crim 104 week 12 december 04.docx

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Last Week, week 12
December 04
CONTEMPORARY THEORIES
MASCULINITIES AND CRIME
Ø James Messerschmidt (1993). Masculinities and crime
Ø James Messerschmidt (1997). Crime as structured action
Ø Men and boys are perpetrators of most crimes, and have virtual monopolies on
some kinds of crime
Ø Instead of asking why women don’t commit crimes, criminologists should ask
why men do
PROBLEMS IN THE FEMINIST CAMP
Ø Many feminists started to view “femaleness” as normative or “good” and
“maleness” as “the other” or “bad”
Ø Heterosexuality condemned as another means by which men maintained
patriarchy and dominated women
CONSTRUCTING MASCULINITY
Ø The idea that men are naturally aggressive is wrong men learn to be aggressive,
just like other behaviour is learned
Ø Men and boys construct masculinity differently men are raised to be tough and
aggressive, girls to be timid and docile
A SOCIOLOGY OF MASCULINITY
Ø Need to bring men into the equation consider gendered content of men’s
behaviour and of crime
Ø Sociology of masculinitycomprehend why men are involved disproportionately
in crime , why they commit different types of crime
Ø Interrelationships between social actions/practices , social structures and race,
class and gender relations
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THE GENDER DIVISION OF LABOUR
BOYS WILL BE BOYS DIFFERENTLY
Ø Boys will be boys differently, depending upon position in social structure and
access to power and resources
Ø White, middle-class boys become involved in youth gangs and commit minor
delinquencies (e.g., drinking, minor thefts, vandalism), at the same time avoiding
physical violence
Ø Boys in lower-working-class gangs commit more serious and violent crimes , also
engage in internal and external violence
WHITE, MIDDLE CLASS BOYS
Ø Have access to power and normative self-enhancement structures not available
to lower-working-class boys
Ø Go about accomplishing their masculinity in different ways
Ø Develop “accommodating masculinity” aimed at institutional success
LOWER CLASS BOYS
Ø Develop an “opposition masculinity” based on hegemonic ideals that school
discourages
Ø Hate crimes disproportionately committed by groups of white, working-class boys
ROBBERY IS FUN
Ø Working class more likely than other boys to accomplish gender by constructing
a physically violent opposition masculinity
Ø Disproportionately involved in serious property crimes like robbery and in
publicly displayed forms of group violence
PIMPING IS EVEN MORE FUN
Ø Become wives-in-law of pimp , turn their earnings over to him, give him their
unquestioned respect
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