Gloomy Sunday: Did the "Hungarian Suicide Song" Really Create a Suicide Epidemic?

Stack, Steven, Krysinska, Karolina and Lester, David (2007) Gloomy Sunday: Did the "Hungarian Suicide Song" Really Create a Suicide Epidemic?. Omega : Journal of Death and Dying, 56 4: 349-358. doi:10.2190/OM.56.4.c


Author Stack, Steven
Krysinska, Karolina
Lester, David
Title Gloomy Sunday: Did the "Hungarian Suicide Song" Really Create a Suicide Epidemic?
Journal name Omega : Journal of Death and Dying   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 0030-2228
1541-3764
Publication date 2007-01-01
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.2190/OM.56.4.c
Volume 56
Issue 4
Start page 349
End page 358
Total pages 10
Place of publication New York
Publisher Baywood Publishing Company
Language eng
Subject 111714 Mental Health
170106 Health, Clinical and Counselling Psychology
Abstract The effect of art on suicide risk has been a neglected topic in suicidology. The present article focuses on what is probably the best known song concerning suicide, Gloomy Sunday, the "Hungarian suicide song." An analysis of historical sources suggests that the song was believed to trigger suicides. It was, for example, banned by the BBC in England until 2002. The alleged increase in suicides in the 1930s associated with the playing of the song may be attributed to audience mood, especially the presence of a large number of depressed persons as a result of the Great Depression. The influence of music on suicide may be contingent on societal, social, and individual conditions, such as economic recessions, membership in musical subcultures, and psychiatric disturbance. Further research is needed on art forms, such as feature films, paintings, novels, and music that portray suicides in order to identify the conditions under which the triggering of suicides occurs
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Provisional Code
Institutional Status Unknown

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: Excellence in Research Australia (ERA) - Collection
School of Medicine Publications
 
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