The Art of Dying, The Act of Grieving

'Reaper' - Josh Smith

​Where did death go? For most of our history, death demanded constant intimacy with life, obligating the living to tend to it, practice for it, and most importantly, know it.

A constant harbinger, death also presented itself as a most exciting opportunity. For death, it was once believed, offered human beings their greatest stage for self-making. Only in one’s death could one truly become who they are, or were. Death revealed a final and unquestionable truth. Thus the living studied this craft, this difficult art of dying, knowing they had but one chance to perform well on the Reaper’s stage.

Grief, too, occupied and carved out a space for itself in social life. Grief had rules, expectations, and it required mourners to announce its presence in their daily public lives. Witnesses to such displays had a role to play as well. Being well verse and trained in the acts of grief, community member responded with precise social displays of sympathy.

Today, many of us have no idea how to speak about death, let alone how to behave in the presence of it. Do we hug our colleague who has just lost a parent? Do we attend a funeral for someone we don’t love? Do we wash dead bodies? What do you say when someone you love tells you they are dying? How do let others know you are heartbroken by grief? This Olio will look the lost art of dying, the absence of clear social expectations for the grieving, and try to understand how and why we let death disappear from life.

Location: Work Heights - Electric

650 Franklin Ave, Brooklyn, NY 11238

Work Heights is a coworking space by day with 3 locations and a community event space and venue hire by night. They have created a local, productive, and visible work space for freelancer's, solopreneurs, and small business.

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Other upcoming Olios

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Dec 11

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Dec 12

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Dec 18

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Dec 18

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Dec 20

Dec 29


Taught by Patricia Kim
3 p.m. at Living Room

Sign Up - $15

Jan 21

Decolonizing the Heart & Mind

Taught by Kim Nguyen
7:30 p.m. at Work Heights - Electric

Sign Up - $35

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