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The Psychopathological Profile of Cannibalism: A Review of Five Cases.
J Forensic Sci 2019; 64(5):1568-1573JF

Abstract

In today's society, human cannibalism is extremely rare and represents an unthinkable act of violence. Scientific literature on the topic is sparse due to significant methodological problems, such as collecting enough data and generating unbiased analyses. The purpose of this article is to illustrate some psychodynamic aspects of cannibalism. After a review of the literature, we will present and compare five cannibalistic patients hospitalized in the Henri Colin secure unit (Villejuif, France). The patients described fall into two subgroups, suffering either from severe schizophrenia or from a mixed personality disorder with sadistic and psychopathic features associated with paraphilia. For the schizophrenia group, cannibalism is a self-defense reaction to a perceived threat of destruction: survival depends on the annihilation or assimilation of the other. For the mixed personality disorder group, ego and narcissism are the central issue with a desire to overcome deep-rooted frustrations by means of an extraordinary act.

Authors+Show Affiliations

UMD Henri Colin, GH Paul Guiraud, 54 avenue de la République, BP 20065, 94806, Villejuif Cedex, France.HDJ, Maison de Santé de Nogent, 3bis rue de l'Ardillière, 94130, Nogent sur Marne, France.UMD Henri Colin, GH Paul Guiraud, 54 avenue de la République, BP 20065, 94806, Villejuif Cedex, France.

Pub Type(s)

Case Reports
Journal Article
Review

Language

eng

PubMed ID

31157920

Citation

Raymond, Sophie, et al. "The Psychopathological Profile of Cannibalism: a Review of Five Cases." Journal of Forensic Sciences, vol. 64, no. 5, 2019, pp. 1568-1573.
Raymond S, Léger AS, Gasman I. The Psychopathological Profile of Cannibalism: A Review of Five Cases. J Forensic Sci. 2019;64(5):1568-1573.
Raymond, S., Léger, A. S., & Gasman, I. (2019). The Psychopathological Profile of Cannibalism: A Review of Five Cases. Journal of Forensic Sciences, 64(5), pp. 1568-1573. doi:10.1111/1556-4029.14099.
Raymond S, Léger AS, Gasman I. The Psychopathological Profile of Cannibalism: a Review of Five Cases. J Forensic Sci. 2019;64(5):1568-1573. PubMed PMID: 31157920.
* Article titles in AMA citation format should be in sentence-case
TY - JOUR T1 - The Psychopathological Profile of Cannibalism: A Review of Five Cases. AU - Raymond,Sophie, AU - Léger,Anne-Sophie, AU - Gasman,Ivan, Y1 - 2019/06/03/ PY - 2019/04/13/received PY - 2019/05/15/revised PY - 2019/05/16/accepted PY - 2019/6/4/pubmed PY - 2019/12/18/medline PY - 2019/6/4/entrez KW - anthropophagy KW - cannibalism KW - forensic psychiatry KW - forensic science KW - psychopathy KW - schizophrenia SP - 1568 EP - 1573 JF - Journal of forensic sciences JO - J. Forensic Sci. VL - 64 IS - 5 N2 - In today's society, human cannibalism is extremely rare and represents an unthinkable act of violence. Scientific literature on the topic is sparse due to significant methodological problems, such as collecting enough data and generating unbiased analyses. The purpose of this article is to illustrate some psychodynamic aspects of cannibalism. After a review of the literature, we will present and compare five cannibalistic patients hospitalized in the Henri Colin secure unit (Villejuif, France). The patients described fall into two subgroups, suffering either from severe schizophrenia or from a mixed personality disorder with sadistic and psychopathic features associated with paraphilia. For the schizophrenia group, cannibalism is a self-defense reaction to a perceived threat of destruction: survival depends on the annihilation or assimilation of the other. For the mixed personality disorder group, ego and narcissism are the central issue with a desire to overcome deep-rooted frustrations by means of an extraordinary act. SN - 1556-4029 UR - https://www.unboundmedicine.com/medline/citation/31157920/The_Psychopathological_Profile_of_Cannibalism:_A_Review_of_Five_Cases_ L2 - https://doi.org/10.1111/1556-4029.14099 DB - PRIME DP - Unbound Medicine ER -