The Meaning of Grief seeks to capture the dramatic nature of grief by reconstructing the common story of people who have grieved. It provides a holistic approach to understanding the wisdom of experience in the context of human life. The book offers an original exploration of grief as a significant human emotion and introduces a unique method for the study of emotions in general. Through a detailed examination of individual accounts of grief, common themes are identified and woven into a dramatic composition, one that resembles the structure of a rite of passage. The volume carefully develops two basic units for description and investigation, considers emotions generally in light of what has been discovered concerning grief, and poses new questions about the nature of emotions.