Death is a universal, and for humans so is the experience of grief that follows. This dissertation exams how Facebook users utilize the social media platform as they mourn their loved ones, process their grief, and support the grief of others. It explores how the experience of death and loss shapes the religious beliefs and actions of grievers and how social media impacts the grief experience of its users. It looks at the community that arises organically from mourning on the deceased’s Facebook Timeline and interrogates the social pressure to perform grief in such a public space. Finally, it asks how interacting with these virtual memorials impacts the mental and social health of participants.

Degree Date

Spring 2021

Document Type


Degree Name





Dr. Caroline Brettell

Second Advisor

Dr Nia Parson

Third Advisor

Dr. Jill DeTemple

Fourth Advisor

Dr. Phillip Frana

Subject Area




Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 4.0 License



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