The Loneliness of the Dying: AND Humana Conditio by Norbert Elias
This volume contains two of Elias' shorter books. The Loneliness of the Dying is one of his most admired works - drawing on a range of literary and historical sources, it is sensitive and even moving in its discussion of the changing social context of death and dying over the centuries. Today, when death is less familiar to most people in everyday life, the dying frequently experience the loneliness of social isolation. Humana Conditio, written in 1985 to mark the fortieth anniversary of the end of the Second World War, has never before been published in English. 'Human beings', writes Elias, 'have made the reciprocal murdering of people a permanent institution. Wars are part of a fixed tradition of humanity. They are anchored in its social institutions and in the social habitus of people, even the most peace-loving'. Elias' meditation on the human lot ranges over the whole of human history, to international relations and the future of humanity.