In the first part of the paper, two different conceptions of the linkages between modernity and death are illustrated and compared: a) "denial of Death" hypothesis mostly advanced by authors as Ariès, Illich, and Bauman and b) "reciprocation of gift of life" hypothesis suggested by Talcott Parsons. Then, the author reviews the most important ethnographic sociological researches on this topic of the Sixties and the Seventies (Sudnow, Glaser and Strauss, Kübler-Ross) and their consequences on the social organization of dying. In particular, he examines the current main differences between Anglo-Saxon libertarian and autonomist model of caring dying people and traditional and paternalistic one. In the final part of the paper, the author suggests that more research on this topic is needed. He indicates three analytical objects for further research: a) systematic comparison between different organizational features of the two models (hospice vs. hospital); b) doctor-terminal patient interactions and their dilemmas; c) illness narratives told by patients and caregivers.