اختلالات فکری و روانی و بی ثباتی رشد
|کد مقاله||سال انتشار||تعداد صفحات مقاله انگلیسی||ترجمه فارسی|
|34283||2001||18 صفحه PDF||سفارش دهید|
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Publisher : Elsevier - Science Direct (الزویر - ساینس دایرکت)
Journal : Evolution and Human Behavior, Volume 22, Issue 2, March 2001, Pages 75–92
Psychopaths are manipulative, impulsive, and callous individuals with long histories of antisocial behavior. Two models have guided the study of psychopathy. One suggests that psychopathy is a psychopathology, i.e., the outcome of defective or perturbed development. A second suggests that psychopathy is a life-history strategy of social defection and aggression that was reproductively viable in the environment of evolutionary adaptedness (EEA). These two models make different predictions with regard to the presence of signs of perturbations or instability in the development of psychopaths. In Study 1, we obtained data on prenatal, perinatal, and neonatal signs of developmental perturbations from the clinical files of 643 nonpsychopathic and 157 psychopathic male offenders. In Study 2, we measured fluctuating asymmetry (FA, a concurrent sign of past developmental perturbations) in 15 psychopathic male offenders, 25 nonpsychopathic male offenders, and 31 male nonoffenders. Psychopathic offenders scored lower than nonpsychopathic offenders on obstetrical problems and FA; both psychopathic and nonpsychopathic offenders scored higher than nonoffenders on FA. The five offenders from Study 2 meeting the most stringent criteria for psychopathy were similar to nonoffenders with regard to FA and had the lowest asymmetry scores among offenders. These results provide no support for psychopathological models of psychopathy and partial support for life-history strategy models.
Psychopaths are deceitful, selfish, manipulative, irresponsible, impulsive, and aggressive individuals who have no concern for the welfare of others and who experience little remorse or guilt as a result of their injurious and antisocial behavior Gacono, 2000 and Hare, 1991. Psychopaths are mostly male and are quite rare (estimated as less than 1% in the general population). Approximately 11% of the forensic psychiatric population and 23% of the correctional population are psychopaths (Hare, 1991). The following abbreviated case history shows many features of psychopathy as currently defined in the clinical literature. Some details have been modified to protect anonymity: Since kindergarten, Frank was a problem. He bullied smaller pupils, disobeyed school rules, and was often truant. He quit school during the 11th grade, then traveled the continent using money he borrowed from friends (but never repaid). He also had many short-term jobs, fraudulently collected welfare, and dealt drugs. He had many heterosexual relationships, fathering at least one child by the time he was 16. He was first incarcerated at 15 for stealing a car, and by 18, he had a criminal record that included violent offenses, theft and possession of stolen goods, and drug trafficking. When he was 19, Frank was arrested for the brutal rape of an acquaintance. The victim barely survived severe internal injuries, but Frank always maintained that the sex was mutually consenting. He was found not guilty by reason of insanity. After many years in a maximum security institution, Frank was transferred to a less secure hospital. While there, he persuaded a nurse that he was innocent and misunderstood. Believing Frank was in love with her, she helped him escape by unlocking the door and hiding him in the trunk of her car. Frank stayed the weekend with her, then left while she was out buying groceries; she never heard from him again. After being apprehended, Frank was returned to the maximum security facility but, within a few years, he was again transferred to a less secure hospital. During his stay there, he sexually assaulted three fellow female patients and a staff member. While on a pass, he viciously raped a young woman in the local community. Again, he was returned to maximum security. Since then he has written a two-volume autobiography featuring a portrait of himself on the cover. He reads all of our published research from which he tries to use out-of-context quotations to convince the Review Board to release him again. Recently, a nurse on his unit lost her job after Frank convinced her to smuggle testosterone tablets to him. Offenders scoring high on measures of psychopathy have extensive and versatile criminal histories Hare et al., 1992, Hare & Jutai, 1983, Hare & McPherson, 1984a and Hare et al., 1988 and are more likely than low-scoring offenders to commit crimes upon release or discharge Harris et al., 1991a, Serin, 1991, Serin, 1996 and Serin et al., 1990. As well, the crimes committed by psychopaths are different from those committed by nonpsychopaths: They are more often goal-oriented, more often involve weapons and violence, more often involve nonkin and stranger victims, and more often involve male victims (Cornell et al., 1996, Hare & McPherson, 1984a, Serin, 1991 and Williamson et al., 1987; reviewed in Patrick & Zempolich, 1998). Most of the research on psychopathy has been conducted in prisons or secured hospitals. The few studies of psychopathic men recruited from the general community also show that they engage in more antisocial and criminal activities than nonpsychopathic men Belmore & Quinsey, 1994, Seto et al., 1997, Widom, 1977 and Widom & Newman, 1985. Also, scores on measures of psychopathy are consistently and positively associated with self-reported use of sexual coercion and aggression Kosson et al., 1997 and Lalumière & Quinsey, 1996. In fact, it has been difficult for researchers to recruit male community volunteers who score high on measures of psychopathy and who have not engaged in criminal