Term Paper: Feminist Crime Theory

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Feminist Theory

Feminist Criminology

Recently, many feminist scholars have begun to re-examine feminist criminology theories as a way to disregard previous stereotypes of female criminals and the nature of female crime. New literature and theories have come out aiming to change society's concept of female crime, "Feminist perspectives, over the past thirty years have not only put some new topics under the criminological cover, they have challenged the theories, concepts, methods, and assumptions of people already involved in the study of crime," (Kelta Advanced Learning 2003). Many researchers now believe that childhood or spousal abuse as well as competition with males leads to increased levels of female crime.

Much of what characterized early theories of female crime were tainted with male biases. It was not until recently that more feminist views were put into use while examining the crime patterns of modern day women all over the country. Men are quick to dismiss aggressive or antisocial behavior in order to keep their idea of women in a docile and subservient role. If the woman spoke up about her abuse and then claimed it was the reason for her crimes that would also turn the blame on the male involved in the situation.

Most women who engage in criminal activity are not doing so in protest of the social order. The majority, with its exceptions, of those who commit crimes are lower class, "James and Thorton revealed from studies involving women prisoners that those incarcerated were primarily from impoverished and uneducated backgrounds," (Kelta Advanced Learning 2003). Traditional theories posit the female criminal as the outcast who chooses to reject her role in society. It is a conscious choice in which women choose to abandon the normal role society has allocated to them.

Bifurcated Consciousness

Women all over the country have to deal with stereotypes on a daily basis, making living life in modern American that much harder. There is… [END OF PREVIEW]

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