The Year of Magical Thinking - Study Guide Chapter 17 Summary & Analysis

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"Grief," the author writes, "turns out to be a place none of us know until we reach it." She then lists the differences between what we think grief is and what it actually is.

As a child, Didion had an awareness of meaninglessness, and how that awareness seemed to be replaced by rituals of meaning. The phrase from the Episcopalian Church, "as it was in the beginning is now and ever shall be, world without end", Didion connects with the inevitability and irresistibility of geological change. As a young mother and wife, she found comfort in household rituals, but always carried within her the belief that both forms of ritual would converge in her and John's simultaneous deaths.

Society considers self pity as a negative. Animals never exhibit it,but humans can't seem to function, in grief, without it. She attributes her own self-pity to...

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This section contains 392 words
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