- LAST REVIEWED: 21 March 2017
- LAST MODIFIED: 29 October 2013
- DOI: 10.1093/obo/9780199828340-0116
- LAST REVIEWED: 21 March 2017
- LAST MODIFIED: 29 October 2013
- DOI: 10.1093/obo/9780199828340-0116
Suicidology is a modern movement that encompasses scholarly work on suicide, intervention, and prevention efforts, as well as advocacy. Although non-scholarly efforts are an essential part of the movement, scholarly work will be the exclusive focus of this bibliography. Historically, suicide has been discussed as a philosophical and sociological topic, and even in ancient times was discussed as a medical topic. Suicide is now studied within the domains of psychiatry, psychology, sociology, and related disciplines. Interdisciplinary research on biological correlates of suicide represents an emerging focus. The major correlates of suicide include mental disorders, other psychological and behavioral issues, and cultural factors. The largest portion of early 21st century scholarly work on suicide can be viewed as falling into two categories: risk assessment/treatment and theory.
As discussed in Minois 2001, suicide has been a part of society since early civilizations. Most of the scholarly work on suicide has been much more recent, however. Papadimitriou, et al. 2007 discusses views on suicide from Antiquity. Hume 2004 is a treatise (originally published in 1783) on the ethics of suicide and represents an early philosophical work on suicide. Early scientific work on suicide includes Morselli 1882, an early scientific treatise of suicide, and Durkheim 1951, which is a sociological theory of suicide (originally published in 1897), with some empirical work still being done on his theory even today. In the United States, Shneidman and Farberow 1957 is an informative resource for the historical founding of crisis centers. Spencer-Thomas and Jahn 2012 discusses the history of suicide research, prevention, and major theories of suicide. Supiano 2012 discusses efforts to assist those who have lost loved ones to suicide. Heron 2012 is a resource for recent statistics on suicide in the United States.
Durkheim, Emile. 1951. Suicide: A study in sociology. New York: Free Press.
Originally published in 1897. Durkheim posited two societal-level variables, integration and regulation, and discussed subtypes of suicide as being variants of the two variables. Egoistic suicide and altruistic suicide were conceptualized as being due to a lack of or excess of integration (respectively). Anomic suicide and fatalistic suicide resulted from under—or over—regulation (respectively).
Heron, Melonie. 2012. Deaths: Leading causes for 2009. National Vital Statistics Reports 61:1–96.
Provides a number of statistics about suicide and is an excellent resource for facts about suicide in the United States. It is worthwhile to note that this report is provided annually, although the data analyzed is approximately three years behind the publication date.
Hume, David. 2004. Essays on suicide and the immortality of the soul. Whitefish, MT: Kessinger.
Originally published in 1783. These philosophical essays on suicide were initially printed with a larger collection of essays and were highly controversial at the time. The essays proved so controversial, in fact, that they were removed from their printed copies.
Minois, Georges. 2001. History of suicide: Voluntary death in Western culture. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins Univ. Press.
This study of the cultural aspects of suicide ranges from ancient Greek and Roman societies through the Renaissance, Enlightenment, and Romantic periods. The author views the transition of suicide from a heroic to a stigmatized act as a by-product of Christian influences and cites a variety of historical texts.
Morselli, Enrico. 1882. Suicide: An essay on comparative moral statistics. New York: D. Appleton.
Morselli’s treatise is considered to be one of the earliest scientific attempts at understanding suicide. His work predates Durkheim’s and involved major advances in methodology and theory beyond any of the (primarily philosophical) work that predated it. Text available online.
Papadimitriou, John, Panayiotis Skiadas, Constantinos Mavrantonis, Vassilis Polimeropoulos, Dimitris Papadimitriou, and Kyriaki Papacostas. 2007. Euthanasia and suicide in Antiquity: Viewpoint of the dramatists and philosophers. Journal of the Royal Society of Medicine 100:25–28.
Examines historical views on euthanasia and suicide over the past 3,000 years. Philosophical views from Ancient Greece are a primary focus. Philosophical opposition to suicide by Plato, Aristotle, and others is discussed.
Shneidman, Edwin, and Norman Farberow, eds. 1957. Clues to suicide. New York: McGraw-Hill.
This study of suicide notes includes an in-depth analysis of the notes with contributions from other authors.
Spencer-Thomas, Sally, and Danielle Jahn. 2012. Tracking a movement: U.S. milestones in suicide prevention. Suicide and Life Threatening Behavior 42:78–85.
Examines the major scholarly influences with regard to the relatively short history of suicidology in the United States. The authors rank the theories of Shneidman, Durkheim, and Joiner as the most influential theoretical frameworks for the scientific study of suicide.
Supiano, Katherine. 2012. Sense-making in suicide survivorship: A qualitative study of the effect of grief support group participation. Journal of Loss and Trauma 17:489–507.
