What is the stigma behind our understanding of suicide? What causes this stigma? Should suicide only be viewed in relation to physical pain, as medicine often views it, or mental pain, as psychiatry views it? Or is it a more complex phenomenon? Can we think of suicide as a rational act that is, on the one hand, independent of pain, without, on the other hand, reducing it to mental illness? I will argue that if we can, we can give a less reductive account of suicide. In this paper, we shall attempt to give an answer to the above questions while investigating the Stoics’ model of suicide first and their answer to the question, followed by the contemporary debate regarding the permissibility of suicide, then we shall explore Albert Camus’ view on the topic. The views of the Stoics and Camus shall be compared. Then, we shall propose a theory that combines both systems, a classical and a modern model of suicide, to arrive at an answer to later show how the proposed theory answers some of the questions raised by contemporaries.


School of Humanities and Social Sciences


Philosophy Department

Degree Name

MA in Philosophy

Graduation Date

Spring 6-17-2021

Submission Date


First Advisor

Robin Weiss

Second Advisor

Patrick Hassan

Committee Member 1

Abraham Anderson

Committee Member 2

Robert McIntyre


84 p.

Document Type

Master's Thesis

Institutional Review Board (IRB) Approval

Approval has been obtained for this item