Magazine article Resources for Gender and Women's Studies: A Feminist Review

Women Criminals: An Encyclopedia of People and Issues

Magazine article Resources for Gender and Women's Studies: A Feminist Review

Women Criminals: An Encyclopedia of People and Issues

Article excerpt

Vickie Jensen, ed., WOMEN CRIMINALS: AN ENCYCLOPEDIA OF PEOPLE AND ISSUES. Santa Barbara, CA: ABC-CLIO, 2012. 2 vols. 752 p. illus. $189.00, ISBN 978-0313337130; e-book, ISBN 978-0313068263.

This highly inclusive resource for the study of feminist criminology opens a thorough survey of the field with twelve lengthy essays that make up the entire first volume of this two-volume set. These essays analyze the core topics of women and crime and women in the criminal justice system, gathering together a broad-based scholarly perspective that is otherwise scattered or largely lacking in the criminology literature.

The second volume offers a diverse group of resources for understanding the field. First are 135 biographical essays, usually of some two pages in length, describing the lives of a remarkable list of women. Some of these women are "criminals" in terms widely accepted today in most of Western culture --including, for example, Beverly Allitt, a female serial murderer, and Ma Barker, head of a family enterprise of kidnapping and robbery. A number of others are associated with prostitution, and still others are found here whose rather unlikely inclusion can only be explained by some degree of notoriety --they include Marie Antoinette, Josephine Baker, Margaret Sanger, and Gloria Steinem. This volume also includes appendices with some 56 pages of statistics and reports from diverse sources--useful to have in one place; a highly selective bibliography of 125 items; a thorough index for both volumes with some 1550 entries; and, finally, a listing of credentials for the 81 individuals who have contributed to this encyclopedia. …

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