Death Denial


I think this needs to be kept living and not just hidden in my archives. I will be posting more from my archives on Becker.

Roger Albert - Always a Sociologist

If there’s a constant in human history, it’s death denial.  Ernest Becker, in the last book he published just before his death in 1974, The Denial of Death, explores and explains the pervasiveness of death denial in all cultures all over the globe.  I cannot recommend this book highly enough for anyone interested in trying to come to grips with their own death, but also with the death of cultures, ways of life and all cultural artifacts.  According to Becker, individual death is a given, at least in the physical sense, but as human beings, we can’t accept that inevitability, so we devise sometimes very elaborate systems of death denial.  For Becker, cultures themselves are immortality projects designed to deny death.  The Christian idea of the soul is a great immortality project.  The body dies, the soul lives on forever.  Take that, death!  Life 1, Death 0.  So, Christians…

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