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The Death Class

A True Story About Life

By Erika Hayasaki

Why does a college course on death have a three-year waiting list?

When nurse Norma Bowe decided to teach a course on death at a college in New Jersey, she never expected it to be popular. But year after year students crowd into her classroom, and the reason is clear: Norma’s “death class” is really about how to make the most of what poet Mary Oliver famously called our “one wild and precious life.”

Under the guise of discussions about last wills and last breaths and visits to cemeteries and crematoriums, Norma teaches her students to find grace in one another. By following her over four years, award-winning journalist Erika Hayasaki shows how Norma steers four extraordinary students from their tormented families and neighborhoods toward happiness: she rescues one young woman from her suicidal mother, helps a young man manage his schizophrenic brother, and inspires another to leave his gang life behind. Through this unorthodox class on death, Norma helps kids who are barely hanging on to understand not only the value of their own lives, but also the secret of fulfillment: to throw yourself into helping others. Hayasaki’s expert reporting and literary prose bring Norma’s wisdom out of the classroom, transforming it into an inspiring lesson for all. In the end, Norma’s very own life—and how she lives it—is the lecture that sticks.

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Book

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Publish Date

2014

ISBN

9781451642858


Format: Book
Author: Hayasaki, Erika
Summary: A journalist details how Norma Bowe, the professor of a popular class on the stages of dying, death, and bereavement at Kean University in New Jersey, shows her students how to truly heal and live their lives through contemplating the end.
Title: The death class : a true story about life / Erika Hayasaki.
Publisher Date: New York, NY : Simon & Schuster, 2014.
Subject: Thanatology. Thanatology -- United States.
Isbn: 9781451642858 (hbk.) 1451642857 (hbk.)
Current Holds: 0
System Items Available: 0
System Items Total: 3
Call Number: 306.9 Hay
Oclc: 841211829
Upc:
Bib Id: 495746

Format: Book
Author: Hayasaki, Erika.
Summary: A journalist details how Norma Bowe, the professor of a popular class on the stages of dying, death, and bereavement at Kean University in New Jersey, shows her students how to truly heal and live their lives through contemplating the end.
Title: The death class : a true story about life / Erika Hayasaki.
Edition: First Simon & Schuster hardcover edition.
Publisher, Date: New York, NY : Simon & Schuster, 2014.
Description: xxii, 263 pages ; 24 cm
Subjects: Thanatology.
Subjects: Thanatology -- United States.
Notes: Includes bibliographical references (pages [236]-253) and index.
Contents: The good-bye letter -- Death's secrets. The professor ; Life stories of Norma Lynn ; Rewind button ; Little boy ; Strange behavior ; To the rescue ; The trigger ; Despair ; Brothers -- Life lessons. Reclamations ; Jonathan ; Caitlin ; To serve ; Roadblocks ; Parting ways ; Epiphanies -- Final exam. Road trip ; The rhizome ; Life cycles ; Birthday -- Appendix. Erikson's stage theory.
LCCN: 2013002025
ISBN: 9781451642858 (hbk.)
ISBN: 1451642857 (hbk.)
Requests: 0
Available Copies: 0
Total Copies: 3
Call Number: 306.9 Hay