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By Jackie Turton

Usually baby sexual abuse has been perceived as a male crime, even if, fresh examine means that an important minority of offenders are girl. whereas spotting the significance of male perpetrators, this groundbreaking booklet locations the habit of those offending girls into social context, difficult traditional perceptions of girl offenders, femininity, and mothering. together with case stories and responses from pros within the box, this key textual content highlights the issues inherent in keeping young children and identifies ways that we will be able to enhance a clearer realizing of the social methods concerned via an research of the denial and minimisation utilized by girl perpetrators. It bargains a severe knowing of the notions of damage, the rights of the kid, perform whereas defining a few of the barriers and probabilities of a feminist research of kid sexual abuse via ladies.

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Extra resources for Child Abuse, Gender and Society (Routledge Research in Gender and Society)

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17 Some of the difficulties the professionals identified when dealing with female sexual abusers were related to these stereotypical ideas of the family structure. So what are the alternative ways to view the family? Challenges to the original, often rather functional, discourse on the family can be identified in the work of Giddens (1992), who considers intimate and familial relationships, and in the work of Morgan (1996), who follows this theme in his discussion about carers and caring and his concept of ‘family practices’ rather than family units.

Things would have looked OK. We had a car; we had a TV; we went on holiday . . on Sunday we would have Sunday lunch and the tea would be put on a trolley . . we did a lot of entertaining. . (Alice) . . the family were seen by outsiders as loving and affectionate. . (Celia) . . there was the abuse side, the horrendous emotional blackmail and that side to it. But then on the other side we were very much an upper middle class family. All my clothes were handmade . . I went to ballet school and private school and all sorts of things like that.

These women are more likely to be seen as victims requiring help and support and as such ‘will mitigate their culpability as offenders’ (Hudson 2002, 40). The discourse of sexuality offers a less sympathetic ear to women who are unconventional, seen as unfeminine or childless, and without family. Certain so-called female crimes, such as shoplifting, may be considered ‘gender role expressive,’ but other crimes—those considered more male, such as violent and sexual crimes—might be less acceptable (Worrall 1990).

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