#6 Suicide as Rare
     (Diamond Jenness, 1913-18)

The majority of the natives are extremely curious, although a few of them keep this feeling fairly under control. They like to pick up and examine everything, to turn a thing over and see what is inside. . . .Just as among Europeans, however, there were very many different types. Some were very timid and alarmed by anything they could not understand, such as the phonograph or the magnetic needle, others were bold and inquisitive, or sly and cunning, and a few, a very few, frank and straightforward. The majority were cheerful and light-hearted, inclined to be talkative and, in some cases, even garrulous. Their gay and care-free natures make suicide an extremely rare occurrence; in fact I do not remember hearing of more than one case, and that was due not to any morbid weariness of life, but to terror of the revenge that might be exacted for a crime that the man had committed.

[#6] D. Jenness, Report of the Canadian Arctic Expedition 1913-18, vol XII: The Life of the Copper Eskimos (Ottawa: F.A. Acland, 1922): 233.


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