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Evil in Mind

The Psychology of Harming Others

Christopher T. Burris

July 2022

ISBN: 9780197637180

200 pages

In Stock

Price: £29.99



This book offers readers a digestible, social-scientific definition and analysis of evil in its various incarnations, including hate, sadism, and a range of harmful behaviors. By mapping out the psychological and environmental factors that amplify our propensity for hurting others, Evil in Mind offers a systematic, research-based understanding of the phenomenon of evil for an accessible and potentially transformative read.

  • Offers a social-scientific definition of evil that departs from oversimplication and generalizations
  • Examines psychological and environmental factors that increase the likelihood of harm-causing behavior
  • Presents the subject accessibly for students, academics, and educated lay readers

About the Author(s)

Christopher T. Burris, Professor of Psychology, St. Jerome's University

Christopher T. Burris is a Professor of Psychology at St. Jerome's University, in the University of Waterloo, Canada. In addition to creating and teaching a course on the psychology of evil for over two decades, Dr. Burris contributes to courses in the psychologies of good, religion, and death and dying. His published research has spanned the breadth of human experience—from the self, consciousness, afterlife beliefs, atheism, and from sadism, hate, and evil to empathy. The sum of these efforts, he hopes, is to contribute to a greater understanding of some of life's big issues.

Table of Contents

    Chapter 1 - What Is "Evil"
    Chapter 2 - "Evildoers": Who (or What) Earns the Title?
    Chapter 3 - The "Mark of Cain"
    Chapter 4 - Becoming Evil
    Chapter 5 - Hate
    Chapter 6 - Sadism
    Chapter 7 - Serial Killers
    Chapter 8 - Organized Evil
    Chapter 9 - "Evil" Spelled Backwards Is...?


"impressive and fascinating ... an intellectually profound yet highly readable book about evil that will capture and enlighten the reader" - Fabio Sani, Chair of Social and Health Psychology, School of Social Sciences, University of Dundee

"provocative and thought-provoking... Evil in Mind is a compelling read that leaves one with disquieted inspiration" - Katherine Aumer, Assistant Professor of Psychology, Social Sciences Division, The University of Hawai'i, West O'ahu

"an intriguing psychological excursion into not only evil's origins and varieties, but also why we label particular people and behaviors as 'evil' in the first place" - Mark Leary, Garonzik Family Distinguished Professor Emeritus, Duke University

"By daring and assisting you to comprehend what motivates causing or condemning harm, Evil in Mind will have you thinking about the nature of evil for a long time" - Leonard S. Newman, Associate Professor of Psychology, Syracuse University

"a deep, comprehensive, multiculturally attentive dive that establishes a psychological paradigm for how we perceive, think about, and evaluate evil" - Richard D. Harvey, Associate Professor of Psychology, St. Louis University