skip navigation


Register for Latest Research

Stay Informed
Register with NCJRS to receive NCJRS's biweekly e-newsletter JUSTINFO and additional periodic emails from NCJRS and the NCJRS federal sponsors that highlight the latest research published or sponsored by the Office of Justice Programs.

NCJRS Abstract

The document referenced below is part of the NCJRS Virtual Library collection. To conduct further searches of the collection, visit the Virtual Library. See the Obtain Documents page for direction on how to access resources online, via mail, through interlibrary loans, or in a local library.


NCJ Number: 150770 Find in a Library
Title: Race and Gender Effects on Perception of Criminal Events: Testing Hypotheses From Black's The Behavior of Law
Journal: Journal of Correctional Education  Volume:45  Issue:2  Dated:(June 1994)  Pages:62-70
Author(s): L C Gould; M Gertz
Date Published: 1994
Page Count: 9
Type: Research (Applied/Empirical)
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: Using a sample from Florida State University, this research tested the hypothesis that social position relative to race and gender affected the perception of criminal events.
Abstract: Of 1,018 students originally sampled, data were obtained from a random cluster sample of 611 undergraduates attending Florida State University in 1985. The survey questionnaire was organized around 12 criminal events which were described in brief scenarios. The offender's sex and race were varied in each criminal event. Findings revealed small differences in the perceived seriousness of assault and burglary incidents. Assault between two women was perceived as more serious than assault between two men. Students indicated it was more serious for a man to seduce a woman who was too drunk to give informed consent to sex than it was for a woman to seduce a man under the same conditions. In general, varying the sex and race of offenders and victims did not affect student perceptions of the seriousness of criminal events. Although students perceived sex differences in how the criminal justice system operates, they did not use sex or race differences to judge crime seriousness. An appendix contains the wording used in the 12 criminal events. 20 references, 4 endnotes, and 4 tables
Main Term(s): Criminology
Index Term(s): Assault and battery; Burglary; Crime seriousness measures; Florida; Gender issues; Male female offender comparisons; Public Opinion of Crime; Race-crime relationships; Social classes; Students
To cite this abstract, use the following link:

*A link to the full-text document is provided whenever possible. For documents not available online, a link to the publisher's website is provided. Tell us how you use the NCJRS Library and Abstracts Database - send us your feedback.