This page has a collection of articles, essays and reports from popular news sites and academic journals exploring narcissism, machiavellianism, and psychopathy otherwise known as the Dark Traid of personality disorders. The subject headings have been arranged alphabetically. Further addition of articles will be ongoing.
Please also read the following:
|The Pathology of Normality I|
|The Rise of Narcissism and the Loss of Meaning I|
|The Rise of Narcissism and the Loss of Meaning II|
|The Rise of Narcissism and the Loss of Meaning III|
|The Hissy Fit Generation And The Loss of Free Speech IV: The Narcissism Factor (1)|
|The Hissy Fit Generation And The Loss of Free Speech IV: The Narcissism Factor (2)|
|The Rape of Conscience: I, Psychopath|
|The Psychopath: A Different Species? I|
|The Psychopath: A Different Species? II|
|The Psychopath: A Different Species? III|
|The Psychopath: A Different Species? IV|
|The Female Psychopath I|
|The Female Psychopath II|
What is THE DARK TRIAD?
The Dark Triad is a phrase you’re unlikely to have heard around the workplace, but it is one of the “buzzwords” in the world of psychology. It refers to three distinct but related personality traits: narcissism, Machiavellianism and psychopathy.
- Narcissism: narcissism comes from the Greek myth of Narcissus, a hunter who fell in love with his own reflection in a pool of water, and drowned. Narcissistic people can be selfish, boastful, arrogant, lacking in empathy, and hypersensitive to criticism.
- Machiavellianism: the word comes from the renowned 16th century Italian politician and diplomat Niccolo Machiavelli. He earned notoriety when his 1513 book, “The Prince,” was interpreted as an endorsement of the dark arts of cunning and deceit in diplomacy. Traits associated with Machiavellianism include duplicity, manipulation, self-interest, and a lack of both emotion and morality.
- Psychopathy: personality traits associated with psychopathy include a lack of empathy or remorse, antisocial behavior, and being manipulative and volatile. It’s important to note that there is a distinction between psychopathic traits and being a psychopath, with its commonly held association with criminal violence.
“Experience has taught the author that evil is similar to disease in nature, although possibly more complex and elusive to our understanding. Its genesis reveals many factors, pathological, especially psychopathological, in character, whose essence medicine and psychology have already studied… [A] comprehension of the essence and genesis of evil generally makes use of data from [biology, medicine, and psychology]. Philosophical reflection alone is insufficient.” (Lobaczewski, 98)
Like a color blind man incapable of distinguishing red from green, a small minority of the human population cannot experience or fully comprehend the normal range of human emotions. And like those color blind who may conceal their condition by using the correct words while not understanding their meaning (e.g., the top traffic light is “red”, the bottom is “green”) – so does this minority conceal their condition by playacting an emotion’s exterior signs (facial expressions, exclamations, body language). However, they do not actually experience the emotion in question. Their deception is revealed in the laboratory, where they respond to words like DEATH, CANCER, DISEASE, as if they were DAY, CREAM, or PAPER. They lack the ability to comprehend the emotional “punch” that certain words contain. They use others’ emotional reactions as cues, and they adjust their behavior to portray the correct ‘emotional’ behavior. (Hare, 129-30)
These individuals are known as psychopaths. Not only can they not feel the pain of others, they often seem to deliberately cause others pain. Lobaczewski refers to this disorder as an “essential psychopathy” to distinguish them from others with deficits in their genetic/instinctual endowment, essential psychopathy being the most severe and disturbing.
Many so-called “antisocial individuals” acquire similar characteristics in their life-time, whether caused by brain damage to certain areas of the brain, or functionally, because of close contact with and influence by such individuals. Lobaczewski terms such individuals characteropaths. The vast majority of both these groups cannot change. The acts that we call evil (especially on a macrosocial level) can be traced back to this deviant minority of human beings and the effects of their actions on their family, friends, and society.”
— See also Psychopathy (Wikipedia)