In the Cemetery Where Al Jolson Is Buried Themes

This Study Guide consists of approximately 34 pages of chapter summaries, quotes, character analysis, themes, and more - everything you need to sharpen your knowledge of In the Cemetery Where Al Jolson Is Buried.
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Fear of Death

Readers never know exactly what illness the sick friend dies of or precisely what her symptoms are; therefore, the major focus of the story is on the women's verbal, behavioral, and psychological responses in confronting their own mortality. The one is dying, the other (the narrator) is observing both her friend's behavior and her own reactions to the phenomenon of death.

The dying woman engages in trivial conversation and ghoulish jokes in dealing with her situation. For example, she loops a phone cord around her neck and exclaims "end o' the line." She also wants something specific from the visiting friend when she has a second bed placed in the room. The expectation of spending the night with her dying friend "hit me like an open coffin.... She wants my life."

Conscious of her situation, the dying woman mentions Swiss psychiatrist Elisabeth Kubler-Ross's five stages of...

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This section contains 766 words
(approx. 2 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy the In the Cemetery Where Al Jolson Is Buried Study Guide
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In the Cemetery Where Al Jolson Is Buried from Gale. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.
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