Death at War

On Saturday 15 May the University of Winchester’s MA in Religion, Rhetoric & Death held it’s first ‘Death Day‘, a really interesting event with a great balance of interesting speakers. I missed the first session, but then listened to really thought-provoking talks from Cribb’s funeral parlours, the UK Manager of Cemeteries, and a conductor of ‘secular funerals’ – covering a range of ideas about how the funeral business has changed and is changing. After an interesting lunch sat with a number of ‘Revs’ it was time to give my paper (above), combining with a paper from Helen Frisby on mourning practices in Victorian Britain… followed by a paper on the use of effigies before the ‘Rock & Roll’ session of the day: ‘Slasher movies’ and the use of obituaries for celebrities, especially when suicide is involved (and drew our attention to a new magazine: Eulogy). Lots of food for thought from the day, especially enjoyable when it’s a conference not related to either of the subjects I teach (History & Media Studies) and just a chance to enjoy!