Assaultive Behavior in Bars: A Gendered Comparison

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					Violence and Victims, Volume 24, Number 2, 2009




                Assaultive Behavior in Bars:
                 A Gendered Comparison
                                 Jessie L. Krienert, PhD
                              Illinois State University, Normal, IL

                                Donna M. Vandiver, PhD
                            Texas State University, San Marcos, TX

      This research assesses the prevalence, nature, and arrest patterns of barroom aggression;
      it includes a cross-national sample of men and women involved in simple or aggravated
      assault. Prior research indicates bars are a haven for assaults; however, little research
      has focused on female involvement in barroom assault. Data from the National Incident-
      Based Reporting System are used to assess differences between men (n = 9,262) and
      women (n = 2,787) involved in barroom assaults during 2005. Results shed light on an
      understudied population of barroom offenders. Specifically, women are younger than
      their male counterparts and more likely to use a weapon during a barroom altercation.
      Additionally, while barroom assault is intrasexual in nature, women are more likely than
      men to assault outside their sex.


Keywords: bars; aggravated assault; simple assault; gender




F
       emales are less studied than men in virtually every aspect of criminal justice
       (Baro & Eigenberg, 1993; Hannon & Dufour, 1998).1 Women are frequently left out
       of research on violent crime, especially aggressive or assaultive behavior (Horney,
Osgood, & Marshall, 1995). Whether assessing causes, situational cues, or types of assault
and victimization (Campbell, Muncer, & Bibel, 1998), men commit more aggressive acts
(Pollock & Davis, 2005). Often labeled the „invisibility doctrine‰ (Belknap, 1996) or
termed the „forgotten offender,‰ this phenomenon has translated into limited empirical
information regarding females who do engage in assaultive behavior.
    Much of the research focus on aggressive female behavior turns to intimate partner or
family violence, centering on women who assault a spouse or partner (Tjaden & Thoennes,
2000) or women who abuse their children (Wolfner & Gelles, 1993). When research does
focus on female offenders and violence, it typically takes a familial tone. Assessing women
outside a domestic setting and in a location where assaults are likely to occur (i.e., a bar)
has the potential to provide insight into the unique dynamics of female assaultive behav-
ior. The focus of this research is to use a cross-national sample of simple and aggravated
assault offenders to identify the prevalence of female barroom aggression and offer a
comparison to male barroom aggression.




232                                                          © 2009 Springer Publishing Company
                                                                     DOI: 10.1891/0886-6708.24.2.232
Assaultive Behavior in Bars                                                               233

LITERATURE REVIEW

Convergence Research
Traditionally
				
DOCUMENT INFO
Description: This research assesses the prevalence, nature, and arrest patterns of barroom aggression; it includes a cross-national sample of men and women involved in simple or aggravated assault. Prior research indicates bars are a haven for assaults; however, little research has focused on female involvement in barroom assault. Data from the National Incident-Based Reporting System are used to assess differences between men (n = 9,262) and women (n = 2,787) involved in barroom assaults during 2005. Results shed light on an understudied population of barroom offenders. Specifically, women are younger than their male counterparts and more likely to use a weapon during a barroom altercation. Additionally, while barroom assault is intrasexual in nature, women are more likely than men to assault outside their sex. [PUBLICATION ABSTRACT]
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