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Psychopaths are difficult to ignore. They are involved in many of today's most serious problems: war, drugs, murder, and political corruption. As a construct, psychopathy has evolved far beyond its confusing origins in a melange of labels into an empirically measurable syndrome. The first text of its kind, The Clinical and Forensic Assessment of Psychopathy: A Practitioner's Guide, translates the robust findings of the past 30 years into applied procedures and methods for all those whose work brings them into contact with this difficult population in mental health, correctional, or court settings. Synthesizing the latest information on assessing psychopathy in children, adolescents, and adults, it offers "standard of care" guidelines for the assessment of psychopathy in general and the use of the Hare Psychopathy checklists in particular. It further:
* develops conceptual models for understanding the information processing and emotional experience of psychopaths;
* addresses legal and ethical issues;
* discusses implications for training and the effective integration of psychopathy assessment into general forensic practice-interviewing, predicting risk, evaluating the relationship of psychopathy to malingering, and writing reports;
* describes dilemmas presented by the psychopath in the corporate setting and offers suggestions for managing them and for weighing the necessity of incorporating psychopathy assessment into institutional evaluation procedures; and
* considers the relationship of psychopathy to sexual deviance, substance abuse, and the criminal personality.
The Clinical and Forensic Assessment of Psychopathy: A Practitioner's Guide is a resource for anyone who seeks to make fast the link between research and practice. Experienced professionals and their trainees and students alike will learn much from it.
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More than just a focus on evaluation, diagnostics, and treatment, The Clinical and Forensic Assessment of Psychopathy represents the cutting-edge discourse on this often elusive and vexing topic....Clearly, however, the contributors in this finely crafted collection of well-written, mostly lucid, and compelling essays have moved the analytic forward in terms of psychopathy theory, research, and practice. Thus, this book is a vital resource for practitioners and academicians alike. It is a must read for any serious researcher or (correctional) mental health worker confronted with the clinical and forensic challenges (and dangers) of treating psychopaths.
—International Journal of Offender Therapy and Comparative Criminology
The Clinical and Forensic Assessment of Psychopathy is a landmark work. It is a must for forensic experts conducting assessments on this special population as well as for those clinicians doing treatment with this group. Topics never before covered or only superficially considered are given in-depth coverage in a single volume. A quick review of the table of contents reveals the all-inclusive, state-of-the-art nature of this book. The inclusion of chapters on legal and ethical issues, the assessment of deception, report writing, and those addressing psychopathy at work, in prison, and its relationship to sexual aggression reflect the innovative approach and forensic applicability of this volume.
Dr. Gacono sets a high goal for this book: to bring the latest in clinical and scientific research to the real world of the mental health or corrections professional, criminologist, or sociologist. He and the authors he selected have succeeded admirably, from the science to the art of understanding these fascinating yet destructive people. And they are people, about whom we know far more than we did in Cleckley's time. The Clinical and Forensic Assessment of Psychopathy will help clinicians and other professionals, of course, but I believe it will eventually help society as well.
—William H. Reid, MD, MPH
University of Texas Health Science Center, Texas A&M College of Medicine, Texas
This book leaves no doubt that psychopathy has earned the distinction of being the single most important psychological construct in the study of criminal violence and antisocial behavior. The research summarized here illustrates how far the area has progressed by adopting the PCL family of instruments as a common metric for operationalizing the construct. This book is a must-read for anyone who works with persistently antisocial individuals.
—Marnie E. Rice, Ph.D.
Penetanguishene Mental Health Centre and McMaster University, Hamilton, Ontario
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