Suicide-Related Crimes in Contemporary European Criminal Laws
1997 (English)In: Crisis, ISSN 0227-5910, E-ISSN 2151-2396, Vol. 18, no 1, 35-47 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Describes suicide-related penal legislation in contemporary Europe, and analyzes and relates the results to cultural attitudes toward suicide and to national suicide rates. Data were obtained from 42 legal entities. Of these, 34 have penal regulations which—according to definition—chiefly and directly deal with suicide. There are 3 main types of act: aiding suicide, abetting suicide, and driving to suicide. The laws vary considerably with regard to which acts are sanctioned, how severely they are punished, and whether any special circumstances (e.g., the motive) can make the crime more serious. Various ideologies have inspired legislation, including religions, the euthanasia movement, and suicide prevention. There are some cases in which neighboring legal systems have clearly influenced laws on the topic. However, the process seems mostly to have been a national affair, resulting in large discrepancies between European legal systems. The laws seem to reflect public opinions: countries which punish the crimes harder have significantly less permissive cultural attitudes toward suicide. The cultural and normative elements of society seem to be connected with its suicide mortality.
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
1997. Vol. 18, no 1, 35-47 p.
brott, dödshjälp, Europa, lag, självmord
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:sh:diva-6578DOI: 10.1027/0227-5910.18.1.35OAI: oai:DiVA.org:sh-6578DiVA: diva2:402708