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Title: Psychopathy and sexual offending
Author: Boothroyd, David
Awarding Body: University of Liverpool
Current Institution: University of Liverpool
Date of Award: 2021
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Introduction: Research suggests an association between psychopathy and rape myth acceptance (RMA). Prior to the perpetration of sexual violence, many people hold attitudes that justify, defend and minimize violence. In this case, it would be useful to understand the extent to which myths about rape relate to psychopathy and its various facets. This is the first review which has systematically reviewed the evidence for the relationship between both primary and secondary psychopathy and RMA. Aims: This systematic review and meta-analysis aimed to examine the evidence for i) the relationship between primary psychopathic traits and RMA and ii) the relationship between secondary psychopathic traits and RMA. Method: Systematic searches of nine databases were performed, using search terms relating to psychopathy and RMA. Articles which reported zero-order correlations specifically for primary and secondary psychopathy and RMA were included. Two meta-analyses were conducted to synthesise effect sizes for both primary and secondary psychopathy and RMA. Results: Thirteen peer-reviewed studies were included in the meta-analyses. A significant small association was found between primary psychopathy and RMA, r =0.26 (95% CI [0.19, 0.33] p < .001). A significant small association was found between secondary psychopathy and RMA, r = 0.25 (95% CI [0.20, 0.29] p < .001). Conclusion: Both primary and secondary psychopathic traits are significantly associated with RMA. Researchers should begin to address the methodological and philosophical issues that surround both the fundamental constructs of psychopathy and rape myths, to inform future therapeutic interventions.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (D.Clin.Psy.) Qualification Level: Doctoral