Design, reinforced by research, reveals an urgent call to liberate city life from the burden of outmoded practices. A community’s need for sanitary and sensible disposal of corpses is intertwined with the need of survivors to organize suitable rituals and memorialize the deceased.

DeathLab’s body of research includes critical theoretical spatial propositions, data projections, scientific inquiry, and aims to develop ways to reduce the adverse impacts of our living years on the environment.


Bregman, Lucy, ed. Religion, Death, and Dying – Volume 3: Bereavement and Death Rituals. Santa Barbara, CA: Praeger Perspectives, 2010.

Carson, Denise. Parting Ways: New Rituals and Celebrations of Life’s Passing. Berkeley: University of California Press, 2011.

Crouch, Mira. “Last Matters: The Latent Meanings of Contemporary Funeral Rites.” In Making Sense of Dying and Death, edited by A. Fagan, 125–40. Amsterdam: Rodopi, 2004.

Cullen, Lisa Takeuchi. Remember Me: A Lively Tour of the New American Way of Death. New York: HarperCollins, 2006.

DasGupta, Sayantani, and Marsha Hurst. “Death in Cyberspace: Bodies, Boundaries, and Postmodern Memorializing.” In The Many Ways We Talk About Death in Contemporary Society, edited by Margaret Souza and Christina Staudt. Lewiston, NY: Edwin Mellen Press, 2009, 105–20.

Harris, Mark. Grave Matters: a Journey Through the Modern Funeral Industry to a Natural Way of Burial. New York: Scribner, 2007.

Laderman, Gary. Rest in Peace: A Cultural History of Death and the Funeral Home in Twentieth Century America. New York: Oxford University Press, 2003.

Mitford, Jessica. The American Way of Death Revisited. New York: First Vintage Books, 2000.

Staudt, Christina and J. Harold Ellens, eds. Our Changing Journey to the End: Reshaping Death, Dying, and Grief in America – Volume 1: New Paths of Engagement. Santa Barbara CA: ABC-CLIO Praeger Imprint, 2013.

The following chapters address new forms of memorials and rituals: Chapter 10. “Expansion of New Rituals for the Dying and Bereaved” by Sherry R. Schachter and Kristen M. Finneran; Chapter 11. Virtual Memorials: Bereavement and the Internet by Candi K. Cann; Chapter 12. “Strange Eternity: Virtual Memorials, Grief, and Entertainment” by Angela Riechers; Chapter 13. “Roadside Memorials: A 21st-Century Development” by George E. Dickinson and Heath C. Hoffmann; Chapter 14. “Reconfiguring Urban Spaces of Disposal, Sanctuary, and Remembrance” by Karla Maria Rothstein.

Winner, Lauren F. “From Black Crepe to Blue Ink: Mourning Tattoos and the Practice of Embodied Bereavement.” In The Many Ways We Talk About Death in Contemporary Society, edited by Margaret Souza and Christina Staudt, 135–48. Lewiston, NY: Edwin Mellen Press, 2009.