SORROW, GRIEF AND BEREAVEMENT IN OLD AND MODERN POLISH LANGUAGE AND CULTURE

E. Skorupska-Raczyńska, D. Skrocka

Abstract


Human beings expect their reality to provide balance in their lives and the lives of their loved ones, aff ording them dignity to experience painful feelings of grief, sorrow and bereavement. These are expressed and described with lexical choices which shed light on the emotions experienced by sensitive and responsible people, especially those responsible for others, who do not share their feelings because they do not want to do it, are not allowed to do it, or simply are not able to do it. The feelings of sorrow, grief and bereavement have their own weight, depth, fl avour, etc. They remain, however, a very personal and intimate experience, concealed and hidden deep at the bottom of the heart. The linguistic analyses of the words żal, żałość and żałoba [sorrow, grief and bereavement] presented in the paper show that there is a great need to express diffi - cult and painful feelings. Although people of today are expected to hide the fact they are in pain, the verbalisation of their suffering turns out to be necessary to heal the wounded psyche of those experiencing loss and grief following a death. The words to describe the emotions they are feeling and the support of witnesses of their suff ering are the foundations for a healthy grieving process. Hiding your grief or trying not to express your sorrow and bereavement steal away the joy of life and hinder the recovery and growth that follow loss.

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