The Corpse Project: phase I


  • Dr Sophie Churchill

    The Corpse Project

Project summary

The Corpse Project aims to improve options for the body after death, through multidisciplinary research and public engagement. Current burial and cremation practices are, generally, poor versions of ancient customs and fail to return the body to the natural cycle. The environmental implications of current and alternative practice are under-researched and poorly understood. This matters, given threats to soil health and pressures upon wider ecosystems. The UK seems particularly affected by a loss of rituals around, and acceptance of, the dead body, which have historically provided a way to mourn, and to be reconciled to death.

The Corpse Project will aim to establish whether human and ecological well-being can benefit from a more open and informed consideration of the corpse, through investigating public knowledge and attitudes to the treatment of the corpse and reviewing current literature and policy.