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Death and Dying

By nahely1 Apr 18, 2013 822 Words
Ashley Martinez
PSYT 1325-003
T & R 12:15pm-1:30pm
April 9,2013
Book Report About Elisabeth Kubler- Ross

Elisabeth Kubler- Ross was born on July 8, 1926 in Zurich, Switzerland. Elisabeth wanted to be a doctor, though her father forbade it. She had a fragile start in life as a triple, weighing only two pounds when she and her two other siblings were born. Elisabeth developed a really good interest in medicine at a young age. She also encountered intense resistance from her father about her career aspirations. Her father would tell her that she could be a secretary in his business or go become a maid. Elisabeth left home at the age of 16 years old and worked a series of jobs. Therefore, she also served as a volunteer during World War II. Helping out in the hospitals and caring for refugees. After the war, Elisabeth volunteered to help in numerous war- torn communities. Kubler- Ross was profoundly affected by a visit to the Maidanek concentration camp in Portland and her images of hundreds of butterflies carved into some of the walls there. To Kubler- Ross the butterflies were the final works of art by those facing death. They would tell her stay with her for years and influenced her thinking about the end of life. Later Kubler- Ross began to pursuing her dreams to become a doctor in 1951 as a medical student at the University of Zurich. So now that she made it to her dreams, she met Emanuel Robert- Ross. Emanuel is an American medical student just like Elisabeth. They ended up getting married in 1958, a year after she graduated and moved to the Untied States. Robert and Kubler both had internships at Community Hospitals in Glen Cove, Long Island. From there on she went to specialize in psychiatry, and becoming a resident at Manhattan State Hospital. Around 1962 Kubler- Ross and her husband moved to Denver, Colorado to teach at the University Of Colorado Medical School. She had been disturbed by the treatment of the dying through her time in the United States and found nothing in the medical school curriculum at the time that addressed death and dying. Kubler- Ross brought in a 16 year old girl who was dying from leukemia into the classroom. She told her students to ask the girl any questions they wanted. Through after receiving numerous questions about her condition, the girl erupted in anger and started asking questions that mattered to her as a person. Then in 1965 Kubler- Ross moved to Chicago and became an instructor at the University of Chicago’s medical school. A small project came along about death with a group of theology students evolved into a series of well- attended seminars, also featuring candid interviews with people who were dying. Building upon her interviews and researcher, Kubler- Ross wrote “On Death and Dying” in 1969. The book identified the five stages that most terminally ill patients experience: Denial, Anger, Bargaining, Depression, and Acceptance. The identification of these stages that were listed was a revolutionary concept at the time. Though it has since become widely acceptance, another one “A Life” magazine ran an article on Kubler- Ross in November 1969. She brought public awareness to her work outside of the medical community. The response was enormous and influenced Kubler- Ross decision to focus on her career on working with the terminally ill and their families. Kubler- Ross stopped teaching at the university to work privately on what she called the “greatest mystery in science”—death. During Kubler- Ross career she wrote more than 20 books on death and related subjects, including “To Live Until We Say Goodbye” (1978), “Living with Death and Dying” (1981), and “The Tunnel and the Light” (1999). She also traveled around the world giving her “Life, Death, and Transition” workshops. The later part of her career she became increasingly, which was with skepticism and scorn by her peers in the medical and psychiatric circles. People who wrote so extensively on dying and death, Kubler- Ross transition from this life was not smooth on. Kubler- Ross retired to Arizona after series of strokes in 1995. The strokes left her partially paralyzed and in a wheelchair. Her quotes were “I am like a plane that has left the gate and not taken off”, she said according to an article in the Los Angeles Times. “I would rather go back to the gate or fly away”. In 2002 Kubler- Ross moved into a hospice. She finished work on her final book, “On Grief and Grieving” (2005), which she wrote along with David Kessler. She was survived by two children and two grandchildren. Now in 2007 she was inducted into the National Women’s Hall of Frame for her work. Kubler- Ross helped start the public discussion on death and Dying and campaigned vigorously for better treatment and care for the terminally ill.

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