Psychopathy and ability emotional intelligence: Widespread or limited association among facets?

David A. Lishner, Emily R. Swim, Phan Y. Hong, Michael J. Vitacco

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

41 Scopus citations


Recent research is mixed with regard to the nature of the association between facets of psychopathy and ability emotional intelligence (AEI). Some studies find evidence of widespread association between facets, whereas other studies find limited association between facets. The present research sought to provide clarification regarding this empirical discrepancy by measuring both constructs in a demographically homogenous sample of participants (N=144). Analyses revealed that a number of associations between facets of psychopathy and facets of AEI were eliminated after controlling for participant gender and age. Specifically, primary psychopathy remained inversely associated with the ability to perceive emotion regardless of participant gender. Primary psychopathy and secondary psychopathy both remained inversely associated with managing emotion, but only in men. The findings demonstrate that when demographic variability is minimized non-spurious relations between psychopathy and AEI facets are relatively few in number.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1029-1033
Number of pages5
JournalPersonality and Individual Differences
Issue number7
StatePublished - May 1 2011
Externally publishedYes


  • Emotional intelligence
  • Gender
  • Primary psychopathy
  • Secondary psychopathy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Psychology


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