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FCA recognizes that the dissemination of individual experiences, the reporting of public information, and linking to other sites can help further our mission of educating the public on their funeral rights and options. However, FCA's limited resources and the nature of the Internet make it impossible to verify the content of personal experiences that are supplied by others or to verify the content of linked sites. FCA accepts no responsibility for these. Comments on the contents of personal reports and linked websites should be directed to the author(s).



The New Republic: Who Owns the Dead?

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 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.

Last Updated ( Monday, 29 June 2015 16:16 )
 

Open Air Cremation in Colorado

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Crestone, Colorado is home to one of the nation's only open-air cremation providers. Operated by Crestone End-of-Life Project, families are invited to participate in the cremation - positioning the body, preparing kindling for the fire and placing juniper branches on the pyre to add a pleasant smell to the process. This sort of open-air cremation is reminiscent of the ancient funeral rites commonly associated with Vikings. Although it may seem bizarre to many Americans, this method is still practiced among Buddhists and Hindus in other parts of the world.

High Country News has some beautiful photographs of the crematory.

Last Updated ( Wednesday, 24 June 2015 11:50 )
 

New Vermont Law Allows For The Creation Of "Green" Cemeteries

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Act 24, a new law codifying green cemeteries in Vermont, will pave the way for the creation of such cemeteries in the very eco-minded state.

You can hear VPR's interview with Josh Slocum on the topic here.

 

Raw Story: Don't let the mortician turn you into a biohazard

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"The typical 10-acre swath of cemetery ground, for example, contains enough coffin wood to construct more than 40 homes, nine hundred-plus tons of casket steel, and another twenty thousand tons of vault concrete. To that add a volume of embalming fluid sufficient to fill a small backyard swimming pool and untold gallons of pesticide and weed killer to keep the graveyard preternaturally green. Like the contents of any landfill, the embalmed body’s toxic cache escapes its host and eventually leaches into the environment, tainting surrounding soil and groundwaters. Cemeteries bear the chemical legacy of their embalmed dead, and well after their graves have been closed."

- Mark Harris in his book Grave Matters

Read the full article here at Raw Story.

 

NPR's Marketplace talks to FCA on Green Burials

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American Public Media's "Marketplace" on natural burials with a cautionary note from FCA: Beware of attempts to get you to pay a premium for a green burial---you shouldn't have to pay a boutique price for a burial that simpler and uses less product.

 
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