1st Edition

An Analysis of Emile Durkheim's On Suicide





ISBN 9781912127252
Published July 5, 2017 by Macat Library
96 Pages

USD $8.95

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Book Description

Emile Durkheim’s 1897 On Suicide is widely recognized as one of the foundational classic texts of sociology. It is also one that shows the degree to which strong interpretative skills can often provide the bedrock for high-level analysis.

Durkheim's aim was to analyse the nature of suicide in the context of society itself – examining it not just as an individual decision, but one in which different social factors played important roles. In order to do this, it was vital that he both define and classify suicide into subtypes – kinds of suicide with different causal factors at play. From his research, Durkheim identifed four broad types of suicide: egoistic (from a sense of not-belonging), altruistic (from a sense that group goals far outweigh individual well-being), anomic (from lack of moral or social direction), and fatalistic (in response to excessive discipline or oppression). These definitions opened the way for Durkheim to pursue a close social analysis examining how each type related to different social contexts.

While his study is in certain ways dated, it remains classic precisely because it helped define the methodology of sociology itself – in which interpretative skills remain central.

Table of Contents

Ways in to the text 

Who was Émile Durkheim? 

What does On Suicide Say? 

Why does On Suicide Matter? 

Section 1: Influences 

Module 1: The Author and the Historical Context 

Module 2: Academic Context 

Module 3: The Problem 

Module 4: The Author's Contribution 

Section 2: Ideas 

Module 5: Main Ideas 

Module 6: Secondary Ideas 

Module 7: Achievement 

Module 8: Place in the Author's Work 

Section 3: Impact 

Module 9: The First Responses 

Module 10: The Evolving Debate 

Module 11: Impact and Influence Today 

Module 12: Where Next? 

Glossary of Terms 

People Mentioned in the Text 

Works Cited

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Author(s)

Biography

Robert Easthope holds an MSc in race and postcolonial studies from the London School of Economics.