Gender, structural disadvantage, and urban crime: Do macrosocial variables also explain female offending rates?

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127 Scopus citations

Abstract

Building on prior macrosocial-crime research that sought to explain either total crime rates or male rates, this study links female offending rates to structural characteristics of U.S. cities. Specifically, we go beyond previous research by: (1) gender disaggregating the Uniform Crime Report (UCR) index-crime rates (homicide, robbery, aggravated assault, burglary, larceny-theft) across U.S. cities; (2) focusing explicitly on the effects of structural disadvantage variables on the index-offending rates of females; and (3) comparing the effects of the structural variables on female rates with those for male rates. Alternative measures of structural disadvantage are used to provide more theoretically appropriate indicators, such as gender-specific poverty and joblessness, and controls are included for age structure and structural variables related to offending. The main finding is consistent and powerful: The structural sources of high levels of female offending resemble closely those influencing male offending, but the effects tend to be stronger on male offending rates.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)403-438
Number of pages36
JournalCriminology
Volume38
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - May 2000

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine
  • Law

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