Beth A. Visser is now at Trent University (Oshawa), Department of Psychology.
Is Low Anxiety Part of the Psychopathy Construct?
Article first published online: 26 APR 2012
© 2011 The Authors. Journal of Personality © 2011, Wiley Periodicals, Inc.
Journal of Personality
Volume 80, Issue 3, pages 725–747, June 2012
How to Cite
Visser, B. A., Ashton, M. C. and Pozzebon, J. A. (2012), Is Low Anxiety Part of the Psychopathy Construct?. Journal of Personality, 80: 725–747. doi: 10.1111/j.1467-6494.2011.00745.x
This research was supported by Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada grant 2007-2159. We thank Christine DuRoss for her assistance with data collection.
- Issue published online: 15 MAY 2012
- Article first published online: 26 APR 2012
- Accepted manuscript online: 29 JUL 2011 04:00PM EST
- Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada. Grant Number: 2007-2159
Low anxiety has traditionally been considered a feature of psychopathy, but there has been mixed research support for this conceptualization. We investigated the PPI-R-SF Stress Immunity subscale (a measure of low anxiety) in relation to 2 widely used self-report psychopathy scales in a sample of 346 undergraduate students. Results indicated that PPI-R-SF Stress Immunity was nearly unrelated to other indicators of psychopathy, showing a near-zero loading on the common psychopathy factor defined jointly by the scales of the PPI-R-SF and SRP-III. Stress Immunity also showed a pattern of personality and temperament correlates much different from those of other psychopathy subscales. Finally, Stress Immunity had a slight negative correlation with self-reports of diverse antisocial acts. These results suggest that despite its historical importance in the conceptualization of psychopathy, low anxiety is likely not a core feature of psychopathy.