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September 1956

The Psychopath in a Mental Institution

Author Affiliations

North Battleford, Sask., Canada

AMA Arch NeurPsych. 1956;76(3):286-295. doi:10.1001/archneurpsyc.1956.02330270058013

This study attempts to elucidate two questions:

  1. What are the characteristics of those psychopaths who find their way to a mental institution?

  2. What is the clinical difference between the psychopaths with a normal brain wave pattern and those who have an abnormal electroencephalogram?

The century-long nosological struggle with these troublesome people has left semantic scars on medical thinking (Bromberg9). Neither cake nor the whip produces any visible effect on their maladjustment (Bleuler6). Although essentially not different, they have just disharmony enough to be misfits in life.79 We find among them Casanova and Don Juan, the morally insane22 and the moral imbeciles,70 the pathetically morbid16 and the lucid melancholics,72 the reasonable fools72 and the reasoning phrenasthenics91 of old writers. We find the criminaloid of Lombroso,68 the constitutionally inferior of Adolph Meyer,86 the psychopathic personality of Koch86 and the creative psychopath