Affordable Access

Psychopathic personality traits are linked to reduced false memories for negative events

  • Mirandola, Chiara;
  • Lanciano, Tiziana;
  • Battista, Fabiana; 129145;
  • Otgaar, Henry;
  • Curci, Antonietta;
Publication Date
Feb 01, 2023
External links


Individuals scoring high on psychopathic personality traits process emotional material to a different extent than individuals with few psychopathic traits. Evidence exists that these individuals have impaired emotional memory. The question arises whether this emotional memory impairment has ramifications for the production of emotional false memories. In the present study, we investigated the production of false and true memories for emotional events in a community sample (N = 120) of individuals varying in psychopathic traits (evaluated with the Psychopathic Personality Inventory-Revised [PPI-R] questionnaire). The fearless dominance (FD) component of psychopathy interacted with the emotional impact of to-be-remembered events in the production of false memories, showing fewer negative false memories with increasing levels of FD. At the subjective level, negative false memories were not perceived as vivid memory experiences in high FD individuals. Concerning true memories, higher scores in cold-heartedness were related to fewer true memories for neutral and negative (but not positive) events. These results show that individuals with high psychopathy traits - in particular, FD - do not have a general emotional memory impairment but they process negative material in a different way than individuals with low psychopathic traits and thus are less susceptible to producing false memories for negative events. / status: accepted

Report this publication


Seen <100 times