Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows (Harry Potter, #7) Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows discussion


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Is Voldemort a psychopath or a sociopath?

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message 1: by [deleted user] (new)

He's targeting only one person (Harry Potter) but he will kill ANYONE who is in his way, or to gain power. What do you think?


Hina I guess I would say neither. Voldemort had a bad childhood, his father had abandoned him and his mother gave up magic so I guess it was natural for him to so strongly believe in all that pureblood propaganda that was developing more and more at the time. You also have to look at Dumbledore and Grindlewald, they were affected to by all this and I guess Dumbledore realised what he was doing at the last moment when the latter didn't. Anyway, it is very hard to have some sympathy with Voldemort, but it definitely was his environment which made him in able to love. He wanted to be noticed and feared for once and that completely devoured him. When he found out that this boy was about to ruin the only thing he had, I guess Voldemort was only human to do what he did.

Obviously I'm not condoning him murdering innocent people, what Voldemort did was very wrong and absolutely inexcusable no matter how hard his life was.


message 3: by [deleted user] (new)

Hina wrote: "I guess I would say neither. Voldemort had a bad childhood, his father had abandoned him and his mother gave up magic so I guess it was natural for him to so strongly believe in all that pureblood ..."

Hitler probably grew up believing that certain people should not exist. Are you saying that he was neither a psychopath nor a sociopath?


Hina Alannah wrote: "Hina wrote: "I guess I would say neither. Voldemort had a bad childhood, his father had abandoned him and his mother gave up magic so I guess it was natural for him to so strongly believe in all th..."

I'm not talking about Hitler. He's entirely different to Voldemort. One is that Voldemort is fictional and Hitler is real. From what I know/learnt about Hitler he was around war, murder, bloodshed for most of his life. That would affect anyone mentally as well as physical more for the wrong reasons than right. He took killing to an extreme level which probably made him instable mentally, but you also have to think that Hitler on his own would have got nowhere without followers, us human beings and enough to support him. That is the same as Voldemort.


Shanna what are your definitions for sociopath and psychopath?


message 6: by Robin (last edited Nov 12, 2011 05:52PM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Robin I think they pretty much are synonomous. Sociopath is like a Ted Bundy type, and a psychopath is more gruesome.


message 7: by Laurie (last edited Nov 12, 2011 05:55PM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Laurie From the Education Mavericks online:

Sociopathy and psychopathy share many traits, which is the main source of confusion for differentiating them in psychology. Traits that sociopaths and psychopaths share include:

~ a disregard for the rights of others
~ a failure to feel remorse or guilt
~ a disregard for laws and social mores
~ a tendency to display violent behavior and emotional outbursts

Though not all psychology professionals agree on what exactly differentiates sociopaths from psychopaths, among those who believe each are separate disorders there is a list of definite differences. Sociopaths tend to be nervous and easily agitated. They are likely to be uneducated and live on the fringes of society, unable to hold down a steady job or stay in one place. Some sociopaths form attachments to an individual or group, though they have no regard for society in general. In the eyes of others, sociopaths appear clearly disturbed. Any crimes committed by a sociopath tend to be disorganized and spontaneous.

Psychopaths, on the other hand, often have charming personalities. They are manipulative and easily gain people’s trust. They have learned to mimic emotion and so appear “normal” to other people. Psychopaths are often educated and hold steady jobs. Some are so good at manipulation and mimicry that they can have families and other long-term relationships without those around them ever suspecting their true nature.

