Exploring Associations Between Psychopathic Personality and Components of Disinhibition vs. Constraint

  • Robert D. Latzman
  • Jatin G. Vaidya
  • Mariya V. Malikina
  • Joanna M. Berg
  • Scott O. Lilienfeld


Recent models of psychopathy implicate Disinhibition vs. Constraint (DvC) as one of the primary underpinnings of psychopathic traits, although little research has examined associations between specific DvC components and psychopathy facets. The present study aimed to fill this gap by examining associations between psychopathy facets, as operationalized by two widely used self-report psychopathy instruments, and lower-order components of DvC within a racially diverse sample of 1,160 undergraduates. Path analyses confirmed the broad dimension of DvC as representing a general diathesis to psychopathy, with second-order components conferring more specific risks for particular psychopathy traits regardless of the model of psychopathy employed. Further, findings suggest that associations do not vary by race. Results suggest both generality and specificity of DvC dimensions as they relate to psychopathic traits, as well as potential avenues for further investigation of the associations between psychopathy and DvC.


Psychopathy Disinhibition Low perseverance Low premeditation Agreeableness 


Conflict of Interest

All authors declare no conflicts of interest.

Experiment Participants

The current study was conducted with the informed consent of all participants. This project was approved by the university Institutional Review Board.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • Robert D. Latzman
    • 1
  • Jatin G. Vaidya
    • 2
  • Mariya V. Malikina
    • 1
  • Joanna M. Berg
    • 3
  • Scott O. Lilienfeld
    • 3
  1. 1.Department of PsychologyGeorgia State UniversityAtlantaUSA
  2. 2.Department of PsychiatryUniversity of Iowa Hospitals and ClinicsIowa CityUSA
  3. 3.Department of PsychologyEmory UniversityAtlantaUSA

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