‘Everyday sadists’ receive emotional boost from seeing others suffer, studies show

Posted on September 23, 2013

Two new studies show that people who score high on a measure of sadism seem to enjoy pleasure from behaviours that hurt others, and are even willing to spend extra effort to make someone else suffer.

New research led by psychological scientist Erin Buckels of the University of British Columbia suggests that everyday sadism is real and more common than previously thought.

“Some find it hard to reconcile sadism with the concept of ‘normal’ psychological functioning, but our findings show that sadistic tendencies among otherwise well-adjusted people must be acknowledged,” says Buckels. “These people aren’t necessarily serial killers or sexual deviants but they gain some emotional benefit in causing or simply observing others’ suffering.”

Researchers believe their findings could have the potential to help find solutions to domestic abuse, bullying, animal abuse and cases of military and police brutality.

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Source material from National Post


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