Write a 11 pages paper on why girls join gangs: sense of family, acceptance, power, excitement, and protection.


Write a 11 pages paper on why girls join gangs: sense of family, acceptance, power, excitement, and protection. Girl membership in gangs has been documented since the 1920s (Walker-Barnes & Mason, 2001, p.303). They are called “girls” because they join gangs as early as 8 years old, although most are actually initiated from 11 to 14 years old (Eghigian & Kirby, 2006, p.48). Scientific literature, however, predominantly ignored female gang members because earlier scholars focused on male gang participation and leadership (Shelden, Tracy, & Brown, 2012, p.140. Walker-Barnes & Mason, 2001, p.304). At the same time, the general public, the police, and criminologists believed in the male gang member stereotype, which resulted in them overlooking female gang membership and rendering them invisible (Shelden, Tracy, & Brown, 2012, p.140. Walker-Barnes & Mason, 2001, p.304). Shelden et al. (2012) mentioned studies that revealed how a number of law enforcement agencies were inclined to diminish female gang membership by not counting them as gang members, or not taking their functions in their gangs seriously (p.140). Moreover, the wide-scale belief before the 1990s perceived female gang members as performing minor roles, mostly serving sexual-partner functions and other auxiliary functions, and these stereotypes are some reasons that hindered research on female gang membership and leadership (Hunt, Joe-Laidler, & MacKenzie, 2000, p.332. Vigil, 2008, p.51).

The 1990s showed a shift in research attitudes and concerns after scholars began interviewing female gang members themselves to understand their goals for gang participation (Molidor, 1996, p.252). Some scholars also became concerned about the rising numbers of female gang members who committed serious crimes (Molidor, 1996, p.251), including robbery, where women’s involvement increased by 30.2% from 2000 to 2009, according to the Federal Bureau of Investigation (Chesney-Lind & Pasko, 2004, p.37). The “bad girl” discourse in popular media further helped increase interest in female gang members, while also promoting female gang stereotypes of girls’ sexual and physical recklessness and financial motives in joining gangs (Chesney-Lind & Pasko, 2004, pp.35-36).

Write a 11 pages paper on why girls join gangs: sense of family, acceptance, power, excitement, and protection.


Write a 11 pages paper on why girls join gangs: sense of family, acceptance, power, excitement, and protection. Girl membership in gangs has been documented since the 1920s (Walker-Barnes & Mason, 2001, p.303). They are called “girls” because they join gangs as early as 8 years old, although most are actually initiated from 11 to 14 years old (Eghigian & Kirby, 2006, p.48). Scientific literature, however, predominantly ignored female gang members because earlier scholars focused on male gang participation and leadership (Shelden, Tracy, & Brown, 2012, p.140. Walker-Barnes & Mason, 2001, p.304). At the same time, the general public, the police, and criminologists believed in the male gang member stereotype, which resulted in them overlooking female gang membership and rendering them invisible (Shelden, Tracy, & Brown, 2012, p.140. Walker-Barnes & Mason, 2001, p.304). Shelden et al. (2012) mentioned studies that revealed how a number of law enforcement agencies were inclined to diminish female gang membership by not counting them as gang members, or not taking their functions in their gangs seriously (p.140). Moreover, the wide-scale belief before the 1990s perceived female gang members as performing minor roles, mostly serving sexual-partner functions and other auxiliary functions, and these stereotypes are some reasons that hindered research on female gang membership and leadership (Hunt, Joe-Laidler, & MacKenzie, 2000, p.332. Vigil, 2008, p.51).

The 1990s showed a shift in research attitudes and concerns after scholars began interviewing female gang members themselves to understand their goals for gang participation (Molidor, 1996, p.252). Some scholars also became concerned about the rising numbers of female gang members who committed serious crimes (Molidor, 1996, p.251), including robbery, where women’s involvement increased by 30.2% from 2000 to 2009, according to the Federal Bureau of Investigation (Chesney-Lind & Pasko, 2004, p.37). The “bad girl” discourse in popular media further helped increase interest in female gang members, while also promoting female gang stereotypes of girls’ sexual and physical recklessness and financial motives in joining gangs (Chesney-Lind & Pasko, 2004, pp.35-36).

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