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Psychologists may claim that suicidal behavior runs in the genes, hence the common perception that suicide

is inevitable. But according to Durkheim, a sociologist, although suicide can appear to run in families, it is not necessarily hereditary. Personally, I believe that Durkheim was right in saying that the causes of suicidal behavior, such as general mental affliction and nervous weakness, may be transmitted, but not suicide per se. While it may be true that members of families share the same emotional environment and may therefore inherit the same tendencies towards mental or emotional illnesses, which can aggravate the potential for suicide attempts, it is not enough to classify the act of suicide as genetic. As Durkheim put it, the self-destruction of a person does not occur because his parents had done the same but because they were insane. This tells us that one cause of suicide is the transmission of a mental disease (insanity) of which suicide is a contingent result. In other words, Durkheim believes that if a suicidal person is insane, its offspring may also inherit insanity, which would most likely trigger suicide. However, Durkheim also claimed that not every insane person is impelled to self-destruction. This contradicts his earlier theory that insane families are bound to committing suicide. Nevertheless, to support his previous hypothesis, he presented another factor that may serve as the cause of suicide without considering heredity and this is the contagious power of suicide. Apparently, Durkheim believes that even if suicide is not hereditary, it is indeed very contagious. In my own opinion, it is possible that a suicidal person s influence to other vulnerable people (in this case, those who are insane/mentally ill) affects the decision of the latter to either commit suicide or not. Lastly, Durkheim asserts that not only is suicide contagious among family members the suicidal methods used are also identical.