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Chapter 17 - A Focus on the Mother

Uncertainty

from Part II - Biographical Sketches

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  26 May 2022

Frederick Toates
Affiliation:
The Open University, Milton Keynes
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Summary

Ted Bundy was separated from any individual caregiver after birth. Apparently, he was disturbed by the uncertainty around who was his biological mother. Pretense on who she really was might also have contributed to his distress. These experiences seemed to have initiated his resentment against women, which were subsequently inflamed by jilting. Intelligent, handsome and articulate, Bundy was described as a most unlikely serial killer, which shows the limitations of stereotypes. He was very sensitive to social class and uncomfortable with his own position. He illustrates a feature of displaced aggression: that retribution can be out of all proportion to the initial trigger. Bundy was an organized offender committing murder in a series of states of the Union. However, he became somewhat disorganized at the end of his killing series. Bundy exemplifies the use of cognitive empathy to gain access to his victims. He claimed that violent pornography played a role.

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Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Print publication year: 2022

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