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Articles on Death

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The death of Savita Halappanavar in an Irish hospital in 2012 after she was denied an abortion during a miscarriage caused outrage across Ireland. AP Photo/Shawn Pogatchnik

Abortion: the story of suffering and death behind Ireland’s ban and subsequent legalization

In 1983, a constitutional referendum outlawed abortion in Ireland. In 2018, another referendum repealed the ban and legalized abortion during the first trimester of pregnancy. What happened?
An unmarked grave with a headstone that resembles a computer screen, nicknamed ‘iGrave’, is seen in north-west London. Leon Neal/AFP

‘Deadbots’ can speak for you after your death. Is that ethical?

The recent case of a man making a simulation of his deceased fiancée raises important questions: while AI makes it possible to create “deadbots”, is it ethically desirable or reprehensible to do so?
A man identified only as Viktor shows his neighbor’s grave in Bucha, Ukraine. It was too dangerous to go to the cemetery. Jana Cavojska/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images

How burying the dead keeps the living human

Ukrainian families’ anguish at not being able to bury their loved ones underscores a deep human need, an anthropologist writes.
Some people are drawn to the idea of a natural burial to bring more of the dying ritual into their homes. LPETTET/E+ via Getty Images

What’s a natural burial? A Christian theologian explains

Green burial is not a new concept, but it is gaining interest among consumers, and some religious groups are leading the way. A theologian explains what’s involved and who natural burials appeal to.
Our healthcare system needs to respond in a more just, inclusive, caring and timely way to allow in-person final goodbyes. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Graham Hughes

People should be allowed to visit, say goodbye to those who are dying during COVID-19

Our health-care system needs to respond in a more just, inclusive, caring and timely way to allow in-person final goodbyes from those who matter most to those at the end of life.
Bob Saget, top left, was affectionately called ‘America’s Dad’ for his role as Danny Tanner in the sitcom ‘Full House.’ Lorimar Television/Fotos International via Getty Images

What made Bob Saget’s Danny Tanner so different from other sitcom dads

A contrast to the bumbling and immature fathers commonly found on sitcoms, Bob Saget’s character on ‘Full House’ reflected a shift in expectations of fatherhood that began in the late 1970s.
Grave from France where the individual was moved around before he fully decomposed. Éveha-Études et valorisations archéologiques/G Grange

Archeologists long believed that ancient graves were robbed all over Europe, but here’s why they’re wrong

All over Europe, early medieval graves look like they were robbed long ago. But new research suggests that relatives re-opened them to take out heirlooms and make connections with the dead.
Table-tipping workshop with mediums Jane and Chris Howarth in Erie, Pennsylvania, in 2014. © Shannon Taggart. Courtesy of the Artist.

As spiritualism’s popularity grows, photographer Shannon Taggart takes viewers inside the world of séances, mediums and orbs

Alternative beliefs like spiritualism seem to experience resurgences in times of crisis. Taggart has spent the past 20 years exploring the oft-misunderstood religion.
Spirit photograph by William Hope, taken around 1920. (National Media Museum Collection/Flickr)

Spirit photography captured love, loss and longing

Today viewers may be preoccupied by the methods used by spirit photographers, but spirit photographs had a notable impact on the bereaved who commissioned the portraits.

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