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31 days of ideas
Jon Ronson

Strange answers to the psychopath test

Recommended by Mona Chalabi

Last year, when an erratic businessman became an erratic president of the United States, there were calls for mental health professionals to publicly diagnose him as a psychopath. I was reminded of this TED Talk by the brilliant Jon Ronson.

In "Strange answers to the psychopath test," Jon describes how he discovered a handy 20-point checklist for spotting a psychopath -- and then he explains how it might not be so handy after all.

This talk reminds us of just how complex we humans are. A mental health diagnosis isn't a simple slur you can throw at a political opponent. It's possible to respect someone and view them as a psychopath just as much as it's possible to loathe them while believing they're sane.

Watch "Strange answers to the psychopath test"
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