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Psychopathy Example Paper

Psychopathy Example Paper


Every society exercises some degree of control over its people. Each member of the society is expected to behave in a particular code or comply with some set of norms or rules. Going contrary to these set norms constitutes deviance. Ogloff (2006) stipulates that any action that violates or counters the set rules is unacceptable and deemed deviant. These norms are established to ensure that harmony and peace are maintained within the society. Every member is expected to conform and abide by the set customs or risk being punished. According to Durkheim (2013), four elements constitute deviance. The existence of a rule or law, a violator of the law, audience, and punishment following the violation. Psychopathy Example Paper

More often than not, violators are usually punished, condemned, arrested or isolated by the society. However, rules may differ according to various culturessince a particular community may consider an action deviant which another society can consider it non- deviant. Nevertheless, various actions are perceived as deviant in most societies. In every country or nation there exist some formal norms called laws upon which citizens must abide. The law comprises a small percentage of the complex rules which govern human action. Conducts of the citizens resulting in a violation of these formal norms constitute a crime. A crime is a form of deviance but to another higher degree.  Aker (2017) stipulates that deviance can be categorized into different degree within a range upon which punishment will be instituted. Psychopathy Example Paper

Crimes are regarded as the most severe violation of society’s rules which raise public concern. The society is composed of diverse people exhibiting different behaviors. Some behaviors may cause injuries or predispose the society to serious harm. Many crimes committed within this set up are perpetrated by psychopaths. Undeniably, no society is immune to psychopaths. According to Marsh et al., (2012) 50% of the incarcerated population in the USA is composed of psychopaths. These people are responsible for the majority of crimes occurring in the society. Crime is a severe form of deviance which is handled with a lot of concern. It becomes essential to understand the foundation of these crimes and how psychopaths engage in this deviant behaviour. This paper, therefore, will explain and analyze the foundation of crimes and how psychopaths engage in these deviant behaviours.Psychopathy Example Paper

Durkheim deviance theory

The society operates as an integrated unit with each person performing a specific function which results in development. Within this integrated unit, deviant people will always exist. However, this deviance to some extent is necessary within the society.  Durkheim (2013) stipulates that deviance serves four elementary functions within the society. First, it reinforces the societal norms in a sense that; when the member of a community sees someone being punished for violating the crime, they are meant to believe that violation of the norms is unacceptable. Second, members of the society can distinguish right from wrong on viewing the consequences of breach. Third, deviance brings unity to the society and lastly, deviance facilitates the change of the norms or laws. Psychopathy Example Paper

These crimes perpetrated in the society pinpoint some of the norms that are inconsiderate or oppressive. Among the dreadful crime committed in the USA and the world at large were perpetrated by psychopaths. Crime rates are increasing day in day out as the worldevolves. The persistence emphasis on wealth and narrowed opportunities to become wealthier have resulted escalated crimes. The quest for success despite blocked channels for growing successful has made people deviant in coming up withmethods of gaining success. However, some of these crimes are not tied to success but rather the loss of life. Every day, the media feeds the public with news of shocking murder and horrific stories often accused bysome psychopaths.Psychopathy Example Paper

The bad reputation of psychopaths has made the society associate them with every terrible crime.  Ronson (2011) argues that despite the fact that most murder crimes are committed by psychopaths, it is not automatic that they are accused of every heinous crime. Nevertheless, a significant percentage of crimes committed in the current world is committed by psychopaths. The behaviors and penchantsof these people have primarily facilitated commitment of crimes.  Aker (2017) stipulates the establishment of norms ought to craft a peaceful society which fosters development. Crime is dysfunctional and impacts negatively on the growth of society. Psychopaths possess certain traits which predispose them to commit wrong actions.Psychopathy Example Paper

Psychopathic tendencies

Psychopaths more often than not get in trouble with the law. Marsh et al. (2012) depict that approximately one-third of psychopaths are in the criminal justice system. Their traits enable them to cover up for crimes committed. Such people have mental a disorder which causes violent or abnormal social behaviors. Over and over again people develop this disorder following a medical condition such as dementia, inheritance, while some acquire it from the environment. The environment in which these people are raised from play a prominent role in the genesis of this disorder.  Ogloff (2006), details that people with a history of childhood neglect or trauma are more likely to develop this disorder.Psychopathy Example Paper

Also, people living in an environment with reduced means of acquiring basic needs may turn violent developing these characteristics. Moreover, psychopathic traits are inheritable which poses a danger to future generations. Majority of the imprisoned psychopaths have a track record of crimes committed since childhood. Psychopaths lack a conscience which implies their lack mindfulness of their actions whether they are right or wrong. They lack morals to care about their actions which are a dangerous trait they possess. Ronson (2011) adds that conscience enablespeople to judge actions which the psychopaths lack. This leads them to commit serious crimes since they require a filter to distinguish between good or bad actions. Psychopathy Example Paper

Moreover, they lack guilt of their actions regardless whether the acts hurt or predispose someone to harm.Psychopaths are capable ofdoing anything from stealing to butchering people without feeling guilty. These individuals are reckless in their pursuit and stop at nothing until they achieve their desires. These psychopaths have an ingrained tendency which fails to prevent them from reaching what they want which in most cases amount to crimes. Moreover, psychopaths are deceptive and charming. Viljoen et al., (2010) further affirm that psychopaths possess a lot of charisma which they employ effectively in their dishonest actions. They make someone believe a lie without suspicion.Psychopathy Example Paper

