Bad Boys, Bad Men: Confronting Antisocial Personality Disorder

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Bad Boys, Bad Men examines antisocial personality disorder or ASP, the mysterious mental condition that underlies this lifelong penchant for bad behavior. Psychiatrist and researcher Donald W. Black draws on case studies, scientific data, and current events to explore antisocial behavior and to chart the history, nature, and treatment of a misunderstood disorder that affects up to seven million Americans. Citing new evidence from genetics and neuroscience, Black argues that this condition is tied to biological causes and that some people are simply born bad. Bad Boys, Bad Men not only describes the warning signs that predict which troubled children are more likely to become dangerous adults, but also details progress toward treatment for ASP. This volume will be an essential resource for psychiatrists, psychologists, criminologists, victims of crime, families of individuals afflicted with ASP, and anyone else interested in understanding antisocial behavior.
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Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
Black (psychiatry, Univ. of Iowa Coll. of Medicine) claims that ample new evidence from genetics and neuroscience supports a biological cause for antisocial personality disorder (ASP), lending truth to the adage "some people are simply born bad." ASP is intimately connected to many of society's ills, including crime, domestic violence, drug and alcohol abuse, and even rape and murder. For men with severe ASP, life becomes an opportunity to break all social and moral rules without remorse. But there are ways of detecting warning signs in troubled children, and there are procedures--various combinations of medication, psychotherapy, and social institutional interventions--to prevent and treat ASP. Black emphasizes the fundamental need for a healthy moral conscience by analyzing a wide variety of case studies. An excellent companion title is Adrian Raine's The Psychology of Crime: Criminal Behavior as a Clinical Disorder (Academic, 1993). An eye opener suitable for all libraries.--Chogollah Maroufi, California State Univ., Los Angeles
From the Publisher

"Clearly written, informative, and filled with intriguing stories of real people....Tells us what we need to know about antisocial personality disorder. A wonderful book."--John M. Oldham, MD, Columbia University

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780195137835
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA
  • Publication date: 4/20/2000
  • Pages: 256
  • Sales rank: 700,640
  • Product dimensions: 7.90 (w) x 5.20 (h) x 0.60 (d)

Meet the Author

Donald W. Black, MD, is Professor of Psychiatry at the University of Iowa College of Medicine in Iowa City. A graduate of Stanford University and the University of Utah School of Medicine, he has received numerous awards for teaching, research, and patient care, and is listed in "Best Doctors in America." He writes extensively for professional audiences, and his work has been featured on 20/20, Dateline, and 48 Hours. C. Lindon Larson is a writer and editor and lives in Iowa City.

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Table of Contents

Acknowledgments Introduction
1. A Lurking Threat: Antisocial Personality Disorder and Society
2. Searching for Answers: The Evolving Psychiatric View of Antisocial Personality Disorder
3. Bad Boys to Bad Men: The Symptoms of Antisocial Personality Disorder
4. Naming the Problem: The Diagnosis of Antisocial Personality Disorder
5. Divergent Paths: The Natural History of Antisocial Personality Disorder
6. Seeds of Despair: The Causes of Antisocial Personality Disorder
7. Overcoming Antisocial Personality Disorder: Options for Treatment
8. Power and Pretense: The Hidden Antisocials
9. The Antisocial Murderer: Gacy and Others
10. Antisocial Personality Disorder and Families: Finding Ways to Cope Epilogue: Dispelling the Myths Notes Recommended Readings Index

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 25, 2003

    The Bad Seeds

    Genetic determinism has been with us since the bible. Recent advances in genome and proteome studies debunk both radical claims: 'people are born bad' (bad seeds hypothesis) and 'people are corrupted by bad parents and society' (the tabula rasa approach). It seems that genes and environment interact, recursively influencing each other. So are crime and moral dissolution hereditary mental disorders - or learned behavior patterns? The author votes for the former in this impressive but accessible introductory text, replete with dozens of case studies and recent scientific data. Still, social and domestic ills such as abuse and poverty, admits Black, a psychiatrist, play a role, at least in unlocking the criminal 'potential'. One should applaud the author's honesty in admitting his own profession's helplessness in the face of these depraved and largely untreatable personality disorders. Sam Vaknin, author of 'Malignant Self Love - Narcissism Revisited'.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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