• Summary
  • Contents
  • Subject index

Dying is a social as well as physiological phenomenon. Each society characterizes and, consequently, treats death and dying in its own individual ways—ways that differ markedly. These particular patterns of death and dying engender modal cultural responses, and such institutionalized behavior has familiar, economical, educational, religious, and political implications. The Handbook of Death and Dying takes stock of the vast literature in the field.

Global Mortality Rates: Variations and their Consequences for the Experience of Dying
Global mortality rates: Variations and their consequences for the experience of dying

The statistical distribution of mortality varies considerably, both historically and across regions of the world. Most obviously, life expectancy has risen over time, yet people in some countries can expect to have much longer lives than people in others. Within countries there are marked differences in the age distribution of death for different groups; for example, life expectancy is influenced by gender and by socioeconomic differences. Additionally, there is variability among regions of the world in different causes of death, and there are great differences among countries in the availability of formal health care. Given the combination of these factors with cultural ...

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