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Suicide: a Review of Japan

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HS1003 Assignment 2 Name: Tay Hongjie Joash Matric Number: U1130441E Introduction Suicide occurs when an individual voluntarily and intentionally takes his/her life. Everyone is said to have a “suicide potential” which translates to the differing degrees of the individuals’ inclination to end their lives. (Durkheim, Spaulding and Simpson 1951) This “suicide potential” is very much affected by the collective social actors which have a reality sui generis – unique; of its own kind, and not a mere subset of biological or psychological factors. (Durkheim et al. 1951) Moreover, these collective social actors are exclusively found in each differing society which underscores the stark contrast of suicide rates between countries and even…show more content…
(Statistics Japan 2010) This extensive family downsizing is a recent phenomenon in Japan, juxtaposed to the conventional three generational cum extended families that used to dominate the household structures. (Rebick and Takenaka 2006) Table 3 – Source: Statistics Japan: Prefecture Comparisons| Rate of Nuclear Families In addition, the population density is the highest in Tokyo, with 5,751 people/km2. This adversely affects the amount of urban and social space one has, which is vital for the sustainability of the network of social interactions between a network of individuals. (Tonnelat 2010) According to Tonnelat (2010), this space also mirrors the “city’s spatial and social organization, which effectively acts as a medium for social change for the betterment of the populace. The idea of density also brings to mind the demand for technical specialisation which portrays Durkheim’s depiction of a shift from mechanic solidarity to organic solidarity. (Flanagan 1993) In organic solidarity, there is a unification of values and beliefs that comes through collective consciousness and shared experiences. (Flanagan 1993) However, this is unviable in the city as specialization forces people to be independent in their work, but functionally dependant on each other for the service of others. (Flanagan 1993) Again, this suggests that relationships are formed on a whim as a means to an end. Table 4 – Source: Statistics Japan: Prefecture Comparisons| Population Density
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