Emile Durkheim

Emile Durkheim, one of the founders of the Sociological discipline published various paramount works – that shaped the substantive matter of Sociology and in addition advocated a specific research method. Durkheim’s work ‘On Suicide’, 1897 remains the most influential cannon of work relating to the conception of suicide as a social phenomenon.
The objective of this paper is to understand the theoretical mechanism that traces social causation advocated by Durkheim and the various social provocations that can cause recurring patterns of suicide. It seemed extremely appealing to understand the canonical theoretical perspectives on this subject as only with analysis that proposes relevant modifications in established sociological theories, can society attempt to academically understand social phenomenon in changing times. The scope of analysis in this paper, of Durkheim’s work is restricted to contemporary Indian society. The method utilised is the study of Durkheim’s book, ‘On Suicide’, 1897 which is exhaustive in covering his theories on the subject, and using relevant secondary sources on contemporary Indian society to analyse the significance of these theories.
Hence, the research question that this paper will attempt to examine what Durkheim’s theory of suicide is and its relevance or lack thereof in contemporary Indian Society.