Handbook of Social Justice in Loss and Grief: Exploring Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion, 1st Edition (Paperback) book cover

Handbook of Social Justice in Loss and Grief

Exploring Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion, 1st Edition

Edited by Darcy L. Harris, Tashel C. Bordere


294 pages

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The Handbook of Social Justice in Loss and Grief is a scholarly work of social criticism, richly grounded in personal experience, evocative case studies, and current multicultural and sociocultural theories and research. It is also consistently practical and reflective, challenging readers to think through responses to ethically complex scenarios in which social justice is undermined by radically uneven opportunity structures, hierarchies of voice and privilege, personal and professional power, and unconscious assumptions, at the very junctures when people are most vulnerable—at points of serious illness, confrontation with end-of-life decision making, and in the throes of grief and bereavement. Harris and Bordere give the reader an active and engaged take on the field, enticing readers to interrogate their own assumptions and practices while increasing, chapter after chapter, their cultural literacy regarding important groups and contexts. The Handbook of Social Justice in Loss and Grief deeply and uniquely addresses a hot topic in the helping professions and social sciences and does so with uncommon readability.


"The Handbook of Social Justice in Loss and Grief is destined to become a classic in the field. Not only could this book be used in professional training for medical, social work, nursing, and counseling courses, it could also be used in courses in social stratification, social institutions, as well as death and dying. It is exceptionally well-written, based on scholarship, and covers areas not found in any other book! The prologue, foreword, and introduction alone are worth the price of the book—the rest of the book is an added bonus!

Gerry R. Cox, PhD, Center for Death Education and Bioethics, University of Wisconsin–La Crosse

"This handbook is an incredibly important addition to many fields of practice because of the social justice lens it brings to working with diverse patients and clients who are experiencing various forms of grief and loss. All practitioners in the field will benefit from the many chapters that provide insightful analyses of complex issues in grieving, both locally and internationally, while simultaneously supplying excellent, culturally conscientious interventions and case studies."

Anne Cummings, PhD, professor emerita of counseling psychology, University of Western Ontario, Canada

"The voices and variety of perspectives in this handbook contribute a rich and vital perspective that has been under addressed in the bereavement field. Anyone in the helping professions will benefit from a deeper understanding of how our experiences and perceptions shape and shift effective practice, with practical applications for a diversity of populations and often-marginalized communities."

Donna L. Schuurman, EdD, FT, executive director, the Dougy Center for Grieving Children and Families, Portland, Oregon

"Rarely have issues of social justice, politics, culture, and diversity been so clearly explained in relation to loss and grief. Clinicians in today’s multicultural world need greater understanding and insight into how our own worldview colors our perception of reality. Readers will be enlightened and changed by the personal and academic insights in this book."

Stephen R. Connor, PhD, senior fellow, Worldwide Hospice Palliative Care Alliance

Table of Contents

Series Editor’s Foreword Foreword Preface Introduction Darcy Harris and Tashel Bordere Part One: Introductory Concepts 1. Social Justice Conceptualizations in Grief and Loss Tashel Bordere 2. Looking Broadly at Grief and Loss: A Critical Stance Darcy Harris Part Two: Issues Related to Social Status, Policy, and Politics 3. Living, Suffering and Dying in a Globalized World Solomon Benatar 4.Compassion in a Materialist World Neil Thompson 5. Inequality, Exclusion and Infant Mortality: Listening to Bereaved Mothers Neil Small, Katie Fermor, Ghazala Mir, and members of the HOPE group Part Three: Issues Related to Groups 6. Cultural competence and humility Paul Rosenblatt 7. "Not Gonna Be Laid Out to Dry": Cultural Mistrust in End of Life Care and Strategies for Trust-Building Tashel Bordere 8. Is Social Justice Elusive for the First Nations Peoples’ Loss and Grief? Kekinusuqs, Judith Sayers 9. Protecting Dignity at the End of Life: An Agenda for Human Rights in an Aging World Andy Ho and Geraldine Xiu Ling Tan Part Four: Individual Experiences in Social Contexts 10. Medicalizing Grief Leeat Granek 11. Iatrogenic Harm and Objectification in the Context of Care Delivery Darcy Harris 12. The Silenced Emotion: Older Women and Grief in Prison Ronald H. Aday & Jennifer Kabrill 13. Grief and Developmental Disabilities: Considerations for a Disenfranchised Population Rebecca Morse, Theodore T. Hoch, & Thomas Freeman 14. Social Expectations of the Bereaved Darcy Harris Part Five: Practice Implications 15. Transformation through Socially-Sensitive Experiences Donely Meris 16. Spirituality and Social Justice Neil Thompson 17. From Violation to Voice, From Pain to Protest: Healing and Transforming Unjust Loss through the use of Rituals and Memorials Alfonso M. García-Hernandez & Carlos Torres 18. Restorative Justice Principles and Restorative Practice: Museums as Healing Spaces Carla Sofka 19. Critical Social Work in Action June Allan 20. Navigating Social Institutions and Policies as an Advocate and Ally Sandy Joy 21. Care for the Caregiver: A Multilayered Exploration Darcy Harris 22. The Liberating Capacity of Compassion Mary Vachon & Darcy Harris Conclusion

About the Editor

Darcy L. Harris, PhD, FT, is an associate professor in the department of interdisciplinary programs at King's University College at the University of Western Ontario in Ontario, Canada, where she is also the coordinator of the thanatology program.

Tashel C. Bordere, PhD, CT, is an assistant professor of human development and family studies and state extension specialist in youth development at the University of Missouri-Columbia and a past editor of The Forum.

About the Series

Series in Death, Dying, and Bereavement

Volumes published in the Series in Death, Dying and Bereavement are representative of the multidisciplinary nature of the intersecting fields of death studies, suicidology, end-of-life care, and grief counseling.

The series meets the needs of clinicians, researchers, paraprofessionals, pastoral counselors, and educators by providing cutting edge research, theory, and best practices on the most important topics in these fields—for today and for tomorrow.

Learn more…

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
PSYCHOLOGY / Psychotherapy / Counseling
PSYCHOLOGY / Psychotherapy / General
PSYCHOLOGY / Mental Health