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The anarchist, the esthete, the mystic, the revolutionary socialist, even if they do not despair of the future, agree with the pessimist in the same sentiment of hatred and disgust for whatever is; in the same need of destroying the real, and escaping from it. The collective melancholy would not have invaded consciousness to that point unless it has taken morbid development; and in consequence the development of suicide which results from it, is of the same nature. All the proofs unite in causing us to regard the enormous increase which has shown itself within a century in the number of voluntary deaths, as a pathological phenomenon which becomes every day more menacing.
–Émile Durkheim, Le suicide: étude de sociologie (1897)
More from Scott Horton:
Conversation — August 5, 2016, 12:08 pm
Sidney Blumenthal on the origins of the Republican Party, the fallout from Clinton’s emails, and his new biography of Abraham Lincoln
Conversation — March 30, 2016, 3:44 pm
Joseph Hickman discusses his new book, The Burn Pits, which tells the story of thousands of U.S. soldiers who, after returning from Iraq and Afghanistan, have developed rare cancers and respiratory diseases.
Estimated number of people who watched a live Webcast of a hair transplant last fall:
A rancher in Texas was developing a system that will permit hunters to kill animals by remote control via a website.
A man in Japan was arrested for stealing a prospective employer’s wallet during a job interview, and a court in Germany ruled that it is safe for a woman with breast implants to be a police officer.
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"It is an interesting and somewhat macabre parlor game to play at a large gathering of one’s acquaintances: to speculate who in a showdown would go Nazi. By now, I think I know. I have gone through the experience many times—in Germany, in Austria, and in France. I have come to know the types: the born Nazis, the Nazis whom democracy itself has created, the certain-to-be fellow-travelers. And I also know those who never, under any conceivable circumstances, would become Nazis."