Grime and gender

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  • Gender and crime
    • Convictions
      • Women make up only 5% of the prison population
      • 16% of those arrested and 24% of defendants were women (2011-12)
      • If guilty women were more likely to be fined than men
        • But... less likely to be sent to prison
      • Women are generally given shorter sentences than men
    • Chivalry thesis
      • Pollak - men are socialised to be protective of women
      • Most of the CJS is male so they are more likely to treat women more leniently
      • Allows female activity to go unchecked and so may distort statistics
      • But... women's crimes are often less serious so men will receive harsher punishments
      • Women show remorse so may be treated more leniently
    • Sex role theory
      • Girls are brought up to be passive and conformist
      • Boys are socialised to be manly and agressive
        • Heidensohn = men are more likely to commit crimes of violence
      • Carlen = courts treated women differently depending on how they conformed to gender roles
        • I.e. good mothers were less likely to be jailed than women without children/ children in care.
    • Social control
      • Abbott and Wallace = Young women are more closely watched by their family and given less freedom
      • Women are encouraged to dress and behave appropriately to avoid judgement from society
        • In the workplace managers/ bosses are often male
      • The crimes women do commit tend to be related to their role in the home as mother etc.
        • I.e shoplifting
        • They often dont have access to white collar crime
    • The liberation thesis
      • Adler - as society become less patriarchal, women's crime rates increase
      • Westwood = female identities are changing and women are adopting more male characteristics
      • WC women benefit least from the liberation thesis yet they commit the most majority of female crimes


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