World Library  
Flag as Inappropriate
Email this Article

Obituary

Article Id: WHEBN0000379881
Reproduction Date:

Title: Obituary  
Author: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Language: English
Subject: Eulogy, Perugu Siva Reddy, Subhas Anandan, John Adams, Sr., Harold Montgomery
Collection: Acknowledgements of Death, Undertaking
Publisher: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Publication
Date:
 

Obituary

American obituary for WWI death
Traditional street obituary notes in Bulgaria

An obituary is a news article that reports the recent death of a person, typically along with an account of the person's life and information about the upcoming funeral.[1] In large cities and larger newspapers, obituaries are written only for people considered significant.[1] In local newspapers, an obituary may be published for any local resident upon death. A necrology is a register or list of records of the deaths of people related to a particular organization, group or field, which may only contain the sparsest details, or small obituaries. Historical necrologies can be important sources of information.

Two types of paid advertisements are related to obituaries. One, known as a death notice, omits most biographical details and may be a legally required public notice under some circumstances. The other type, a paid memorial advertisement, is usually written by family members or friends, perhaps with assistance from a funeral home.[1] Both types of paid advertisements are usually run as classified advertisements.

Contents

  • Premature obituaries 1
  • Media 2
  • See also 3
  • References 4
  • Further reading 5
  • External links 6

Premature obituaries

A premature obituary is a false reporting of the death of a person who is still alive. It may occur due to unexpected survival of someone who was close to death. Other reasons for such publication might be miscommunication between newspapers, family members, and the funeral home, often resulting in embarrassment for everyone involved.

Irish author Brendan Behan said that there is no such thing as bad publicity except dying in a toilet. In this regard, some people will seek to have an unsuspecting newspaper editor publish a premature death notice or obituary as a malicious hoax, perhaps to gain revenge on the "deceased". To that end, nearly all newspapers now have policies requiring that death notices come from a reliable source (such as a funeral home), though even this has not stopped some pranksters such as Alan Abel.

Media

Many news organisations have pre-written (or pre-edited video) obituaries on file for notable individuals who are still living, allowing detailed, authoritative, and lengthy obituaries to appear very quickly after their death. The Los Angeles Times‍ '​ obituary of Elizabeth Taylor, for example, was written in 1999 after three months of research, then often updated before the actress' 2011 death.[2] Sometimes the prewritten obituary's subject outlives its author; an example is The New York Times' obituary of Taylor, written by the newspaper's theater critic Mel Gussow, who died in 2005.[3]

Obituaries are a notable feature of The Economist, which publishes one full-page obituary per week, reflecting on the subject's life and influence on world history. Past subjects have ranged from Ray Charles to Uday Hussein.

The British Medical Journal encourages doctors to write their own obituaries for publication after their death.

Pan Books publishes a series called The Daily Telegraph Book of Obituaries, which are anthologies of obituaries under a common theme, such as military obituaries, sports obituaries, heroes and adventurers, entertainers, rogues, eccentric lives, etc.

For numerous summer seasons, CBC Radio One has run The Late Show, a radio documentary series which presents extended obituaries of interesting Canadians.

See also

References

  1. ^ a b c "Talk to the Newsroom: Obituaries Editor Bill McDonald". The New York Times. September 25, 2006. Retrieved 2008-07-28. The paid notices are classified ads. They're gathered and placed in the paper or on the Web by the classified advertising department, which operates independently of the news department.... despite any misconceptions to the contrary, no one pays for an obit that appears as a news story. 
  2. ^ Woo, Elaine (2011-03-23). "Elizabeth Taylor's obituary: outtakes from a 12-year work in progress". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved April 1, 2011. 
  3. ^ Gussow, Mel (2011-03-23). "Elizabeth Taylor, Lifelong Screen Star, Dies at 79". The New York Times. Retrieved March 23, 2011. 

Further reading

  • Baranick, Alana; Sheeler, Jim; Miller, Stephen (2005). Life on the Death Beat: A Handbook for Obituary Writers. Oak Park: Marion Street Press.  
  • Johnson, Marilyn (2007). The Dead Beat: Lost Souls, Lucky Stiffs, And The Perverse Pleasure of Obituaries. New York: Harper Perennial.  
  • Massingberd, Hugh (2001). Daydream Believer: Confessions of a Hero-Worshipper. London: Macmillan. p. 245.  

External links

  • Newspaper Obituaries - ObituariesHelp.org Newspaper Obituaries
  • Obituaries Research Guide Tips for finding obituaries
This article was sourced from Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License; additional terms may apply. World Heritage Encyclopedia content is assembled from numerous content providers, Open Access Publishing, and in compliance with The Fair Access to Science and Technology Research Act (FASTR), Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., Public Library of Science, The Encyclopedia of Life, Open Book Publishers (OBP), PubMed, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health (NIH), U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, and USA.gov, which sources content from all federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial government publication portals (.gov, .mil, .edu). Funding for USA.gov and content contributors is made possible from the U.S. Congress, E-Government Act of 2002.
 
Crowd sourced content that is contributed to World Heritage Encyclopedia is peer reviewed and edited by our editorial staff to ensure quality scholarly research articles.
 
By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. World Heritage Encyclopedia™ is a registered trademark of the World Public Library Association, a non-profit organization.
 


Copyright © World Library Foundation. All rights reserved. eBooks from Project Gutenberg are sponsored by the World Library Foundation,
a 501c(4) Member's Support Non-Profit Organization, and is NOT affiliated with any governmental agency or department.