Article

The Application of Learning Theory to Serial Murder or “You Too Can Learn to be a Serial Killer”

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Abstract

Popular ideas concerning serial murder see these killings as an act committed by a deranged or irrational individual. This article contends that this is not the case, but that the killer is behaving in a manner which makes sense and is logical to the killer and is a response to some perceived wrong. The process through which this reponse occurs is detailed. The conclusion suggests that if serial murder is indeed a learned response then this response can be “unlearned” and the serial murderer can be restored to again function within society.

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... Their theory may explain how an individual goes on to commit violent acts towards others, but there is nothing that specifically links this outcome to serial murder behaviour. Hale (1993) goes further than Wright and Hensley (2003) by arguing that it is only individuals who internalize humiliation as a motive that go on to commit serial murder. Using Hull (1943) and Spence's (1936) theories of discriminant learning, Hale (1993) argues that the ability to discriminate between similar situations and behave in a way appropriate to the situation in question is based upon the presence of a reinforcement or rewarding stimulus. ...
... Hale (1993) goes further than Wright and Hensley (2003) by arguing that it is only individuals who internalize humiliation as a motive that go on to commit serial murder. Using Hull (1943) and Spence's (1936) theories of discriminant learning, Hale (1993) argues that the ability to discriminate between similar situations and behave in a way appropriate to the situation in question is based upon the presence of a reinforcement or rewarding stimulus. Hale (1993) states that in early caregiving relationships of individuals who go on to commit serial murder, there is an absence of a rewarding stimulus. ...
... Using Hull (1943) and Spence's (1936) theories of discriminant learning, Hale (1993) argues that the ability to discriminate between similar situations and behave in a way appropriate to the situation in question is based upon the presence of a reinforcement or rewarding stimulus. Hale (1993) states that in early caregiving relationships of individuals who go on to commit serial murder, there is an absence of a rewarding stimulus. Consequently, individuals who commit serial murder are unable to discriminate between the original and subsequent perceived humiliatory situations. ...
... This lack of control that Chase had over his penis could possibly have been a prolongation of a loss of control in his childhood (Bollas, 1987(Bollas, , 1995Johnson & Becker, 1997) . It might have accumulated to this early loss and reinforced a need to strive for control and power (Claus & Lidberg, 1999;Hale, 1993) . ...
... 431) . This results in a drive to regain lost power (Hale, 1993) or a "striving towards an establishment of the infantile omnipotence" (Claus & Lidberg, 1999, p . 429) . ...
... 431) . According to them and many other theorists (Bollas, 1987;1995;Fox & Levin, 1994;Geberth & Turco, 1997;Hale, 1993;Stein, 2009;Youngs & Canter, 2011), the central point in the process of symbiotic merger is the sense of loss stemming from early infancy . ...
Article
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This psychobiographical study of Richard Trenton Chase (1950–1980), a serial murderer, has the aim to uncover the psychic mechanisms characteristic of his functioning. The study included primary and secondary data sources. All materials collected and analysed, were published and publically available. The Schahriar syndrome model served as the conceptual framework for data framing and interpretation. Findings suggest that Chase exhibited five primitive psychic mechanisms namely: omnipotence, sadistic fantasies, ritualised performance, dehumanisation and symbiotic merger. The Schahriar syndrome model has utility to explain the psychological functioning of a serial murderer.
... Serial murder is one area to which scholars have attempted to apply learning theory. Hale (1993) suggested that serial murder is a crime that can also be learned. Hale (1993) noted that the internal drives of a serial killer are often overlooked as motivation. ...
... Hale (1993) suggested that serial murder is a crime that can also be learned. Hale (1993) noted that the internal drives of a serial killer are often overlooked as motivation. Previous case studies of serial killers suggested that killers'victims often resemble persons who caused the killers humiliation. ...
... This happens, however, only if killers recognize and internalize the humiliation as a motive. Hale (1993) used Amsel's (1958) frustration theory to explain how killers internalize the perceived wrong and use it as a justification for murder. Based on this theory, killers associate certain cues from the situation in which the humiliation initially occurred with the later humiliation. ...
