Gender and Victimization

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“Anger is seen as a sign of strength. Males are considered to be standing up for their rights if they react to a frustrating or undesirable event with anger. Outrage is often the only reaction to an injustice that is allowed from boys.”

Meg Kennedy Dugan, It's My Life Now: Starting Over After an Abusive Relationship or Domestic Violence (2000)

Crime rates show that men have higher victimization rates than women for almost all categories of violent crime except sexual assault (Truman, 2011). Gender differences vary by crime; for example, men are three times more likely than women to be victims of homicide (Cooper & Smith, 2011). Despite a number of conflicting studies, there is ample evidence that women are the primary victims of gender-related victimizations such as sexual assault, sex trafficking, and sexual harassment (Morash, 2006).

A victim’s experiences with the criminal justice system may also be influenced by his or her gender and the type of crime committed. From 2000 to 2009, 20% of the women who reported crimes to police received assistance from victim service agencies, but only 9% of the males received assistance (Langton, 2011).

Select one of the victims you have previously reviewed in the media and consider the victim’s vulnerability to crime, based on gender, including the type of crime committed. You also analyze the influence of gender on the victim’s experiences with the criminal justice system.

The Assignment (2–3 pages):

  • Explain factors related to gender that might have contributed to the vulnerability of the victim.
  • Explain factors related to gender that might have played a role in the type of crime committed against the victim.
  • Explain how the victims’ experiences with the criminal justice system might vary based on the gender of each victim.

Support your Assignment with specific references to all resources used in its preparation. You are to provide a reference list for all resources, including those in the Learning Resources for this course.


Bureau of Justice Statistics. (2011). Sourcebook of criminal justice statistics online. Estimated percent distribution of self-protective measures employed by victims of violent crime.
Retrieved from

Cooper, A., & Smith, E. (2011). Homicide trends in the United States, 1980–2008.
Retrieved from

Dugan, M. (2000). It’s my life now quotes.
Retrieved from

Langton, L. (2011). Use of victim service agencies by victims of serious violent crime, 1993–2009.
Retrieved from

Morash, M. (2006). Understanding gender, crime, and justice. Chapter 3: Gender related victimization.
Retrieved from

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Gender-related Victimization




Gender-related Victimization
Women and girls are more likely than men to fall victim to gender-related victimization,
particularly that of a sexual nature. This vulnerability often results in victimization in the form of
sexual assault, trafficking and intimate partner violence among other forms of crime against
them. This essay uses the case of Emily Doe to discuss gender with respect to victimization, with
emphasis on its contribution to the vulnerability of the victim, the type of crime committed
against them, and their experiences with the justice system.
Morash (2006) finds that gender makes women and girls more vulnerable to
victimization. Two years ago, the story of a woman who was sexually assaulted the previous
year by a former Stanford University varsity swimmer hit the headlines. The victim, who the
media referred to as Emily Doe to protect her identity had attended a party with her younger
sister during which she got inebriated and later fell victim to her attacker. Her case is not unique
given that since 1988, over seventeen million women have fallen victim to sexual assault in the

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