Thumbnail Image

A Systematic review: Psychopathy and personality in subclinical populations

Literature concerning psychopathy has grown since the early 1940s, when it was described as a clinical psychological disorder by Cleckley, 1941. Psychopathy was defined by factors such as callousness, manipulativeness, superficial charm, egocentricity, impulsivity, risk-taking and antisocial behaviour. There has been a longstanding debate concerning the appropriate models and measures related to psychopathy, which encouraged the development of many measures to capture psychopathic personality factors. Through the development of different measures and in addition to psychopathy’s clinical and criminal form, there have been advancements towards a subclinical form of psychopathy. The subclinical form of psychopathy involves factors which conceptualise psychopathy, however rather than only existing in a clinical or criminal population, they also exist in subclinical populations. Subclinical populations are portrayed as the range of normal personalities in general populations also defined as noninstitutionalised populations, such as the workplace. In this systematic review, the term subclinical will be referred to as psychopathy in the workplace, due to the variety of definitions which exist, of the word ‘subclinical’. In addition to the development of clinical and criminal measures of psychopathy, recent research has emerged in literature, prompting interest in subclinical psychopathy and its relationship with the Five-Factor Model of personality (FFM; McCrae & Costa, 1987). The concept of subclinical psychopathy and how it’s measured in subclinical populations using the (FFM) of personality is essential in highlighting the potential outcomes that occur at an interpersonal and organisational level (subclinical) when considering the workplace. In exploring existing literature concerning psychopathy and personality as the Five-Factor Model (FFM), the current systematic review aims to investigate the relationship between clinical or criminal psychopathy and subclinical psychopathy, and how subclinical psychopathy is measured. An extensive systematic review was implemented using 7 databases and three key features; psychopathy, personality (FFM) and the workplace. After removing 7149 duplicates and studies which were deemed ineligible, 418 studies were appraised as being relevant to the inclusion and exclusion criteria with only 5 studies examining the relationship between psychopathy and personality, (FFM) and how psychopathy is measured in subclinical settings, such as the workplace. These findings suggest future research should aim to develop a measure of subclinical psychopathy through the use of the FFM, to detect psychopathic factors in subclinical populations. The FFM is used within subclinical populations such as the workplace, measuring personality successfully through five factors; openness, conscientiousness, extraversion, agreeableness and neuroticism. The FFM factors overlap with constructs of clinical psychopathy, and therefore, could be used to measure subclinical psychopathic personality factors in subclinical populations.
Type of thesis
The University of Waikato
All items in Research Commons are provided for private study and research purposes and are protected by copyright with all rights reserved unless otherwise indicated.