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Volume 7

Material Mediations: People and Things in a World of Movement

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Death, Materiality and Mediation

An Ethnography of Remembrance in Ireland

Barbara Graham

174 pages, 18 illus., bibliog., index

ISBN  978-1-78533-282-1 $95.00/£67.00 Hb Published (November 2016)

eISBN 978-1-78533-283-8 eBook

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“Graham has succeeded in conveying a rich, complex, dynamic, nuanced, and moving picture of the ways in which individuals and communities engage with death and loss, and how the dead retain a social presence in the lives of the living.” · Christine Valentine, University of Bath

“Graham has gained unprecedented access to very personal and private situations in Ireland – such as wakes and house clearances after the death of a relative – and this makes for an interesting read, especially given her great narrative skills in describing the settings and scenarios of her ethnography.” · Elisabetta Viggiani, Queen’s University Belfast


In Death, Materiality and Mediation, Barbara Graham analyzes a diverse range of objects associated with remembrance in both the public and private arenas through ethnography of communities on both sides of the Irish border. In doing so, she explores the materially mediated interactions between the living and the dead, revealing the physical, cognitive, emotional, and spiritual roles of the dead in contemporary communities. Through this study, Graham expands the concept of materiality to include narrative, song, senses, emotions, ephemera and embodied experience. She also examines how modern practices are informed by older beliefs and folk religion.

Barbara Graham is an anthropologist with a special research interest in Ireland. She has extensive research experience in the field of material culture studies, death, emotions, aging and care.

Subject: General Anthropology General Cultural Studies
Area: Europe


List of Illustrations

Introduction: Contextualizing Death

Chapter 1. Field Boundaries
Chapter 2. Talking About The Dead
Chapter 3. Sensing The Memories And The Dead
Chapter 4. Objects Of The Dead
Chapter 5. Collective Remembrance
Chapter 6. Materiality In The Graveyard



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