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ISE The Last Dance


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Table of Contents

Despelder: The Last Dance: Encountering Death and Dying, 11e


CHAPTER 1: Attitudes Toward Death: A Climate of Change
CHAPTER 2: Learning About Death: Socialization
CHAPTER 3: Perspectives on Death: Historical and Cultural
CHAPTER 4: Death Systems: Mortality and Society
CHAPTER 5: Health Care: Patients, Staff, and Institutions
CHAPTER 6: End-of-Life Issues and Decisions
CHAPTER 7: Facing Death: Living with Life-Threatening Illness
CHAPTER 8: Last Rites: Funerals and Body Disposition
CHAPTER 9: Survivors: Understanding the Experience of Loss
CHAPTER 10: Death in the Lives of Children and Adolescents
CHAPTER 11: Death in the Lives of Adults
CHAPTER 12: Suicide
CHAPTER 13: Risks, Perils, and Traumatic Death
CHAPTER 14: Beyond Death / After Life
CHAPTER 15: The Path Ahead: Personal and Social Choices


About the Author

Lynne Ann DeSpelder and Albert Lee Strickland collaborated on writing projects over a number of years. The many editions of The Last Dance: Encountering Death and Dying could not exist without the unique combination of their talents as a teacher and a writer working together. The early decision to tape and transcribe classroom lectures with student interaction gives the book a conversational tone. The book's interdisciplinary flavor reflects the goal of covering the subject as broadly as possible.

Both Lynne and Al are members of the International Work Group on Death, Dying, and Bereavement (IWG), which gives them opportunities to work closely with death-related professionals from many countries. IWG meetings are held in various countries, creating opportunities to pursue one of their favorite aspects of the study of death and dying— cultural diversity in practice and belief. In 2003, they received the Death Education Award from the Association for Death Education and Counseling (ADEC).

Lynne is an educator, author, and counselor. As a faculty member at Cabrillo College in Aptos, California, she developed and taught one of the first interdisciplinary courses on death and dying. Certified by ADEC as a death educator and as a grief counselor, Lynne was instrumental in developing the organization's Education for Certification program. In addition to producing audiovisual and print resources, she lectures both in North America and internationally to professional, corporate, and community groups. She also conducts training programs and in-service education for hospices, school districts, community organizations, and health care professionals.

Al is a professional writer whose interests focused on death-related topics since the late 1970s. He is a former editor of The Forum Newsletter published by ADEC. In recent years his professional interests combined with a lifelong involvement in music, resulting in invitations to perform musical concerts centering on themes of death, dying, and bereavement, showcasing his voice and guitar, in Australia, Germany, Italy, Hong Kong, Canada, and the United States. A member of the Authors Guild, he is currently at work on a novel.

Jeanette Potts holds a Master of Science degree in Leadership with a concentration in Grief and Bereavement from Marian University. She is employed at the American Tissue Services Foundation as an Education and Development Manager and Donor Family Advocate. She is an adjunct instructor for Marian University where she teaches Introductory to Thanatology using The Last Dance textbook.  She also teaches End-of-Life Care and most currently the Comprehending Suicide classes to undergraduate students.

Jeanette is an active member of the Association of Death Education and Counseling (ADEC), and she achieved professional certification with the designation CT—Certified in Thanatology. She elected to serve a three-year term on the ADEC Board in 2019. In April 2016 at an ADEC conference, Jeanette sought out Lynne and Al to explain how much The Last Dance meant to her, both professionally and personally. This is where their friendship and her ties to working on this edition were formed. Jeanette is an active subject matter expert for the text and ensures the online resources enhance student encounters with the field of death and dying.

Jeanette is also past Vice Chair for Prevent Suicide Fox Cities (PSFC), which focuses on community education, suicide prevention, and survivor support. She currently co-facilitates the survivor support groups and is a trained facilitator for suicide prevention (QPR) and suicide support group services through the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention.

Jeanette is a mother to two adult boys and proud grandmother to four grandchildren.

Marion Mason has a Ph.D. in Developmental Psychology from The Ohio State University and over 27 years of experience teaching at Bloomsburg University of Pennsylvania.  In 2013 – 2014, she helped to guide the development of an interdisciplinary minor in Aging Studies and Gerontology into a full program, drawing students from psychology, social work, exercise science, speech pathology, and biology.  Her areas of interest are the development of user-friendly technologies for older adults and pet therapy with older adults. 

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