Most people are repelled and intrigued by the images of cold-blooded, conscienceless murders that increasingly populate our movies, television programmes and newspaper headlines. With their flagrant criminal violation of society's rules, serial killers like Ted Bundy and John Wayne Gacy are among the most dramatic examples of the psychopath. Individuals with this personality disorder are fully aware of the consequences of their actions and know the difference between right and wrong, yet they are terrifyingly self-centred, remorseless and unable to care about the feelings of others. Perhaps most frightening, they often seem completely normal to unsuspecting targets - and they do not always ply their trade by killing. Presenting a portrait of these dangerous men and women based on 25 years of scientific research, the author describes a world of con artists, hustlers, rapists and other predators who charm, lie and manipulate their way through life. Are psychopaths mad, or simply bad? How can they be recognized? And how can we protect ourselves? This book provides information and insights for those seeking to understand this devastating condition.
Robert D. Hare, PhD, considered one of the world's foremost experts on psychopathy, is Professor Emeritus of Psychology at the University of British Columbia, Canada. Dr. Hare is the developer of one of the most widely used tools for assessing psychopathy and the author of over 100 scientific articles and several books. He has received numerous awards for his distinguished contributions to psychology and criminology.