, Volume 15, Issue 2, pp 153-156

Enhanced interpretation of nonverbal facial cues in male rapists—a preliminary study

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Interpretation of nonverbal cues was tested in 12 white, male, self-admitting rapists. All rapists were being treated for depression and were between the ages of 20 and 31. All victims were female strangers who had been observed in a social setting. The rapists and 12 age- and class-matched male controls viewed 10 male and 10 female volunteers during a specific gambling trial. Rapists were found to be more accurate than controls in interpreting both female and male nonverbal cues. This enhanced ability was hypothesized to be due to pathological expressions of intimacy and sexuality in the rapists' families of origin.