Talking about death isn’t easy, but mortician Caitlin Doughty is trying to reform how we think about the deaths of loved ones — and prepare for our own.

“My philosophy is honesty,” Doughty tells Fresh Air‘s Terry Gross. “I think that we’ve been so hidden from death in this culture for such a long time that it’s very refreshing and liberating to talk about death in an open, honest manner.”

Doughty is the founder of The Order of the Good Death, a group of funeral industry professionals, academics and artists who focus on the rituals families perform with their dead and how the industry disposes of dead bodies. She is also starting her own funeral service in Los Angeles, called Undertaking L.A., that will help families with planning after they lose a family member.

Doughty’s new memoir, Smoke Gets in Your Eyes and Other Lessons from the Crematory, serves as, among other things, a way for her to cope with working with dead bodies.

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Source: – Texas Public Radio

Image:Mara Zehler Courtesy of W.W. Norton & Co. Inc.


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