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Gender and Violence (From Women, Crime, and Criminal Justice: Original Feminist Readings, P 77-92, 2001, Claire Renzetti and Lynne Goodstein, eds. -- See NCJ-197570)

NCJ Number
Candace Kruttschnitt
Date Published
16 pages
This chapter provides an overview of the correlation between violent behavior and gender, including the causes of violence, the relationship between social and economic inequality and crime, and the dynamic between victimization and offending.
Given the attention given to Uniform Crime Reports data in research on gender and crime, the chapter begins with a brief review of these data, drawn only from previously published works. The author then references cross-national and historical data to determine the generalizability of current U.S. patterns and the social processes that may aggravate or mitigate gender differences in violence. The author notes that although this historical and cross-national focus permits the assessment of the significance of social processes in shaping aggregate patterns of violence among both males and females, it ignores the particular individuals and the specific contexts in which violence occurs. This leads the author to a review and analysis of micro-level data on gender and violence, with attention to demographics of violence and the context of violent offending. She further advises that without information on women's involvement in a wider range of violent crimes in various times and cultural contexts, researchers can only guess about the processes that are actually responsible for the relationship between gender and violence. In examining the explanations for the gender-violence relationship, this chapter considers socialization for aggression, situational explanations for violence, and structural explanations for violence. The structural explanations address economic inequality, cultural norms, and social control. 6 notes, 93 references, and 3 discussion questions


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