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Without Conscience: The Disturbing World of the Psychopaths Among Us | [Robert D. Hare]

Without Conscience: The Disturbing World of the Psychopaths Among Us

Most people are both repelled and intrigued by the images of cold-blooded, conscienceless murderers that increasingly populate our movies, television programs, and newspaper headlines. With their flagrant criminal violation of society's rules, serial killers like Ted Bundy and John Wayne Gacy are among the most dramatic examples of the psychopath. Individuals with this personality disorder are fully aware of the consequences of their actions and know the difference between right and wrong....
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Publisher's Summary

Most people are both repelled and intrigued by the images of cold-blooded, conscienceless murderers that increasingly populate our movies, television programs, and newspaper headlines. With their flagrant criminal violation of society's rules, serial killers like Ted Bundy and John Wayne Gacy are among the most dramatic examples of the psychopath. Individuals with this personality disorder are fully aware of the consequences of their actions and know the difference between right and wrong, yet they are terrifyingly self-centered, remorseless, and unable to care about the feelings of others. Perhaps most frightening, they often seem completely normal to unsuspecting targets. Presenting a compelling portrait of these dangerous men and women based on 25 years of distinguished scientific research, Dr. Robert D. Hare vividly describes a world of con artists, hustlers, rapists, and other predators who charm, lie, and manipulate their way through life. Are psychopaths mad, or simply bad? How can they be recognized? And how can we protect ourselves? This book provides solid information and surprising insights for anyone seeking to understand this devastating condition.

©1999 Robert D. Hare, Ph.D. (P)2011 Tantor

What the Critics Say

"A fascinating, if terrifying, look at psychopaths.... Hare makes a strong case for the view that psychopaths are born, not made.... A chilling, eye-opening report - and a call to action." (Kirkus)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.1 (574 )
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Performance
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  •  
    annewbe 10-09-12
    annewbe 10-09-12 Member Since 2012
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Good"

    I really enjoyed this book. It was great listening about killers & Psychopaths. I would recommend this book for sure.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    ricketsj St. Paul, MN United States 10-06-12
    ricketsj St. Paul, MN United States 10-06-12 Member Since 2012
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    "Interesting, but definitely a little biased."

    I find Hare's work fascinating, and his psychopath test is an important contribution to many fields. While much of the book is interesting, it becomes obvious as the narrative goes on that 1) Hare thinks of psychopaths and being essentially a different species,which is a bit disturbing, and 2) he is not very open-minded once he has decided an individual meets the psychopathic definition- whether or not he has actually diagnosed the person. Interesting, but Hare comes across as seeing psychopaths around every corner.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Rob London, United Kingdom 09-17-12
    Rob London, United Kingdom 09-17-12 Member Since 2003
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    "Forget al you think you know about psychopaths"

    Few psychopaths are actually murderers. They're everywhere: many are career criminals, but some of them are CEOs at top companies. You've almost certainly come across one, hopefully without too much damage to your life. Many are less fortunate, though. This book helps you to spot them, and gives you strategies for minimising the damage they can cause you. Essential reading.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Kathy Davis, CA, United States 08-30-12
    Kathy Davis, CA, United States 08-30-12 Member Since 2008

    Newly retired, I am a reading fiend! I like many types of books, both fiction and non-fiction, with the exception of romance and fantasy

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    "A fascinating subject!"

    This book had a good mix between descriptions of numerous individual's psycopathic behaviors and an exploration of the theories of what causes psychopathy. It is a very good introduction to the subject, which holds a particular fascination for me.

    If you liked this book, make sure and read "The Sociopath Next Door" by Martha Stout, as it is fascinating and you can apply it to your own actual life experiences.

    The narrator initially seemed a little odd and hesitant but I quickly adapted to him (or possibly, he adapted to the narration process) and he did a fine job, thereafter.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    J. Eastham Austin, Texas 03-26-12
    J. Eastham Austin, Texas 03-26-12 Member Since 2012
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    "Helpful book"
    Where does Without Conscience rank among all the audiobooks you???ve listened to so far?

