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[Dr.] Stout says that as many as 4% of the population are conscienceless sociopaths who have no empathy or affectionate feelings for humans or animals. As Stout (The Myth of Sanity) explains, a sociopath is defined as someone who displays at least three of seven distinguishing characteristics, such as deceitfulness, impulsivity and a lack of remorse. Such people often have a superficial charm, which they exercise ruthlessly in order to get what they want. Stout argues that the development of sociopathy is due half to genetics and half to nongenetic influences that have not been clearly identified. The author offers three examples of such people, including Skip, the handsome, brilliant, superrich boy who enjoyed stabbing bullfrogs near his family's summer home, and Doreen, who lied about her credentials to get work at a psychiatric institute, manipulated her colleagues and, most cruelly, a patient. Dramatic as these tales are, they are composites, and while Stout is a good writer and her exploration of sociopaths can be arresting, this book occasionally appeals to readers' paranoia, as the book's title and its guidelines for dealing with sociopaths indicate.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
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Beautifully written, very informative. Also inspires hope in humanity. Probably the best book I've ever read.Published 1 day ago by Monica Quesada
I have read this 4 times and can now pick out a sociopath "like that".....they are so close, if you know one, this book will confirm it and you can let them go.Published 4 days ago by Ginger Diver
Overall a good read. Interesting to know the psychology behind the sociopath and the frequency in our culture. Gets a little drawn out and overly hopeful in the end.Published 5 days ago by carrie Scott
Unbelievably informative and actually comforting to know I not crazy. I've been able to identify the sociopath in my life who has had not only myself but the entire family feeling... Read morePublished 5 days ago by Theresa Gammons
Read this book while borrowing it from local library and enjoyed it so much I decided I needed to purchase it. Read morePublished 9 days ago by Diamonds
Very interesting and easy to understand. It does make you take a completely different look at those around you. Not that you become suspicious of anyone, just more aware . Read morePublished 12 days ago by Irene Merola
I found this book very poorly written and am shocked that it received such high marks from a great number of people. Read morePublished 18 days ago by Nichole Sperling