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February 20, 1904


JAMA. 1904;XLII(8):538. doi:10.1001/jama.1904.02490530040006

It is contended by some that suicide is a symptom of mental aberration, but while such a view is not in strict accordance with the facts, it will be found that, apart from those unequivocally insane, the suicide is one who has been ill or has suffered loss or disappointment or ill treatment, real or fancied. Statistics show that suicide is increasing in frequency, and the reasons therefor are all too obvious. In the intense struggle for existence, in the eager contest for power, in the mad race for place and position, some must inevitably meet defeat and disappointment, and some must be left behind; and it is from among these that is recruited a large part of the army of those that seek refuge and oblivion in self-destruction. The burden naturally falls most heavily on those that have reached maturity, but children do not entirely escape, and it will