Posts Tagged: death
At the New York Times, Dana Stevens and Benjamin Moser debate whether or not we romanticize writers who die young. While Moser argues that we should not remember a writer for his death, Stevens admits that she is attracted to the “mythic tale” of writers who die prematurely....more
Colin Dickey writes for Hazlitt about the practice of covering mirrors after a death:
There seems to be no universal reason behind the custom. Reginald Fleming Johnston, documenting this practice in China in 1910, claimed that the reason mirrors are covered is because “if the dead man happens to notice a reflection of himself in the glass he will be much horrified to find that he has become a ghost, and much disappointed with his own appearance as such.” Johnston also notes that for some, there is a belief that “every mirror has a mysterious faculty of invisibly retaining and storing up everything that is reflected on its surface, and that if anything so ill-omened as a corpse or a ghost were to pass before it, the mirror would thenceforth become a permanent radiator of bad luck.”
How we ended up in those backwoods hills was Iris said we needed to ‘get a little air,’ and Dolan added, ‘country air!’ and that was that. Iris was my lover, and Dolan was her roommate I’d never liked. All of us were alive, at that point.
Placed after a mention of death or dying, Kurt Vonnegut’s “So it goes” refrain throughout Slaughterhouse Five utilizes repetition to explore the inevitability of death.
Over at the Ploughshares blog, E.V. De Cleyre considers how Kurt Vonnegut uses repetition in relation to death in his writing....more
Few things are more frightening for an academic and a scholar than losing the ability to think. Their livelihoods, and sense of self, are dependent on the cognitive ability to generate new ideas and write about them. And so for Sandy Bem, a psychology professor, the diagnosis of Alzheimer’s threatened a devastating blow....more