Stereotyping of Female Offenders in the Criminal Justice System Essay

Stereotyping of Female Offenders in the Criminal Justice System Essay

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When the criminal justice system was established, the main objective was to create neutrality and fairness between the sexes. Even though people might believe that there is no such thing as ‘stereotyping’ in the criminal justice system, it is quite obvious that women are constantly being look down upon because of their sex. In general, women tend to be treated like fragile objects that could break at any moment; the truth is that women can be strong and courageous just like men. Society stereotypes women and the criminal justice system is no different.
Throughout history, certain crimes have been separated into different categories base on their prevalence. For every crime, the offense and charge is different. In addition, not every crime is committed by the same gender. Crimes such as larceny, fraud, forgery, and prostitution (Chesney-Lind, 1986) tend to be committed more often by women; whereas, assault, murder, trafficking, etc tend to be committed by men. When it comes to the stereotyping of women in the criminal justice system one could say that women present themselves as victims to reach a lesser sentence or that by presenting themselves as victims they will have a longer sentence that will protect them.
Statistical evidence has shown that women do in fact receive lesser and longer sentences when they are convicted of the similar crimes as men; such as drug related crimes (Coughenour, 1995). Criminologists provide different theories that explain the differences between male and female treatment in the criminal justice system. Once of the known theories that are express by the male counterpart that make up the criminal justice system is ‘chivalry’. By definition, ‘chivalry’ is the protection of women. This term start...

... middle of paper ...

...t as me. As the same time, by being the weaker link, women have a certain advantage over men that could work in their favor depending on the situation at hand.

Works Cited

Anderson, E. A. (1976). The "Chivalrous" Treatment of the Female Offender in the Arms of the Criminal Justice System: A Review of the Literature. Social Problems, 23(3), 350-357
Coughenour, J. Separate and Unequal: Women in the Federal Criminal Justice System. JSTOR. N.p., n.d. Web. 15 Mar. 2014
Chesney-Lind, M. (1986). Women And Crime: The Female Offender. Signs: Journal of Women in Culture and Society, 12(1), 78.
Moulds, E. F. (1978). Chivalry and Paternalism: Disparities of Treatment in the Criminal Justice System. Political Research Quarterly, 31(3), 416-430.
The Sentencing Project: Research and Advocacy for Reform. (2007) Women in the Criminal Justice System: Briefing Sheets.

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