Press Esc to close
Wednesday 27 August 2014
News updated at 4:15 PM IST
Weather
Max: 28°C
Min : 20.2°C
In Bangalore
Generally cloudy

Inside the minds of psychopaths

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
Children dressed as Mother Teresa offer prayers on the occaision of her birthday in Bhopal ...

Children dressed as Mother Teresa offer prayers on the occaision of her birthday in Bhopal ...

J Sreenivasan, Vice President, Sales, TVS Motor Company, at the launch of TVS Scooty Zest 110 ...

J Sreenivasan, Vice President, Sales, TVS Motor Company, at the launch of TVS Scooty Zest 110 ...

Kaiser-e-Hind, a rare butterfly species in Ziro in Lower Subansiri district of Arunachal Pradesh ...

Kaiser-e-Hind, a rare butterfly species in Ziro in Lower Subansiri district of Arunachal Pradesh ...

An Army jawan distributes food to people of border villages who are affected by Pakistani shelling .

An Army jawan distributes food to people of border villages who are affected by Pakistani shelling .

Sheila Dikshit after a press conference following her resignation as Kerala Governor in New Delhi ..

Sheila Dikshit after a press conference following her resignation as Kerala Governor in New Delhi ..

BSF DG DK Pathak interacts with a person injured in border shelling in Jammu ...

BSF DG DK Pathak interacts with a person injured in border shelling in Jammu ...

Puducherry Chief Minister N Rangaswamy paying floral tributes to a statue of Mother Teresa ...

Puducherry Chief Minister N Rangaswamy paying floral tributes to a statue of Mother Teresa ...

An Army jawan during an encounter with militants, at Kalaro in Kupwara district  ...

An Army jawan during an encounter with militants, at Kalaro in Kupwara district ...

Britain's Deputy PM, Nick Clegg at Taj Mahal Hotel in Mumbai ...

Britain's Deputy PM, Nick Clegg at Taj Mahal Hotel in Mumbai ...

Rabbi Holtzberg speaks before the reopening ceremony of Nariman House in Mumbai ...

Rabbi Holtzberg speaks before the reopening ceremony of Nariman House in Mumbai ...

Copyright 2014, The Printers (Mysore) Private Ltd., 75, M.G Road, Post Box 5331, Bangalore - 560001
Tel: +91 (80) 25880000 Fax No. +91 (80) 25880523