G4 Doctoral dissertation (monograph)
Psychopathy as a descriptive construct of personality among offenders (1992)
Psykopatia rikoksentekijoiden persoonallisuutta kuvaavana konstruktiona

Haapasalo, J. (1992). Psychopathy as a descriptive construct of personality among offenders [Doctoral dissertation]. Jyväskylän yliopisto. Jyväskylä studies in education, psychology and social research, 84. http://urn.fi/URN:ISBN:978-951-39-8378-9

JYU authors or editors

Publication details

All authors or editors: Haapasalo, Jaana

ISBN: 951-680-610-6

eISBN: 978-951-39-8378-9

Journal or series: Jyväskylä studies in education, psychology and social research

ISSN: 0075-4625

Publication year: 1992

Number in series: 84

Publisher: Jyväskylän yliopisto

Place of Publication: Jyväskylä

Publication country: Finland

Publication language: English

Persistent website address: http://urn.fi/URN:ISBN:978-951-39-8378-9

Publication open access: Openly available

Publication channel open access: Open Access channel


The study was based on the classical description of psychopathy by Hervey Cleckley. The principal goals of the work were (1) to examine various assessment methods used in psychopathy and their interrelationships, (2) to group offenders on the basis of assessment methods, and (3) to clarify the nature of criminal behavior among the Cleckley psychopaths and other offenders. 92 male offenders, aged 21 - 53 yrs and convicted of property, narcotics and traffic offenses, participated in the study. They completed psychopathy-related questionnaires (Eysenck Personality Questionnaire, MMPI Pd and Ma, CPI So, Zuckerman's Sensation Seeking Scale) and were assessed with the Psychopathy Checklist on the basis of file and interview data. Eysenck's and Zuckerman's questionnaires were first standardized in a sample of 967 respondents, aged 17 - 71 yrs. The results revealed two Checklist factors. Factor 1 included the core personality characteristics of the Cleckley psychopath. Factor 2 related to chronically unstable and antisocial lifestyle. The factor scores were correlated with the personality questionnaire scores, resulting in differential correlative patterns. The psychopaths were differentiated from the others by using global interview impressions, the Checklist total scores and a clustering of the Checklist items. Criminal behavior was examined by analyzing types of offense in the Checklist groups and by comparing the clusters with respect to four criminality variables. It is argued that Cleckley psychopaths can be discerned among the Finnish offenders and that psychopathy assessments should be based on similarities in the Checklist items between subjects rather than other methods

Keywords: offenders; prisoners; personality; personality disorders; psychopathy; development of personality; interferences; personality psychology; evaluation; psychological tests; doctoral dissertations

Free keywords: psychopathy; offenders; criminal behavior; personality assessment; personality questionnaires; sensation seeking

Contributing organizations

Ministry reporting: Yes

Last updated on 2021-15-06 at 17:04