Death is one of the key concepts present in the traditional image of the world. It means an end and is related to the process of wearing out and losing original properties. In folk anthropology, death is understood in terms of the transition from the earth world to the land of the dead, as the beginning of eternal existence. Death is one of the rites of passage and as such is correlated with other crucial moments of human existence, mainly with birth and marriage. Death is a common motif present in various genres of folklore. Researchers are interested in death predominantly because of its belief- and ritual-related image. The aim of the article is to analyse depictions of death in folk fablesand other kinds of prose works. Special emphasis is placed on the personifi cation of death as well as on its genesis and ontological status. The article also deals with the idea of death understood as both an event and a process, and it addresses death seen as a transcendental and unmaterialised force which determines a person’s life against his or her will.
The article deals with the issue of illness and suffering in Carmelite sermons of the 17th–18th centuries. The question of the origin of suffering is considered along with the role of God’s mercy and justice in the preaching discourse about the rightness and purposefulness of suffering of the human being. In addition, an analysis of the views of preachers about topics related to passing away and the attitude they advocate in the face of death is included.
In the present article, the author attempts to solve the paradox hidden in the declaration pronounced by Bogusław Wolniewicz who referred to himself as a ‘Non-Confessional Roman Catholic.’ First, the author analyses (1) the way Wolniewicz understood the sources of religion, and then, (2) how he defined the minimum of Christianity. (3) The author investigates whether it is possible to reconcile his acceptance of euthanasia with the teaching of the Church, and finally, (4) the author focuses on his evangelical aesthetics. By way of conclusion the study traces on similarities between the tychistic rationalism and Christianity.
The author analyses problems of disease, dying, and death addressed in a play by Margaret Edson entitled Wit. Special attention is paid to the structure of meta-theatre and the function of wit in the play. The author investigates limitations of reason in the approach adopted by the doctors who take care of Vivian Bearing, and who subject her to an excruciating experiment in order to achieve a potential research success. She also discusses the protagonist’s attitude to literary works, dealing with her own disease, to other people and to God. This offers an opportunity to ruminate on the exact meaning of irretrievable loss involved in suffering. She also concentrates on the attitude of the nurse who – thanks to her emotional intelligence and empathy – accompanies Vivian on her way to death.
Introduction: Clostridium difficile (C. difficile) is a Gram-positive, anaerobic rod-shaped bacteria, widely spread in the human environment. In the last decade, the frequency and severity of Clostridium difficile infection (CDI) have been increasing, making this particular disease one of the most significant nosocomial infections. The aim of our study was an analysis of CDI risk factors, its course and consequences. Materials and Methods: Medical documentation of the patients treated for CDI in the University Hospital in Cracow and St Anne’s Hospital in Miechów has been analysed. The analysis focused on epidemiological data, blood parameters, comorbidities, recurrence rate, and complication rate (deaths included). As part of risk factors analysis, antibiotic use or hospitalisation in a period of 3 months before the episode of infection was considered relevant. Blood tests have been performed using routinely employed, standard methods. Results: We evaluated data of 168 people infected with C. difficile, out of which there were 102 women (61%) and 66 men (39%). Th e median age of the patients was 74 years for the entire population with 76 years for women and 71 years for male patients. One hundred thirteen people (67%) had been previously hospitalised, and 5 person was a pensioner of a nursing home. 99 people (59%) were treated with antibiotics within 3 months before the first episode of infection. An average length of the hospital stay because of CDI was 11 days. One hundred thirty persons (77%) experienced only 1 episode whereas 38 people (23%) had more than 1 episode of infection. The person with the largest number of recurrences had 9 of them. Conclusions: The development of CDI is an increasing problem in a group of hospitalised persons, particularly of an old age. The general use of beta-lactam antibiotics is the cause of a larger number of infections with C. diffi cile. Vast majority of patients have had at least one typical risk factor of CDI development.