Also, they can fake emotions and feelings depending on the situation at hand. This enables them to blend with people during various situations without being recognized. Psychopaths are unconcerned with the consequences of their actions which makes them bend the law and norms. This inability to follow social rules plunge them into the hands of the law enforcers. In America, many psychopaths imprisoned have meddled with the law since childhood. They have a record of crimes which reaffirms their inability to obey social norms. Furthermore, they are manipulative and heartless. According to 2012 FBI reports, psychopaths can control authority while being interrogated which posse a significant peril to the criminal justice system.Psychopathy Example Paper

They fail to explicit pity to empathetic interviews conducted to them to confirm their action which is a significant ability they possess.  Marsh et al. (2012) stipulate that psychopaths can succeed in business because they influence people to believe what they want and acquire their desires. Their independent beliefs make them unrestrained by social codes and norms. In a nutshell, they are unable to form social bonds due to their views. According to social control theory, personalities’ beliefs, morals, commitments, and relationship creates a non-violent environment. Members with similar beliefs have self-control over their actions.Psychopathy Example Paper

The concept further emphasizes that the societal bonds are enhanced by the relationship among fundamental beliefs, adherence to rules and involvement within the society. Lack of any of the four creates a loophole for crimes. Psychopaths are unable to attach to other individuals within the society fostering a criminal behavior. Hence, the psychopathic traits predispose them to crimes.   Aker (2017) further details the absence of the bond makes the psychopath feel no guilt when committing crimes such as theft or rape. They are often aggressive and loss temperament at ease.Temperamental people pose a significant threat to human safety.

In a nutshell, psychopaths can perpetuate their deeds efficiently without being recognized due to their intelligence capabilities. When psychopaths commit homicides, their killing schemes are often organized and planned (Ronson 2011). This further reinforces that there is a connection between criminal acts and psychopathy. However, the criminal justice system ensures that citizens live within the bounds of law through punishing the offenders. Crimes disrupt societal peace and functioning often warranting actions to be taken.Psychopathy Example Paper

Psychopaths since time in memorial have fallen into the hands of the judiciary which decides their fate. More often than not, they are Incarcerated or taken to a rehabilitation center to mend their ways.  Ogloff (2006) stipulates that even afterbeing imprisoned, these psychopathsrelapse back to their deviant behavior due to the inherent inability to conform to the law. However, these crimes are indicators of an ailment within the society which need to be addressed. Some of these laws and norms infringe on people’s freedom or violate their principles which makes them plunge into deviant behaviors. Also, motives to gain power and brutal inclinations can result in crimes. Psychopaths are driven by sheer reasons to harm people or satisfy their desires which amount to crimes (Viljoen et al., 2010).


This further reaffirms the thought that crime is a significant form of deviance and often are driven by selfish interest. These people lack the conscience which is a central core in shaping people’s actions and deeds within the society. Furthermore, the environment upon which an individual develops contributes to deviant behavior. According to Aker (2017), hostile upbringing and environment breed deviant behaviors. The children can establish mental disorder which may result in crime. Psychopaths view their behaviors right according to their beliefs. Being driven by sadistic and selfish motives, the psychopaths feel they have accomplished their desires. Psychopathy Example Paper

Their actions result in social injustices such as murder, theft, and assault making the society isolate them. Psychopaths pose a lot of danger besides being punished. Lack of conscience makes them revolt back to their deviant behaviors. Reports from American Psychiatric Association depicts that psychopaths hardly change entirely and quite often they perpetuate the same act after being released and counseled but with a more significant magnitude the second time. The society in most cases turns to the criminal justice system for the institution of appropriate punishment to the criminals or rehabilitationcenters.

Policy recommendations

For a long time, psychopathy has been viewed as a single personality disorder. However, research has depicted that it is an amalgamation of different types of disorders. The criminal justice system has instituted justice based on this notion that psychopathy is a sole disorder. Viljoen et al., (2010) details that the tendency of a psychopath committing an offense since childhood which is common in some juvenile criminals is indicative of emotional disruption rather than emotional detachment as perceived. The lack of distinction has challenged policymakers hence falling to curb crime.Psychopathy Example Paper

The policy decision should be made by the judiciary in conjunction with the psychiatrist to add scientific support to the policies.  Viljoen et al., (2010) add that intensive treatment carried out to psychopathic youth and adults have shown a reduction in aggression. Thus more resource should be put to create a secure base and environment for the children at risk of becoming psychopathic. Also, the psychotic adults should be alleviated from a situation that can trigger the violent actions. However, due to the cost of these resources, the change may take time before being instituted. More inputs and considerations should be added to cater for the welfare of psychopaths.Psychopathy Example Paper


Norms and laws govern the behavior and conduct of every society. Violation of these laws attracts punishment or retribution. Crime is a form of deviance which ought to be punished. There is a strong correlation between psychopathy and crime. Without the existence of norms and laws, the society would be in chaos.

Reference list

Akers, R. (2017). Social learning and social structure: A general theory of crime and deviance. Routledge.


Durkheim, E. (2013). Durkheim: The rules of sociological method: And selected texts on sociology and its method. Palgrave Macmillan.


Marsh, A. A., & Cardinale, E. M. (2012). When psychopathy impairs moral judgments: neural responses during judgments about causing fear. Social cognitive and affective neuroscience, 9(1), 3-11.



Ogloff, J. R. (2006). Psychopathy/antisocial personality disorder conundrum. Australian & New Zealand Journal of Psychiatry, 40(6-7), 519-528.


Top of Form

Ronson, J. (2011). The psychopath test: A journey through the madness industry. New York: Riverhead Books.


Viljoen, J. L., McLachlan, K., & Vincent, G. M. (2010). Assessing violence risk and psychopathy in juvenile and adult offenders: A survey of clinical practices. Assessment, 17(3), 377-395.

Psychopathy Example Paper


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