behavior. Results from studies of nonadjudicated boys and men also suggest a very early onset of psychopathic tendencies Frick et al., 1994, Lynam, 1996, Lynam, 1997, Lynam, 1998 and Skilling et al., in press. The seriousness, diversity, pervasiveness, and continuity of the antisocial and criminal behavior of psychopaths has intrigued many and has led to much research aimed at better understanding the origin and development of this phenomenon. Psychopathic men recruited from prisons, psychiatric hospitals, or the community differ from nonpsychopathic men in several ways. In the laboratory, they show little tolerance of delay, more perseverance when punished , less control over dominant (highly probable) responses, and are generally less affected by the consequences of their actions Howard et al., 1997, Howland et al., 1993, Lykken, 1957, Newman & Kosson, 1986, Newman et al., 1992 and Newman et al., 1987. Psychopaths are less physiologically reactive when exposed to cues of distress or to aversive or unexpected stimuli like loud sounds, and less reactive when anticipating some aversive stimuli Hare, 1978, Ogloff & Wong, 1990, Patrick, 1994 and Schmauk, 1970. Psychopaths appear to process emotionally charged information very differently: In contrast to nonpsychopaths, psychopaths do not show different behavioral and electrocortical reactions to emotional and to neutral verbal information (Williamson, Harpur, & Hare, 1991). Also, psychopaths show less cerebral lateralization than nonpsychopaths and differ on contemporaneous measures of cerebral activity when processing verbal information Day & Wong, 1996, Hare & McPherson, 1984b, Intrator et al., 1997, Kiehl et al., 1999 and Raine et al., 1990. Results of neuropsychological and neuroimaging tests, however, have shown no evidence of lesions or other brain damage Hare, 1984 and Hart et al., 1990. The striking differences between psychopaths and other men are illustrated and underlined by the finding that psychopathy represents a discrete entity. Harris, Rice, and Quinsey (1994), Skilling, Harris, Rice, and Quinsey (2000), and Skilling et al. (in press) reported, using Meehl's taxometric methods, that a score on a measure of psychopathy represents a probability of the person assessed belonging to the psychopathy class rather than a degree of psychopathy. This empirical finding has been obtained with samples of adult male psychiatric patients, adult male prisoners, and grade school boys. The essential logic of taxometric analyses is that, when a construct is underlain by a distinct natural class, valid indicators of the construct do not covary (or show low covariance) when members of the class and its complement are considered separately. The same indicators covary much more when members of the natural class and its complement are mixed together (Harris, Skilling, & Rice, in press). The discrete nature of psychopathy suggests that its development may be quite unique. There are two general theoretical views about the development of psychopathy. 1.1. Psychopathy as psychopathology Psychopathy has traditionally been seen as an extreme mental disorder and a disease. More recently, it has been described as a serious personality disorder, a brain-based pathology, or a virulent strain of conduct disorder (e.g., Hart & Hare, 1989, Hart & Hare, 1996, Lapierre et al., 1995, Lynam, 1996 and Schulsinger, 1972). Psychopathy is seen as destructive to self and others, as illustrated in these statements: “… given the morbidity of psychopathy and its negative impact on society, it is difficult to imagine that any mental disorder, save perhaps schizophrenia, could be considered a greater public health concern” (Hart & Hare, 1996, p. 131); “In the psychopathic child … we have an opportunity to observe the development of the disorder before it has had an opportunity to destroy its host” (Lynam, 1997, p. 434). According to this view, the development of psychopaths has been disturbed, so that they are unable to experience such moral sentiments as empathy or remorse, cannot fully appreciate the consequences of their actions, and therefore cannot behave in prosocial ways. Although the causal developmental disturbances have not been identified, there are many candidates: deleterious genes, obstetrical problems, or injuries leading to neurological problems, inadequate or abusive childhood environments, failure to bond with a primary caretaker in infancy, and so on (Lykken, 1995). Thus, the most common interpretation of the observed differences between psychopaths and nonpsychopaths is that psychopaths are behaviorally, emotionally, physiologically, and cognitively impaired. For example, Patrick (1994, p. 327) concluded that “[t]he absence of normal startle potentiation in psychopaths during exposure to aversive pictures or warning cues signifies a deficit in the capacity for defensive response modulation, which is the essence of fear” (italics added). The psychopathology interpretation has not yet led to successful etiological models of psychopathy, but has nonetheless led to interventions designed to promote prosocial emotions, cognitions, and behavior. Thus, therapy programs have attempted to increase empathy, responsibility, understanding and caring for others, and so on. However, these treatments have not produced the desired effects on criminal recidivism. In one study, an increase in the violent recidivism of psychopaths was associated with therapy designed to improve their emotional and social functioning, probably because psychopaths learned new ways to appear empathic and to better manipulate others ( Harris et al., 1994 and Rice et al., 1992; see also Seto & Barbaree, 1999). 