Sociology, suicide, & Emile Durkheim

Sociology, suicide, & Emile Durkheim - Sociology...

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Sociology, suicide, & Emile Durkheim Tuesday, March 20, 2012 10:59 AM Suicide - CDC Data - before the recession o Pop (2007): about 300 million ppl o # of suicides: little under 35,000 But some of these are unreported, some are ruled an accident o Suicide rate: about 11 per 100,000 o 3rd leading cause of death among 15-24 yr olds, after accidents and homicide o Fatal car crashes: about 44,000 As gas prices go up, number of fatal car crashes go down b/c ppl drive slower/don't drive as much Theory o Is an answer to "why or "how" question o Why do ppl kill themselves? Clinical depression, too much stress, money issues, no other option Unhappiness Theory of Suicide o Stresses internal state of mind You're stressed out on an individ level o The more unhappy people are, the more likely they are to commit suicide o Results (who is more likely to commit suicide?) Males more than females out of 100,000 Whites more than blacks out of 100,000 for both female and male African American females have the lowest suicide rate…so according to theory, they should be the happiest o Happiness levels: theory & evidence mismatch No statistically significant differences between men and women Whites significantly more likely to say "very happy" than African Americans Why? Race factor…overall better quality of life White men happier than AA males White women happier than AA femalesj College degree -> likely to be "very happy" **The unhappiness theory cannot explain rates of suicide among groups -> only works for individ Emile Durkheim o Sociology is a science Founding father, 1880s & 1890s Social thought dominated by philosophers, theologians -> answers to how society works General rise of science as way of thinking about the social world - things behind how society works is amendable to science.
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