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Network Analysis of Dark Triad Traits and Emotional Intelligence in Peruvian Adults.

BACKGROUND: The study of Dark Triad traits and emotional variables has been conducted in numerous regions; however, there is a lack of research focusing on Latin American samples and considering variables such as sex and age. Incorporating these variables could enhance our understanding of underlying aversive patterns.

PURPOSE: This study aimed to analyze the associations between Dark Triad traits and emotional intelligence in Peruvian adults.

METHODS: Data were collected in 2021 and 272 adults (M=31.8 years, 68% female) participated through online surveys via non-probability purposive sampling. Dirty Dozen and Trait Meta-Mood Scales were used. Two partial correlation network models were applied between the study variables with and without controlling for gender and age. Bridge-expected influence and predictability analysis were calculated to find interconnected traits and higher connections, respectively.

RESULTS: Subclinical psychopathy primarily showed negative associations with emotional clarity (r=-0.17), followed by emotional attention (r=-0.08) and emotional repair in networks with and without age and gender variables. Machiavellianism consistently displayed a negative association with emotional repair (r=-0.13) in both estimated networks. Conversely, subclinical narcissism exhibited a positive association solely with emotional attention (r=0.15). Furthermore, younger age was linked to higher Machiavellianism (r=-0.23), females showed higher emotional attention (r=0.11), and narcissism connected intrapersonal emotional domains with Dark Traits (bridge expected influence >1.25) while Machiavellianism exhibited greater predictability (r2 >0.45) due to reinforcement by other Dark Traits.

CONCLUSION: This study revealed negative connections between the Dark Triad and emotional intelligence traits, except for narcissism, which was positively associated with emotional attention and functioned as a "bridge" between all traits. However, relying solely on this single positive emotional aspect of narcissism may not be adequate to characterize it as possessing fully adaptive emotional traits. Findings suggest that detailed aspects of emotional intelligence and sociodemographic factors can provide valuable insights into the complex nature of aversive patterns and their broader impact on society.

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