1.2. Psychopathy as “special design” An alternative interpretation is that psychopaths are different by design, rather than as a result of impairment. Based on considerations of evolutionary biology, a characteristic would qualify as a deficit or an impairment only when it represents a failure of a mechanism to perform its evolved function. According to recent Darwinian models of psychopathy, the behavioral, emotional, cognitive, and neuropsychological characteristics of psychopaths are not deficits or impairments; instead, they are a set of organized, functional, and specialized phenotypic features that formed a viable reproductive social strategy in human evolutionary history. Harpending and Sobus (1987) used the concepts and results of game theory research to demonstrate that a cheater (or nonreciprocator) could achieve Darwinian success under certain conditions: cheaters are successful when they are difficult to detect, highly mobile, verbally skilled, and especially skilled at persuading females to mate. Harpending and Sobus pondered the possibility that psychopathy (they used the term “sociopathy”) could be the result of a condition-dependent or an obligate strategy, or perhaps a combination of both. Mealey (1995, p. 536) extended and documented these ideas and suggested that psychopathy — what she called primary sociopathy — might be an evolutionarily stable strategy maintained by frequency-dependent selection. By this account, psychopaths are genetically different from other antisocial individuals and from everyone else, their genotype strongly predisposing them to a lifetime of antisociality: “Without love to ‘commit’ them to cooperation, anxiety to prevent ‘defection,’ or guilt to inspire repentance, they will remain free to continually play for the short-term benefit in the Prisoner's Dilemma.” Lalumière and Seto (1998) argued, based on the work of Harpending and Sobus (1987), Mealey (1995), and also Axelrod (1984) and Frank (1988), that a “cheater” or “defector” model of psychopathy would require the following conditions in the environment of evolutionary adaptedness (EEA): (1) most members of human social groups were strongly inclined to cooperate, (2) it was possible to move from one group to another, and (3) detecting defectors entailed costs. A fairly evenly mixed group of cooperators and defectors would have resulted in many fruitless interactions between defectors, and would have resulted in greater vigilance for defection by cooperators. Lack of mobility would have resulted in high cost for gaining a reputation as a defector and eventual ostracism or even death. And cost-free detection would have excluded defectors from all interactions (and again their eventual elimination). Quinsey, Harris, Rice, and Cormier (1998, p. 230) noted that psychopaths also use aggression and violence as part of their strategy of social defection and suggested that “psychopathy can be considered to be a life-history strategy consisting of short-term mating tactics, an aggressive and risky (“warrior-hawk”) approach to achieving social dominance, and frequent use of nonreciprocating and duplicitous (cheating) tactics in social exchange.”1 These ideas suggest that the defining features of psychopaths (manipulative, charming, glib, deceptive, parasitic, irresponsible, selfish, callous, promiscuous, impulsive, antisocial, aggressive), and the laboratory findings (not tolerating delay of gratification, perseveration despite punishment, superficial processing of emotional material, lesser reactivity to cues of other's distress and fear) are not pathological outcomes of impaired development, but rather features of a Darwinian adaptation designed to thrive in an interpersonal environment dominated by social cooperators. The defining features and characteristics of psychopaths do show evidence of design with regard to the particular life-history and social strategies hypothesized by evolutionary psychologists. It is difficult to imagine how the combination of these characteristics could result from pathology. It is not immediately obvious, however, how to devise clear-cut empirical tests to distinguish between psychopathological and special design views of psychopathy. In this article, we use the concept of developmental instability to examine whether adult psychopathy is the result of a pathological or a nonpathological development. 1.3. Developmental instability Developmental instability “refers to the imprecise expression of a given developmental design because of untoward environmental or genetic perturbations that disrupt developmental processes” (Gangestad & Yeo, 1994, p. 572). Thus, measures of developmental instability tell a historical tale of poor or disrupted design, random errors and accidents, or deleterious environments. Measures of developmental instability allow the assessment of some crucial properties of adaptation and pathology, in particular, developmental precision (or lack thereof). A psychopathological view of psychopathy suggests that psychopaths should show signs of developmental perturbations, while a special design view of psychopathy suggests that they should not. One set of developmental perturbations are obstetrical problems, including difficulties during pregnancy, labor, delivery, and postdelivery (e.g., bleeding, hypertension, toxemia, use of forceps) and atypical outcomes of pregnancy (e.g., prematurity, low birth weight, signs of neurological problems). These problems have been associated with low intelligence, mental retardation, epilepsy, autism, early-onset schizophrenia, hyperactivity, anxiety disorders, behavior disorders, and other developmental problems Allen et al., 1998, Bolton et al., 1997, Broman, 1989, Firestone & Prabhu, 1983, Hunt & Cooper, 1989 and Verdoux et al., 1997. Some obstetrical problems (e.g., toxemia) may be causes, as well as signs of developmental perturbations. In Study 1, we investigated the relationship between psychopathy and a history of obstetrical problems among a large group of male offenders.