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Lachmann, A. Lachmann, F.M. (1995). The Personification of Evil: Motivations and Fantasies of the Serial Killer. Int. Forum Psychoanal., 4(1):17-23.

(1995). International Forum of Psychoanalysis, 4(1):17-23

The Personification of Evil: Motivations and Fantasies of the Serial Killer

Annette Lachmann, M.A. and Frank M. Lachmann, Ph.D.

A serial killer is born when early experiences of abuse, deprivation, and deception lead to a specific fantasy system and motivations. The premeditation before the killing, its viciousness, and its apparent motivelessness mark the serial killer as the personification of evil. We summarize the stories of three serial killers, Henry Lee Lucas, Randall Woodfield, and Theodore Robert Bundy, based on reports and interviews conducted by journalists, forensic psychologists, and law enforcement officials. These cases illustrate the range of socio-economic backgrounds, educational levels, charm, sociability, manipulativeness, economic deprivations and advantages, as well as the extent to which physical and sexual abuse characterize the serial killer's history. We hold that utilizing the five motivational systems proposed by Lichtenberg provides a comprehensive perspective to investigate the motivations of the serial killer. These five systems organize the fantasy that combines needs for self assertion and control over others that motivates the repetitive killings. We organize our speculations and inference using a seven stage framework proposed by Norris.

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