Skip to main content
Article
Differentiating Antisocial Personality Disorder, Psychopathy, and Sociopathy: Evolutionary, Genetic, Neurological, and Sociological Considerations
Criminal Justice Studies
  • Anthony Walsh, Boise State University
  • Huei-Hsia Wu, University of West Alabama
Document Type
Article
Publication Date
4-1-2008
Disciplines
Abstract
This paper examines the separate but overlapping constructs of psychopathy, sociopathy, and antisocial personality disorder from evolutionary, genetic, neurological, and sociological perspectives. Evidence indicates that psychopaths are a stable proportion of any population, can be from any segment of society, may constitute a distinct taxonomical class forged by frequency‐dependent natural selection, and that the muting of the social emotions is the proximate mechanism that enables psychopaths to pursue their self‐centered goals without felling the pangs of guilt. Sociopaths are more the products of adverse environmental experiences that affect autonomic nervous system and neurological development that may lead to physiological responses similar to those of psychopaths. Antisocial personality disorder is a legal/clinical label that may be applied to both psychopaths and sociopaths.
Citation Information
Anthony Walsh and Huei-Hsia Wu. "Differentiating Antisocial Personality Disorder, Psychopathy, and Sociopathy: Evolutionary, Genetic, Neurological, and Sociological Considerations" Criminal Justice Studies (2008)
Available at: http://works.bepress.com/anthony_walsh/58/