Investigating Regional Differences in Suicide Acceptability Attitudes in the U.S.
Platt, Jane. “Investigating Regional Differences in Suicide Acceptability Attitudes in the U.S.”, Boston College, 2022. http://hdl.handle.net/2345/bc-ir:109428.
In this thesis, I investigate if there are regional differences in suicide acceptability attitudes in the United States and what might explain these differences, namely political views or religious beliefs. I examine four suicide attitudes from the 2018 General Social Survey: whether a person has the right to die by suicide due to an incurable disease; bankruptcy; dishonoring one’s family; or being tired of living and ready to die. I draw upon a number of theories that discuss how one’s environment can influence their attitudes and how individuals form their attitudes in general. An individual from New England was found to be more accepting of suicide than someone from another region, and individual-level political and religious views were somewhat able to explain one’s suicide acceptability attitudes. Overall, regional differences in suicide attitudes do exist, perhaps helpful for future research to better understand differences in suicide rates around the country.