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Criminal Law doctrine and women who kill.
Pages 17 (4267 words)
Background Topic: Criminal law doctrine seems utterly incapable of dealing with women who kill. Either they are deemed monstrous and receive sentences that cannot be justified under any rational scheme of punishment, or they are treated with undue chivalry.
Thus when women do not conform to the male-dominated sex role expectations of what it is to be a good wife, good mother and therefore a good woman, they are then considered to be 'doubly deviant' and punished for both their legal infringements as well as their refusal to conform to the female gender behaviour. This becomes all the more relevant while considering that the bulk of female homicides involve the killing of those closest to them that is, their spouses, lovers or infants thereby contradicting all concepts of motherhood, wife and woman.
She further writes that when women kill it is typically not to terminate violence on their part, nor to gain any power over their male partners. Instead it is usually an attempt to get some degree of final and desperate control and relief for themselves from their abusive partner especially at that point when they realise that their very life is being threatened.
Patricia Pearson, Toronto based author of the hard-hitting book on female violence When She Was Bad: Violent Women and the Myth of Innocence, says women get off the hook for violent crimes because society will not admit they can be predators. According to her some women are getting away with murder simply because they're women. ...
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