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The Boston Globe


Book Review

‘Dying in Character’ by Jeffrey Berman

Jeffrey Berman is a scholar whose writing and teaching focus on the literature of loss. In 2010 he published “Companionship in Grief,” an examination of memoirs written by Joan Didion, Donald Hall, John Bayley, and others about the death of a spouse. Berman has also written on teaching the literature of bereavement, death-education in classrooms, and writers who commit suicide.

Yet his work is neither heavy nor grim. Having suffered the loss of his wife and having nearly lost his own life when hit by a car, Berman shows a dedication to these subjects that transcends the purely academic. He has found an approach that balances personal experience and disclosure with scholarly discipline and compassionate attention, creating an engaging tone.

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