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Video: Business of Death


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Throughout the developed world the business surrounding death has often been an uneasy topic of discussion. Originating in the mid-19th Century, the modern funeral has evolved into an economic and cultural monster, with a vast network of supporting industries and myriad options for your earthly remains.

This original GOOD Magazine animation takes you inside the business of death.


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Death is a huge business, specially in Catholic countries.

This is an image of a normal graveyard in Portugal;

Imagine the resources spent in that graveyard: the marble, the flowers, the candles and the water that is spent every time people go there just to wash all that marble

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This is what I hope will happen to me when I have died:

Cremation to be replaced by eco-friendly freeze-drying of corpses

It brings a new meaning to the phrase "dust to dust".

Funerals in Britain could soon end with the body of a loved-one being frozen to -196C in liquid nitrogen and then shaken until it disintegrates into powder.

The process - known as "promession" - could be the answer to the dwindling amount of space in Britain's cemeteries as well as being more environmentally friendly than cremation, say campaigners.

It has already been given the go-ahead in Sweden, and now councils are lobbying the Government to change the law to allow it to happen here - currently bodies can only be buried or cremated.

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