"Who minus who": suicide in Boston's Ethiopian community
Melstrom, Eva Rose
MetadataShow full item record
This thesis examines suicide in Boston's Ethiopian Community. The act of suicide and individual cases are explored through participant narratives. Narratives from family members and acquaintances of those who died by suicide are examined. I rely on in-depth (N=8) and follow-up interviews (N=7). Drawing heavily on culturally constructed notions of self, this thesis explores what it has meant for persons of the Ethiopian community to lose fellow members to suicide. Intersections of emotions, constructions of choice and agency, and idealized notions of self emerge as central themes. The body, in life and death, is situated as a vehicle for communicating dis-eased social relationships and unrealistic cultural expectations. Participants position their perceptions of the deceased in relation to popular preconceived notions of life in the United States and stresses encountered during and after the immigration process. Memory of Ethiopia, the United States, immigration, and the suicide are significant for understanding the rigidity of culturally authoritative truths. This thesis emphasizes the progressive and beneficial methodology of an anthropological investigation into suicide. Understanding the reasons and acquiring specific knowledge about Ethiopian suicide in the United States can contribute to current conversations regarding immigrant suicide. Ultimately, this study aims to contribute to comprehensive prevention measures, which support every individual.