Female Criminality Essay Example

Female Criminality Essay Example
📌Category: Crime
📌Words: 1267
📌Pages: 5
📌Published: 29 April 2021


The focus of this research paper is to provide more insight on female criminality and whether the motivations are different than their male counterparts. In order to do this, I will be dividing the paper into four subsections which will develop a better understanding of the gender variance within criminal behaviour. The first subtopic that will be discussed will be the societal roles inflicted upon both male and females. Following this, the paper will delve into the subtopic of motivation and the opportunity of committing crimes. Then deterrence will be used to explain why female criminality is different from men’s. Lastly, the views of criminality will be discussed to aid the conclusion of differences in offending based on gender. 

Societal Roles

For the first part of this research paper I will be examining the ways in which society influences female behaviour when it comes to crime. This will allow for a better understanding into how the patriarchy forms the ways that women identify and how they continue to conduct themselves. By doing this, I can further examine why women commit certain felonies and compare them to the reasons of their male counterparts. Firstly, women are more inclined to be raised more focused on the social aspects of the community which involve more familial ties to prepare them for motherhood. Covington and Bloom (2003) converse about how women are raised to be attractive to their male counterparts so that they will have a good chance at acquiring an admirable partner. In opposition, the males are raised to focus more on the material items as well as looking more at a good paying job. Additionally, Cops and Pleysier (2011) explore the idea of women being fearful and are groomed early in childhood to ensure that their focuses rely on being family oriented. They touch on the innate behaviors that women are perceived to have, but I believe that these assumptions are sexist as they do not account for individuality. The use of sexual assault is brought up in their reflection which is a gendered crime and used to perpetuate the ideals of the fearful woman. 

Another aspect of women’s upbringing is shown through the works of Heijden and Pluskota (2018) who rely on the idea that women are more reliant on adherence to their sociatal roles due to their innate ability of child bearing which makes women less likely to comply with coercion. With this, marriage is brought up once again to ensure that women are more inclined to be looking admirable for a man that will lead to marriage. This perpetuates the idea that women are merely raised to deal with the children and care for their husbands ever changing needs without focusing on why women are less inclined to stray from their societal roles. Adultery is brought up through their research as a major crime committed by women due to their roles within society and the lack of time to commit other crimes. This coincides with Campaniello (2019) who focuses on marriage which comes with responsibilities to uphold the societal expectations forced upon women. These expectations all rely on the women of society to be as admirable as possible to ensure they can be perceived as eligible future wives who conform and do not ask questions or try to break down the patriarchy. 

Another idea perpetuated by womens comes from the description laid out by the research shown by Gottchalk (2019) which states that “women’s self-actualization was linked to family and home, justice and equality, team and cooperation, friends and relationships, and also fame and reward – in contrast to men who emphasized money, income, privileges, power, status and authority” (Gottschalk, 2019: 721).  This explanation just reaffirms the ideals placed upon women and lacks the depths needed to develop a formidable and accurate conclusion on women’s criminality. Focusing on the influence of the male viewpoint with this source leads to the belief that sexism played a role in the research used to construct this paper. These sexist based research methods are shown through the research done by Bernard (2013) on the gender deal. In its simplest forms, the gender deal relies on women to believe their sole purpose in life is to find a husband and bare children.  


For this theme I will be looking at the opportunity that women have to give a better understanding as to why women are more likely to engage in less violent crime. This could be affected by the changes within management roles within the workplace allowing for more women within the labour force. Equality in the workplace is brought up in the research conducted by Estrada, Nilsson & Pettersson (2019). They posit that because of women’s liberation, female criminality is on the rise. Women have gained more influence in the workplace which can account for the rise in criminality, but it could also be that female criminality was hidden from the public due to the areas in which female criminality takes place. Their research showcases that because women have a higher influence within the workplace accounts for the increase in female criminality, but also the decrease in male criminality. The shifting of the paradigm within the workplace can account for the power shift which leads to the rise of criminality. This is also demonstrated by Campaniello (2019) who addresses that because women typically occupy less powerful roles, they have less opportunity to commit crimes as well as Gottschalk (2019) who further argues that the gender variance in the workplace works against female criminality. Through the aforementioned research conducted by all five authors, researchers could see an increase in female criminality once the hierarchy starts to include more women in powerful positions. 

Another perspective in the literature used to describe female criminality showcases the lack of opportunity due to the motherhood factor. Relying on the stereotypes that women must solely care for the children they bear, it leaves them with less free time to consider criminality. Bernard (2013) constitutes that women are less unlikely to contribute to criminal activity because they are more relied on within the structure of the home. In this case, women are supposed to tend to the children’s needs at all times and are seen as mothers first and human beings second. In addition, the findings of Heijden and Pluskota (2018) postulate that women are restricted by the social networks which are more centred upon groups that have children in mind as well as the aspect of further adhering to the societal role that have been forced upon women. However, Shdaimah and Leon (2014) factor in the perspective of protitution which is a more gendered crime due to the lack of male prostitutes. Their research shows that female prostitutes would rather sell their bodies because the only person they are harming is themselves. Prostitution is less detrimental than most other criminality because it only effects a certain group of people. This type of crime is also more generalized to a particular minority because it is a way to ensure financial need for their family which further oppresses the groups that are involved. It also is usually less consequential than other crimes which is why more women resort to these types of crime as opposed to men who are more focused on financial gain for themselves. 

This ties into the work of Spalek (2007) who focuses on less noticeable crime that are typically committed by women which includes prostitution as well as fraud. These crimes typically got unnoticeable due to the impact they have on society. The research also has taken into account that women have less motivation to commit crime because they have inherently better survival skills than their male counterparts. These survival skills allow them to keep under the radar while using manipulation to avoid detection which could be the reason for unnoticeable crimes being committed by these women. Whereas men are more likely to be invited to commit criminal acts due to their high standings within the labour force and have more motivation to commit crimes because of their upbringings focusing on material items as well as getting a good paying job. Therefore, the gender gap exists just as much in the labour force as it does within the confines of criminal activity.

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