Department of Social & Policy Sciences

Dr Christine Valentine

Research Associate and Teaching Fellow in sociology, with expertise in social and cultural aspects of grief and bereavement

Christine Valentine

Research Associate BA, PGDip, MRes, HEA Fellowship, PhD

3 East 3.11
Tel: +44 (0) 1225 38 3885

PhD supervision


  • Chao Fang, ‘Motivation in Bereavement: Comparing China, Japan and the UK.


  • Revd Dr Paul Fitzpatrick, ‘Offerings at the Wall: An exploration of the Artefacts at the Vietnam Veterans War Memorial, Washington’, University of Cardiff.
  • Member of supervision team for Hong Chen, A study of the lived experience of hope in relation in older people with advanced cancer in relation to end of life care in different settings, the Open University.
PhD Examining
  • Bereavement after parental suicide: transcending chaos and disorder, by Dr Caroline Simone, University of Derby, July 2010;
  • The Grief of Nations: An analysis of how nations behave in the wake of loss, by Ann Malamah-Thomas, University of Bath, Nov 2011 (Internal examiner and Chair).
  • Bereaved Individuals’ Experience of the Physical Aspect at the Moment of Death, by Dr Lisa Dvorjetz, City University, June 2014;
  • Death Talk and Bereavement: Icelandic Men and Widowers, by Dr Bragi Skulason, University of Iceland, June 2014;
  • The Management of Death and Loss in Primary Schools, by Lorna Gray, University of Chichester, July 2016;
  • Beyond Bereavement: Is close kinship enough: An exploration of bereavement experiences and support in Gypsy and Traveller families, by Carol Rogers, Buckingham New University of September 2016;
  • Exploring the concept of receptivity to bereavement support: Implications for palliative care services in rural, regional and remote Western Australia, by Philippa Blackburn, University of Notre Dame, Australia, March 2017;
  • Parental Grief After Infant Loss, by Ester Holte Kofod, University of Aalborg, Denmark, June 2018.


Christine holds a PhD in sociology from the University of Bath on the social-cultural shaping of grief and bereavement, including the role of continuing relationships between the living and the dead. The findings are published in the book Bereavement Narratives: Continuing Bonds in the 21st Century.

She has undertaken further bereavement research in Tokyo, Japan, to explore how bereaved Japanese people negotiate traditional ancestral ideas in a secular, post-industrial context. Findings from both UK and Japanese studies have been published in various articles and edited collections (see publications list).

Working with Dr Kate Woodthorpe and Dr Hannah Rumble, on a project sponsored by Axa Sun Life Direct, Christine has examined systems of funeral welfare for people on low income both nationally and internationally. Funding from the HEIF supported dissemination of the research through conference presentations and academic articles.

Christine secured ESRC funding from 2012-2015 for the first large-scale qualitative study of family members and individuals bereaved as a result of a drug or alcohol-related death. Based in the Centre for Death and Society collaborating with the University of Stirling, the research team of 9 members, including one bereaved family member, worked with bereaved people and practitioners to develop practitioner guidelines to improve how those bereaved by substance use are treated by services. The book based on the research, 'Families Bereaved by Alcohol or Drugs', was published in 2017.

Christine is currently conducting a project on the impact of bereavement on university students, which aims to improve how bereaved students are supported to continue their studies.

Christine is a member of the Centre for Death and Society.

Research interests

  • Individual, social, cultural and policy aspects of bereavement
  • Disadvantaged groups of bereaved people
  • Death policies and practices in cross-cultural comparison
  • Methodological and ethical challenges of death-related research


Read publications by Christine Valentine

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