• Summary
  • Contents
  • Subject index

What characterizes women's and girls' pathways to crime?

Girls, Women, and Crime: Selected Readings, Second Edition is a compilation of journal articles on the female offender written by leading researchers in the fields of criminology and women's studies. The contributors reveal the complex worlds females in the criminal justice system must often negotiate—worlds that are frequently riddled with violence, victimization, discrimination, and economic marginalization. This in-depth collection leaves readers with a greater understanding of the complexities and nuances of the realtionship between girls and women and crime.

Chapter 13: Women Under Lock and Key: A View from the Inside

Women Under Lock and Key: A View from the Inside
Women under lock and key: A view from the inside
MedaChesney-Lind and NoelieRodriguez

During the early 1970s, newspapers and periodicals were full of stories on the “new female criminal” (Roberts, 1971; Foley, 1974; Nelson, 1977; Klemesrud, 1978; Los Angeles Times Service, 1975). Presumably inspired by the women's movement, she was beginning to seek equality in the underworld just as her more conventional counterparts were pursuing their rights in more acceptable arenas.

These accounts generally relied on two types of evidence to support the notion of a relationship between the women's rights movement and increasing female criminality: Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) statistics showing dramatic increases in the number of women arrested for nontraditional crimes and sensationalistic accounts of ...

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