Download The Good Death: An Exploration of Dying in America by Ann Neumann PDF

By Ann Neumann

Following the dying of her father, journalist and hospice volunteer Ann Neumann units out to envision what it skill to die good within the United States.

When Ann Neumann's father used to be clinically determined with non-Hodgkin's lymphoma, she left her task and moved again to her place of origin of Lancaster, Pennsylvania. She grew to become his full-time caregiver--cooking, cleansing, and administering medicines. while her father died, she was once undone via the event, via grief and the visceral caliber of death. Neumann struggled to place her lifestyles again so as and located herself haunted by way of a question: was once her father's loss of life a very good death?

The manner we discuss loss of life and how we really die are very various things, she found, and plenty of people are protected against what loss of life truly appears like. to achieve a greater figuring out, Neumann turned a hospice volunteer and got down to realize what an exceptional demise is at the present time. She attended meetings, educational lectures, and grief classes in church basements. She went to Montana to speak with the lawyer who effectively argued for the legalization of reduction in loss of life, and to Scranton, Pennsylvania, to hear "pro-life" teams who think the elimination of feeding tubes from a few sufferers is tantamount to homicide. specially, she listened to the tales of these who have been as regards to death.

What Neumann stumbled on is that loss of life in modern the US is far extra advanced than we predict. clinical applied sciences and elevated lifestyles expectations have replaced the very definition of scientific demise. And even supposing dying is our universal destiny, it's also a divisive factor that all of us event another way. What constitutes a great dying is exclusive to every folks, counting on our age, race, financial prestige, tradition, and ideology. What's extra, differing suggestions of selection, autonomy, and consent make dying a contested panorama, ruled by means of social, clinical, criminal, and spiritual systems.

In those pages, Neumann brings us intimate snap shots of the nurses, sufferers, bishops, bioethicists, and activists who're shaping the way in which we die. The reliable Death provides a fearless exam of the way we procedure loss of life, and the way these folks as regards to demise family stay in death's wake.

From the Hardcover edition.

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Sample text

The support for such laws has risen 5 percent since 1990. • 70 percent say there are circumstances in which a patient should be allowed to die. Among those who believe there are specific circumstances that warrant a patient’s choice to die, individual support differs according to those circumstances. • 60 percent feel that that those who suffer great pain with no hope of improvement should be allowed to die. • • 53 percent limit circumstances to those who have an incurable disease. Only 33 percent feel that those who are ready to die because living ‘is a burden’ should be allowed to do so.

Without Clear Evidence of Intent, Life Support . . ) Once 18, Phillip was legally considered emancipated, and his parents would no longer be his guardians. 54 In a far more bizarre twist, questions over whether Phillip was alive led to a criminal conundrum. A psychiatric patient from another ward made his or her way into Phillip’s room and removed his feeding tube and respirator. The damage done to the body during the removal contributed to Phillip’s eventual death two weeks later. 55 Legal standards also provide clear rules and protections for hospitals and those who work in them.

Theologians also believe that life is sacred as a gift given by a Supreme Being, and therefore it is a violation of religious law to harm this gift of life. Since life is sacred and valuable, the government has a duty to protect it, as part of government’s job in creating order. There is also no way to distinguish which lives are worth living and which are not, and it is unethical to try to do so. Therefore, the government must protect all lives to the best of its ability. 33 ­ nd-­of-­life­­ E Decisions­Are­­ Personal­Matters T hroughout American history, citizens have fought for freedom.

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