Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)



Document Type



This dissertation is a county-level sociological examination of middle-age (35-64) non-Hispanic white male suicides. Although an extensive amount of literature exists on ecological suicide, studies have largely ignored the correlates of suicide among this population group because this stage of the life course has historically demonstrated relatively low and stable rates of suicide. However, suicide rates among middle-age adults have increased dramatically over the last decade, calling for an examination of the correlates of suicide specific to this group. Moreover, the extant suicide literature has largely ignored the possibility of a structural disadvantage-suicide link, as well as the influence of macro-structural characteristics of the social and economic environment on variations in ecological suicides. Guided by these issues, the objectives of this dissertation have been to examine whether variations in county-level middle-age non-Hispanic white male suicides can be explained by the differential presence of indicators of civic communities and/or by structural disadvantage and how these relationships vary across the rural-urban continuum. The results show an association between bridging congregations and lower levels of middle-age non-Hispanic white male suicide across micropolitan counties, an association between civic and social organizations and lower rates of suicide across non core counties, and an association between structural disadvantage and higher rates of suicide across all urbanization levels except non core counties.



Document Availability at the Time of Submission

Release the entire work immediately for access worldwide.

Committee Chair

Blanchard, Troy C.



Included in

Sociology Commons