An interview with Bundy, the day before his execution

Bundy is surprisingly forthcoming in his attempts to explain and understand how he came to be a monster. There are a number of responses that seem decidedly un-psychopathic. He has no problem taking full responsibility for the murders and he realizes that he is very different from other people.

Bundy claims that he was from a good home and was never abused, and that it was his exposure from soft to violent pornography that made his fantasies become more and more violent; one could raise the argument that it was simply stumbling across violent pornography as a child that constituted the abuse necessary to traumatize and stymie the development of his brain.

He speaks of the need to murder (which included necrophilia) as an addiction. Keppel, one of the detectives who helped to apprehend Bundy explained that Bundy experienced the desire for necrophilia as a chemical tidal wave, like an addiction to a narcotic. It certainly seems like his frontal lobe, and the connections between it and the limbic system, failed to control and inhibit his desires.

The interview does not strike me as a manipulation or an attempt to spread lies, but of course that can’t be ruled out. He does, however, appear to respect his interviewer.

This is a good interview with Bundy, which anyone interested in the development of extreme human behaviors should watch.

7 thoughts on “An interview with Bundy, the day before his execution

  1. Paula

    We also can’t rule out the impact of being imprisoned on a person. I worked in community corrections as a teacher. If the felons I worked with thought they were getting something from me by being nice, they’d be nice and respectful. I was their supply, like the interviewer is Bundy’s supply. It’s a criminal mind on top of a psychopathic mind at work. As you alluded to, nothing can be ruled out as to his motives. Thanks for sharing.

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  2. rasajack

    Such a powerful interview and not once did I get the impression Bundy was looking for anything other than to attempt to get society to understand how damaging hard-core pornography is. Thank you for posting this blog, I am currently doing a bachelors in Applied Social Sciences and find this type of information enlightening. Society does need to look at stopping these types of crimes from happening not just building more prisons to house the criminals. Discovering what influences behaviour is a key to this problem.

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  3. ashanam

    The problem with asking sociopaths to talk about being sociopaths is that they lie, even when there is no particular reason to lie and nothing to be gained by it. Many (perhaps all) sociopaths do not understand truth as an objective feature of reality outside of their own imaginations. Their grandiosity is so great that they believe reality is whatever they say it is. Others enjoy the sense of power that comes from persuading someone of something that isn’t true: Lying involves a thrill.

    Because sociopaths lack conscience, they do not often give the usual indications of lying. They don’t feel guilty, and so they don’t look guilty. They aren’t afraid of being found out, and so they don’t reveal nervousness or fear. The only way to tell if a sociopath is lying is to have access to the facts, and the sociopath himself is the only one with access to the facts about his own motives.

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  4. alienredqueen

    Being exposed to violence as a child is one of the key risk factors for being violent as an adult. If he saw this pornography when he was in his formative years, I have no doubt it could have affected him. It would probably be like Social Learning Theory, and he probably became “conditioned” to view violence and sex interchangeably. That said, sociopaths are master manipulators, often highly capable of feigning normal emotions. He may indeed be sincere, but I wouldn’t bet on it. I’d take everything he said with a grain of salt.

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    1. alienredqueen

      Also, another theory on serial murders, a physiological one, is the idea that in utero the sociopath’s brain was “bathed” in serotonin, resulting in (and I’m REALLY simplifying it here) a deadening of the calming and pleasurable effects of the chemical. What Bundy said comparing the compulsion to a drug addiction and seeking the “next big high” made me remember this.

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      1. Jay Cuzey Post author

        Thanks for your comments! I hadn’t heard the in utero serotonin theory before, so it’ll be good to look that up. Do you know of any good papers that covers this phenomenon?

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