Course code: SASH90
ECTS credits: 7.5

Teaching – spring semester 2021

The Covid-19 pandemic continues to affect our education and most of the teaching must take place completely digitally until further notice. Pay attention to the information in the schedule and/or in Canvas – the information is continuously adjusted based on current decisions and recommendations.

Read more at Covid-19 and the academic year 2020/2021.

Study period: spring semester 2021
Type of education: only online
Type of studies: part time, 50 %, distance course
Study period: 2021-03-24 – 2021-06-05
Language of instruction: English
Application code: LU-75961
Eligibility: General requirements for university studies in Sweden

Introductory meeting: 2021-03-26 at 10:15 – 12:15

Teachers: Katarina Bernhardsson, Tommy Bruhn, Fredrik Ekengren


MEMENTO MORI! Remember that you will die.  This is a course for you who want to discuss, reflect and learn more about perspectives of and practices around dying, death and mourning in contemporary society.


Death is the single most democratic thing in existence. Sooner or later, everyone dies. Still, death is one of the greatest mysteries known to humanity. This course introduces the field of death studies, covering rhetorical, social and cultural aspects of death and dying. Within the course you will learn about how death is understood in western contemporary society by looking at narratives, practices and institutions of dying, death and mourning.

The course content.

The course focuses on discussions of different types of rhetorical and cultural practices, institutions and rituals of death and dying in contemporary society. We discuss contexts of medial as well as cultural and social conditions for the practices, institutions and rituals of death

Within the course you will learn key theoretical perspectives on death in late modernity, historical developments in the cultural views, practices and institutions of death. You’ll also be working different ethical issues of institutions and representations of death and dying

In workshops, seminars and lectures you analyse and discuss literary and media representations of death and dying. We also work with media representations and social practices while taking into account relevant scientific, cultural and social aspects of death.


Some topics that will be covered during the course

• Media representations of death, risk and notable deaths

• The end of life and the social death

• the hospice movement

• Debates on palliative care and euthanasia

• The rhetoric of the good death

• Personal narratives of disease and dying

• Rituals of burial and remembrance

• The gentle art of Swedish death cleaning

• The breakdown of protocols of death during the Covid19 pandemic


After the course

You will be well versed in how to think about death as a cultural and social practice. Whether you are working in a death profession, have an academic interest in death as a cultural phenomenon or just want to learn more of different perspectives regarding end of life, you’ll be suited with theories and reflections on how to approach death.


The course is not open for applications through / next semester. Please contact the department for more information!

How to apply

Lund University uses a national application system run by University Admissions in Sweden. It is only possible to apply during the application periods: October–January for autumn semester and June–August for spring semester.

Extended application deadline

Sometimes the application deadline is extended for a specific programme or course. In these cases you will find the message "open for late application" by the programme/course information on You apply with the usual application steps. As long as this message is showing, it is possible to apply, but late applications are processed in order of date, so it is still important to apply as soon as possible. Please note that if the programme/course does not have an extended deadline, it is not possible to apply late.

First or Second Admission Round?

All international students are encouraged to apply to the First admission round. This round takes place many months before the start of a semester and gives students the time they need to pay their tuition fees, apply for and receive their residence permit (if required), find housing, etc.

The Second admission round is an alternative for students from EU/EEA countries as they do not need a residence permit. Non-EU/EEA students will most likely not have enough time to obtain their permit before the start of the semester. However, even EU/EEA students are advised to apply during the First admission round, as some programmes can be applied for only in the January round. Also, this provides applicants with an admission decision much earlier, which is helpful in making decisions about their studies.

Tuition Fees

Non-EU/EEA citizens

Citizens of a country outside of the European Union (EU), the European Economic Area (EEA) and Switzerland are required to pay tuition fees. You pay one instalment of the tuition fee in advance of each semester.

Read more about tuition fees, payments and exemptions

EU/EEA citizens and Switzerland

There are no tuition fees for citizens of the European Union (EU), the European Economic Area (EEA) and Switzerland.

Application fee

If you are required to pay tuition fees, you are generally also required to pay an application fee of SEK 900 (approximately EUR 100) when you apply at You pay one application fee regardless of how many programmes or courses you apply to.

Read more about paying the University Admissions in Sweden application fee and exemptions