A New Perspective: Anatomy of Evil


Byron Headrick, Writer

Have you ever wondered what would truly classify someone as evil? In a survey taken here at Bob Jones, 47.3% of the 55 participants believed that someone is born evil. When asking them to classify an evil act, 30 people said that a serial killer killing someone with torture was the evilest. 23 others said a man coming home and killing his wife and unborn child was the evilest act. From this survey, you can see that no one agrees on what makes “evil” or defines it. Michael H. Stone takes a deeper look into this subject in his book: The Anatomy of Evil.

The book starts off by addressing Stone’s category of evil 2-6 which all fall under murders in persons without psychopathic features. He gives the reader an in-depth look at why he defined this as a category of evil and examples of crimes that lead him to form the category. These crimes included the ones of Clara Harris, a jealous wife who ran down her husband once she caught him cheating and Robert Rowe, an attorney that had a psychotic meltdown and murdered his wife and 3 kids with a baseball bat and then addressing those who were mentally ill that killed someone. He also states that most of the public would place sexual crimes such as rape at the highest amount of evil, but he puts serial killers and torturers at the top of the list.

Stone ends his book with saying that “every generation will have a small but irreducible percentage of paranoid schizophrenic and other psychotic persons, a few of whom will commit […] crimes of spectacular awfulness” and that it’s impossible to completely get rid of evil.

If you love to read about true-crime cases or just looking for a book that will give you a new perspective on crime and what brings someone to commit horrible acts, then this book is for you.