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Women in Corrections, Article Critique Example

Pages: 2

Words: 531

Article Critique

Since women first began entering arenas that had been almost exclusively the domains of men, they have faced certain challenges. Here, an article that explores the topic of women in community corrections is reviewed. A summary of the article, a statement of the research problem, an analysis of the data, and a discussion of the author’s conclusions follows.

Holland has conducted a literature review of the problems women face working in law enforcement in general (2008). She painstakingly submits statistical evidence to support the idea that, although things are getting better, there is still working that must be done to even the playing field for women working in community corrections (Holland, 2008).

She set out to describe the situation from a historical standpoint (Holland, 2008). What she accomplished was a description of progress that has been made (Holland, 2008). The research question was how can the lot of women working in community corrections be improved (Holland, 2008)?

The data she sets forth illustrates certain facts. It shows that over the last century women have been increasingly working in law enforcement (Holland, 2008). It also shows that they have made significant moves into corrections in particular (Holland, 2008). She uses a case study of community corrections in Virginia (Holland, 2008).

Holland’s conclusion predicates the need for a more egalitarian socialization process for women in corrections (2008). She sees the need for increased mentoring, networking, and support as one method of achieving this end (Holland, 2008). She places emphasis on promotions as a measure of how fair the system really works for women (Holland, 2008).

I agree will her to some extent, but I think she misses a few important points. One point is not just that women should be more fairly represented in the work place in general, law enforcement particularly, and corrections specifically. The presence of women in male correctional facilities gives rise to a dilemma. Although women in such settings have often been targeted by some inmates who habitually abuse power, they are associated with more orderly operations. When most inmates are in the presence of women correctional officers, they tend to be on somewhat better behavior. The exact reason for this is a matter of debate, but some ideas include a sense of feminine refinement, a feeling of closeness to “the world,” and a general biological tendency for men to be less aggressive around what is perceived as a finer gender.

Although I do not necessarily disagree with Holland, I believe she could have made somewhat of a case that when women are present in correctional facilities, male inmates are more likely to lean toward rehabilitation. Because women are seen as more compassionate and less brutal, it allows the men to feel less apprehensive about their condition. This feeling of security enables them to relax enough to think a little more clearly about their predicament and, perhaps, act a little better.

An article that explores the topic of women in community corrections has been reviewed here. A summary of the article, a statement of the research problem, an analysis of the data, and a discussion of the author’s conclusions were presented.

Reference

Holland, J.G. (2008). The Feminization of the Community Corrections Work Force. Corrections Today, 70, 4: 44-48.

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