Elisabeth Kübler-Ross Biography


Elisabeth Kübler-Ross, Virginia Farm, 1987

Elisabeth Kübler-Ross, M.D. (July 8, 1926 – August 24, 2004) was a Swiss-born psychiatrist, a pioneer in Near-death studies and the author of the groundbreaking book On Death and Dying (1969), where she first discussed what is now known as the Kübler-Ross model. In this work she proposed the now famous Five Stages of Grief® as a pattern of adjustment. These Five Stages of Grief are: denial, anger, bargaining, depression, and acceptance. The five stages have since been adopted into The Kübler-Ross Change Curve™ by many corporations to train employees in change and loss. In 1970, she delivered the The Ingersoll Lectures on Human Immortality at the University of Harvard, on the theme, On Death and Dying. During the 1970’s and 1980’s she helped initiate more than 50 hospices around the world. In 1985 she initiated the world’s first prison hospice in Vacaville, California. She is a 2007 inductee into the National Women’s Hall of Fame.  She was the recipient of twenty honorary degrees and by July 1982 had taught, in her estimation, 125,000 students in death and dying courses in colleges, seminaries, medical schools, hospitals, and social-work institutions. Elisabeth retired in 1994 after an arsonist burnt her house down. She had been trying to start a AIDS hospice for abandoned babies. She spent the last nine years of her life living in Arizona near her son, Kenneth Ross. During these last years she wrote four more books including, “On Grief and Grieving.” She died in August, 2004 at assisted living center in Scottsdale, Arizona. She is the author of 24 books in 44 langauges. In 2005 her son Ken Ross, started the Elisabeth Kübler-Ross Foundation which continues her legacy in more than a dozen countries.

En Español »