Press Esc to close
Saturday 30 April 2016
News updated at 10:44 AM IST
Weather
Max: 37°C
Min : 24.5°C
In Bengaluru
Sunny day

Inside the minds of psychopaths

Last updated: 16 October, 2011
Washington, Oct 16 (IANS)

Psychopaths use more conjunctions like ''because'' or ''since'', are more likely to use past tense and use twice as many words relating to physical needs like sex or money, a computerised analysis reveals.

The analysis has revealed how psychopathic killers utter specific words beyond conscious control while talking about heinous crime.

The words of psychopaths match their personalities, reflecting selfishness, detachment from their crimes and emotional flatness, says Jeff Hancock, professor of computing and information science at Cornell University and colleagues.

Hancock and colleagues analysed stories told by 14 psychopathic murderers held in Canadian prisons and compared them with 38 convicted murderers who were not diagnosed as psychopathic.

Each subject was asked to describe his crime in detail. Their stories were taped, transcribed and subjected to computer analysis, the journal Legal and Criminological Psychology reports.

Psychopaths used more conjunctions like "because", "since" or "so that", implying that the crime "had to be done" to obtain a particular goal, according to a Cornell statement.

They were more likely to use the past tense, suggesting a detachment from their crimes, say the researchers. They tended to be less fluent in their speech, using more "ums" and "uhs".

They used twice as many words relating to physical needs, such as food, sex or money, while non-psychopaths used more words about social needs, including family, religion and spirituality.

Unveiling their predatory nature in their own description, psychopaths often included details of what they had to eat on the day of their crime, according to a Cornell statement.

The exact reason for this is not clear, but the researchers speculate that the psychopath is trying harder to make a positive impression, needing to use more mental effort to frame the story.

This research potentially opens the way for better diagnosis and treatment of such conditions and have implications for law enforcement and social media.


Go to Top

Photo Gallery
Cricketer Virat Kohli during inauguration of a store in Hyderabad on Friday...

Cricketer Virat Kohli during inauguration of a store in Hyderabad on Friday...

Boys cool themselves in a pond on a hot summer afternoon at a village near Balurghat in South...

Boys cool themselves in a pond on a hot summer afternoon at a village near Balurghat in South...

A duck quenches its thirst at a zoo during hot summer day in Surat on Friday...

A duck quenches its thirst at a zoo during hot summer day in Surat on Friday...

A pair of tigers at a zoo during hot summer day in Surat on Friday...

A pair of tigers at a zoo during hot summer day in Surat on Friday...

Devotees take holy dip in the Kshipra river during Simhasth Kumbha Mela in Ujjain...

Devotees take holy dip in the Kshipra river during Simhasth Kumbha Mela in Ujjain...

Farmers bathe their cattle in a stream during hot summer day in Kasara, Thane...

Farmers bathe their cattle in a stream during hot summer day in Kasara, Thane...

Actors Karan Singh Grover and Bipasha Basu during their mehndi Ceremony in Mumbai...

Actors Karan Singh Grover and Bipasha Basu during their mehndi Ceremony in Mumbai...

Villagers gather to collect water from a well that was filled by a tanker in Kasara, Thane...

Villagers gather to collect water from a well that was filled by a tanker in Kasara, Thane...

Protesters throw stones on security personnel during clashes in Srinagar...

Protesters throw stones on security personnel during clashes in Srinagar...

Muslim children paying obeisance at the Golden Temple on the occasion of 463rd Birth Anniversary...

Muslim children paying obeisance at the Golden Temple on the occasion of 463rd Birth Anniversary...