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Percept Mot Skills. 2008 Dec;107(3):862-72.

A graphical analysis of handwriting of prisoners diagnosed with antisocial personality.

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Department of Psychology, Maria Curie-Sklodowska University, Plac Litewski 5, 20-080 Lublin, Poland.


Some researchers have claimed that important aspects of personality can be assessed using a person's handwriting. The aim of this research is to pull together systematically and extend data on the relationships between handwriting and antisocial personality. Specifically examined was whether there are specific identifiable characteristics of writing and, if so, are these useful in handwriting analysis to diagnose a personality disorder. The graphic handwriting characteristics of 50 inmates with a diagnosis of Antisocial Personality Disorder was analyzed and compared with that of 40 inmates without such diagnosis and 50 nonprisoner controls, also without Antisocial Personality Disorder. Forensic experts examined the documents, concentrating on those aspects of handwriting which previous researchers had reported associated with Antisocial Personality Disorder, such as a sinusoidal line, heavy pressure, and an open-shaped "a". Analyses of variance comparing the frequencies of 13 handwriting parameters indicated no significant differences for characteristics in any of the groups on any parameter. The diagnosis of Antisocial Personality Disorder was not significantly associated with any of the graphical measures; however, 5 of the 13 parameters were different between the Antisocial Personality Disorder and the non-Antisocial Personality Disorder groups in a direction opposite of expectations.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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