Our American Discourse, Ep. 36: The End – Death, Cemeteries, and Remembering

Though we are sad to bid farewell to “Our American Discourse,” we welcome the opportunity to talk about farewells—indeed, the hardest farewells of all: those that happen after death. How do we say goodbye to the past? And what does our farewell mean for the lives gone before us and for the future that will come after them? It is time to break the “death taboo” and have one last real conversation about the one last real experience we all must confront.

In this episode, David Charles Sloane tells the history of the American cemetery, and in that story, we find the evolution of our own existential approach to life, death, and beyond.

Prof. Sloane is a Professor in the Sol Price School of Public Policy at the University of Southern California, where he also facilitates the Borthwick George Washington Lecture Series. He is the author of several books, including the newest Is the Cemetery Dead?, which was released in April by the University of Chicago Press.

To listen to this episode of Our American Discourse, click the orange arrow in the Soundcloud player at the top of this post. Or you can download it and subscribe through ApplePodcasts, Soundcloud, Google Play, or Stitcher.


“Our American Discourse” is produced by Aubrey HicksJonathan Schwartz, and myself, and mixed by Corey and Ryan Hedden.