ISSN 1671-3710
CN 11-4766/R

Advances in Psychological Science ›› 2014, Vol. 22 ›› Issue (9): 1456-1466.doi: 10.3724/SP.J.1042.2014.01456

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Callous Unemotional Trait: A Personality Disposition Vulnerable to Violent Crimes

XIAO Yuqin; ZHANG Zhuo; SONG Ping; YANG Bo   

  1. (College of Criminal Justice, China University of Political Science and Law, Beijing 100088, China)
  • Received:2013-09-25 Online:2014-09-15 Published:2014-09-15
  • Contact: YANG Bo


Callous-unemotional (CU) trait is a personality disposition which exhibits callous use of others, lack of guilt, absence of empathy. CU is a predictive factor of aggressive antisocial behavior and even violent criminal behavior in youth and adult people. CU trait is associated with emotional impairment such as negative emotional processing deficits and absence of empathy, and cognitive problems such as reward-oriented behavior and punishment insensitivity. Biologically, individuals with CU trait show low arousing level, low cortisol, abnormal reaction of amygdala and ventral medial prefrontal cortex. Further researches is needed to revise and develop local CU traits scales, investigate the gender difference of CU trait, explore the association of CU traits with other mental disorders such as oppositional defiant disorder, and provide evidence for violent criminal corrections.

Key words: callous unemotional trait, juvenile delinquency, violent crimes, aggressive, psychopathy