Tag Archives: bereavement

Death and Perception

“I can remember how when I was young I believed death to be a phenomenon of the body; now I know it to be merely a function of the mind–and that of the minds of the ones who the suffer the bereavement.”

Faulkner, William. As I Lay Dying: The Corrected Text. First Vintage International Edition. New York: Vintage Books, 1990. Print.

Although the previous statement was made by a Doctor attending and treating a dying mother, does his words hold truth, thus, value? Claiming that death is simply a function of the mind may not be necessarily truth, due to the fact that causes of death such as respiratory failure, or failure of a essential organ has nothing to do with the mind itself, but a culmination of several physical issues that lead to the ultimate consequence. However, I do agree with the second claim of the doctor’s statement; loved ones of the deceased are the ones that may suffer the most mentally after the passing. And it is them that suffer the grievance of the process of letting the loved one go and attainment of peace and closure.

Death is a community experience?

“I can remember when I was young I believed death to be a phenomenon of the body; now I know it to be merely a function of the mind — and that of the mind of the ones who suffer the bereavement.” (44)

Faulkner, William. As I Lay Dying: The Corrected Text. First Vintage International Edition. New York: Vintage Books, 1990. Print.

It seems to me that Peabody is saying that death is an experience of the people left behind, more so than the people who have actually died. If I’m interpreting this correctly, this would make sense as this communal experience appears to be a running theme of the novel.