"Outstanding. Based on over 20 years of empirical literature and clinical experience, this second edition is a 'must read' for mental health professionals and researchers. Dutton goes beyond social stereotypes and superficial explanations to compassionately and eloquently describe the complex relationship among biological, developmental, psychological, and social factors contributing to the development of the abusive personality. With a solid foundation in the etiology of violent behavior, readers also learn about Dutton's highly effective perpetrator intervention program. The book will be accessible both to seasoned clinicians and to students, interns, and newly licensed professionals. What is most exciting and unique about this second edition is its incorporation of the most recent findings on neurobiology and attachment theory into a comprehensive theory of the development and treatment of the abusive personality."Daniel J. Sonkin, PhD, private practice, Sausalito, California
"What sets this book apart from others is that Dutton goes to the core of partner violence by addressing individual psychopathology. He convincingly argues that abusive men have significant personality problems with origins in their early development, and he uses object relations and attachment theory to provide excellent clinical descriptions of how an individual becomes an abuser. This is important reading for any clinician or researcher interested in the psychology of battering."K. Daniel O'Leary, PhD, Stony Brook University
"Dutton's formulations are the product of a first-rate scientific mind informed by decades of empirical research. He brings scientific rigor and intellectual clarity to his writing, which is both scholarly and compelling. With this second edition, Dutton solidifies his position as one of the world's most eminent domestic violence researchers."Reid Meloy, PhD, Department of Psychiatry, University of California, San Diego
"Dr. Dutton's outstanding work traces 20 years of empirical history examining partner violence from childhood to adulthood and then presents practical programs to meet the needs of patients suffering from abusive personality disorders. This book will not only appeal to the scholarly scientific mind of a well-seasoned therapist but will inform students just beginning in the field. The second edition has incorporated recent findings in neurobiology and developmental theory, which has been updated to include chapters on trauma research and abuse in females. I highly recommend it for any practitioner working with abusive personality disorders."Muriel Prince Warren, DSW, ACSW, private practice, Orangeburg, New York
Reviewer: Susan Richardson, MA, PsyD (Private Practice)
Description: This book describes the recent research on understanding and treating perpetrators of violence in intimate relationships. The first edition was published late in 2002.
Purpose: It seeks to explore the abusive personality from psychological and neurobiological developmental pathways, reviewing both theory and research data.
Audience: The book is intended for clinical professionals working with this type of perpetrator or their families. It also would be appropriate for graduate studies in personality and interpersonal relationships. The author has done a significant amount of research with this population and he reviews research by others from the earliest discussions on the subject.
Features: The fundamental areas of understanding, diagnosing, and treating this type of perpetrator are covered. The author begins his book by noting nothing was written on the topic of domestic violence until the 1970s, then presents all the relevant research and theory since then. Chapters cover theory, the cycle of violence, understanding the origins of rage, and, finally, treatment of this type of violence. Although the book is not comprehensive, it is certainly a well done offering on a somewhat neglected subject. Some readers may not agree with the object-relations theoretical focus, but that perspective is well supported with research.
Assessment: This book is well written and well researched, offering insight into an area that has only recently become the focus of clinical attention. The second edition highlights some neurobiological underpinnings to the disorder and also discusses female abusers based on recent research.