Press Esc to close
Friday 31 October 2014
News updated at 7:36 PM IST
Weather
Max: 28.4°C
Min : 18°C
In Bangalore
Partially cloudy

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
Security personnel patrol a street after a protest by the supporters of Jammu and Kashmir...

Security personnel patrol a street after a protest by the supporters of Jammu and Kashmir...

India A players Rohit Sharma and Manish Pandey during a practice match against Sri Lanka...

India A players Rohit Sharma and Manish Pandey during a practice match against Sri Lanka...

Indian Air Force officers arrive at the Gateway of India after swimming for a distance...

Indian Air Force officers arrive at the Gateway of India after swimming for a distance...

The Navy hovercraft carrying West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee to Sagar Island...

The Navy hovercraft carrying West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee to Sagar Island...

A Rajasthani herder with his cows in Gurgaon...

A Rajasthani herder with his cows in Gurgaon...

Devotees wait for the Sun to offer prayers, during Chhath Puja festival in Agra...

Devotees wait for the Sun to offer prayers, during Chhath Puja festival in Agra...

Sand artist Sudarsan Pattnaik creates a sand sculpture on Black Money with a message...

Sand artist Sudarsan Pattnaik creates a sand sculpture on Black Money with a message...

BJP workers arrange the cut-outs of party symbol (lotus) to decorate the boats at the Marine...

BJP workers arrange the cut-outs of party symbol (lotus) to decorate the boats at the Marine...

A police man investigates the tunnel dug up by the robbers in Gohana bank heist, in Sonipat...

A police man investigates the tunnel dug up by the robbers in Gohana bank heist, in Sonipat...

Bollywood megastar Amitabh Bachchan sweeps in a stree during a cleanliness drive as a part...

Bollywood megastar Amitabh Bachchan sweeps in a stree during a cleanliness drive as a part...

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