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A meditation on the human tendency to end our own lives, by an author who brings his own experience of depression to bear on this rarely discussed subject.
Jesse Bering is an award-winning science writer specializing in evolutionary psychology and human behavior. His 'Bering in Mind' column at Scientific American was named a 2010 Webby Award Honoree by the International Academy of Digital Arts and Sciences. His previous books are, The Belief Instinct whichwas included in the American Library Association's Top 25 Books of the Year.This was followed by a collection of his previously published essays, Why Is the Penis Shaped Like That? and Perv , a taboo-shattering work igniting discussion and fierce debates, named as a New YorkTimes Editor's Choice.A developmental psychologist by training, Bering is a renowned expert in the field ofcognitive science and religion, He began his career at the University of Arkansas, as an Assistant Professor of Psychology from 2002 to 2006. He then served as the Director of the Institute of Cognition and Culture at the Queen's University, Belfast until 2011. Presently, he is an Associate Professor of Science Communication at the University of Otago, New Zealand.
Jesse Bering asks the questions no one else dares, he tells truths
that others shy away from, and he writes the books that I wish I
had written. To me, he is everything a great scientist and
communicator should be. Suicide may be an uncomfortable subject
yet the escalating numbers of people who take their lives each year
means we must make it's unravelling our priority. I have no
doubt this book will have a profound impact on all who read it,
and add considerably to our understanding of that self-willed
oblivion, whether it lies palpably just beneath our own skin, or
the skins of those we love. But perhaps most importantly of all
it will help dispel the stigma and shame that so perniciously
clings to all suicides. -- Dr Christian Jessen
A brave and important exploration of a subject we urgently need to demystify. It will change every reader for the better. -- Derren Brown
Bering's book touches upon some deep questions relevant to all of us. Indeed, it is as much about what makes us uniquely human as it is about suicide. A Very Human Ending transcends its own objectives. It is a fascinating, thoughtful, unflinching meditation on one of the most intriguing and curious aspects of the human condition. -- Dr Frank Tallis, clinical psychologist * Evening Standard *
I'm not surprised that a book on suicide would be very personal, but I didn't expect it to be so damn funny. It's also engaging, thoughtful, and sensitive - although Bering is certainly irreverent, there is a real appreciation of how painful and difficult this topic can be. This is a book for scholars and for a general audience, but it is also entirely suitable for people whose lives have been touched by the suicide of someone they loved. * Paul Bloom, Professor of Psychology at Yale University and author of Against Empathy *
I have yet to come away from reading [Bering's] work and not feel considerably better informed than I was just minutes before * Forbes *