[lit-ideas] Suicide in Europe

  • From: "Lawrence Helm" <lawrencehelm@xxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • To: <lit-ideas@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Sat, 20 Nov 2010 14:28:34 -0800

Thornton published his book in 2007.  His references on the subject of
suicide are 
"European suicide rates: World Health Organization, Suicide Prevention in
Europe (2002), 
"American: National Institute for Mental Health, In Harms Wary: Suicide in
America (2003)."
Thornton probably didn't have the 2004 edition of WHO's book on suicide when
he wrote his own book.  Interestingly, WHO's reputation doesn't seem
Of course Thornton's "suicide" has most to do with the reduction of the
production of children and the importation of immigrants to make up the
short fall so the European elderly can continue their retirement
entitlements.   A lot that is in his book seems a rehashing of material I've
read elsewhere.  My own tangent was based more on books I read about Europe
(including those by Tony Judt) after World War II than Thornton's reference
to actual suicide, that is, I had been thinking about that for some time.
Why the West has bifurcated, Western Europe one way and America (or
Anglo-America?) another is something I have an ongoing interest in.
From: lit-ideas-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx [mailto:lit-ideas-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx]
On Behalf Of Judith Evans
Sent: Friday, November 19, 2010 11:50 AM
To: lit-ideas@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
Subject: [lit-ideas] Re: Europe, World War II, Suicide and Jason Bourne

I am not sure what the various figures actually measure, Lawrence, but for
what it's worth, reported/recorded suicide rates in European countries are
not uniformly higher than in the USA.  Also I don't know what Thornton's
sources are, but mine say Luxemburg's figures are more or less identical to
the USA's.  That leaves us, pending further investigation,  with four
European countries with higher suicide rates than those of the US and of
other European countries.

more importantly, Thornton says (I copy the quotation from your blog)

"in many European countries, suicide is the second leading cause of death,
after accidents,"

in fact, it's the second leading cause of death, *disease apart*, **among
teenagers** in Europe (according to a WHO report of 2004).  (This teenage
suicide rate varies greatly across Europe.)

That's worrying but doesn't really support your overall thesis.

Judy Evans, Cardiff, UK

 and France's suicide rate is about twice that of the United States', as

--- On Fri, 19/11/10, Lawrence Helm <lawrencehelm@xxxxxxxxxxxxxx> wrote:

From: Lawrence Helm <lawrencehelm@xxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
Subject: [lit-ideas] Europe, World War II, Suicide and Jason Bourne
To: "Lit-Ideas" <Lit-Ideas@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
Date: Friday, 19 November, 2010, 18:08

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