Article
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Scholars have endeavored to study the motivation and causality behind serial murder by researching biological, psychological, and sociological variables. Some of these studies have provided support for the relationship between these variables and serial murder. However, the study of serial murder continues to be an exploratory rather than explanatory research topic. This article examines the possible link between serial killers and military service. Citing previous research using social learning theory for the study of murder, this article explores how potential serial killers learn to reinforce violence, aggression, and murder in military boot camps. As with other variables considered in serial killer research, military experience alone cannot account for all cases of serial murder. Future research should continue to examine this possible link.
... Consequently, this could result in a lifelong drive to regain lost power (Hale, 1993) or a "striving towards an establishment of the infantile omnipotence" (Claus & Lidberg, 1999, p. 429). ...
... This lack of control that Gacy had over his sexuality could possibly have been an extension or prolongation of a loss of control in his earlier childhood (Bollas, 1987(Bollas, , 1995Johnson & Becker, 1997). Furthermore, it might have accumulated to this early loss and reinforced a need in Gacy to strive for ultimate control and power Hale, 1993). ...
... According to Claus and Lidberg (1999, p. 431), this is regarded as so important, and if denied in childhood can lead to a person experiencing "lifelong feelings of being deprived of their own existence" and to a lifelong drive to regain power and lost control (Hale, 1993). The researcher argues that Gacy's ritualistic performance and the repetitive pattern in his crimes were his repeated unconscious attempts to regain the control and power he had lost in his youth. ...
... This lack of control that Chase had over his penis could possibly have been an extension or prolongation of a loss of control in his earlier childhood (Bollas, 1987(Bollas, , 1995Johnson & Becker, 1997). Furthermore, it might have accumulated to this early loss and reinforced a need in Chase to strive for ultimate control and power (Claus & Lidberg, 1999;Hale, 1993). ...
... If children are denied this right to omnipotence, they may suffer "lifelong feelings of being deprived of their own existence" (Claus & Lidberg, 1999, p. 431). This in turn, could result in a drive to regain lost power (Hale, 1993) or a "striving towards an establishment of the infantile omnipotence" (Claus & Lidberg, 1999, p. 429). ...
... Claus and Lidberg (1999) stated that "to incorporate a victim by eating her is indeed a physical merger; when the murderer has her in his body, she can never leave him" (p.431). According to them and many other theorists (Bollas, 1987;Fox & Levin, 1994;Geberth & Turco, 1997;Hale, 1993;Stein, 2009;Youngs & Canter, 2011), the central point in the process of symbiotic merger is the sense of loss stemming from early infancy. This can be explained as follows. ...
... The frustration theory has been applied in connect with Social Learning theory to help explain the development of serial killers (Hale, 1998). Briefly, Frustration theory asserts that humiliation is the result of a non-reward situation, where a reward was given in the past. ...
... As has been well discussed, during Ray's childhood he experienced many humiliating situations and unbalanced non-reward situations as well as many no-reward situations (Glatt, 2002). Hale (1998) argues that in the face of these unbalanced situations, serial killers learn to anticipate humiliation in every encounter. Of course, the object of humiliation is rarely actually acted upon, and instead surrogates are found (Hensley & Singer, 2004). ...
Article
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On March 19th, 1999 Cynthia Vigil escaped into the desert near Truth or Consequences, New Mexico. For three days she had been held captive, bound, raped and tortured by a man who the police would quickly identify as David Parker Ray. A quickly launched federal investigation would unearth a series of dark, horrific crimes so far beyond imagination that the case was nearly thrown out. With an alleged victim count numbering in the 40's, David Parker Ray is widely considered an incarnation of true, undeniable evil. But what could provide an individual the capacity for such nefarious malevolence? By examining several theoretical potentials, a basic understanding of Mr. Ray is developed, potentially providing the groundwork for further case investigation and certainly putting explanatory theory to the test.
