Top Ten Posts

    Here's a list of my personal favourite ten posts so far. They're in no specific order and there's no exact criteria for why I chose these particular posts other than if I liked them.


Research Participants Needed - reminder

Surveys are now CLOSED and interviews are no longer being conducted, thank you to those who participated!

HREA Panel B approval no. 13 031

The Public & Private Domains of Everyday Life: Social Sanitation & Australian Understandings of the Funeral Industry 

    I am looking for people to participate in my honours project!  This project seeks to develop a better understanding of our society through the modern Australian funeral industry.

    To do this I will need people to participate in interviews.  There are two types of participants I am after; those who have direct experience working in the funeral industry (funeral staff), and others with no experience working in the industry (the general public).  This project is part of honours in anthropology at the University of New South Wales and has received ethics approval (approval no. 13 031) from HREA Panel B at UNSW.

If you, or someone you know, is interested then contact me: 
Feel free to contact me if you have any questions or concerns.

Selection Criteria (for funeral participants):
  • Currently based in Sydney.
  • Work within the funeral industry, past or present.  This can include any role with direct funeral experience.  Such as an undertaker, crematorium staff, transfer crew, mortician, gravedigger, celebrants, and so on.  You do not need to be directly employed by a funeral company as long as you have direct experience working within the funeral industry in some capacity.
  • Aged 18 to 70.
  • Potential participants who have experienced a loss of a family member or friend within the last 24 months will be excluded.

Selection Criteria (for non-funeral participants):
  • Currently based in Sydney.
  • Very little to no direct experience with funeral industry procedures.  As in, never employed by a funeral company.
  • Aged 21 to 60.
  • Potential participants who have experienced a loss of a family member or friend within the last 24 months will be excluded.

Other Important Information:
  • All interviews will be conducted between the 25th of June and 30th of August.
  • Interviews will last 30 minutes.
  • Voice recordings and written notes will be taken, no videos or photos will be taken.
  • Interviews are face-to-face and semi-structured.  This means there will be a set of open ended questions which the participant can direct.
  • It should be noted, this project is separate from the blog and its own project done through the University of New South Wales (UNSW).

If you, or someone you know, is interested then contact me: 
Feel free to contact me if you have any questions or concerns.

    There is a copied of the project flyer below which has more information about the project.  You are welcome to share this flyer (and post) with anyone who might be interested in participating.

Funeral Industry Study
Hello, my name is Peter Minucos, and I am conducting a study exploring perceptions of the funeral industry in Sydney. This study will be looking at the public and private aspects of what happens after death and people’s attitudes and understandings of the industry. 

This study is for the purposes of my Honours research project in Sociology and Anthropology at the University of New South Wales, and this research has received ethics approval (approval no. 13 031) from HREA Panel B at UNSW. Through this study I hope to gain a better understanding of ‘social sanitation’ within society, how undesirable processes are removed from the public. I also hope to learn more about the funeral industry itself, from how it operates to why it works the way it does. 

I am seeking people and organisations willing to participate in the project and discuss their views on this topic. 

Anyone interested in the funeral industry or this topic is free to participate. I am seeking anyone who might have experience relating to the funeral industry, such as having attended a funeral, or work in a funeral company. But I am also looking for anyone curious in the funeral industry. The interviews should go for no longer than 30 minutes, and there will be no compensation from participation, although it will be greatly appreciated! 

If you are interested in participating please contact me with the information provided below OR if you know someone who may be interested please feel free to pass on this flyer. If you are interested you can contact me for more information on how you can participate to this research. 

I can be contacted on the following:
Email: Peter Minucos at theothersideoffunerals@gmail.com 
Or you can contact my research supervisor, Dr. Amanda Kearney.

Thank you so much for your time and consideration! 

Thank you to all those who have participated and are interested in participating!!



Will Baby Boomers Significantly Impact the Funeral Industry?

    The baby boomers are considered somewhat of a prized commodity by many within the funeral industry. Essentially the theory is that over the next few years there will be a growth of deaths as the boby boomers die. Hence current marketing is attempting to tap into this desirable market.

    Yet I question this notion, maybe the baby boomer generation will push death rates up, but will it really be a notable rise?  In this post I explore the rising deaths of baby boomers and whether this might be as significant for the funeral industry as assumed.


PHD Comics Thesis Outline

    The comic PHD Comics is a very accurate (and amusing) summary of many university experiences.  Their recent summary of a thesis chapter outline is surprisingly accurate, with a few minor changes I could say this is my honours thesis (although I only plan to have six chapters).

    This is actually quite a good chapter outline in a way, simple and to the point.



Rookwood Rail Line

    I accidentally found this interesting post on the blog Past/Lives about the history of the rail line at Rookwood.  It's actually one of the better sources of information on this that I have come across so far.

    So check it out via the link below, it has a lot of good photos and information not found elsewhere:




Changing Society & Technology

    I am very busy lately so I don't have time to write a post. Instead I will quickly discuss something which continues to come up every now and then, and while not directly about the funeral industry iy relates to the industry.

   People comment about the changing nature of society, specifically how technology is making us less social.  To me this is a simplistic and incorrect argument; nothing has changed much really.  This is an old issue that has been brought up time and time again, as the web comic xkcd so nicely demonstrates.  You can view the comic in full below.


Mortuary Station

    Here's some photos of Mortuary Station in the CBD from the rail lines. Currently Mortuary Station is  closed to the public, as it is on an active rail line and under renovation. But if you catch the right train you can get some pretty close photos of it, some other lines get even closer than this.


The Process - On the funeral

    Recently I came across an old post which I never published, simply forgot about it. It might not be completely accurate, or even up to date. This was written just over a year ago and forgotten about.

    Not long ago I wrote about how the body makes it from the site of death to the hearse for the funeral.  This is my follow up post on what happens once the coffin in loaded into the hearse.  Once again I focus on the coffin and its immediate preparations.  There is a lot of paperwork and other things going on at the same time which I do not cover.  Yet this time I talk more about the staff and how they go about the job.  This is so you can understand the feel of it better.

    Anyway, here's what happens after the coffin is loaded into the hearse.


Honours Timetable

    As some might have noticed my posting has decreased lately. This is due to the tight honours timetable. Right now is my midyear review, and it's a busy process anyway. I am hoping to start the fieldwork soon, which should be good fun!

    On that note, if anyone is interested in participating in the study you can email me: