Thursday, November 28, 2019

Psychopathy free essay sample

Criminal psychopathy can be both repulsive and fascinating, as illustrated by the vast number of books and movies inspired by this topic. Offenders diagnosed with psychopathy pose a significant threat to society, because they are more likely to harm other individuals and to do so again after being released. A brain imaging study in the Netherlands shows individuals with psychopathy have reduced empathy while witnessing the pains of others. When asked to empathize, however, they can activate their empathy. This could explain why psychopathic individuals can be callous and socially cunning at the same time. Why are psychopathic individuals more likely to hurt others? Individuals with psychopathy characteristically demonstrate reduced empathy with the feelings of others, which may explain why it is easier for them to hurt other people. However, what causes this lack of empathy is poorly understood. Scientific studies on psychopathic subjects are notoriously hard to conduct. Convicted criminals with a diagnosis of psychopathy are confined to high-security forensic institutions in which state-of-the-art technology to study their brain, like magnetic resonance imaging, is usually unavailable, explains Professor Christian Keysers, Head of the Social Brain Lab in Amsterdam, and senior author of a study on psychopathy appearing in the Journal Brain this week. We will write a custom essay sample on Psychopathy or any similar topic specifically for you Do Not WasteYour Time HIRE WRITER Only 13.90 / page Bringing them to scientific research centres, on the other hand, requires the kind of high-security transportation that most Judicial systems are unwilling to finance. The Dutch Judicial system, however, seems to be an exception. They Joined forces with academia to promote a better understanding of psychopathy. As a result, criminals with psychopathy were transported to the Social Brain Lab of the University Medical Center in Groningen The Netherlands). There, the team could use state of the art high-field functional magnetic resonance imaging to peak into the brain of criminals with psychopathy while they view the emotions of others. The study, which will appear on the 25th of July in the Journal Brain (published by Oxford University Press) and is entitled Reduced spontaneous but relatively normal deliberate vicarious representations in psychopathy, included 18 individuals with psychopathy and a control group, and consisted of three parts. All participants first watched short movie clips of two eople interacting with each other, zoomed in on their hands. The movie clips showed one hand touching the other in a loving, a painful, a socially rejecting or a neutral way. At this stage, we asked them to look at these movies Just as they would watch one of their favourite films, Harma Meffert, the first author of the paper, explains. Meffert was a graduate student in the Social Brain Lab while the study was conducted, and is now a post-doctoral fellow at the National Institutes of Mental Health in Bethesda. Next, the participants watched the same clips again. This time, owever, the researchers prompted them explicitly to empathise with one of the actors in the movie, that is, they were requested to really try to feel what the actors in the movie were feeling. In the third and final part, we performed similar hand interactions with the participants themselves, while they were lying in the scanner, having their brain activity measured, adds Meffert. We wanted to know to what extent they would activate the same brain regions while they were watching the hand interactions in the movies, as they would hand interactions themselves. when they were experiencing these same

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