As the macabre and gruesome imagery accompanying thoughts of death illuminate, the figure of death is often something that people want to avoid or circumvent. While this may produce religious and spiritual responses, it is also evident that representations of “undeath” or the “undead” or bypassing death. These representations or traditions are important to understanding cultural approaches to dying and mourning. Black magic, witchcraft, and spiritualism often tell tales of bringing loved ones back from the dead or of them speaking beyond the grave. 

"Thy Son Liveth"
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(Utah State University, Merrill-Cazier Library, Special Collections & Archives, Call Number BOOK COLL 10 L2-61.)

Thy Son Liveth

The emotions and pain surrounding war and death often illicit paranormal responses. This 1918 book by children’s author Grace Duffie Boylan, first published anonymously, tells the story of how Boylan’s son, after dying on a battlefield in France during the First World War, returned from death and communicated via Morse code and automatic writing.