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Risk of suicide-related behaviors is elevated among military personnel transitioning to civilian life. An earlier report showed that high-risk U.S. Army soldiers could be identified shortly before this transition with a machine learning model that included predictors from administrative systems, self-report surveys, and geospatial data. Based on this result, a Veterans Affairs and Army initiative was launched to evaluate a suicide-prevention intervention for high-risk transitioning soldiers. To make targeting practical, though, a streamlined model and risk calculator were needed that used only a short series of self-report survey questions.
We revised the original model in a sample of n = 8335 observations from the Study to Assess Risk and Resilience in Servicemembers-Longitudinal Study (STARRS-LS) who participated in one of three Army STARRS 2011–2014 baseline surveys while in service and in one or more subsequent panel surveys (LS1: 2016–2018, LS2: 2018–2019) after leaving service. We trained ensemble machine learning models with constrained numbers of item-level survey predictors in a 70% training sample. The outcome was self-reported post-transition suicide attempts (SA). The models were validated in the 30% test sample.
Twelve-month post-transition SA prevalence was 1.0% (s.e. = 0.1). The best constrained model, with only 17 predictors, had a test sample ROC-AUC of 0.85 (s.e. = 0.03). The 10–30% of respondents with the highest predicted risk included 44.9–92.5% of 12-month SAs.
An accurate SA risk calculator based on a short self-report survey can target transitioning soldiers shortly before leaving service for intervention to prevent post-transition SA.
The votive deposition of naked bronze male figurines and the adoption of actual naked activities in ritual contexts probably cohere as elements of a set of social and ritual practices that were novel in the Aegean during the EIA. In this chapter, I make a case that this ritual system cannot be understood in the absence of an extended consideration of its material underpinnings, specifically the material realities entailed in the production of bronze votives, with a focus on the figurines with which I am concerned in this book.
The purpose of this chapter is to add iconographic and spatial analyses to the diachronic presentation of the history of nude figurines in , and to consider whether the iconographic patterns and spatial distribution of naked figurines might indicate the existence of different attitudes and practices related to naked males in EIA Greece. Iconographic patterns are somewhat difficult to pin down, although a few identifiable types, like warriors and worshippers, bind together disparate regional traditions. The spatial patterns in the figurine data show that the practice of depositing bronze anthropomorphic figurines, including nude figurines, was likely quite circumscribed during the EIA. The distribution shows a mainly Cretan and western pattern. In order to test whether this geography of EIA nude male figurines should be taken only to indicate the spatial limits of ritual practices associated with dedicating bronze figurines or whether it might indicate the presence of distinct regional iconographies and practices associated with nudity, I check these patterns against patterns in the depiction of nudity in Geometric vase painting. Although this evidence is considerably later than much of the figurines, it suggests that, at least during the eighth century, people in different regions of the Aegean probably had distinct ideas about nudity. I then argue that it is not unreasonable to reconstruct, based on the combined spatial patterns in EIA figurines and EIA vase painting, that these distinct ideas can be extrapolated back into the earlier phases of the EIA. I therefore posit a Cretan and western EIA ideology in which nudity was often associated with ritual practice, and an eastern EIA ideology in which nudity was most often associated with death and vulnerability.
In the last chapter I suggested that the most likely explanation for the appearance of a new kind of votive dedication at EIA mainland sanctuaries sites was a process of both technological and ritual transfer from Crete, and that the metal casting processes that went into votive production explain many peculiar characteristics of EIA bronze figurines, including their small size, stylistic variety, and many flaws and defects. I closed this discussion by suggesting that the craft processes involved in making the figurines were more fundamental to their meaning in the context of ritual practice than the aesthetic outcome of those processes.
My purpose in this book has been to reconsider the beginnings of a ‘culture of male nudity’ in the Aegean through analysis of some of the earliest images of naked males in material culture from the Aegean region. I laid out the evidence for nudity in the archaeological record of the EIA Aegean, especially focusing on the earliest naked figurines from the few sanctuaries on Crete and the mainland where they appear in substantial quantities. I presented a treatment of the earliest naked bronze figurines from EIA that placed their production at the forefront of interpretation and set this in the context of ritual practice and votive deposition. I contended that EIA bronze figurines were not valued for their aesthetic appearance, but accrued value instead through the metal casting processes of production that took place within the sanctuary grounds. This perspective, along with a granular understanding of the casting process, helps to explain their unprepossessing appearance. In contrast to existing views that reconstruct production as a purely economic phenomenon, I posited a meaningful ritual role for bronze working in certain EIA contexts. Specifically, I argued that bronze casting was not practiced at sanctuaries in order to produce votives for the economic benefit of itinerant craftsmen, but that smiths were ritual actors whose casting practices were embedded in and central to some EIA ritual.
The purpose of this last substantive chapter of the book is twofold. First, I reiterate a number of differences between the interpretation of the naked EIA males that I have presented here and views about them that arose from previous, relational and text-based approaches to the same material. Second, I articulate a number of new questions that may be posed of cultural and ritual history based on this treatment, questions that might not have occurred to historians to ask based on previous reconstructions of the evidence. The goal of this chapter is therefore to highlight how the results of this study may move understanding of EIA nudity forward, while the concluding chapter that follows will comment on the value of the study from the point of view of methodological challenges involved in constructing a non-relational, non-textually determined understanding of EIA society.
The material record datable to the early phases of the Aegean EIA is relatively short on figural art. According to the usual diachronic narrative, the turn of the first millennium involves a relatively long-lasting period during which images of humans and animals are mostly absent from visual culture – as Coldstream called it, a “long pictureless hiatus.”1 In place of figural decoration, geometric designs are most characteristic of Aegean iconography during the EIA. According to some art historical accounts, this period of aniconic art represents a reset, during which the traditions of LBA iconography were mostly wiped away. The figural art of the Geometric period is then usually presented as the start of a new tradition.2