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Neurobiology of Violence, Second Edition

Jan Volavka, M.D., Ph.D.

  • ISBN 978-1-58562-081-4
  • Item #62081


Every clinician today needs a basic understanding of what causes violent behavior. The second edition of Neurobiology of Violence synthesizes current research on the origins of violence and reveals its implications for managing aggressive patients and minimizing risk.

Author Jan Volavka, currently Chief of Clinical Research at the Nathan S. Kline Institute, spent time in a Nazi prison as a child and has devoted much of his career to studying violence in humans. In Neurobiology of Violence, Second Edition, he brought together research and clinical data from many diverse disciplines in a single-authored volume with a unified voice that is clearly written and interesting to read.

Neurobiology of Violence, Second Edition, will give you a firm grounding in a complex subject that will help you diagnose, manage, and predict violent behavior. In the first part of the book you’ll examine the basic science of the origins of violence in humans, such as

  • Factors in animal aggression that have parallels in human aggression, including the relationship between serotonin and aggression
  • The genetic and environmental factors that interplay from conception to adulthood to result in violence.
  • In the latter part, you’ll develop new insights and strategies for working with violent patients in discussions of the latest clinical science, including
  • Major mental disorders and violent behaviors, including behaviors expressed in the community and those in psychiatric hospitals
  • Alcohol and various drugs and the tendencies of each type of abuse to predispose people to violence
  • Current psychopharmacological approaches to managing violent behavior in patients.

With more than 1000 updated references, the second edition of Neurobiology of Violence is a seminal resource for clinicians. It is an important tool for psychiatrists, neurologists, psychologists, and all other clinicians who struggle to understand and treat violent patients.


Preface to the Second Edition
Preface to the First Edition
Chapter 1. Human Aggression and Criminal Violence: Definitions and Classifications
Chapter 2. Aggression Among Animals
Chapter 3. Neurotransmitters, Hormones, and Genes
Chapter 4. Neurological, Neuropsychological, and Brain Imaging Correlates of Violent Behavior
Chapter 5. Congenital and Demographic Factors
Chapter 6. Developmental Antecedents of Violent Behavior
Chapter 7. Personality Disorders and Impulse Control
Chapter 8. Violence and Psychoactive Substance Abuse
Chapter 9. Violent Behavior of Persons With Mental Disorders Outside of Hospitals
Chapter 10. Violent Behavior of Psychiatric Inpatients
Chapter 11. Biological Treatment of Violence
Chapter 12. Summary and Conclusions
Appendix Statistical Explanation of the Actuarial Method: Bayes Decision

About the Authors

Jan Volavka, M.D., Ph.D., is Chief of the Clinical Research Division at The Nathan S. Kline Institute for Psychiatric Research and Professor in the Department of Psychiatry at New York University Medical Center in New York, New York.

Volavka's book is not only a must for researchers and clinicians in the field; it can also be recommended for educated lay readers. In highly accessible language, it combines modern biologic theories with theories about external, environmental factors.—Danuta Wasserman, M.D., Ph.D., New England Journal of Medicine, 1/1/2003

Dr. Volavka combines a profound understanding of human neurobiology, an extensive knowledge of the animal and human research on aggressive behavior, and clinical experience to describe the complex roles played by biological factors in determining human violence. Skillfully, with wit and a critical scientific style, he clarifies and illuminates a voluminous and complicated field of study. The revised version is even better than the earlier one and is essential reading for all interested in the topic.—Sheilagh Hodgins, Ph.D., Professor, Department of Psychology, Universite de Montreal, Montreal, Canada

The Neurobiology of Violence, Second Edition by Jan Volavka is a scholarly, comprehensive and often brilliant synthesis of knowledge and theory which provides readers, within a single volume, all that is currently known about violence and mental illness.—Jeffrey A. Lieberman, M.D., Thad and Alice Eure Distinguished Professor and Vice Chair of Psychiatry, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

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