1898, from French anomique (Durkheim, 1897); see anomie.
A more important form of suicide is that which the author terms "anomic," by which he means the suicides produced by any sudden social shock or disturbance such as that due to economic disasters. Men commit egoistic suicide because they see no further reason for living, altruistic suicide because the reason for living seems to them to lie outside life itself, anomic suicide because they are suffering from a disturbance of their activity. [review of "Le Suicide" in Mind, April 1898]
Also attested from 1919 in a sense "non-legal."