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April 9 feminism.doc

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Bryan Hogeveen

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April 9 – Feminism • We need to remember there is a gender binary – male and female • Dominance works through silence • Law appears neutral • When we think of law, we think of lady justice blindfolded • We think of law being neutral and just • As we know, law is anything but that. It is desgined to govern those who are the most marginalized in society • We see law is racilized, classist and gendered • The way women are governed under law is much different than men are • If we think about hroughout history, boys are overrepresented in the CJS • In the 70s we see a girl problem • Until the 1890s, there wasn’t any real laws governing women's deviance and criminality • The majority of attention was placed on boys • In the 1890s, there was teh industrial revolution • There were large groups on women and girls moving to cities • When it becomes a big deal, we see women and girls establish gender boundaries • Prior to this, girls and women were confined to the private sphere • Most women were domestics or moms because they didn't have disposable income • In the late 19 century, we see women moving into the cities and working • For the first time, we have unattached women moving into the big city • It becomes a big deal when women come out of their traditional spaces, such as going to the bar, dating, and doing things outside of the norm • This irritated those in power, who were all male • These people in power who controlled the CJS saw this as being deviant • They were living away from parents, hanging out with guys and dancing. The elites saw this as contributing to the downfall of the nation • These grils were transgressing these boundaries • Many social welfare agencies popped up to govern the behaviour of girls • YMCA and YWCA were created for the purpose to govern and control young girls • The morality squads job was to police the behaviour of young women • Crimes related to women's sexuality. • Girls almost always came to attention for the police for holding hands with boys. They would be thrown into an industrial school for an undetermined period of time • Once girls were thrown into industrial school, they would undergo physical examinations. If they detected sexual activity, they would be sentenced longer 1.)Law appears neutral but is gendered • Throughout time and until recently legal attention has been directed squarely at the “boy problem” But an emerging “girl problem” was also developing during late 19 century: • Creation of cities and emergence of paid female labour (immigration, migration and industrialization) • Inappropriate feminity or errant female sexuality warranted institutionalization Refugees such as the Toronto Industrial Refuge for Girls also emerged: • They offered protection, not punishment • Working class females could develop their moral character through lessons in femininity and domesticity Females are governed according to their gender • Norms of domesticity, piety and chastity Velma Demerson • She took up living with a man and got pregnant. Her dad freaked out and called the police. He found out where velma and the guy were living. She gave birth to her child and lost him almost immediately • When women run a foul of the law, their gender is part of how they are sentenced 2.) Women as Persons • Until relatively recently in human history, women weren’t considered “persons” • In Canada, it wasn’t until 1929 where women were considered persons in this country • Before this time, women had no rights • We see how the understanding of women in gendered ways acts against the desire of men to say you can vote • In the BNA act of 1867, used the word “persons” referring to more than one person and ‘he’ when referring to one person • In 1927, Emily Murphy and 4 other prominent Canadian women asked the supreme court of Canada to answer the question, “are women persons?” • After 5 weeks of debate, the supreme court decided that the word “person” didn't include women • These 5 women named the famous 5 were shocked at the supreme courts decision and refused to accept it. They took the persons case to the privy council in England – in those days, Canada’s highest court • The women succeeded in overturning the ruling 3. Criminology and Criminal Justice • Add women and stir • Too few to count • Ear
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