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The Psychopath Test by Jon Ronson

The Psychopath Test (edition 2012)

by Jon Ronson

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2,083983,175 (3.8)92
Title:The Psychopath Test
Authors:Jon Ronson
Info:Picador (2012), Paperback, 304 pages
Collections:Your library

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The Psychopath Test: A Journey Through the Madness Industry by Jon Ronson

Recently added byprivate library, JaclynM, kristi_test_05, HeleneE, acf151, kristi_test_04, Chiffongurl, Lirmac
  1. 20
    The Sociopath Next Door by Martha Stout (Anonymous user)
    Anonymous user: This book also deals with recognizing and dealing with people who lack the ability to empathize with others and who see emotions as a weakness to be exploited. The tone is more scholarly and clinical.
  2. 10
    Them: Adventures with Extremists by Jon Ronson (Sandydog1)
  3. 01
    A Wolf at the Table: A Memoir of My Father by Augusten Burroughs (WildMaggie)
    WildMaggie: The personal experience of living with one versus the science of finding one.

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» See also 92 mentions

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Steven Crossley
  jmail | Mar 21, 2016 |
I guess I have to expect that about only 1 out of every 4 books is going to be really good and hence worth reading. This is definitely one of them. Written with a humorous and engaging style, it's a fun trip through some weird and fascinating stuff. There are some strange people out there. Kind of scary, but at least I think I can recognize a psychopath when I meet one now! ( )
  ndpmcIntosh | Mar 21, 2016 |
This was interesting and a quick read. If you're curious about how we identify psychopaths clinically -- or if you're just curious about what psychopathic tendencies your significant other displays -- this should fill you in, and give you a couple of interesting case studies along the way. There's also some musing about the role of psychopaths in the upper echelons of corporate culture that provides some food for thought. But for me, the most entertaining portion by far was the description of an experimental treatment for psychopaths in the 70s that involved naked group therapy while everyone tripped on prison-supplied LSD. Can you even imagine? ( )
  BraveNewBks | Mar 10, 2016 |
In The Psychopath Test, journalist and filmmaker Jon Ronson delves into the definition of insanity, eventually coming to question the methods that are currently utilized for diagnosing psychopaths –- methods which, in many cases, require nothing more than a score of 30 or more on a 20-point checklist of characteristics common to psychopaths: things like glib and superficial charm, grandiosity, manipulative behavior, and lack of remorse. When Ronson is interviewing a psychopathy researcher, as she expounds on psychopathic characteristics he asks her if there is anything she wants to be sure is shared with his readers. “Tell them,” she says, “if now you are sitting there worried that maybe you are a psychopath, that means you aren’t.” I had been worried!

Ronson’s investigative journey is fascinating. The psychopaths he encounters and the scientists bent on identifying them lead him to wonder whether there is a danger in defining people exclusively by their most extreme characteristics and whether, by ignoring the rest of the person, rampant mistaken diagnoses are occurring.

Read Jon Ronson’s interview on NPR (http://www.npr.org/2011/05/21/136462824/a-psychopath-walks-into-a-room-can-you-t...). Other titles by Jon Ronson are Them: Adventures with Extremists and The Men Who Stare at Goats. ( )
  SaraMSLIS | Mar 1, 2016 |
This book was highly recommended to me, but I think all that I was told spoilt the reading experience for me as I felt I already knew what was inside. Very interesting, but a little disjointed and the second half couldn't keep pace with the first. ( )
  ellohull | Feb 10, 2016 |
Showing 1-5 of 98 (next | show all)
Mr. Ronson’s latest book has less ballast. Though he retains his own paranormal ability to locate and befriend wing nuts of every stripe, he has to try a little harder than usual to get “The Psychopath Test” going. Chalk up some of that forced quality to the fact that Mr. Ronson’s BBC Radio 4 program, “Jon Ronson on ...,” is considered comedy. Throw in the fact that most psychopaths aren’t really all that funny. Still, his winning style pervades most of “The Psychopath Test,” as when Mr. Ronson wonders whether he will have psychopaths for readers. According to the second characteristic on the 20-item Hare Psychopathy Checklist (from which this book takes its title), some of them will. “Grandiose sense of self-worth” is one of their notable traits. “What should my message to them be?” he asks one Harvard Medical School psychologist. “Turn yourselves in?”
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For Anita Bhoomkar (1996-2009),
a lover of life and all its madness
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This is a story about madness.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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"In this madcap journey, a bestselling journalist investigates psychopaths and the industry of doctors, scientists, and everyone else who studies them. The Psychopath Test is a fascinating journey through the minds of madness. Jon Ronson's exploration of a potential hoax being played on the world's top neurologists takes him, unexpectedly, into the heart of the madness industry. An influential psychologist who is convinced that many important CEOs and politicians are, in fact, psychopaths teaches Ronsonhow to spot these high-flying individuals by looking out for little telltale verbal and nonverbal clues. And so Ronson, armed with his new psychopath-spotting abilities, enters the corridors of power. He spends time with a death-squad leader institutionalized for mortgage fraud in Coxsackie, New York; a legendary CEO whose psychopathy has been speculated about in the press; and a patient in an asylum for the criminally insane who insists he's sane and certainly not a psychopath. Ronson not only solves the mystery of the hoax but also discovers, disturbingly, that sometimes the personalities at the helm of the madness industry are, with their drives and obsessions, as mad in their own way as those they study. And that relatively ordinary people are, moreand more, defined by their maddest edges"-- "In this madcap journey, a bestselling journalist investigates psychopaths and the industry of doctors, scientists, and journalists who study them"--… (more)

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