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Article on Suicide Rates in the Asian American community August 14, 2009

Posted by peterong in Asian American, Chinese American.


New American Media put out an article about the rise of Asian Americans and suicide rates and referred to recent happenings involving three students at Caltech who committed suicide.   As I read this and people are chiming in about the influence of pressure of achievement from family and also the overall environment at the university to excel. I think that some of the scholars are missing is that suicide narratives are such a part of the cultural narrative.

As I remember so much of our histories and stories in our family has always had one or another relative who found their only way of escape was to take one’s life. It was not glorified in any sense but more of a necessary reality of our family history. As I think through the analysis of some of the psychological issues which we as a culture forgo or dismiss, I think the deeper issue of transparency or creating space so we know how to speak into our individual and collective pain. (more…)