This is one of the best-written books I have ever read. It is scientific, accurate, and an eye- and brain-opener. Recognize some mountain bikers?


Robert D. Hare, _Without Conscience -- the

Disturbing World of Psychopaths Among Us_. New

York: The Guilford Press, 1993.


"They have little resistance to temptation, and

their transgressions elicit no guilt. Without the

shackles of a nagging conscience, they feel free

to satisfy their needs and wants and do whatever

they think they can get away with. Any antisocial

act, from petty theft to bloody murder, becomes

possible." p.76. "When we used this laboratory

task with prison inmates, the nonpsychopaths

showed the normal pattern of responses -- quicker

decisions and larger brain responses to emotional

than to neutral words -- but the psychopaths did

not: <i>They responded to emotional words as if

they were neutral words.</i>" p.130. "The social

and financial costs to society of failing to

solve the deadly mystery of the psychopath will

be staggering. It is imperative that we continue

to search for clues." p.220.


A friend wrote:


"It's funny to get this because the other day on Tam, a ranger stopped some

bikers who had ridden across a meadow, leaving deep ruts in the very wet

soil (just to avoid going through a fire road gate). Their response was so

calm and lackadaisical as if nothing had happened. I have seen this every

time bikers are stopped on trails for riding illegally. They go into a

psychological denial of any wrong, extend that into an area of logic where

they feel they are the ones being wronged and ergo, they can do what they

want. It would make a great study for a masters or Ph.D. thesis."