... While we might identify a serial killer's motivations, we will never comprehend their behavior. The second major theme concerns questions of defi nition (Dietz, 1996; Hale, 1998; Holmes and DeBurger, 1998; Ferguson et al., 2003; Canter and Wentink, 2004). By convention, a serial killer is someone who has killed three or more people who were previously unknown to him. 1 There must also be a 'cooling off' period between each murder. ...
Article
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The study of serial killing has been dominated by an individualized focus on the aetiology and biography of particular offenders. As such, it has tended to downplay the broader social, historical and cultural context of such acts. This article addresses this lacuna by arguing that serial killers are distinctively modern. It highlights six modern phenomena related to serial killing: (a) the mass media and the attendant rise of a celebrity culture; (b) a society of strangers; (c) a type of mean/ends rationality that is largely divorced from value considerations; (d) cultural frameworks of denigration which tend to implicitly single out some groups for greater predation; (e) particular opportunity structures for victimization; and finally (f) the notion that society can be engineered. Combined, these factors help to pattern serial killing in modernity's own self-image, with modernity setting the parameters of what it means to be a serial killer, and establishing the preconditions for serial murder to emerge in its distinctive contemporary guise.
... Most of the empirical work in this area, however, has entailed studies that analyze data without the guidance of a theoretical framework (Godwin, 2000;Hickey, 1991;Kraemer, Lord, & Heilbrun, 2004;Ressler, Burgess, & Douglas, 1988;cf. DeFronzo, Ditta, Hannon, & Prochnow, 2007;Hale, 1993;Lundrigan & Canter, 2001), yet the criminal career tradition in criminology provides a clear framework for examining offending specialization or versatility among homicide offenders. ...
Article
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The American public's fascination with multiple homicide offenders—individuals who seemingly transcend the heinousness of “regular” homicide offenders because of their multiple victims—has grown during the past few decades. Such growth has not, however, been matched by a proportional increase in serious scholarly attention concerning whether those who kill repeatedly are, or are not, “generally” deviant. As a way of moving beyond this problem, the current analysis builds on recent work concerning multiple homicide offenders to investigate the degree to which such offenders are, in fact, more specialized in their offending careers than are other homicide offenders. The implications for continued theoretical development and empirical research are discussed.
... From a neurobiological perspective, aggression has been linked with high levels of testosterone and low levels of certain neurotransmitters such as serotonin [11]. Aggression has also been linked to genetics [12][13] and social learning [14][15]. However, it was argued that there is no single factor credible enough to determine the root of aggression [16]. ...
Article
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Objective: A sizable body of criminology literature has suggested that personality factors are critical to the development of aggressive behaviour. While research on personality focusing on aggression often revolves on "Eynseck Three Factor Model" and "Big Five Model", research on "Alternative Five Factor Model" (AFFM) is rather inadequate. Objective: The present study aimed to examine the association between five types of personality traits and subscales of aggression. Methods: This observational cross-sectional study was conducted in two prisons in Peninsular Malaysia among 198 Malay adult male inmates. The participants were selected based on the purposive sampling method from those who were convicted for various types of crime. Two psychometric instruments adapted to the Malaysian context were used: Malay version of Zuckerman-Kuhlman Personality Questionnaire-40-Cross Culture (ZKPQ-M-40-CC) and Aggression Questionnaire (AQ-M). Pearson correlation coefficient test was conducted to determine the association between five types of personality traits and subscales of aggression. Results: The results showed that there was a significant association between certain types of personality traits and subscales of aggression. The results were discussed in relation to theory and the context of crime. Conclusion: There is evidence that personality traits are linked to aggressive behaviour which may lead a person to commit offenses.
... The second major theme concerns questions of defi nition (Dietz, 1996;Hale, 1998;Holmes and DeBurger, 1998;Ferguson et al., 2003;Canter and Wentink, 2004). By convention, a serial killer is someone who has killed three or more people who were previously unknown to him. 1 There must also be a 'cooling off' period between each murder. ...
