• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

'Feminist theorising and research on crime within the family has transformed fundamentally criminological understanding of the problem of crime' Discuss.

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

Seminar Leader: Keith Hayward Natalie Norwood 'Feminist theorising and research on crime within the family has transformed fundamentally criminological understanding of the problem of crime' Discuss. The Sage Dictionary of Criminology1 defines family Crime as a "generic term which draws attention to the extent and range of violence and abuse in 'private' domestic life". Family crime or domestic violence has been a hidden crime for many decades. The woman's movement in the 1970's broke the silence on issues which related to the victimisation of women in the private sphere. These issues included childhood abuse, incest, rape and domestic violence. Since that movement, women's experiences began to be discussed and noted. Feminist criminology started to become a noticeable part of criminology around the early 90's. Criminologists with the feminist perspective aim to increase female visibility within criminological knowledge. As well as this, they aim to understand crime as a male dominated activity produced not only as a result of sex differences but also as a product of gender differences. They question whether sex/gender have a place in crime, justice and criminological and justice theories. ...read more.

Middle

Kelly and Radford (1987)4 claim that "a future free of the threat and reality of sexual violence requires nothing less than the total transformation of patriarchal relations". Although this is a difficult goal to reach, especially in the short term, until then their aim is to have violence by men to be taken more seriously. Radical feminist criminologists have made many attempts to raise more awareness to male violence and improve the authority's response to women. However, it has been argued by Susan Edwards5 that although this seems a good approach in theory, some 'feminist idealists' have claimed that these authorities, such as the police and the law are all part of this patriarchal society. Therefore "legal change serves only to perpetuate the basic conditions of patriarchy". It is suggested by Mackinnon (1989)6 than instead of changing man-made law, it would be much more beneficial to introduce a feminist jurisprudence based largely on women's own experiences. Radical feminism has made an impact on the way that crime in the family is viewed as a problem of crime but what they are suggesting, "the transformation of patriarchal relations", would require such a vast change for the society that it does not seem like it's achievable. ...read more.

Conclusion

Feminist Theories Feminist Research into domestic violence Messerschmidt Mr J. Messerschmidt (1993)9, a strong supporter of feminist views, believed that other more conventional theories of criminology did not provide a strong enough understanding of criminal behaviour because sex/gender was not included in their analysis. He also analyses patriarchal theories, claiming that although they do not avoid the gender issue, they do tend to categorise woman as the good party and men as the "bad, plain and simple", rendering these theories incomplete. CONCLUSION Feminist contributions, based on research and theories around crimes of the family, towards the understanding of crime can be divided into two parts. Firstly, feminist criminology criticises other criminological theories of considering gender differences or for stereotyping women in sexist ways. Secondly, the term 'women' was always seen as a unified category 1 McLaughlin E. and Muncie J. The Sage Dictionary of Criminology, p 117 2 Mooney J., Gender, Violence and The Social Order, p88 3 As above 4 Mooney, J., Gender, Violence and the Social Order, p102 5 As above, p103 6 As above, p103 7 pdf - results 8 sheet 1 9 Lilly J.R., Cullen F.T. and Ball R.A., Criminological Theory, p 172 ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our AS and A Level Crime & Deviance section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related AS and A Level Crime & Deviance essays

  1. Sociological Theories on Crime and Deviance

    DEVIANT CAREERS In the ordinary context of words, a career refers to the sequence of movements a person makes through different positions in an occupational system. A deviant career refers to the sequence of movements people make through a particular subculture of deviance.

  2. Assess The Contribution Of Control Theory To Our Understanding Of Crime And Criminality

    It soon became clear that not all offenders would fit the initial theory. They were not homogeneous and differences occurred between them and the different crimes they committed. This led Lombroso to sub divide the criminal population into types of offender.

  1. Crime: Social construction or reality?

    Cohen reported that there was no evidence of structured gangs, there were minimal motorbikes, and violence and vandalism was minimal. One journalist was forced to admit the media had exaggerated the event. Cohen (1973, 52-53). The mods and rockers created more disturbances after this event.

  2. Social construction of childhood

    And this separation is now decreasing through the mass increase of literate children and the invention of the internet. Recently there has been a collapse of adult authority. Parents are much more likely to give in to children emotionally as well as financially, causing the gap between child and adult to further decrease.

  1. Outline and Assess Sociological Approaches to Social Control Within Crime and Deviance

    the state used physical punishment as there was slightly less need for the labour, yet the peasants needed repressing. They also point out that in times of high unemployment, prison populations soar. However, surely, according to Hirschi, this is because the individuals have the time to commit the crime, have

  2. Book Review Women and Crime.

    The book does meet it aims which are set so it fulfils the purpose of the book. The book has two additions, the first edition has 10 chapters in it and the second edition has 11. This is because the book has been updated.

  1. Assess the right realist view that crime is the result of biological rational factors ...

    However, in modern society in Britain there are more necessities for everyone. The minimum wage and housing conditions have never been better in Britain. The minimum wage has been increased so that the lower class has got more disposable income to spend on goods that they want.

  2. What have theories of deviance added to our understanding of crime? Why are there ...

    this could be linked with ritualism, since being in a downward spiral involving drugs means the need for easy money. Cloward and Ohin are seen as significant in furthering Merton's work on subcultural theories, being seen as making important advances in Mertonian theory, yet there are several aspects where their theories differ.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work