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on death

I just read about a fellow book reader who died recently. I did not know her but she was one of my fellow "challenge" readers. I belong to a notable books challenge blog, in which I challenge myself to read books from several notable books lists and then review them in the blog.

There is much discussion about her and how to remember her. Suggestions to plant trees, to donate to the library she frequented, to continue her blogs.

I have long wondered what happens to this journal when I die? It is only a lifetime membership, after all! Does that mean it dies when I do? I assume that it does. I will be looking at the different ways I can copy it to another blog format - after all, my words are precious and not to be left lightly behind.

Should we create trusts, offering our blogs to others when we die? Or just let them fade away, quickly or slowly?



Dec. 4th, 2008 05:17 pm (UTC)
I have done a bit of genealogy research; and if you have as well, you are probably aware that after you get past the great-grandparent level, there is almost no information available about that person except for the bare demographics-- name; birthplace; birth, marriage (if any), and death dates; children's names/birth dates (if any); place of death.

If you're lucky, you may have a word or two about the person's profession and/or any particularly notable skills or avocations (he was a dairy farmer; she was known as an excellent seamstress...)

I have often looked at those stark names and dates on my family tree chart and wondered about those people, my ancestors. How did they spend each day? What were their opinions/feelings regarding the "current events" of their times? What were their hopes and dreams and passions? What kinds of things were they really good at and really bad at? Who was smart, who was dumb, who was skinny, who was fat? What were their favorite times of the year and favorite meals and colors? From the fundamental to the trivial--EVERYTHING!

My mother was born in Lithuania, so the information I have about her side of the family is even scarcer than that of my U.S.-born father. I don't even have pictures of her parents' parents.

The advantage of our generation going forward is that we have things like this-- the widespread (nearly universal) capability to write and publish all of these things about ourselves, and to preserve them in formats that could theoretically last forever.

Can you imagine if your great-great-great grandmother had a digital camera and an online blog? Wouldn't that be SO COOL to read???

So, yeah-- let your blog live forever :)

P.S.-- I am not sure if I have ever commented on your LJ before, but I really adore your writing!
Dec. 4th, 2008 05:49 pm (UTC)
Thank you for your nice comments! I do not think you have commented here before.

I have read a bit that my grandmother wrote. She wrote some stories, some poetry. I didn't read it until long after she died and I am not sure I would have been open enough to discuss it when she was alive, as I was younger and callow and all that then.

Some of what she wrote has made me think about her very differently, to want to know more. So yes, i would love it if she left more behind. I am lucky she did as much as she did.

I'll find a way to KEEP THE BLOG ALIVE!


Judith Lautner
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