Psychopaths, when committing crimes, carefully plan out every detail and often have contingency plans in place. Because of this marked difference between the method of crimes committed by sociopaths and psychopaths, the distinction between these disorders is perhaps even more important to criminology than it is to psychology.


helpingpsychology DOT com/sociopath-vs-psychopath-whats-the-difference


Robin I guess I confused the two: Ted Bundy would be a psychopath. But still both socio and psycho paths are truly abhorrent. But these two are useful both in crimonology and psychology as well. If people would get the help they need, before they commit crimes, all the better. But alas, it is only in committing the crimes do we learn about it.


message 9: by Shanna (last edited Nov 12, 2011 06:04PM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Shanna I've reread the question and realised it can be interpreted at whether voldemort is either, or, but it could be interpreted your way Robin. If the didfinitive characteristics of Pychopathy or sociopathy is a lack of empathy and regard for others beyond being tools and/or prey
Then definately definitivly yes he is.
More gruesome than Ted Bundy did you read what he did, what he actually did?


Robin Yes, he used to charm the women, or make like he was hurt to gain their sympathy, then you know what happened.


Laurie Ted Bundy killed many young women in Utah, where I live. He terrorized the area for many years. I still think of him with fear, even though he's dead.


Minna if you look into the deffinition, psychopaths take the more violent path to killing people, and sociopaths are more "get into your head and make you kill yourself"

i think that when Voldemort was young he was more like a sociopath, but then later on he became a psychopath.

but then you could say that it wasnt either option. when Dumbledore went to tell him that he was accepted at Hogwarts he said "I knew i was special". i think that part of his problem was that he's an attention seaker. he was headboy, got top grades, learned where the chamber of secrets was, all of those things fed his ego and made him want more of that feeling of self-importance. i think that is what drove to becoming who he was.


Robin I agree with Sara.


message 14: by [deleted user] (last edited Nov 14, 2011 04:24PM) (new)

Laurie wrote: "From the Education Mavericks online:

Sociopathy and psychopathy share many traits, which is the main source of confusion for differentiating them in psychology. Traits that sociopaths and psycho..."


Based on this, i would say definitely a psychopath. Voldemort was always described as charming in his youth. He was was educated, and very smart. In addition, he planned things out more, he spent years biding his time and getting stronger after Harry nearly killed him. Also, he made many Horcruxes in case he got killed too, totally planning ahead. He also seemed quite normal when he was in school, and manipulated his surroundings. For example, he got Hagrid expelled to deflect suspicion from himself, and so he would get to stay at Hogwarts. Whereas a Sociopath seems to not think as much, just act and kill people. Maybe not as specific as Harry. Based on those definitions, I would say Voldemort is a Psychopath for sure.


message 15: by Lauren (new)

Lauren I remember reading somewhere that the difference between a psychopath and a sociopath is that psychopaths cannot form attachments to other people, whereas sociopaths can form a few close attachments. The people they become attached to are too close for them to feel okay with harming or manipulating, and so they struggle more with their disorder and cannot fit in or hold down a normal job. Because of their blanket disregard for others, psychopaths find it easier to put on a convincing act and so can hold down a job and lead a fairly normal appearing life.

By this definition, Voldemort was definitely a psychopath. Dumbledore says in HBP that Voldemort never made an actual friend, although some death eaters claimed they were trusted friends of his. He just acted it and always manipulated those around him. Also remember, Voldemort was well liked and even admired by all his teachers at hogwarts (bar dumbledore).


message 16: by [deleted user] (new)

Psychopath. He's got his act together too well.


TheBohemianBookworm Carrington wrote: "Psychopath. He's got his act together too well."

This. Sociopath is different.


message 18: by AgCl (new) - rated it 4 stars

AgCl psychopaths are born while sociopaths become what they are because of external factors. Voldy was evil even as a kid so i'd say psychopath.


TheBohemianBookworm I don't think he was born evil or anyone for that matter. He became that way the way everyone does, through bad treatment and trauma.


message 20: by Homakp (last edited Aug 04, 2014 04:27PM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Homakp None. he's just one of the few miserable people who don't want their misery to end!

AgCl wrote: "psychopaths are born while sociopaths become what they are because of external factors. Voldy was evil even as a kid so i'd say psychopath."
He became like that because of external reasons. he hated regular people 'cause of the way his father treated his mother. if i remember correctly, his father was his first kill.


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