BEHS 380 7380 Death and Human Behavior

BEHS 380 7380 Death and Human Behavior

BEHS 380 7380 Death and Human Behavior

The causes of death in the United States have significantly changed over the past few centuries. Today, people have a longer lifespan compared to those who lived 100 years ago due to advancements in medical science and improved nutrition, sanitation, and hygiene (Harper et al., 2021). The leading causes of death 100 years ago are fundamentally different from the current causes of death. This is partly attributed to the enhancement in medical knowledge that has resulted in a more sophisticated classification system. Over the past few centuries, people were dying in mass from infections. However, the current causes of death are associated with cardiovascular conditions, cancer, and external causes (Snowden, 2019).

This paper argues that the fear of death is universal. There is more about death to fear. Despite the cause of

BEHS 380 7380 Death and Human Behavior
BEHS 380 7380 Death and Human Behavior

death, the way to death is associated with intense pain for many people, except for a few individuals (Clignet et al., 2018). Death is also an isolating and lonely encounter. Human beings are naturally social, and it is through the relationships with other people that complete the existence of humans and provide meaning to human life. As such, death is a division from the fundamental aspects that give meaning and form to humans. The death of a loved one is essentially the worse expressively painful encounter that a person can experience and it can trigger an intrinsic revulsion and horror (Livne, 2021). In addition, death is finality and it presents the most dreadful challenges to the notion that human life has a purpose and meaning. Based on these principles, fear of death is a leading response to death.

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Awareness of death can shape the lives of people in many ways including intensifying how individual’s values direct their actions, triggering generosity in people, making young people live carelessly claiming that life is short, and inspiring people to improve health and prioritize development-oriented objectives (Livne, 2021). The thoughts of death can lead to these behaviors by clouding the feelings of happiness, fulfillment, and exuberance about human life.

References

Clignet, R., Beckert, J., & Harrington, B. (2018). Death, deeds, and descendants: inheritance in modern America. Routledge.

Harper, S., Riddell, C. A., & King, N. B. (2021). Declining life expectancy in the United States: missing the trees for the forest. Annu Rev Public Health, 42(1), 381-403. https://www.annualreviews.org/doi/10.1146/annurev-publhealth-082619-104231

Livne, R. (2021). Toward a sociology of finitude: life, death, and the question of limits. Theory and Society, 50(6), 891-934. https://doi.org/10.1007/s11186-021-09448-y

Snowden, F. M. (2019). Epidemics and society: From the black death to the present. Yale University Press.