring Semester in Thailand program. He holds degrees from Westmont College (B.A.), Marquette University (M.A.), and the University of Utah (Ph.D.). He has completed additional graduate study at the University of California, Santa Barbara. Dr. Leming was the founder and former director of the St. Olaf College Social Research Center, a former member of the board of directors of the Minnesota Coalition of Terminal Care and the Northfield AIDS Response, and has served as a hospice educator, volunteer, and grief counselor. He is the author of numerous articles on social thanatology and family issues and has taught courses on death and dying for over 35 years.

George E. Dickinson, College of Charleston

George E. Dickinson is professor of sociology at the College of Charleston in South Carolina. He holds degrees from Baylor University (B.A. in biology and M.A. in sociology) and Louisiana State University (Ph.D. in sociology). He has completed postdoctoral studies in gerontology at Pennsylvania State University, in thanatology at the University of Kentucky School of Medicine, and in medical sociology at the University of Connecticut. He was Visiting Research Fellow in palliative medicine at the University of Sheffield’s School of Medicine in England in 1999, the International Observatory on End of Life Care in the Institute for Health Research at Lancaster University in England in 2006, and the University of Bristol School of Veterinary Science’s Department of Animal Behavior and Welfare in England in 2013. He has published over 90 articles in numerous professional journals.
  • Chapter summaries, discussion questions, a glossary, and suggested readings encourage individual study and serve as review aids to outline the important points of each chapter.
  • Many topics in the four categories of boxed inserts are new. Practical Matters boxes basically offer useful advice; Listening to the Voices boxes present excerpted material from people writing about their own experiences with dying and death; Words of Wisdom boxes contain insights from excerpted poems, literature, and other sources; and Death Across Cultures boxes examine cross-cultural examples of death practices and beliefs.
  • The authors seek to sensitize students to the subject of dying, death and bereavement; aid students in adjusting to the death of a significant other; help individuals examine their own feelings and reactions to death and grieving; and make readers aware of different cultural groups’ death and bereavement customs.
  • The authors’ more than 80 years of combined experience teaching and researching the topic result in practical advice, personal anecdotes, prose, and cross-cultural examples of death practices and beliefs presented to readers.
  • The text draws from the disciplines of cultural anthropology, psychology, philosophy, religion, history, health science, family studies, social work, gerontology, and sociology.

Understanding Dying, Death, and Bereavement


1. Studying Dying, Death, and Bereavement.
2. The American Experience of Death.
3. Growing Up with Death/Growing Old with Death.
4. Perspectives on Death and Life after Death.
5. The Dying Process.
6. Living with Dying.
7. Dying in the American Health Care System.
8. Biomedical Issues and Euthanasia.
9. Suicide and Other Sudden, Unnatural Traumatic Deaths.
10. Diversity in Death Rituals.
11. The Business of Dying.
12. The Legal Aspects of Dying.
13. Coping With Loss.
14. Grieving Throughout the Life Cycle.

Cengage provides a range of supplements that are updated in coordination with the main title selection. For more information about these supplements, contact your Learning Consultant.


Online Instructor's Manual

ISBN: 9781305388574
This detailed manual provides sample syllabi, course guidelines, in-class exercises, and chapter objectives to assist instructors in teaching the course.

Online Test Bank

ISBN: 9781305388673
The Test Bank includes multiple-choice, true/false, short-answer, and essay questions-most with answers and page references for each chapter of the text.