From the article:
Much of this desired proximity was connected to the idea of what nineteenth-century Americans called “the Good Death.” A Good Death was one that took place at home, surrounded by family who could not only tend to suffering but “assess the state of the dying person’s soul,”…
…“the intimacy that survivors maintained with the corpse preserved it, at least until the actual interment, as evidence of a valuable, and vital, social relation.”
Libby Copeland writes of the home funeral movement and a return to our funerary roots. The article, titled “Who Owns the Dead” can be found at New Republic.com. “Death Doulas” or “Death Midwives”, she notes are almost exclusively women. This is in contrast to the male dominated funeral industry. Offering different styles of guidance through family directed funerals, these women help families achieve more intimacy with the dead and enable them to take back some control. As funeral guide Merilynne Rush was quoted, “My hope is I’ll be obsolete in another generation” as home funerals become more widely accepted.