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Suicide in early China and the current West


Pridmore, S and Pridmore, W, Suicide in early China and the current West, Australasian Psychiatry, 26, (6) pp. 651-654. ISSN 1039-8562 (2018) [Refereed Article]

Copyright Statement

The Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Psychiatrists 2018

DOI: doi:10.1177/1039856218781013


Objectives: To characterize suicide in early China, as a means of extending knowledge of this behaviour.

Methods: We examined Romance of the Three Kingdoms, and collated and considered relevant details.

Results: In early China, loss of authority/status, loved ones and fortune were triggers for suicide. The expression of the intention to suicide, either by word or action, was observed and elicited a placating response. Less frequent, but nevertheless clearly recorded, were accounts of suicide completed to satisfy the wishes of others.

Conclusions: The suicide and related behaviour of early China shares many features with late Western societies, but one form (to satisfy the wishes of others) is currently undetected.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:suicide, mental disorder, predicament suicide, history
Research Division:Health Sciences
Research Group:Health services and systems
Research Field:Mental health services
Objective Division:Health
Objective Group:Public health (excl. specific population health)
Objective Field:Mental health
UTAS Author:Pridmore, S (Professor Saxby Pridmore)
UTAS Author:Pridmore, W (Dr William Pridmore)
ID Code:126772
Year Published:2018
Deposited By:Medicine
Deposited On:2018-06-22
Last Modified:2019-09-09

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