Besides intrinsic, historical, and literary interest, and pedagogical utility, the study of the history of a disease can provide clues to its pathogenesis. It is necessary, but not sufficient, that the cause of disease be at least as old as the disease itself. We note a possible case of antisocial personality disorder (ASPD) nearly 3000 years ago: the biblical figure Samson (Judges,1 chapters 13-16), son of Manoah.
The DSM-IV requires that 3 of 7 criteria be met for the diagnosis of ASPD. Samson meets 6. (1) Failure to conform to social norms with respect to lawful behavior: The Philistines tried to arrest Samson after he burned the Philistine fields (15:5) and went to Gaza (16:1). (2) Deceitfulness, as indicated by repeated lying: Samson did not tell his parents that he had killed a lion. Furthermore, he proffered honey for his parents to eat, but did not tell them it had come from the carcass of a lion (14:9) and thus caused them to violate their dietary laws. (3) Impulsivity: His burning of the Philistine fields (15:5). (4) Irritability and aggressiveness: This is indicated by his repeated involvement in physical fights. (5) Reckless disregard for safety of self or others: Samson is reported to have taken on and killed 1000 Philistines single-handedly (15:15). Telling Delilah the secret to his strength (16:17), even after she had attempted 3 times previously to get this secret, can also be considered reckless disregard for safety of self. (6) Lack of remorse: He gloated (15:16) after killing 1000 men.
Register and get free email Table of Contents alerts, saved searches, PowerPoint downloads, CME quizzes, and more
Subscribe for full-text access to content from 1998 forward and a host of useful features
Activate your current subscription (AMA members and current subscribers)
Purchase Online Access to this article for 24 hours
Country-Specific Mortality and Growth Failure in Infancy and Yound Children and Association With Material Stature
Use interactive graphics and maps to view and sort country-specific infant and early dhildhood mortality and growth failure data and their association with maternal
Thank you for submitting a comment on this article. It will be reviewed by JAMA Psychiatry editors. You will be notified when your comment has been published. Comments should not exceed 500 words of text and 10 references.
Do not submit personal medical questions or information that could identify a specific patient, questions about a particular case, or general inquiries to an author. Only content that has not been published, posted, or submitted elsewhere should be submitted. By submitting this Comment, you and any coauthors transfer copyright to the journal if your Comment is posted.
* = Required Field
Disclosure of Any Conflicts of Interest*
Indicate all relevant conflicts of interest of each author below, including all relevant financial interests, activities, and relationships within the past 3 years including, but not limited to, employment, affiliation, grants or funding, consultancies, honoraria or payment, speakers’ bureaus, stock ownership or options, expert testimony, royalties, donation of medical equipment, or patents planned, pending, or issued. If all authors have none, check "No potential conflicts or relevant financial interests" in the box below. Please also indicate any funding received in support of this work. The information will be posted with your response.
Some tools below are only available to our subscribers or users with an online account.
Download citation file:
Web of Science® Times Cited: 8
Customize your page view by dragging & repositioning the boxes below.
More Listings atJAMACareerCenter.com >
and access these and other features:
Enter your username and email address. We'll send you a link to reset your password.
Enter your username and email address. We'll send instructions on how to reset your password to the email address we have on record.
Athens and Shibboleth are access management services that provide single sign-on to protected resources. They replace the multiple user names and passwords necessary to access subscription-based content with a single user name and password that can be entered once per session. It operates independently of a user's location or IP address. If your institution uses Athens or Shibboleth authentication, please contact your site administrator to receive your user name and password.