    The subject matter is in the top 5 books on psychopaths that I have read.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Without Conscience?

    Being that it is a nonfiction book, the most memorable moments are when I recognized the traits of paychopaths in certain people I have known.


    What about Paul Boehmer???s performance did you like?

    He makes the book clear and understandable. He does what a good reader does. He becomes the book rather than imposing his interpretation onto the book.


    If you were to make a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?

    Psychopaths. How many do you know?


    Any additional comments?

    Since I have had unhappy dealings with psycho/sociopaths, I am always trying to understand how they get to be that way and if there is a positive outcome. The book has furthered my understanding is a significent way.

    1 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Amazon Customer Worcester, MA 07-24-13
    Amazon Customer Worcester, MA 07-24-13 Member Since 2014

    Anestis

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    "Worst audible book I've ever listened to."
    This book wasn’t for you, but who do you think might enjoy it more?

    People who are easily titillated by vacuous sensationalistic prose will be thrilled by this book.


    Would you ever listen to anything by Robert D. Hare again?

    No - maybe in Guantanamo -


    Who would you have cast as narrator instead of Paul Boehmer?

    There is no narrator that could've improved this book.


    If you could play editor, what scene or scenes would you have cut from Without Conscience?

    I'd start on page one and cut out though the last page of the last chapter


    Any additional comments?

    Incredibly drawn out, boring, vacuous and sensationalist, I managed to listen to the book from beginning to end desperately hoping for some kind of payoff. Paralleling the desperadoes in love with their own "psychopath" desperately hoping for some meaningful change, there was indeed, no payoff. You'll have a lot more fun watching Dexter or Breaking Bad if you're interested in psychopathology rather than listening to the drab deliberations of a "scientist" whose conclusion is "psychopaths are bad, try to protect yourself from them. Here are some redundant examples" Please save your money or credits.

    2 of 6 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Claire Jerusalem, Israel 06-23-13
    Claire Jerusalem, Israel 06-23-13 Member Since 2011
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    "Wasted my $4.95."

    The science is old and watered down to middle school level. The narrator sounds like he is bored but has been instructed to "read with expression".

    I couldn't be bothered to finish. Don't bother to buy it.

    2 of 6 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Mike Morrell 05-14-12
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    "Didn't realize it was a "text""

    I either did not read the description closely enough or it was misleading at best. This book is essentially a text book describing the various facets of a psycopathic personality. I guess I expected much more detailed descriptions of various psycopaths and their crimes. What I got was a somewhat clinical analysis of what Dr's look for in order to make a diagnosis.

    I suspect this might be a good entry level text for pschology students, but was not what I wanted to listen to as a casual read. To top it off, it was very dated, which
    I also missed. Written 30+ years ago, I imagine that even most of what is written here has significantly
    evolved in terms of information known and studies done since then.

    I have not gone back and re-read the description that had made me think this would be a very different read than what it was, but suffice to say, for me it was like trying to read a text book as leisure reading

    2 of 6 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Marissa 06-15-15
    Marissa 06-15-15 Member Since 2015
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    "Significant Insight"

    "Without Conscience" is one of the most important books I've ever "read." If only I had had access to this book earlier in life...say , by age 13... I would've been spared many painful experiences, or at least been armed with defense strategies. Many puzzling personal encounters and relationship glitches were explained, creating many ahhhh ha moments. Insights offered by Hare are an inoculation against naivety and are useful survival tools.....or defense weapons. I rated the book a 4, rather than 5 because I was confused by the 'Dr. Death of Texas ' chapter. I plan to read the book in print and then it will probably be made clear---but listening, it struck me as Hare back peddling on his own insights. I rated the performance a 4, only because it would have been helpful to hear the Chapter number and title announced as Boehmer moved through his reading. I want everyone I care about to read and heed this book.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Chad Hoffpauir 05-23-15
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    "Eye Opening!"

    Well written and documented evidence and anecdotes with regard to psychopaths and their behavior. Highly engrossing and entertaining!

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful

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