An ’empathy switch’ allows psychopaths to feel at will

It was previously thought that psychopaths lacked the capacity for empathy but new research shows they are able to switch it on and off ‘at will’.

The study took eighteen psychopathic prisoners and showed them a variety of video clips of people hurting each other or displaying affection (see below). Brain activity in the regions involved with empathy were then monitored as the subjects watched the videos.