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In China, professional mourners spice up funerals FEATURE 06/19/2011

Sunday, June 19, 2011

In China, professional mourners spice up funerals

FEATURE

06/19/2011
CHONGQING — Hu Xinglian kneels before the corpse of Liang Zhicai and, with one hand on his metal coffin, lets out a piercing wail. But Hu is not at all grief-stricken — she is a professional mourner.

In parts of China, where rural pre-burial rituals are still observed, mourners known as “kusangren” are hired to guarantee that a funeral is a spectacle in grief. And the 53-year-old Hu is up to the task.

She comes to work with a full sound-system, multi-colour spotlights and the six members of her band, “The Orchestra of the Star and River of Chongqing.”

Her job offers a study in contrasts between modern living and tradition in the southwestern province-sized municipality, home to more than 30 million people and a symbol of the rapid urbanization seen across China..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/commentary/20110619com8.html

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