Article
The study of serial killers has been dominated by an individualised focus on studying the biography of offenders and the causes of their behaviour. Popular representations of Jeffrey Dahmer, Harold Shipman, John Wayne Gacy and other notorious figures emphasise the sociopathic tendencies of the lone serial killer, presented in accounts that accentuate how assorted personality traits and risk factors ostensibly contribute to their otherwise unfathomable behaviour. While this emphasis on personal biography lends itself to much needed psychological analysis, the cumulative effect of such accounts is that serial killing can appear a-historical and a-cultural, as though such predispositions might manifest themselves in identical ways irrespective of context.
... Recently, research has found evidence of the importance of social relationships and ties with criminal others in the perpetration of violence Sherretts & Willmott, 2016), however these social factors were significantly less important determinants of offence perpetration in homicide inmates, than other offender groups (Sherretts, Boduszek, Debowska, & Willmott, 2017). For behaviourists, a fundamental criticism of psychodynamic perspectives, including Neo-Freudian object relations theory, is the degree of emphasis attributed to childhood experiences and caregiver influences, which as a consequence negates seemingly significant adult experiences and environmental factors in the commission of behaviour (Castle & Hensley, 2002;Hale, 1993). ...
Article
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This paper looks briefly at the case study of Russian sexual serial killer Andrei Chikatilo. Whilst serial homicide has received wide ranging attention more broadly in the literature, Chikatilo’s criminality and sexually deviant behaviour have thus far lacked any in-depth psychological explanation, with his crimes attributed tentatively to dysfunction upbringing and innate deviance. However, based on theoretical arguments presented in the present investigation, a more detailed account of what may have contributed to the development of such extreme sexual violence and cognitive distortions is discussed. Consideration of psychodynamic and behaviourist perspectives lead to the conclusion that a complex interaction of biological, psychological, and sociological factors may account for the onset and continuation of his homicidal behaviour.
... The application of the theory had been studied and reviewed. For example, Hale (1993) conducted a case study and applied social learning theory to examine the phenomenon of serial murder. The author argued that serial murder's behavior could be learned and concluded that a serial murderer must endure some humiliating experiences in early life. ...
Article
This article is a conceptual research on the applications of constructivist learning theory and social learning theory, along with the impact of technological development, globalization, and demographic change, on continuous development of adult learners. In constructivist learning theory practice, learners are self‐directed and construct knowledge via personal experiences while instructor should act as a mentor. However, to social learning theory, instructor is a role model to learners, and the learners learn through vicarious experiences in a social context. Social interaction and human relation are two major components in applying these two adult learning theories in adult learning and vocational training settings. Hereby, an application matrix of constructivist learning theory and social learning theory was developed for adult educators’ and training professionals’ practice.
... The literature on serial murder is largely the product of broad-based descriptive studies of large numbers of cases of serial killers or the result of individual case studies, such as the research of Douglas and Olshaker (1999), Abrahamsen (1985), Ressler and Shachtman (1997) and Vorpagel (1998), while some have described their own case experiences (Kirwin, 1997;Lewis, 1998). The application of social learning theory has been applied to serial killers (Hale, 1993;Wright & Hensley, 2003), but this theory does not account for why those who are also exposed to violence do not become serial killers. Another perspective taken is the phenomenological approach to understanding serial killers (Skrapec, 2001). ...
Article
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This theoretical paper explores the concept of evil, dislodged from its philosophical and religious underpinnings, and the concept of aggression from within a contemporary psychoanalytical perspective, and links these two concepts in such a way that the concept of evil is located psychologically and (re)defined as destructive aggression that emerges as violence against another. Within this discourse, the argument presented is that sexually motivated serial killers are evil. Evil is thus viewed as both premeditated violence and reactive to a perceived sense of threat or endangerment. Moreover, it has the essential element of psychological pleasure in inflicting pain on another. Related to this perceived threat, these types of serial killers may be viewed as protecting a weak and inadequate sense of self. In this context, serial killers’ heinous acts of destructive aggression are re-enactments of past insults, resulting in victims being the symbolic representative of past tormentors.
