Coercive and precocious sexuality as a fundamental aspect of psychopathy
No Thumbnail Available
Harris, Grant T.
Rice, M. E.
Hilton, N. Z.
Lalumière, Martin L.
Quinsey, V. L.
Sexual behavior is closely associated with delinquency and crime. Although psychopaths, by definition, have many short-term sexual relationships, it has not been shown that sexuality is a core aspect of psychopathy. A Darwinian view of psychopathy led to the hypothesis that psychopaths have a unique sexuality involving early, frequent, and coercive sex. Our subjects were 512 sex offenders assessed on the Hare Psychopathy Checklist (PCL-R). Five variables reflecting early, frequent, and coercive sex loaded on the same principal component in exploratory factor analysis on a subset of the sample, whereas PCL-R items pertaining to adult sexual behavior did not. Confirmatory factor analysis of the remaining subjects yielded a measurement model containing three inter-correlated factors – the traditional two PCL-R factors, and coercive and precocious sexuality. Taxometric analyses gave evidence of a natural discontinuity underlying coercive and precocious sexuality. Coercive and precocious sexuality yielded statistically significant associations with other study variables predicted by the Darwinian hypothesis. The present findings are consistent with prior empirical findings and support the hypothesis that psychopathy has been a nonpathological, reproductively viable, alternate life history strategy.
Sexual Behavior , Psychology Pathological
Harris, G. T., Rice, M. E., Hilton, N. Z., Lalumière, M. L., & Quinsey, V. L. (2007). Coercive and precocious sexuality as a fundamental aspect of psychopathy. Journal of Personality Disorders, 21, 1-27.