The Psychology Of Serial Killers Today

1469 words - 6 pages

The events of the past can hold a great influence on the actions and behaviors of the future. From being raised in a supportive and loving home, to one that is full of neglect and abuse, each event can potentially impact the future of an individual. In the case of serial killers, there has been some debate on whether the evil ones are made or born; does it happen because of a genetic factor, environmental factor, or is it simply they addicted to the feeling of slaughtering another individual’s life? Although, the most important key in finding the truth deals with the past and shapes the outcome of the future. Upon viewing in a psychological stance, there is no clear understanding of why one aspect that most serial killers share, namely psychopathy, is a product of genetics or upbringing (Brogaard & Marlow, 2012). Observing the human mind is positively one of the most impossible topics to fully comprehend… but one of the most fascinating and intriguing.
Psychopathy, which is hallmarked by attributes such as superficial charm, insincerity, lack of remorse, and the incapacity for love among other characteristics (McCaghy & Capron, 1997), which can be identified in numerous serial killers. One of the most notable examples of these qualities is the serial killer Ted Bundy. According to Ramsland (2013), from the beginning of his life, Ted Bundy experienced an unstable life, growing up thinking that his mother was his sister, and that his grandparents were his parents; it is also speculated that he was the product of incest (DeLia, 2004). Bundy was described as being socially awkward and shy, finding it hard to fit in and dating was next to impossible for him. Once he was able to finally find a girlfriend, the eventual breakup lead to a bout of severe depression, which caused him to drop out of school. Bundy reinvented himself and eventually returned to school, where he earned a bachelor’s degree in psychology. The new Bundy was full of bravado and confidence, a far cry from his previous incarnation.
Examining Bundy’s life prior to the murders, it can be easy to identify the aspects that may have contributed to his eventual crimes. It has been reported that Bundy’s grandfather had a temper and also a penchant for pornography (Ramsland, 2013), and Bundy developed similar tastes as well, even been quoted as saying, “Those of us who are... so much influenced by violence in the media, in particular pornographic violence, are not some kind of inherent monsters. We are your sons, and we are your husbands, and we grew up in regular families” (Caputi, 1989, p. 437). While Bundy claimed that he grew up in a “regular family,” the reality is quite evident that there is a difference. Being abandoned at birth, then reclaimed approximately a month later, then proceeding to being told that his sister was his mother, and other traumatic events that occurred in the early formative years of his life may have possibly contributed to his eventual voyeurism, murders, and...

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