Book cover of The Work of the Dead: A Cultural History of Mortal Remains by Thomas Laqueur
History

The Work of the Dead: A Cultural History of Mortal Remains

The meaning of our concern for mortal remains―from antiquity through the twentieth century

The Greek philosopher Diogenes said that when he died his body should be tossed over the city walls for beasts to scavenge. Why should he or anyone else care what became of his corpse? In The Work of the Dead, acclaimed cultural historian Thomas Laqueur examines why humanity has universally rejected Diogenes’s argument. No culture has been indifferent to mortal remains. […Learn More]