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Psychological Research in Depression and Suicide

A Historical Perspective
  • E. Edward Beckham
Part of the Applied Clinical Psychology book series (NSSB)

Abstract

The vulnerability of human beings to depression is documented in some of humanity’s oldest literary sources. The Psalms of the Bible, which are attributed to King David, reflect a variety of emotional states, including repeated instances of intense emotional distress and sadness: “My misdeeds and my sins confront me all the day long” (Ps. 51:3); “As I lay thinking, darkness came over my spirit... all night long I was in deep distress... my spirit was sunk in despair” (Ps. 77:3–6); “I am numbered with those who go down to the abyss and have become like a man beyond help, like a man who lies dead on the plain who sleep in the grave” (Ps. 88:4–5). Many other instances of pessimism and despair are in the Psalms. While it is not clear that the passages are all from the same writer or that they represent clinical depression, their repetitiveness suggests that they come from the hand of an individual author who was prone to severe moods similar to depression.

Keywords

Suicidal Behavior Cognitive Therapy Abnormal Psychology Psychoanalytic Theory Interpersonal Psychotherapy 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1991

Authors and Affiliations

  • E. Edward Beckham
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of PsychiatryUniversity of Oklahoma Health Sciences CenterOklahoma CityUSA

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