Spotting ‘Evil’ In The Brain

Posted: February 6, 2013 in Behaviour, Biology, Ethics, Evil, Psychology, Science
Tags: , ,

The PsychCentral website has posted a fascinating article about a German neurologist who claims to have identified a very specific area of the brain “where evil lurks.”

As part of his government sponsored research, Dr. Gerhard Roth scans and analyzes the brains of violent criminals such as rapists and murderers. And he’s found that they all have something in common: a “dark patch” in their frontal brain. Interestingly, Roth says he can predict with 66% accuracy that an adolescent with anomalies in this area of the brain, is a “felon in the making.”

You can read the whole article here.

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Comments
  1. Absurd. If you want to know what makes someone criminal, look at their nurture, not their biological makeup. Crime is an abstract concept that is determined by society, so relying on an individuals nature to identify the possibility of future crime is irresponsible. Crime is a relational phenomena, not a fixed one.

    For conceptual purposes, lets say this “dark spot” is real, and does predict criminality. You mention murders and rapists as examples; a prior history of victimization is a very common catalyst that turns those people towards crimes such as murder and rape. And we don’t even need to get that specific–victimization does what? It produces astronomical levels of stress and anxiety. So, it’s safe to assume that rapists and murders have, at one point in their history, for one reason or another, been exposed to such high levels of stress and anxiety that even the possibility of a mental illness being fostered is not uncommon. In this example, we could assume that “dark spot” might be the result of a previously experienced high levels of stress/anxiety–this is still the result of their NURTURE, not their NATURE.

    This “Minority Report” parody research does nothing but contribute to publics misconceptions of why individuals commit crime.

    Like

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