Over one million people commit suicide every year, making it the 10th leading cause of death worldwide. It is a leading cause of death among teenagers and adults under 35. There are an estimated 10 to 20 million non-fatal attempted suicides every year. The most common cause is a variety of underlying psychiatric disorders, including depression, bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, alcoholism and drug abuse. The most common method is gunshot. This list will be examining some of the famous cases of suicide.
Virginia Wolf left a note for his husband before he wore her coat and filled her pockets with stones and drowned herself in the river near their house on March 28, 1941. “ I feel certain that I am going mad again… and I can’t recover this time”. It was after she published her last novel.
Hemingway killed himself through gunshot.
Plath was a great American poet and novelist. She killed herself through gassing herself in the kitchen. She thrust her head into the gas oven.
The Japanese writer of “Rashomon” who killed himself in 1927 by an overdose of barbiturates. “The world I am now in is one of diseased nerves, lucid as ice,” read part of his suicide note. “Such voluntary death must give us peace, if not happiness…”
JAMES ROBERT BAKER
American cult writer, author of “Fuel Injected Dreams” and an early pioneer in gay themed literature, killed himself in 1997.
American poet, jumped from a bridge in 1972.
JOHN GOULD FLETCHER
American Pulitzer Prize Winning Poet, like Woolf, drowned himself in a pond near his home.
Sigmund Freud, the founder of modern psychoanalysis, believed we all had a “life drive” and “death drive”. Through his life, Freud used cocaine, which was legal in the late 19th century, and sought to open up peoples’ minds regarding the fundamentals of mental illness. Freud succumbed to his “death drive” in 1939, by taking an overdose of morphine.
Three-time Nobel Prize nominee for literature, committed ritual suicide, disemboweling himself with a sword in the traditional seppuku fashion.
On May 3, 1991, his wife found his body in a half-filled bathtub, a suffocating plastic bag wrapped around his head. “ I am going to put myself to sleep now for a bit longer than usual”, read Kosinski’s suicide note. “ Call it Eternity”.
HUNTER S. THOMPSON
Perhaps most famous for his 1972 novel “Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas”, Thompson put a bullet through his brain and ended his life. “No More Games,” read a note delivered to his wife shortly before the incident. “ No More Bombs. No More Walking. No More Fun. No More Swimming. 67. That is 17 years past 50. 17 more than I needed or wanted. Boring. I am always bitchy. No Fun — for anybody. 67. You are getting Greedy. Act your old age. Relax — This wont hurt.”
On October 4, 1974, right after meeting with a close friend to discuss her latest book of poetry (The Awful Rowing Toward God),
Sexton went home, locked herself in the garage with the car running, and succumbed to carbon monoxide poisoning.