... A community knowledge is enhanced through informal (e.g., personal observation, media etc.) and/or formal (e.g., curricula based) educations (Rickinson, 2001). Knowledge governs people's perceptions, attitudes and actions through building a sense of concern about local and global environment (Hale, 1993;Yavetz et al., 2009;Pykett, 2012). A person with better knowledge about their surrounding environment are more likely environmental positive, care and provides knowledge-based solution (Bradley et al., 1999). ...
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Environmental knowledge and perceptions of community govern the sustainable use and management of environmental resources. Ethiopia has been facing serious environmental problems. In spite of the existing problems, little is known about public understanding and perception of environmental issues. Thus, the overall objective of this research was to assess community perception and knowledge of environmental issues. Interview was conducted using structured questionnaire. The collected data were coded, cleaned and analyzed using descriptive and inferential statistics. The result indicates, most of the community members believed that they have better knowledge of environmental issues, but the evidence obtained from measured knowledge shows the reverse. The principal source of environmental information (local media broadcasting) had a positive correlation with perceived knowledge and negatively correlated with assessed knowledge and perception index of environmental issues. Correctly answered questions used in the evaluation of environmental knowledge were weekly associated (r < .2) with perceived knowledge and perception, which indicates lacks of uniform environmental concept among community. Perceived knowledge was negatively and significantly (P <.001) determined by age and educational levels of respondents. But, measured knowledge was negatively and significantly (P <.05) affected by age, childhood area, education and occupation when positively and significantly (P = .001) influenced by the origin of residence. Similarly, perception was positively and significantly (P =.001) determined by respondent's age, childhood area, education and information source but negatively and significantly (P < .05) influenced by the origin of residence and ethnic group. Generally, self-reported knowledge is not reliable source of information for environmental management decisions. So, stakeholders should strongly work on environmental awareness campaigns, engage students in outdoor activities, and training to improve factors negatively determined community's factual knowledge and perception of the environment.
... A community knowledge is enhanced through informal (e.g., personal observation, media etc.) and/or formal (e.g., curricula based) educations (Rickinson, 2001). Knowledge governs people's perceptions, attitudes and actions through building a sense of concern about local and global environment (Hale, 1993;Yavetz et al., 2009;Pykett, 2012). A person with better knowledge about their surrounding environment are more likely environmental positive, care and provides knowledge-based solution (Bradley et al., 1999). ...
... Mass murderers are produced by neglectful child-rearing practices such as neglect, mind control, rigid child-rearing, and overprotection [15], which cause children to fail to develop the self-identity necessary to establish healthy relationships with others (here, "mind control" indicates manipulating a child so that s/he does not satisfy their own needs, but instead focuses on satisfying the parent[s]' interests [16]). By contrast, serial killers are produced by abusive child-rearing practices such as physical, sexual, and/or psychological abuse [17], including the denial of manhood (e.g., "All women are dirty"), and denial of existence (e.g., "I didn't want to give birth to you"), which warps the child's self-identity into a desire to hurt, destroy, or annihilate others [18], [19]. In other words, children who grow up to be serial killers faced unnatural external forces during their childhoods. ...
Article
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Multiple murder is a popular topic for many movies, TV series, novels, and other art forms due to its seemingly mysterious nature. However, against the depictions of the perpetrators as being rather charismatic and charming personas, the reality is that they are individuals with serious personality disorders of different types. To correct these misleading public images, this paper introduces a simple classification chart of serial, spree, and mass killers to promote easy understandings of who they are and where they come from. It proposes that three factors decide which symptom the subject falls into on the same continuum.
... Entretanto, não existe uma distinção clara entre esses conceitos, o que acabou determinando uma confusão conceitual quando os estudiosos usaram nomes diferentes para os mesmos conceitos ou usaram os mesmos nomes para diferentes conceitos (EDELSTEIN, 2016). Edelstein (2016) complementa que a variedade de definições provoca uma sé- 5 Egger (1985); Hale (1998); Hickey (1992); Holmes e De Burger (1988); Holmes e Holmes (1998); Kocsis e Cooksey (2002);Mitchell (1997); Roebuck e Windham (1983); Vronsky (2004). rie de questionamentos difíceis de serem respondidos: um criminoso habitual é um criminoso de carreira? ...
