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Dark Traits, Maladaptive Personality, and Depression: Comparative Network Analysis in Psychotherapy Patients vs. Non-clinical Samples
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  • Emanuele Fino,
  • Paolo Iliceto,
  • Stephanie Archer-Fern,
  • Antonino Carcione,
  • Gabriella Candilera,
  • Giulio Costantini
Emanuele Fino
Queen's University Belfast School of Psychology

Corresponding Author:[email protected]

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Paolo Iliceto
S&P Statistics and Psychometrics Ltd
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Stephanie Archer-Fern
Nottingham Trent University Department of Psychology
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Antonino Carcione
Terzo Centro di Psicoterapia Cognitiva
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Gabriella Candilera
S&P Statistics and Psychometrics Ltd
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Giulio Costantini
Universita degli Studi di Milano-Bicocca Dipartimento di Psicologia
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Background/Objectives: The present research used a network approach to investigate the relationships between antagonistic traits, maladaptive personality, and depressive symptoms in in psychotherapy patients ( N1 = 254) vs. non-clinical samples ( N1 = 261). Methods: The study used network analysis to provide insight on the differential organisation of these traits and symptoms between the two groups. Results: In individuals from the general population, a positive relationship between Machiavellianism and hopelessness and a negative one between the former and negative affect. Psychopathy was positively associated with antagonism and hopelessness in psychotherapy patients but not in individuals from the general population. Psychopathy was also positively associated with disinhibition in individuals from the general population but not in psychotherapy patients. Narcissism and depression were negatively associated, both in psychotherapy patients and controls. Dark traits were not associated with depression, neither in psychotherapy patients nor in individuals from the general population. Discussion: The network estimated in the former group suggests patterns of antisocial, callous, and reactive-aggressive forms of behaviour that were not found in those from the general population, outlining important implications for theory, future research, and intervention in clinical and health psychology.