Death, Suicide, and Trauma

Description: (Same as Sociology M138.) Lecture, three hours; discussion, one hour. Sociological analysis of incidence of violent death. Suicide is eighth leading cause of death in U.S. and third leading cause for young people aged 15 to 24. Both kinds of violent deaths are often dismissed as extreme psychopathology, reflecting individual mental health issues. Sociologists argue that suicide and homicide are social facts. Suicide and homicide do not occur randomly in society but are stratified according to social factors such as age, gender, race, sexual orientation, and class. Analysis of strength of this sociological argument and evaluation of explanatory potential of different theories to make sense of violent death, paying particular attention to forensic and medicolegal system to determine suicide and solve homicides. Review of historic and contemporary studies to examine how research and conceptualizations of suicide and homicide have changed, as well as social responses to these phenomena. P/NP or letter grading.

Units: 4.0
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