SOC 3750 Chapter Notes - Chapter 6: Youth Criminal Justice Act, Assault, Autonomic Nervous System

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Published on 20 Apr 2013
School
University of Guelph
Department
Sociology
Course
SOC 3750
Professor
Page:
of 4
Chapter 6
Canadian Girls
Patterns of crime and trends in Juvenile Justice
lower rates of violence and aggression in recent years
increased media on girl violence is socially constructed
Canadian Judicial Responses to Female Youth Crime
Official Charges
only 3 percent of all Canadians charged and brought to the court in 2006 were girls
one if five youth charged are girls - to 1:3.5
changing enforcement and laws are what influenced the rise in crime of youth girls, not actually
offending
female assault up
boys has noticeably declined, while girls have only dipped a little - narrows the gap
girls charged with minor theft at double rate than boys - YCJA targets that behaviour - results in
lower sentenced rates
most frequent charge resulting in a court appearance for girls is minor assault, than theft and
administrative offences - amount to 60% of female charges in court
media is performing a strong social control
Administrative offences
large increase in girls being charged with administrative offenses
perhaps used unfairly against girls
judges were adding more strict probation orders - contributed to people breaking them
administrative offences were used to keep girls off unsafe streets and out of sex work
The Youth Criminal Justice Act
YCJA's post custody supervision would increase admin offenses
Current responses have led to an overrepresentation of Aboriginal Girls
represented 44 percent of the female youth in custody in 08/09
aboriginal youth females strongly over represented in custody
aboriginal females are strongly over represented for admin offenses
Court decisions and Dispositions
increase in remand in female - decrease in custody
most common disposition is probation
community service can also be added- but strongly contributes to admin offenses
preemptive offenses - send a youth 14 and up to adult court for serious cases
Theories of Female Crime and Delinquency
females were rarely considered before the 70's, and if they were, it focused on the gender gap
in crime - why females committed less crime in comparison
feminism has not contributed to a rise in female delinquency
was used to be considered to only be in relation to boys, and explained as a masculine thing
Biological Theories
biology was destiny
Lombroso said that if females did become criminals, it was because they were degenerate and
unwomanly
PMS has been blamed for female criminality
Konopka was one of the first to directly turn to adolescent girls and examine them and their
involvement in delinquency - did emphasize a double standard - but still maintained it was
biological
recent bio theories discuss how aggression is biology rather than learned
aggression and violence must be unlearned
Tremblay - low levels of serotonin implicated in impulsive and aggressive behaviour
use of sociology to shift what is biologically given
learning to control aggression in childhood
Kenneth Dodge and Gregory Pettit - biopsychosocial model - explains chronic anti social and
delinquent behaviour in adolescents - shows us we need to pay attention to the reciprocal
influences of biological, socio-cultural contexts of behaviour - biological dispositions influenced
by prenatal factors - such as being exposed to toxic substances - along with autonomic nervous
system hyperactivity, intelligence potential, and temperament can be mediated positively or
negatively in a child's life b y socio-cultural context variables
variables include, family income, occupation and education, family atmosphere, - and positive
or negative peer, school, and neighbourhood influences
Fishbein, Miller, winn, and Dakof - the most salient biological disposition and vulnerability for
delinquency appears to be in early pubertal maturation
early maturing girls = more likely, but dependent on a lot of social factors; and includes
biological factors
mental illness and comobidity is extremely high in delinquent girls
Sociological and Gender role Theories
Gender role theories- explain the difference in male and female participation in delinquent
behaviour as the outcome of differential gender socialization that imposes higher moral
expectations and greater social controls on girls and women
three mainstream sociological approaches to crime and delinquency that fit with a gender role
analysis are -- differential association and social learning theories - social control theories - strain
theories
Social Learning and Differential Association Theories
Kruttschnitt and Giodarno - kids suffer negative consequences from family conflict, harsh and
coercive parenting , and other problematic emotional family dynamics - including exposure to
crime by family members
girls learn that being nice and good have enormous social values, so likely play a role in
decreasing delinquency in the future - if they do not get this socialization, more likely to become
delinquent
Krutt and Giodarno also point to problematic family contexts, inconsistent and harsh discipline,
abuse, lack of warmth, and an absence of positive social teaching on the part of the parents as
being strongly linked to delinquency- peers play large role later in life
Sutherland - females who frequent contact with other deviant youth appear to engage in
deviant behaviour to a greater degree
some socially constructed things help keep girls out of delinquency - girls spend more times in
structured social things then boys - spend less time just hanging out
girls know more people than boys - more options for norms
Social control theories
personal control or inner containment of deviant urges grounded in a positive and socially
conventional self concept are central to the containment of delinquency and crime, as are
effective family functioning, and the existence of a positive social structure - the presence of
social bonds also important
Hirschi - Social bond - made up of four components - attachment, belief, commitment,
involvement
attachment to legitimate others and a belief in the legitimacy of rules have predictive power for
both male and female delinquency
Power -control theory - suggests that social control, power, and constraint vary across gender -
specifically, power control theory suggests that patriarchal families are structured such that they
support, and thus provide greater access , for meals risk taking behaviour
in contrast - tighter restrictions are placed on females
as people move towards egalitarian - girls will become more free and be involved in more
delinquency as a result - falls short
Strain Theory
builds on the notion that delinquency can be explained as a response to being denied access to
socially and conventionally approved opportunities for power and material success
has been criticized for not being to explain why girls have arguably more strains put on them
and do not get to achieve their goals - but do not offend more
argues that they respond differently
females experience different types of strain - non status related - and males are more likely to
act out while females will internalize
no backlash from feminists - supports women getting their goals
Promising directions: Toward an Intersectional Approach
interventions for girls have lagged in quality behind boys
Intersectionality - refers to the movement away from thinking categorically and toward thinking
about the connections and cross roads between social facets - intersectional thinking and
theorizing recognizes the multiple, changing, and often overlapping dimensions, demographics,
roles, and identities of criminals, victims, other individuals, and collectives
goes beyond the simple minded belief that delinquent girls are just bad

Document Summary

Patterns of crime and trends in juvenile justice lower rates of violence and aggression in recent years increased media on girl violence is socially constructed. Only 3 percent of all canadians charged and brought to the court in 2006 were girls. One if five youth charged are girls - to 1:3. 5 changing enforcement and laws are what influenced the rise in crime of youth girls, not actually offending female assault up. Boys has noticeably declined, while girls have only dipped a little - narrows the gap. Girls charged with minor theft at double rate than boys - ycja targets that behaviour - results in lower sentenced rates. Most frequent charge resulting in a court appearance for girls is minor assault, than theft and administrative offences - amount to 60% of female charges in court. Media is performing a strong social control. Administrative offences large increase in girls being charged with administrative offenses.