Study Guide

Life After Life Mortality

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REM whined that everybody hurts, and on our morbid days (or when we're finding Michael Stipe extra whiny), we like to replace that with "everybody dies." After all, there's no avoiding it, no matter how hard you try, right? In Life After Life, Ursula deals with death frequently, from the deaths of her friends and family members to the deaths of strangers during the war to her own, multiple times. For a book called Life After Life there's a lot of Death After Death

Questions About Mortality

  1. Do Ursula's frequent deaths diminish the impact of death? Why or why not?
  2. Do you wish you could see the grieving process after her deaths? How do you think her family would grieve at different times?
  3. Which of Ursula's deaths were the hardest to read? Does she ever have a "good" death? Explain your reasoning using the text.
  4. Other people die in this book, too. Which deaths does Ursula try to prevent, and why are they different from the deaths Ursula doesn't try to change?

Chew on This

Death is inevitable. Despite Ursula's best efforts, she and everyone she knows will always die at some point, whether it be from an accident, war, or old age.

Ursula seems to live her "best" lives when she is unconcerned about avoiding death, and instead she focuses on life.

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