Psychopathy : The Basics book cover
1st Edition

The Basics

  • Available for pre-order on June 6, 2023. Item will ship after June 27, 2023
ISBN 9781032221007
June 27, 2023 Forthcoming by Routledge
264 Pages 36 B/W Illustrations

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USD $22.95

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Book Description

Psychopathy: The Basics is an accessible text that provides a compact introduction to the major findings and debates concerning this complex personality disorder.

The book provides an overview of the field and covers a wide range of research findings from genetics to psychosocial developmental explanations. It begins with an exploration of the historical conception of the phenomenon of psychopathy and goes on to discuss its social and cultural accounts. It also delves into biologically based explanations including genetic and evolutionary approaches along with criminological and entrepreneurial types of psychopathy. Offering a balanced perspective, the book addresses the nature-nurture debate in the field and also discusses widely accepted personality traits of psychopaths. Lastly, it also provides a glossary of key terms and suggestions for further reading

This text will be an essential read for students of forensic psychology, or criminology. It is also an ideal starting point for those interested in the science of psychopathy and personality disorders.

Table of Contents

  1. What is psychopathy: Definitions and history of the conception
  2. Implications of measurement in shaping our understanding of psychopathy
  3. Explanations: Social, psychological and cultural
  4. Explanations: Biological
  5. Explanations: Personality-Psychopathy interaction
  6. Explanations: Developmental pathway and continuity
  7. Criminal and entrepreneurial psychopaths
  8. Psychopaths living among us
  9. Can they change their spots?



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Sandie Taylor is an experienced lecturer and author. Her DPhil in psychology focused on applied memory approaches to facilitate recognition of faces. She has also received an MSc in Criminology and has previously published 4 books (including Forensic Psychology: The Basics) and many peer-reviewed articles and book chapters.

Lance Workman is Visiting Professor of Psychology at the University of South Wales. He was formally Head of Psychology at Bath Spa University. Lance has published widely in psychology including over 100 articles and 9 books. For 7 years he was interviews editor for ‘The Psychologist’ and regularly appears in the media.


'The concept of psychopathy presents challenges for definition, measurement and full understanding. However, in this highly accessible and well-researched book, the authors have mastered this topic in an engaging and enjoyable way. Drawing direct connections between explanation and intervention provides a truly integrated discussion of this complex but fascinating group of individuals.'

Rachel Taylor, Senior Lecturer in Psychology, University of South Wales