Autopsy of a Suicidal Mind [NOOK Book]

Overview

Autopsy of a Suicidal Mind is a uniquely intensive psychological analysis of a suicidal mind. In this poignant scientific study, Edwin S. Shneidman, a founder of the field of suicidology, assembles an extraordinary cast of eight renowned experts to analyze the suicidal materials, including a ten-page suicide note, given to him by a distraught mother looking for insights into her son's tragic death. The psychological autopsy centers on the interviews conducted by Shneidman with Arthur's mother, father, brother, ...
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Autopsy of a Suicidal Mind

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Overview

Autopsy of a Suicidal Mind is a uniquely intensive psychological analysis of a suicidal mind. In this poignant scientific study, Edwin S. Shneidman, a founder of the field of suicidology, assembles an extraordinary cast of eight renowned experts to analyze the suicidal materials, including a ten-page suicide note, given to him by a distraught mother looking for insights into her son's tragic death. The psychological autopsy centers on the interviews conducted by Shneidman with Arthur's mother, father, brother, sister, best friend, ex-wife, girlfriend, psychotherapist, and attending physician.
To gain some understanding of this man's intense psychological pain and to examine what may have been done to save his tortured life, Shneidman approached the top suicide experts in the country to analyze the note and interviews: Morton Silverman, Robert E. Litman, Jerome Motto, Norman L. Farberow, John T. Maltsberger, Ronald Maris, David Rudd, and Avery D. Weisman. Each of the eight experts offers a unique perspective on Arthur's tragic fate, and the sum of their conclusions constitutes an extraordinary psychological autopsy.
This book is the first of its kind and a remarkable contribution to the study of suicide. Mental health professionals, students of human nature, and persons whose lives have been touched by this merciless topic will be mesmerized and enlightened by this unique volume. An epistemological tour de force, it will speak to anyone who is concerned with human self-destruction.
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Editorial Reviews

Doody's Review Service
Reviewer: Brett C. Plyler, M.D.(Northwestern Memorial Hospital)
Description: This is a psychological examination of a young man's life and his death by suicide. It is conducted by the author and a group of eight suicide experts.
Purpose: The book's purpose is to provide the readers with the inner details of a young man's pain and problems that led to his suicide as well as a discussion by the experts in an attempt to help the reader understand how and why this occurred.
Audience: The book is written for mental health professionals and anyone who has an interest in or been affected by suicide.
Features: The book consists of interviews with the subject's (Arthur) father, mother, sister, brother, ex-wife, former girlfriend, best friend, therapist, and psychiatrist, interspersed with evaluations written by the eight consultants. There is a commentary by Dr. Shneidman as well as a letter written to Arthur's mother from Dr. Shneidman. There is also a copy of the suicide note written by Arthur in the appendix.
Assessment: This book is a fascinating and painful look at a talented young man, both a lawyer and a physician, who committed suicide. The interviews with the family and friends are surprisingly open and honest. The discussions with the therapist and the psychiatrist and their reactions to Arthur's death were extremely valuable to me as a mental health professional dealing with suicidal patients. These accounts as well as the detailed history obtained by Dr. Shneidman provide an intimate portrait of Arthur's life, pain, and problems, and the reader is able to understand how deeply a person's suicide affects the people around him. The consultations all provide a unique perspective on Arthur's difficulties and what may have led to his suicide. The letter written to Arthur's mother by Dr. Shneidman is especially poignant and compassionate. Overall, I would highly recommend this book to anyone who treats suicidal patients or has been in some way affected by suicide.

3 Stars from Doody
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780190207687
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press
  • Publication date: 1/30/2004
  • Sold by: Barnes & Noble
  • Format: eBook
  • Sales rank: 1,350,531
  • File size: 934 KB

Table of Contents

Foreword
Consultants
1 The Beginning 3
2 About Suicide Notes 7
3 Consultation by Morton Silverman, M.D. 11
4 Interview with the Mother 23
5 The Idea of a Psychological Autopsy 31
6 Interview with the Father 35
7 Consultation by Robert E. Litman, M.D. 45
8 Consultation by Jerome Motto, M.D. 49
9 Consultation by Norman L. Farberow, Ph.D. 59
10 Interview with the Brother 67
11 Interview with the Sister 75
12 Consultation by John T. Maltsberger, M.D. 85
13 Interview with the Pal 91
14 Consultation by Ronald Maris, Ph.D. 99
15 Interview with the Ex-Wife 105
16 Interview with the Girlfriend 115
17 Interview with the Psychotherapist 125
18 Consultation by David Rudd, Ph.D. 137
19 Interview with the Psychiatrist 143
20 Consultation by Avery Weisman, M.D. 151
21 Letter to the Mother 159
Arthur's Suicide Note 165
References 171
Index 175
About the Author 179
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Customer Reviews

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