Is the time of suicide a random choice? A new statistical perspective.

  • Rocchi M
  • Perlini C
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Notes that the problem of the time distribution of suicide has aroused the interest of many authors, but their findings often appear uncertain and contradictory. These inconsistencies can he partially explained by both the choice of the sample and the statistical method used for the analysis. In this study, in order to reveal expected and unexpected periodicities in the time distribution of suicides, the authors analyzed a small but complete and very homogeneous sample of suicides which occurred in the Mountain District of the Metauro River Valley in Italy in the period 1960-1994. A recent circular statistics technique, the "maximization of mean vector length" was used. No significant weekly and lunar patterns were found, but significant seasonal and intraseasonal cycles, with peaks in March and at the beginning of each season were found. The superposition of these 2 significant cyclic trends was also studied. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2016 APA, all rights reserved)

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  • Marco B.L. Rocchi

  • Chiara Perlini

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