Tessa Lorant Warburg

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Diary of a Dying Man
Winner of the OddFellows Social Concern Book Award 1989


Jeremy Warburg died of cancer in the summer of 1986. This book is based on his own account of the final months of his life. It is written in the manner of a day-to-day personal diary, in which the dying man records his thoughts and feelings.


The diary describes the early period of his illness, during which Jeremy experiments with a Japanese cancer-prevention diet, and his final decline, as well as the strains and stresses on his immediate family. The book also explores the shortcomings in the attitudes of the medical profession towards the terminally ill, notably its reluctance to face squarely the fact of death. This can cause much distress to patients and those close to them. In the light of such deficiencies, the importance of the hospice movement — in conjunction, of course, with essential medical aid — is unequivocal. Yet these pages also show the NationalHealth Service at its best, in terms of its practical support of the patient and his relatives, assistance which in some ways remains unmatched by the private sector.


Some comments at the time of publication:

‘Dying with Jeremy, we face our own death; and thus learn more about the care of the dying.’ — Reverent Richard Rutt, Bishop of Leicester 1979—1990


‘Today our “caring” society sees death as an inadmissible evil. A Voice at Twilight will be a great comfort and encouragement to fellow sufferers under the sentence of death from an incurable disease, whose life will be cut short. It will help them to endure their last months with courage and hope.’ — Malcolm Muggeridge


‘I feel privileged to share the Diary entries, sometimes with frustration and pain, often with humour and joy. This is an important book, perhaps for the awareness of others who find themselves in this position, but especially for my fellow professionals.’ — Senior Nurse, Dorothy House Foundation Hospice, Bath




Copyright © Tessa Lorant Warburg 2011