The West has always looked at death in terms of sadness and mourning. Outside of our culture, death can be seen as a transition far removed from the dramatic connotations of heaven and hell, good and bad, or sorrow and joy. That is why rituals and cemeteries can be so colourful and diverse. Chichicastenango in Guatemala is a good example. Every colour represents a different loss: turquoise for a mother, light blue for a child, yellow for the elderly and white for a father. This results in a space that couldn’t be more attractive to westerners.

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