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On 04/19/01 09:13, Vincent Campbell said this-
>is in relation to the mediation part of the issue- that mediated suicide
>(e.g. press reports, or TV dramatisations) lead to suicides in previously
One wonders if non-suicidal people _ever_ commit suicide? It seems
impossible- it is certainly unlogical semantically.
Japan has a long and traditional culture of suicide, and there is an
'honor' code among european males to remove themselves from disgrace in
this fashion. The typical last scene with the off-stage gunshot....
Places of high expectation, graduate schools, etc., have long histories
of student suicides, until recently actively suppressed in the media (at
least at Harvard and at MIT), but, continuing and constant with a
reliable frequency nonetheless.
Contagion itself, in this sort of behavior changing context, might be
suspect. It is one thing to get someone to change their shirt color, and
quite another to get them to change their spots, or remove them....
When I was in high school there were two suicides I knew about in my
small New England town, both male, both possibly because of sexual
identity issues. I was unaware of the sexuality side of both cases, even
though I was acquainted with one of them (it's no secret that the USA in
the late 50's/early 60's was a hotbed of repression, but, also, I was
very, very, naive as well as being somehow oblivious), but I do remember
thinking that both of them were blinking idiots to kill themselves, and I
was surprised at the strength of my distaste, but I also knew not to
voice this to anyone else, especially those friends who were distressed
and hurt. I wrote a poem at the time about the uselessness of this choice.
And to this day, I can only relate to the choice of suicide in a dramatic
or intellectual way- it has never been one of the choices I've offered
myself. It would seem to me, that exposure to suicidal types would only
make my distaste of their actions more full.
So, I'd perhaps be a bad experimental subject in any of these studies....
Or maybe not. One does need all extremes of data.
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