Dying is a social as well as physiological phenomenon. Each society characterizes and, consequently, treats death and dying in its own individual ways—ways that differ markedly. These particular patterns of death and dying engender modal cultural responses, and such institutionalized behavior has familiar, economical, educational, religious, and political implications. The Handbook of Death and Dying takes stock of the vast literature in the field of thanatology, arranging and synthesizing what has been an unwieldy body of knowledge into a concise, yet comprehensive reference work. This two-volume handbook will provide direction and momentum to the study of death-related behavior for many years to come. Key Features More than 100 contributors representing authoritative expertise in a diverse array of disciplines Anthropology Family Studies History Law Medicine Mortuary Science Philosophy Psychology Social work Sociology Theology A distinguished editorial board of leading scholars and researchers in the field More than 100 definitive essays covering almost every dimension of death-related behavior Comprehensive and inclusive, exploring concepts and social patterns within the larger topical concern Journal article length essays that address topics with appropriate detail Multidisciplinary and cross-cultural coverage.