[Skip to Content]
[Skip to Content Landing]
May 22, 1943

Dark Legend: A Study in Murder

JAMA. 1943;122(4):266. doi:10.1001/jama.1943.02840210058026

This article is only available in the PDF format. Download the PDF to view the article, as well as its associated figures and tables.


This is a popular yet authentic account of a 17 year old matricide. His own story of the events leading to the murder, of the crime itself and the author's analysis of the crime are given. The case is that of an Italian boy who murdered his mother, consciously motivated by his feeling that by her sexual promiscuity she had dishonored the family and the boy's deceased father. The author proceeds to show that more important unconscious motives determined the criminal act. The book is an excellent contribution to forensic psychiatry. The author shows the dilemma of the psychiatrist faced with the rigid legalistic conceptions of insanity on the one hand and his convictions that as a physician he must regard the boy as ill, must understand the nature of this illness and if possible initiate steps leading to a possible cure. His careful diagnostic discussion of the case will

First Page Preview View Large
First page PDF preview
First page PDF preview