Show simple item record

dc.contributor.advisorSellbom, Martin
dc.contributor.authorEngel, Mira
dc.identifier.citationEngel, M. (2020). Elucidating the Relationship between Psychopathic Personality Traits and Fearlessness: A Reconsideration of the Low-fear Hypothesis (Thesis, Master of Arts). University of Otago. Retrieved from
dc.description.abstractDeficits in fear have long been posited as an important etiological factor in the development of psychopathy, a personality disorder characterized by severe interpersonal and social impairments masked by an outward appearance of superficial affability. While there has been much empirical evidence establishing a link between psychopathy and deficits in fear, there are still many questions regarding the nature of this association and much ongoing debate surrounding the conceptualization of psychopathy and demarcation of fear into conscious and unconscious components. The current study examined the association between various theoretical models of psychopathy and different dimensons of fear in order to elucidate the relationship between psychopathic traits and fearlessness. Self-report and informant-report responses were collected on a battery of psychopathy and fear related measures in a mixed student and community sample (N = 305). Analysis of the fear measures revealed two higher order dimensions labeled ‘Danger Seeking’ and ‘Affective Fearlessness’, which were differently associated with different psychopathy trait domains. Overall, Danger Seeking was associated with most psychopathy domains across conceptual models, but Affective Fearlessness was only significantly associated with emotional stability features, suggesting that fear deficits in psychopathy may not extend to reduced emotional experience of fear. The current findings have implications for etiological theories of psychopathy, and future research should investigate further the relationship between psychopathy and different components of fear.
dc.publisherUniversity of Otago
dc.rightsAll items in OUR Archive are provided for private study and research purposes and are protected by copyright with all rights reserved unless otherwise indicated.
dc.subjectlow-fear hypothesis
dc.titleElucidating the Relationship between Psychopathic Personality Traits and Fearlessness: A Reconsideration of the Low-fear Hypothesis
dc.language.rfc3066en of Arts of Otago
otago.openaccessAbstract Only
 Find in your library

Files in this item


There are no files associated with this item.

This item is not available in full-text via OUR Archive.

If you are the author of this item, please contact us if you wish to discuss making the full text publicly available.

This item appears in the following Collection(s)

Show simple item record