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O presente trabalho propõe-se a dois objetivos principais. Primeiro, realiza uma abordagem conceitual do gênero dos criminosos em série. Em um segundo momento, apresenta resultados empíricos sobre a atuação de criminosos em série em Belo Horizonte (MG), no período de 2011 a 2013. A metodologia contou em sua primeira etapa com revisão teórica sobre a temática de criminosos em série e conceitos relacionados. Na segunda etapa, foi realizada análise de ocorrências policiais envolvendo essa modalidade de infrator. Os resultados apontam entre os criminosos em série um perfil com predominância de jovens pardos (18 a 25 anos de idade), do gênero masculino, oriundos da capital mineira, de baixa escolaridade, e que possuem ocupações profissionais de menor status social. Os eventos perpetrados indicam que não há especialidade na atuação dos infratores, o que afasta a característica de profissionalismo, o que permite inferir que se amoldam nas noções encontradas na literatura como infratores crônicos/habituais.
... The literature on serial murder is largely the product of broad-based descriptive studies of large numbers of cases of serial killers or the result of individual case studies, such as the research of Douglas and Olshaker (1999), Abrahamsen (1985), Ressler and Shachtman (1997) and Vorpagel (1998), while some have described their own case experiences (Kirwin, 1997;Lewis, 1998). The application of social learning theory has been applied to serial killers (Hale, 1993;Wright & Hensley, 2003), but this theory does not account for why those who are also exposed to violence do not become serial killers. Another perspective taken is the phenomenological approach to understanding serial killers (Skrapec, 2001). ...
Article
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This article documents the definition and context of serial murder. The main theoretical framework adopted is object relations theories which have been particularly renowned for drawing close attention to the process and development of the early dyadic mother-infant relationship as a primary departure point for understanding both healthy and pathological psychic development. These theories have been especially comprehensive in depicting the inner world of the infant as magical and terrifying, fractured and kaleidoscopic. Within the context of narcissistic dynamics, one aspect of human behavior may be described as nonpathological and the basis for healthy ambitions and ideals, while another may be identified as pathological and destructive so that individuals behave in grandiose and murderous ways. Some of these individuals are sadistic serial killers who enjoy the sexual thrill of murdering and who are both pathological and destructive narcissists. This study examines the psychological roots of the behavior of sexually motivated male serial killers, and why they do what they do. The context of serial murder is presented, with a refined definition of sexually motivated serial murder. The development of narcissism is described as this forms the basis for understanding such behavior.
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Various explanations have been proposed to explain the motivation of serial killers. This article proposes that the theory of the Catathymic Crisis is an explanation that adds light to the “serial” nature of serial murder as well as an explanation of why and how a person can become a serial killer. The theory of Catathymic Crisis was presented in 1937 by Dr. Frederic Wertham as an explanation for some types violent and seemingly motivationless crimes. Dr. Wertham's theory describes a five stage process in which (1) a thinking disorder occurs within the mind of the criminal, (2) a plan is created to commit a violent criminal act, (3) internal emotional tension forces the commission of the criminal act, which leads to (4) a superficial calmness in which the need to commit the violent act is eliminated and normal activity can be conducted and (5) the mind adjusts itself and understands that the thinking process that caused the commission of the criminal act was flawed and the mind makes adjustments in order to prevent further criminal activity. The serial killer never reaches the fifth stage but returns to the second and operates in a cycle between stage two and four. This article advocates that the Catathymic Crisis explains why the serial killer needs to commit murder, why that need develops and why there is an escalating nature of the criminal activity by the serial killer.
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Although serial murder has been recorded for centuries, limited academic attention has been given to this important topic. Scholars have attempted to examine the causality and motivations behind the rare phenomenon of serial murder. However, scant research exists which delves into the childhood characteristics of serial murderers. Using social learning theory, some of these studies present supporting evidence for a link between childhood animal cruelty and adult aggression toward humans. Based on five case studies of serial murderers, we contribute to the existing literature by exploring the possible link between childhood cruelty toward animals and serial murder with the application of the graduation hypothesis.
