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Abstract

This paper investigates the recent claim that women are becoming increasingly involved in aggressive or serious criminal activities. On the basis of an a priori classification of aggressive crimes, a review of three different types of data reveals no unambiguous pattern of change in women's criminality. Several theoretical problems which hove inhibited the systematic development of the relationships between gender roles and criminality are discussed. Particular attention is paid to the lack of conceptual precision that characterizes the use of the terms gender and aggressive crime.