chapter  10
16 Pages

Where Are All the Women in White-collar Crime?

The gendered structure of white-collar crime is, perhaps, the least studied topic in the field of criminology. A number of factors account for the lack of serious attention. Similar to early observations that crime and criminology were pursued by male scholars studying male criminals, white-collar crime is all about men (Cullen and Agnew, 2003; Dodge, 2009). In early criminological and sociological research, the low incident rates of female criminal activity of all types hampered serious investigation and women were deemed as insignificant given the overriding masculine nature of crime (Adler, Mueller and Laufler, 2007; Brown, Esbensen and Geis, 2007). The assignment of women as secondary to criminal involvement, however, contradicts the importance of acknowledging gendered varieties of behavior and the complicated structural and social barriers that confound attempts to determine whether or not women who commit crimes are the same as or different than men (Daly and Chesney-Lind, 1988). Many of the obstacles in the study of women and crime stem from traditional, deeply embedded explanations and perspectives that ignored or attributed causes of crime to concepts of femininity and biology.