A portion of the suicidology movement focuses on providing support for survivors of suicide (i.e., those who have lost a loved one to suicide). Further resources on this topic are available at suicidology.org. Because these efforts are primarily advocacy and support-group based (rather than scholarly) this topic is not discussed in further depth in this bibliography.
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- Abnormal Psychology
- Action Research
- Addictive Behavior
- Affective Forecasting
- Allport, Gordon
- Alzheimer’s Disease
- Animal Behavior
- Animal Learning
- Anxiety Disorders
- Art and Aesthetics, Psychology of
- Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) In Adults
- Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) in Childre...
- Attraction in Close Relationships
- Attribution Theory
- Authoritarian Personality
- Behavior Therapy, Rational Emotive
- Behavioral Economics
- Behavioral Genetics
- Bereavement and Grief
- Biological Psychology
- Birth Order
- Body Image in Men and Women
- Bystander Effect
- Clinical Neuropsychology
- Clinical Psychology
- Cognitive Consistency Theories
- Cognitive Dissonance Theory
- Cognitive Neuroscience
- Communication, Nonverbal Cues and
- Comparative Psychology
- Conformity, Compliance, and Obedience
- Coping Processes
- Counseling Psychology
- Critical Thinking
- Cross-Cultural Psychology
- Cultural Psychology
- Death and Dying
- Deceiving and Detecting Deceit
- Defensive Processes
- Depressive Disorders
- Development, Prenatal
- Developmental Psychology (Cognitive)
- Developmental Psychology (Social)
- Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM...
- Dissociative Disorders
- Drugs and Behavior
- Eating Disorders
- Ecological Psychology
- Educational Settings, Assessment of Thinking in
- Embodiment and Embodied Cognition
- Emerging Adulthood
- Emotional Intelligence
- Environmental Neuroscience and Environmental Psychology
- Ethics in Psychological Practice
- Evolutionary Psychology
- Eyewitness Testimony
- Factor Analysis
- Festinger, Leon
- Five-Factor Model of Personality
- Flynn Effect, The
- Friendships, Children's
- Fundamental Attribution Error/Correspondence Bias
- Gambler's Fallacy
- Game Theory and Psychology
- Health Psychology
- Heuristics and Biases
- History of Psychology
- Human Factors
- Implicit Association Test (IAT)
- Industrial and Organizational Psychology
- Intercultural Psychology
- Intergroup Conflict
- International Classification of Diseases and Related Healt...
- International Psychology
- Interviewing in Forensic Settings
- Intimate Partner Violence, Psychological Perspectives on
- Item Response Theory
- Law, Psychology and
- Learned Helplessness
- Learning versus Performance
- LGBTQ+ Romantic Relationships
- Lie Detection in a Forensic Context
- Life-Span Development
- Locus of Control
- Meaning in Life
- Mechanisms and Processes of Peer Contagion
- Memories, Autobiographical
- Memories, Flashbulb
- Memories, Repressed and Recovered
- Memory, Human
- Memory, Implicit versus Explicit
- Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory (MMPI)
- Moral Development
- Moral Psychology
- Moral Reasoning
- Neuroscience of Associative Learning
- Obsessive-Complusive Disorder (OCD)
- Operant Conditioning
- Optimism and Pessimism
- Organizational Justice
- Parenting Stress
- Path Models
- Peace Psychology
- Perception, Person
- Personality Disorders
- Personality Psychology
- Placebo Effects in Psychology
- Positive Psychology
- Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)
- Prejudice and Stereotyping
- Prisoner's Dilemma
- Prosocial Behavior
- Prosocial Spending and Well-Being
- Psychology, Political
- Psychophysics, Visual
- Psychotic Disorders
- Reasoning, Counterfactual
- Rehabilitation Psychology
- Religion, Psychology and
- Research Methods
- Risk Taking
- Schizophrenic Disorders
- School Psychology
- Self, Gender and
- Self, Psychology of the
- Self-Regulation in Educational Settings
- Sensation Seeking
- Sex and Gender
- Sexual Minority Parenting
- Sexual Orientation
- Single People
- Skinner, B.F.
- Sleep and Dreaming
- Small Groups
- Social Class and Social Status
- Social Cognition
- Social Neuroscience
- Social Touch and Massage Therapy Research
- Somatoform Disorders
- Sports Psychology
- Stereotype Threat
- Subjective Wellbeing Homeostasis
- Teaching of Psychology
- Terror Management Theory
- Testing and Assessment
- Theory of Mind
- Therapies, Person-Centered
- Therapy, Cognitive-Behavioral
- Thinking Skills in Educational Settings
- Time Perception
- Trait Perspective
- Twin Studies
- Type A Behavior Pattern (Coronary Prone Personality)
- Women and Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM...
- Women, Psychology of