Is Psychopathy Pathology or a Life Strategy?: Implications for Social Policy
Persistently antisocial individuals have long been of interest to mental health and criminal justice professionals. In the 20th century, the construct underlying persistent antisociality has been labeled psychopathy, dyssocial personality disorder, and antisocial personality disorder. Although mental health professionals have long recognized those individuals called psychopaths in this chapter, there has been substantial disagreement about the etiology and nature of their condition (Cleckley, 1976; Hare, 1996; Walker, 1973), leading it to be variously considered a type of mental illness, a form of insanity, and a moral deficit.