A Saturated Void: Anticipating and Preparing Presence in Contemporary Danish Cemetery Culture



It may appear rather straightforward to connect cemeteries with the notion of absence. After all, a cemetery is most often seen as a place for the dead, who are frequently conceived as absent, gone, missing or lost (e.g. DuBose 1997; Durkheim 1915: 339; Freud 1984 [1917]; Rubin 1985). The state of being - or non-being - of the dead is otherwise poorly defined, and may simply be considered a form of “no-moreness” (Sheets-Johnstone 1986: 50). At the same time, the cemetery can be said to contain the absent, because it is ordinarily a place where prolonged spatial and material relations to the deceased are allowed to exist as opposed to e.g. a mass grave, where the dead are meant to disappear (Rugg 2000: 260).


Material Culture Mass Grave Traditional Section Material Practice Archaeological Approach 
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© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.University of AarhusHøjbjergDenmark

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