Understanding Sexual Serial Killing

Toates, Frederick and Coschug-Toates, Olga (2022). Understanding Sexual Serial Killing. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press.

DOI: https://doi.org/10.1017/9781009042703


Why do some people engage in serial killing for sexual pleasure? This book considers the phenomenon of sexual serial killing from the perspective of motivation theory, as advanced in psychology and neuroscience. By examining biological, psychological and social determinants, it develops a model of sexual killing that integrates widely dispersed existing literature. The first part of the book reviews scientific data and theories, while the second part presents biographical sketches of 80 sexual killers and links their early development and later killing to current theoretical understanding. The book examines cases of serial killers from the USA, Western Europe, Iran, Australia and South Africa, and it also includes an account of killers from the USSR, made available to non-Russian speakers for the first time. Deliberately written to avoid jargon, Understanding Sexual Serial Killing is accessible to students, scholars and professionals across psychology, sociology, forensic science and law.

Identifies the principal developmental determinants of sexual serial killing using motivation theory and neuroscience

Offers an entirely new approach to analysing sexual serial killers by logically grouping the killers together according to some of the key features and connections they exhibit

Discusses serial killers not only from the USA but also from Western Europe, Iran, Australia, South Africa; and for the first time, an account of a range of killers from the USSR is made available to non-Russian speakers

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