Recklessness (also called unchariness) is disregard for or indifference to the dangers of a situation or for the consequences of one's actions, as in deciding to act without stopping to think beforehand. Aristotle considered such rashness as one end (excessive) of a continuum, with courage as the mean, cowardice as the deficit vice. Recklessness has been linked to antisocial personality disorder.
"Reck" is a regard or reckoning, particularly of a situation. A reckless individual would engage in an activity without concern for its after-effects. It can in certain cases be seen as heroic—for example, the soldier fearlessly charging into battle, with no care for his own safety, has a revered status among some. However, recklessness is more commonly regarded as a vice—this same soldier may be a liability to his own side, or get himself killed for no benefit – and may be the product of a death wish.
Recklessness should not be confused with bravery. Although the two could sometimes be connected, the latter is usually applied to cases where a person displays a more reasonable reckoning of the inherent danger, rather than none at all.
- Aristotle, Ethics (1976) p. 103
- D, Coon/J. O. Mitterer, Introduction to Psychology (2008) p. 488
- Eric Berne, A Laynan's Guide to Psychiatry and Psychoanalysis (1976) p. 81
- J. Halliday/P. Fuller eds., The Psychology of Gambling (1974) p. 207
- J. Cleese/R. Skynner, Families and how to survive them (1994) p. 35-6
- Otto Fenichel, The Psychoanalytic Theory of Neurosis (1946) p. 480
- Erik H. Erikson, Childhood and Society (1973) p. 249
- Fenichel, The Psychoanalytic Theory of Neurosis (1946) p. 518 and p. 510
- Aristotle, Ethics (1976) p. 129