ISSN 1671-3710
CN 11-4766/R

Advances in Psychological Science ›› 2013, Vol. 21 ›› Issue (7): 1248-1261.doi: 10.3724/SP.J.1042.2013.01248

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Review on the Studies of the Dark Triad

QIN Feng;XU Fang   

  1. (1 Business School, Jinling Institute of Technology, Nanjing 211169, China) (2 Business School, Nanjing Normal University, Nanjing 210023, China)
  • Received:2012-10-11 Online:2013-07-15 Published:2013-07-15
  • Contact: QIN Feng

Abstract: The studies on the Big Five represent the exploration into non-clinical personalities, whereas the studies on the Dark Triad represent the exploration into the shadow of the subclinical personalities. The Dark Triad is composed of three personality traits: Machiavellianism, narcissism and psychopathy, which are usually defined as antisocial personalities in the western culture. Results of recent studies on the Dark Triad indicate: (1) Machiavellianism, narcissism and psychopathy are independent yet intertwining personality traits; (2) valid tools have been developed to measure these personality traits; (3) the Dark Triad traits exhibit both antisociality and prosociality; (4) the Dark Triad may reflect a fast life strategy; (5) genetic and environmental factors play different roles in the development of the Dark Triad; (6) the Dark Triad is definitely a different personality trait cluster in contrast to the Big Five.

Key words: the Dark Triad, Machiavellianism, narcissism, psychopathy