Article

Feminist Theories

Claire M. Renzetti

in Criminology

ISBN: 9780195396607
Published online December 2009 | | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/obo/9780195396607-0013
Feminist Theories

More Like This

Show all results sharing these subjects:

  • Criminology and Criminal Justice
  • Criminal Justice
  • Criminology

GO

Preview

Feminist theories are a group of related theories that share several principles in common. First, feminist theories maintain that gender—the socially constructed expectations about the attitudes and behaviors of women and men that are typically referred to as femininity and masculinity, respectively—is a central organizing component of social life, including criminal offending, victimization, and criminal justice processing. Second, feminist theories hold that because of patriarchal sexism—that is, the valuing of men and masculinity over women and femininity—women and girls have been systematically excluded or marginalized in criminology, both as professionals and as subjects of study. Consequently, a core principle of feminist theories is to include female perspectives and experiences in all research and practice. Feminist theories, though, do not treat women or men as homogenous groups but rather recognize that gender privilege varies across different groups of women and men. Therefore, a third fundamental principle of feminist theories is to examine criminal offending, victimization, and criminal justice processing in the context of multiple intersecting social factors, including—in addition to gender, race, and ethnicity—social class, age, and sexual orientation. Fourth, feminist theories not only attempt to explain criminal offending, victimization, and criminal justice processing but also combine theory with practice so as to develop more equitable and just solutions to the crime problem. Although feminist theories share these four major principles, the theories themselves are diverse. Among the major feminist theories are liberal feminism, radical feminism, Marxist/socialist feminism, postmodern/poststructuralist feminism, and multiracial feminism.

Article.  5648 words. 

Subjects: Criminology and Criminal Justice ; Criminal Justice ; Criminology

Full text: subscription required

How to subscribeRecommend to my Librarian

Buy this work at Oxford University Press »