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On Death and Dying Paperback – 29 Mar 1973


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Product details

  • Paperback: 272 pages
  • Publisher: Routledge; New edition edition (29 Mar 1973)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0415040159
  • ISBN-13: 978-0415040150
  • Product Dimensions: 2.5 x 14 x 21.6 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (41 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 329,643 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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"Life"A profound lesson for the living. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Customer Reviews

4.3 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

42 of 43 people found the following review helpful By Kurt Messick HALL OF FAME on 22 Dec 2005
Format: Hardcover
Elisabeth Kübler-Ross's book, 'On Death and Dying', is one of the classic works in the field, still used to educate and inform medical, counseling, and pastoral professionals since its original publication in the 1960s. Kübler-Ross did extensive research in the field by actually talking to those in the process of dying, something that had hitherto been considered taboo and an unthinkable, uncaring thing to do. Kübler-Ross asked for volunteers, and never pressured people to do or say anything they didn't want to. One of her unexpected discoveries was that the medical professionals were more reluctant to participate than were the patients, who quite often felt gratitude and relief at being able to be heard.
Kübler-Ross also spoke to families, and followed people through their ailments, sometimes to recovery, but most often to their death. She let the people guide her in her research: 'We do not always state explicitly [to the patient] that the patient is actually terminally ill. We attempt to elicit the patients' needs first, try to become aware of their strengths and weaknesses, and look for overt or hidden communications to determine how much a patient wants to face reality at a given moment.'
This caring approach was often an aggravation for Kübler-Ross and her staff, because they would know what the patient had been told but was not yet ready to face. Kübler-Ross recounts stories of attempts to deal with death in different ways; denial, anger, bargaining, depression, acceptance -- in fact, the various stages of grief were first recognised in Kübler-Ross's research.
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17 of 17 people found the following review helpful By R.A.Jones on 6 Jan 2010
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book is superb. The updated version, written when the author herself was dying is an excellent help when facing the death of a friend. Understanding the stages of acceptance was important to all of us, and also to know that the emotions we were going through were normal - and that meant we could talk about them - not bad for a family where emotional communication is not our strong point.

I would strongly recommend this for anyone, but particularly for families where the children are dealing with the death of a parent. If they are old enough to get through the book (maybe 16+) then I hope it would be a help. It was for us.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By genie on 7 Sep 2011
Format: Paperback
I bought this book in an attempt to try to make sense of how I should feel, regarding the iminent death of our son, David, he has recently been diagnosed with an inoperasble benign brain tumour, it had started to bleed into his brain, he had got very weak within weeks. He is now in a residential nursing home. He is 36 years of age. I felt as if I was already grieving for him, although he is still with us. The matron of the home suggested it to me. I found all of the feelings I had had, and have, are quite normal, that I was not going mad! It covers diagnosis through to death. I have already found this book helpful and I'm sure in years to come when I look at it from time to time, it will continue to be so.
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100 of 107 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on 21 April 1999
Format: Paperback
Some time ago at the age of 37 I was told that I was terminally ill and could expect to live only a few months. So far I have outlived all expectations and remain healthy but I am aware that this may be a temporary reprieve so when I came across this book I read it in the hope that it might throw some light on the taboo subject of the process of dying - in terms of the psychological effects. If you are reading this it is likely that you or a loved one are in a similar position, or that you are a health-care professional involved in the care of terminally-ill patients.
I gather that 'On Death and Dying' (now about 30 years old) is something of a medical classic, and from my experience it seems that it's main finding - the need for honesty and compassion in dealing with dying patients - has been thoroughly incorporated into the practices of the National Health Service (Or was I just lucky?). The process of denial and anger leading to depression and eventual acceptance is now familiar enough to seem unsurprising. My main problem with this book is that it consists largely of interviews with patients. They come from a both sexes and a range of ages and backgrounds and display various attitudes towards their illness. However, every one of them, without exception, sooner or later mentions their religious faith as a factor in their experience. This is fair enough - anyone who has a religious faith is bound to use it to rationalise their impending death - but America in the 60s is a long way from the far more secular society of Britain in the 90s and it does mean that the book really seems to have nothing to say to atheists like myself.
Speaking as an atheist, I found my lack of faith a great comfort in facing the possibility of imminent death.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By geek in heels on 23 Jun 2010
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I recently trained to become a bereavement support volunteer with the charity Cruse, and I read this book during my training. I found it really good read and deepened my understanding about attitudes towards death, and all the complications around it.

Highly recommended to anyone doing bereavement work.
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