Suicide is increasingly understood and predicted as an intersection of biological, psychological, cognitive, and sociocultural factors. We have some basic knowledge of these factors and how they interact, but presently we know very little about how culture can play a role as a variable that influences suicide. Suicide Among Racial and Ethnic Minority Groups will go a long way towards filling that gap by pulling together cutting edge empirical research from general cultural diversity literature and applying it to suicide assessment, treatment, and prevention theory and practice. By looking outside of the limited cross-cultural studies done within suicidal populations, the contributors – all established experts in both multicultural counseling and suicidology – expand the available empirical literature base in order to provide a deeper look into how culture can act as an important catalyst in suicidal intentions.
Following theoretical overviews, the text focuses on six broad ethic groups classified in the literature (African American, American Indian, Asian American, European American, Hawaiian & Pacific Islander, and Hispanic), with a main chapter devoted to each, relating each culture to suicide research, highlighting specific variables within the culture that can influence suicide, and presenting appropriate treatment considerations. A final section of the book consists of practical applications within specific settings (therapy, outreach, schools, psychiatric services) and prevention and training issues.
Table of Contents
Leong, Leach, Suicide Among Racial and Ethnic Minority Groups: An Introduction. Part I: Theories and Models. Leenaars, Suicide: A Cross-cultural Theory. Lester, Theories of Suicide. Part II: Research on Racial and Ethnic Groups. Utsey, Stanard, Hook, Understanding the Role of Cultural Factors in Relation to Suicide Among African Americans: Implications for Research and Practice. Duarte-Velez, Bernal, Suicide Risk in Latino and Latina Adolescents. Leong, Leach, Gupta, Suicide Among Asian Americans: A Critical Review with Research Recommendations. Nahuna, Andrade, Examining Suicide and Suicidal-related Behaviors Among Indigenous Pacific Islanders in the United States: A Historical Perspective. Alcantara, Gone, Suicide in Native American Communities: A Transactional-ecological Formulation of the Problem. Part III: Prevention, Assessment, Treatment, Training and Research. Walker, Townley, Asiamah, Suicide Prevention in U.S. Ethnic Minority Populations. Westefeld, Range, Greenfeld, Kettman, Testing and Assessment. Rogers, Whitehead, Ethnic Considerations in Intervention and Treatment with Suicidal People. Leach, Leong, Directions for Future Research.
If we wish to address this staggering and increasing mental health threat, the cultural context in which suicides occur urgently needs to be clarified. In Suicide Among Racial and Ethnic Minority Groups: Theory, Research, and Practice, editors Fredrick Leong and Mark Leach provide an updated description of this context within American minority groups that will be useful for clinicians, researchers, and students of suicide within and outside the mental health professions. While admitting from the onset that significant additional research is needed to isolate those cultural factors most relevant to suicide prevention, the editors have produced a book that can serve as the benchmark against which future progress in this field can be measured. Sunita Stewart and Cindy Claassen in PsycCRITIQUES, April 15, 2009, Vol. 54, Release 15, Article 3
This is a major contribution that brings together research on prevalence rates, cultural and ecological considerations, and treatment/prevention issues. It is the bess single source for anyone wanting to understand suicides among ethnic minority groups. Stanley Sue, PhD, Distinguished Professor, Department of Psychology, University of California, Davis
The editors and authors deeply care about the troublesome and frightening costs and consequences of self-destructive behavior. Each thoroughly written chapter pays close attention to the many factors that contribute to suicide, as well as those that may help prevent and treat the problems. If anyone is curious about the depth and scope of the sociocultural and psychological experiences of ethnic minorities and how they influence suicidal ideation, then this book should be kept close by for use as a reference and a resource. Joseph E. Trimble, PhD, Professor of Psychology, Western Washington University
This books is simply outstanding as a much needed resource in the professional field. New and important information in this text can be used to help us understand the causes and tragic consequences of ethnic suicides and suggest the need to develop culturally effective policies and practices that would guide suicide intervention and prevention. This book is a must read for all mental health professionals and those doing research in the field. Derald Wing Sue, PhD, Professor of Psychology and Education, Teachers College, Columbia University