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The dark triad and intimate partner violence

Carton, Hannah; Egan, Vincent


Hannah Carton

Vincent Egan


Psychological abuse within intimate partner violence (IPV) is poorly researched. We investigated the impact of dark triad (DT) traits and personality on psychological, physical and sexual abuse, and whether DT traits have incremental validity over general personality dimensions in the prediction of IPV expressed psychologically, physically, and sexually. IPV was measured via the Multidimensional Measure of Emotional Abuse (MMEA) and the short form of the revised Conflict Tactics Scale, version 2 (CTS2S) in a general community sample (N = 128). Correlation and regression analysis indicated that low agreeableness and psychopathy had the strongest associations and most predictive relationships with both psychological abuse and physical/sexual abuse. Low agreeableness was predictive of both the participants' and their partners' perpetration of physical/sexual abuse. A significant positive relationship was also found between high scores on the MMEA and high scores on the CTS2S. A significant positive relationship was found between participants' high psychopathy scores and perpetration of psychological abuse, but this had a smaller effect than a measure of agreeableness alone. We did not find that the DT provides incremental validity for the prediction of either psychological abuse or physical/sexual abuse over basic low Agreeableness.


Carton, H., & Egan, V. (2017). The dark triad and intimate partner violence. Personality and Individual Differences, 105,

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Sep 21, 2016
Online Publication Date Sep 26, 2016
Publication Date Jan 15, 2017
Deposit Date Nov 1, 2016
Publicly Available Date Sep 27, 2018
Journal Personality and Individual Differences
Print ISSN 0191-8869
Electronic ISSN 0191-8869
Publisher Elsevier
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 105
Keywords Dark triad; Big Five personality; Intimate partner violence; Psychological abuse
Public URL
Publisher URL


unblind accepted THE DARK TRIAD AND INTIMATE PARTNER VIOLENCE manuscript.pdf (325 Kb)

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