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Grant number like: FO-50182-12

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Chikako Ozawa-de Silva
Emory University (Atlanta, GA 30322-1018)

Fellowships for Advanced Social Science Research on Japan
Research Programs

[Grant products]

$50,400 (approved)
$50,400 (awarded)

Grant period:
1/1/2013 – 12/31/2013

In the Eyes of Others: Suicide and Meaning in Contemporary Japan

Discourse in Japan on suicide prevention has focused almost exclusively on the state of the Japanese economy and mental illness. Increasing evidence suggests that a lack of positive mental health may be more important than the presence of mental illness in predicting future suicide attempts, and also that treatment of mental illness alone may not address the lack of psychological and social well-being implicated in suicidality. This book project intends to mend the current gap in our understanding of suicide and its prevention by making several contributions: it will provide accounts of subjective experience currently lacking in the study of suicide in Japan; it will provide a culturally-situated account of positive mental health in Japan by employing ethnographic methods alongside survey data; and it will critically assess the potential of traditional Japanese practices to bolster positive mental health and thereby play a role in suicide prevention.