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Life's end : technocratic dying in an age of spiritual yearning
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0895032023, Hardcover)The absence of culturally established guidelines and moral codes to preside over dying leaves patients and loved ones confused and anxious. They frequently feel that they are inadequate participants in their own experience, often not knowing how to act or what to say. Physicians typically ignore the personal chaos experienced by patients and their families. They instead focus on technical and physical concerns. This process whereby the personal issues of dying are redefined into technical matters is not only consistent with their training and social organization of work, it serves to reshape the human experience of dying into disease focus and treatment options. This enables healthcare professionals to work each day in an environment where dying and death abound without having to deal with the emotions and social issues of dying and death. Patients and families experience deep personal and social implications of dying, whereas physicians adopt a preeminently technical approach in their patterns of care.
The theme of controlling the experience of dying through technological manipulation and through the social isolation of individuals is central to this book. This new work explores how the American value of individualism and the widespread commitment to technology have given rise to particular forms of governing the process of dying that are unique to the professional dominance of death in the hospital setting. It focuses on how the values of technology in the broader society are applied in the framework of medicalized care of dying patients, and discusses the consequences this has for their lives. Additionally, this book analyzes how the value of individualism, so ubiquitous in the broader society, influences the treatment of dying patients and their definition of the meanings of their own dying. It shows how the dominant values of the American cultural system are institutionalized in the medical treatment of dying patients.
The explicit purpose of this book is to analyze dying and death in the cosmopolitan, modern setting. There is, however, an additional theme that is implicit in the analysis and observations. The portrait of dying, which is provided in the pages of the book, also tells us a great deal about life. It demonstrates that the foundation for the medicalization of death that piercingly shapes the life experience of dying persons and loved ones is a product of the ways of life in the broader culture.
The most important message of the dying patients whose lives and sufferings so enrich this book, was not about death. It was about life. This book, with the landscape of modern life and death which it portrays, is devoted to understanding and honoring the lives and sufferings of all dying persons--both present and future.
Intended Audience: Death education professionals, grief counselors, death educators, bereavement therapists, grief ministry, bereavement groups; Professionals in: Psychology, Sociology, Medical Nursing, Social Work, Counselors, Hospice, Clergy
(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:23:34 -0400)
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