Phenomenology and Functions of Suicide Humor: A Theoretical Review

311

Abstract

The present article provides an analysis of suicide humor as a specific form of dark humor and its relation to suicide behavior. It is suggested that such humor and suicide taboo, as well as communicative taboo on the topic of suicide, are interrelated. The complexity and inconsistency of society’s attitude towards suicide and acts of self-sacrifice are analyzed. Presumably suicide humor represents a rather complex multidimensional phenomenon of communication, which functions as a tool for reflection on suicide taboo. It is suggested that suicide jokes can influence suicide behavior either by strengthening or weakening suicide motivation. Various mechanisms that may underlie the adaptive nature of such humor are considered through its relationship with the psychological factors of suicide risk. The article provides a hypothesis on how such humor can be used as a tool for suicide risk’s clinical diagnosis; it also discusses the reasons for suicide jokes’ popularity among adolescents.

General Information

Keywords: dark humor, suicide humor, memes, sense of humor, suicide behavior, suicide taboo

Journal rubric: Theoretical Research

Article type: scientific article

DOI: https://doi.org/10.17759/cpse.2023120205

Received: 23.03.2023

Accepted:

For citation: Govorov S.A., Ivanova E.M. Phenomenology and Functions of Suicide Humor: A Theoretical Review [Elektronnyi resurs]. Klinicheskaia i spetsial'naia psikhologiia = Clinical Psychology and Special Education, 2023. Vol. 12, no. 2, pp. 94–117. DOI: 10.17759/cpse.2023120205. (In Russ., аbstr. in Engl.)

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Information About the Authors

Stanislav A. Govorov, PhD student, Department of Medical Psychology, Mental Health Research Center, Moscow, Russia, ORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0002-1799-9944, e-mail: stsgovorov@hotmail.com

Elena M. Ivanova, PhD in Psychology, Senior Researcher, Federal State Budgetary Scientific Institution Mental Health Research Center, Moscow, Russia, ORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0002-3616-9444, e-mail: ivalenka13@gmail.com

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