Some societies and some individuals find a place for their dead, others leave them behind. In recent years, researchers, professionals and bereaved people themselves have struggle with this. Should the bond with the dead be continued or broken? what is clear is that the grieving individual is not left in a social vacuum but has to struggle with expectations from self, family, friends, professionals and academic theorists. This book looks at the social position of the bereaved. They find themselves caught between the living and the dead, sometimes searching for guidelines and a de-ritualized society that has few to offer, sometimes finding their grief inappropriately pathologized and policed. At its best, bereavement care offers reassurance, validation, and freedom to talk where client has previously encountered judmentalism. In this book, Tony Walter applies sociological insights to one of the most personal of human situations. This work is aimed at students on medical, nursing, counselling and social work courses that includes bereavement as a topic, and also to sociology students with an interest in death,dying and mortality.