Discussing death

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The co-authors take up challenging questions about pain, caregiving, grief, and what comes after death. Their unlikely collaboration is itself connected to death: the murders of two of Irene's closest friends and Steve's support in perpetuating memories of those friends' lives and not just their violent ends.

The authors share the results of a no-holds-barred discussion they conducted via email for several years. Letting ourselves pose certain questions has the potential to profoundly change the way we think about death, how we choose to die, and, just as importantly, the way we live. Their talk will take place at the Northshire Bookstore on Friday, Jan. 15, starting at 7 p.m.

In the book "Daisy Turner's Kin," author Jane Beck tells the story of Daisy Turner, the daughter of freed African American slaves. In 1983, folklorist Jane Beck began a series of interviews with Turner, then one hundred years old and still relating four generations of oral history. Beck uses Turner's storytelling to build the Turner family saga, using at its foundation the oft-repeated touchstone stories at the heart of their experiences; the abduction into slavery of Turner's African ancestor; Daisy's father Alec Turner learning to read; his return as a soldier to his former plantation to kill his former overseer; and Daisy's childhood stand against racism. Other stories recreate enslavement and her father's life in Vermont. Beck, at the same time, weaves in historical research and offers a folklorist's perspective on oral history and the hazards, and uses, of memory. Her talk will take place Saturday, Jan. 16, at 7 p.m. at the bookstore.


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