I. Galliani, Margherita Bettelli
Feb 25, 2015
ITALIAN JOURNAL OF CRIMINOLOGY
The article presents an update of epidemiological data relating to suicide in the Modena province, and is based on an analysis of 1,267 cases in the period between 1989 and 2008; the data gathered on the person (personal and social-employment data) and the act (place, timing aspects, means and motive) have been compared with other data relating to suicide in the population of Emilia Romagna in the period between 1973 and 1978 and examined by means of analysis of the X2. Statistically significant differences emerged with regards to gender (an increase in cases involving males; X2=21,164), age distribution (an increase in cases involving males aged between 31 and 40 years; X2=7,225; a reduction among males aged between 61 and 70 years; X2=16,163) and the means (an increase in hangings; X2=11,139; and CO2 intoxications; X2=46,135; a reduction in drownings; X2=752). Different hypotheses may be considered to explain the increase in suicide among young adults: from a psychiatric point of view (factors of risk in infancy or adolescence, or biological and genetic factors), to a psychological one (personality traits as critical factors) or to a sociological one (a sense of inadequacy and abandon arising in young men as a result of the problems of modern life and culture). None of the above hypotheses, however, is able to completely explain the phenomenon. The most logical explanation is probably found in a combination of the various aspects: risk factors that develop on a disaggregated social substratum which is unable to provide protection and support, making the individual more vulnerable and predisposed to suicidal tendencies.