Is Donald Trump a Narcissist?

With the presidential election season in the United States heating up even further as the state primaries approach, a great amount of media attention has been focused on Donald Trump’s controversial campaign for the Republican nomination.

Vanity Fair questioned the mental health of Trump in an article titled “Is Donald Trump Actually a Narcissist? Therapists Weigh In!”. Howard Gardner was consulted for the piece and is quoted as saying that Trump is “remarkably narcissistic” but that the more interesting question is the mental states of his many supporters.

Click here to read the full article via Vanity Fair.

A similar article citing Gardner’s views subsequently appeared on the Brazilian site UOL. Click here to read that piece (Portuguese). 


7 Comments on “Is Donald Trump a Narcissist?”

  1. Marty March 13, 2016 at 1:26 am #

    Dr Gardner, if you review the Trump comments from tonight, 3/12 started around 7 est.. and he’s been on a non stop rambling speech of one random thought after another. I wonder if you will find more pathological tendencies and simply a narcissist. clearly he would seem the definition of a sociopath, but i wonder if he goes beyond the pale and is really bordering on pathological disorder. His voice changes up and down in volume, and just now, said about a protester, ‘are you with us or against us’. He’s perhaps paranoid as well? Trump is going to press charges against protesters .. He’s ignoring freedom of speech?

    Anyway, i read the article you wrote , but i wonder if he’s far worse than your initial assessment. i’m sure it’s available online. He’s reading a poem. Really. I think he’s going insane. Can a presidential candidate be removed from running for mental disorder?

    oops it’s not a poem.. it’s a johnny rivers song..

    if perhaps you’re watching this please tell me/the world if he’s insane.


  2. Dolce Ellison March 13, 2016 at 6:22 am #

    I believe that anyone who enjoys media attention with such fervor is a narcissist, and given his current behavior in regards to his discourse he is also a demagogue.

  3. Georg Hamang January 21, 2017 at 3:29 am #

    Donald Trump as every sign of a narcissist. His mental health is obvious far from normal. And this bully, this very bad human being is a threat, not only to the US, but to the rest of world.
    The president of the US also is the Commander in Chief, which is very dangerous when it comes to Trump.
    I hope, like some of the GOP senators, that Trump’ll do a big mistake early so he can be removed as soon as possible.

  4. James Lill February 5, 2017 at 10:08 pm #

    I believe the best test to at least partially tell if someone is a narcissist is their compulsion to include themselves into any narrative no matter how unprofessional or clearly biased.

    Let me provide an example: a intellectually gifted professor has long surrounded himself in the comforts provided by academia culture that is brazen in its idealization of confirmation bias. This professor has for decades been told by his cookie cutter colleagues that his ideas are correct, not based on actual debate or criticism but because they took all believe the same things at least superficially.

    This professor then takes it upon himself to completely dismiss the most basic tenants of professionalism by providing a pseudo psychological analysis of someone he has never met or personally treated. And he has zero remorse about shirking his most elementary professional responsibilities. Why? Because his insular life has led him to think that not only is he beyond the tenants that govern basic human decency, but that the public must have his thoughts inserted into any narrative. He thinks that he is doing the public a disservice by not sharing his blessings upon the masses.

    • Howard Gardner February 6, 2017 at 2:40 pm #

      Thank you for your comment. Here is a follow-up piece about this issue that you may of interest:

      -The Offices of Howard Gardner

    • Dr. B. May 22, 2017 at 3:13 pm #

      Could not agree more with you more James. In my training and continuing education as a licensed psychologist who has practiced for over thirty years, I was taught to be objective and not let biases influence by research and/or evaluation and therapy with patients. If Dr. Gardner wants to be an expert at “evaluating” Trump for “narcissism” he might consider doing the same with the Clintons and Obama. For me, his comments on the matter are not ethical and the excuse of protecting public safety are amazingly unwarranted ….Bogus!!! This type of activity does much to harm perceptions of psychologists. We are not all biased leftists!!!

  5. anystrangething April 26, 2019 at 1:06 am #

    Certainly he is, but so are all the others too, so the question is not much interesting politically.

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