Over My Dead Body (Kobo eBook)

Over My Dead Body By Greg Melville Cover Image
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Journalist Greg Melville’s Over My Dead Body is an “astonishing . . . fascinating . . . powerful” (New York Times Book Review) tour through the history of US cemeteries that explores how, where, and why we bury our dead.

“You hold in your hands a treasure map, a gentle, sly, and poignant presence leading us to places in America and in our lives that have been hiding in plain sight. This tale is about cemeteries, but it’s really about how beautiful is life.” —#1 New York Times bestselling author Doug Stanton

The summer before his senior year in college, Greg Melville worked at the cemetery in his hometown, and thanks to hour upon hour of pushing a mower over the grassy acres, he came to realize what a rich story the place told of his town and its history. Thus was born Melville’s lifelong curiosity with how, where, and why we bury and commemorate our dead.

Melville’s Over My Dead Body is a lively (pun intended) and wide-ranging history of cemeteries, places that have mirrored the passing eras in history but also have shaped it. Cemeteries have given birth to landscape architecture and famous parks, as well as influenced architectural styles. They’ve inspired and motivated some of our greatest poets and authors—Emerson, Whitman, Dickinson. They’ve been used as political tools to shift the country’s discourse and as important symbols of the United States’ ambition and reach.

But they are changing and fading. Embalming and burial is incredibly toxic, and while cremations have just recently surpassed burials in popularity, they’re not great for the environment either. Over My Dead Body explores everything about cemeteries—history, sustainability, land use, and more—and what it really means to memorialize.

Includes Black-and-White Photographs

Locales visited in Over My Dead Body
Shawsheen Cemetery – Bedford, Massachusetts; the 1607 burial ground – Historic Jamestowne, Virginia; Burial Hill – Plymouth, Massachusetts; Colonial Jewish Burial Ground – Newport, Rhode Island; Monticello’s African American graveyard – Charlottesville, Virginia; Mount Auburn Cemetery – Cambridge, Massachusetts; Green-Wood Cemetery – Brooklyn, New York; Laurel Grove Cemetery – Savannah, Georgia; Sleepy Hollow Cemetery – Concord, Massachusetts; Central Park – New York, New York; Gettysburg National Cemetery – Gettysburg, Pennsylvania; Arlington National Cemetery – Arlington, Virginia; Woodlawn Cemetery – Bronx, New York; Boothill Graveyard – Tombstone, Arizona; Forest Lawn – Glenwood, California; the Chapel of the Chimes – Oakland, California; Hollywood Forever Cemetery – Los Angeles, California; West Laurel Hill’s Nature’s Sanctuary – Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Product Details
ISBN-13: 9781647003043
Publisher: Abrams Press
Publication Date: October 3rd, 2022