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Research report: 199 P., 106 fig., 51 tables, 12 annexes. Object of the research: stressogenic elements of hidden impact of real media reports (RMP) on the topic of COVID-19 on social groups. Purpose of the research: to record experimentally psychophysiological reactions to elements of media reports on the topic of COVID-19. Research methods: media monitoring for recording media reports on the topic of COVID-19 and formation of an experimental sample of messages; sociological and psychological approaches to describe types of subjects, web tracking. The results of scientific literature review on the research topic and an experimental study «Stressful Elements of the Latent Impact of Real Media Reports about the COVID-19 Pandemic on Social Groups» (2020-2021), funded by the National Research Foundation of Ukraine are presented. The data are systematized, analyzed, and the conclusion about the impact of RMR elements was drawn. MEDIA MONITORING, REAL MEDIA REPORTS, SOCIAL TYPES, PSYCHOLOGICAL TYPES, WEB TRACKING, STRESSFUL TEXT ELEMENTS, ANXIETY
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The monograph «Stressogenic Elements of the latest Impact of Real Media Reports on the COVID-19 Pandemic on Social Groups (experimental study)» was written by the researchers who carried out a similar project, which was funded for two years by the National Research Foundation of Ukraine. The text of this publication reproduces the organisation process of the research, conduction of the actual experiment aimed at studying the "stressful behavior" of media reports elements on the topic of COVID-19, depending on the conditions of functioning of these messages. The monograph reveals the procedures and means of the research organization, in particular, a method for selecting Live, relevant media reports for the experiment is proposed, and the results of psychophysiological methods usage for recording the results of perception of text elements, in particular the use of web tracking, are demonstrated. Keywords: stressogenic elements, real media reports, latent impact, COVID-19, web tracking
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Techniques of neutralization are used by petty and serious criminals to verbally account for their behavior, mitigate responsibility, and socially construct identity. Since serial killers often appear “normal” while simultaneously killing, neutralizations may provide the process by which serial killers “drift” between conventional societal attachments and murder. These neutralizations may also function as a form of stigma management, as it does for other offenders, assisting in the maintenance of a positive presentation of self. To explore these propositions, a content analysis of narratives and case histories was used to examine serial murderers’ accounts to determine if neutralizations were offered, and if so, the implications of this theory as a general (or universal) theory of crime.
Chapter
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American psychologists anticipated the Gestalt movement in recognizing the necessity of interpreting the differential response of animals to stimuli differing in degree in terms of the relational character of the stimulus situation. But experiments show that the response to relationship is not universal. A previous article by the author set forth a theoretical schema, based on stimulus-response principles, explaining discrimination learning as a cumulative process of strengthening the excitatory tendency of the positive stimulus cue by reinforcements of responses to it while the negative stimulus receives no such reinforcement. Eventually the difference between the excitatory strengths of the positive and negative cue stimuli reaches a minimum necessary to insure a consistent response to the positive stimulus. In the present article it is pointed out that where continuous dimensions as size and brightness are concerned, some transfer of training could be expected, at least between nearby members of a series. Experimental results on animals and humans are shown to be consistent with a theoretical curve of irradiation in which extent of generalization varies with size of stimulus. Gestalt theory fails to explain them. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
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A reply to criticisms contained in a recent discussion by Spence of the theoretical mechanisms involved in solving a discrimination problem, based largely on Krechevsky's data. Spence's objections to the terms "purposive," "docile," etc., as lacking objectivity and his replacement of them by conditioned-reflex terms, are considered superfluous, in view of the fact that the terms objected to were given a purely operational definition and were employed at this level of description. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
Article
The theoretical properties ascribed to the various fractional anticipatory goal reactions (fractional anticipatory reward, fractional anticipatory punishment) are extended to include a fractional anticipatory frustration response. The latter reaction is assumed to have both motivating and inhibitory properties which are amenable to experimental verification. Several relevant studies are analyzed.
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