Tonight at Observatory! Hope very much to see you there.
From the Magnificent to the Macabre: Send-Offs for the Dead
Illustrated talk and book signing with Sarah Murray, author of Making an Exit
Date: Tonight, Thursday, October 20th
Time: 8:00 PM
Admission: $5 Presented by Morbid Anatomy
*** Thematic DJed after-party will follow the lecture; Books will be also available for sale and signing
Sending off the dead is something mankind does spectacularly well. There’s perhaps no human condition to which more attention has been devoted—faced with death, we create elaborate ceremonies and build great architectural edifices. We bury our loved ones in the ground or burn them in fire. We leave corpses as carrion for the birds, hang them in trees, or stow them in caves. We arrange for riderless horses to accompany the cortege to the cemetery or toss the remains of our fellows into sacred rivers amid the sound of bells and the swirl of incense.
In researching her latest book, Making an Exit (St Martin’s Press), Sarah Murray traveled the world in search of the best send offs. She will describe her encounters with everything from a spectacular Balinese royal cremation and a chandelier in the Czech Republic made entirely from human bones to the American death care industry’s biggest road show and a ghoulish Sicilian crypt where mummified corpses line the walls. Join Sarah for an engaging and highly personal discussion in which she will also present some of the unusual objects and artifacts she collected on her travels (she might even tell you about the plans for her own eventual send off).
Sarah Murray’s new book is Making an Exit: From the Magnificent to the Macabre—How We Dignify the Dead (St Martin’s Press, October 2011). She is also author of Moveable Feasts: From Ancient Rome to the 21st Century, the Incredible Journeys of the Food We Eat (St Martin’s Press 2007, Picador 2008). A longtime Financial Times contributor and freelance writer, she lives in New York City.
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