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Law, Crime and Sexuality: Essays in Feminism

by Smart C SAGE Publications Ltd
Pub Date:
01/1995
ISBN:
9780803989597
Format:
Hbk 256 pages
Price:
AU$360.00 NZ$363.48
Product Status: Available in Approx 9 days
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'Carol Smart, argues that institutional and intelectual boundaries often prevent criminologists, socio-legal communities, and feminists from reading each others' works. In her collection of essays,Smart therefore sets out to demonstrate how her feminist project is formed by, and informs, wider debates in sociology, criminology, socio-legal studies, and feminist theory and philosophy......Specifically, Smart highlights how postmodern ideas have led her to question the feasibility of using legal systems for emancipatory puroses....Smart's collection is a valuable contribution to current discussions about law, crime, and sexuality. The accessibility, scope and chronological arrangement of the collection make it especially useful for introducing students to the history of scholarship on female criminality and to recent developments in critical and leagal theory. Moreover, Smart's insightful suggestions about the discursive construction of ''crime'' and the ''criminal'' introduce a welcome alternative to current approaches for addressing the problem of both male and female criminality.' Crime, Law and Social Change 26//1997Carol Smart is one of the leading feminist theorists writing today. Her work on law, crime and sexuality occupies a central place in the literature and inspires students and academics alike.Law, Crime and Sexuality transcends the traditional fragmentation of sociology, criminology, socio-legal studies, feminist theory and philosophy, enabling readers to draw on aspects from each discipline and see the connections between various key themes and debates. Compiled specifically for students' needs, these essays demonstrate that theory need not be inaccessible and help students to understand the law in conceptual terms whilst enabling them to become fully aware of the extent to which the law is implicated in our everyday lives. The book is divided into three sections, each prefaced by a specifically written introduction and looks at: and#183; the shift from criminology to the sociology of lawand#183; the identification of law as a site of struggle rather than as a tool of reformand#183; the recognition of the contested nature of `woman' as a categoryand#183; the significance of the developing situation where feminists must debate about values and epistemologies without fearing the demise of feminist politicsIn addition, the text includes Carol Smart's most recent thoughts in an original final chapter which develops further her challenging work on the gendering and sexing of the body, the survival of sociological feminism and the development of new ways of thinking about women and law.The ideas presented here will generate further ideas and argument, making this book essential reading for all students of criminology, law, sociology of law and women's studies.

Introduction PART ONE: CRIMINOLOGY Introduction Criminological Theory Its Ideology and Implications Concerning Women Feminist Approaches to Criminology, or Postmodern Woman Meets Atavistic Man PART TWO: SEXUALITY Introduction Legal Subjects and Sexual Objects Ideology, Law and Female Sexuality Law's Power, the Sexed Body and Feminist Discourse Unquestionably a Moral Issue Rhetorical Devices and Regulatory Imperatives Law, Feminism and Sexuality From Essence to Ethics? PART THREE: FEMINIST THEORY AND LAW Introduction Legal Regulation or Male Control? Feminism and the Law Some Problems of Analysis and Strategy Feminist Jurisprudence The Woman of Legal Discourse Proscription, Prescription and the Desire for Certainty? Feminist Theory in the Field of Law Postscript of the 1990s, or 'Still Angry After all These Years'

`The great strength of this collection is the author's ability to write clearly about theoretical issues of great complexity. It should therefore prove extremely useful to its intended audience of students in the law and the social sciences. In teaching legal theory I have found `The Woman of Legal Discourse' (Chapter 11) invaluable as a way of bringing out some of the main themes of feminist jurisprudence' - LCCJ Newsletter



`Smart aims to increase the accessibility of theory to students. This is an ambitious task, yet it is tackled well. Theory is not simplified to the point of distortion.... Perhaps the most interesting aspect of the collection is the opportunity provided to understand the evolution of a knowledge project over twenty years which has tried to demystify law and to render its workings more transparent. It provides a rich understanding of law and the extent of its impact on the daily lives of all of us, not only in times of trouble such as divorce or victimisation. Rather, it frames our lives in terms of the possibilities open to us and operates as a discourse which creates legal subjects such as rape victims or lone mothers' - Sociology



'Provides an excellent forum to evaluate and debate those aspects of Carol Smart's work in criminology, the sociology of law and sexuality, and feminism, which will continue to influence a large generation of students and scholars' - Social & Legal Studies




'Carol Smart, argues that institutional and intelectual boundaries often prevent criminologists, socio-legal communities, and feminists from reading each others' works. In her collection of essays,Smart therefore sets out to demonstrate how her feminist project is formed by, and informs, wider debates in sociology, criminology, socio-legal studies, and feminist theory and philosophy......Specifically, Smart highlights how postmodern ideas have led her to question the feasibility of using legal systems for emancipatory puroses....


Smart's collection is a valuable contribution to current discussions about law, crime, and sexuality. The accessibility, scope and chronological arrangement of the collection make it especially useful for introducing students to the history of scholarship on female criminality and to recent developments in critical and leagal theory. Moreover, Smart's insightful suggestions about the discursive construction of "crime" and the "criminal" introduce a welcome alternative to current approaches for addressing the problem of both male and female criminality.' Crime, Law & Social Change 26/1997

Carol is Professor of Sociology at the University of Leeds. She is also Director of the Centre for Research on Family, Kinship and Childhood. Her current research is on changing family life, childhood and cohabitation and her latest book, Family Fragments?, written with fellow CAVA member Bren Neale, was published by Polity Press in 1999. She is also co-author of Cohabitation Breakdown published by the Family Policy Studies Centre in April 2000, and co-editor of The New Family? (Sage, 1999).In relation to the original CAVA programme, Carol is the leader of Strand 3, working predominantly on the Divorce and Separation Study and the Transnational Kinship Study. She is also researching aspects of Strands 1 and 2. In addition, Carol is working with Shelley Budgeon on the Marrying In/Marrying Out project.