Ages of chivalry, places of paternalism: Gender and criminal sentencing in Finland

Candace Kruttschnitt, Jukka Savolainen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

19 Scopus citations


In this study, we argue that the traditional paradigm used to explain the leniency accorded to women offenders in US criminal courts ignores advances in feminist research which suggest how normative patterns that reinforce gender identities can and do change. Using data from Finland, a society generally characterized by more gender equality than is found in the USA, we examine whether an offender's sex has a significant impact on the decision to imprison. Controlling for relevant legal and social characteristics, and considering the conditional effects of labour force participation and parental responsibilities, the findings show that the often-noted preferential treatment given to female offenders, relative to their male counterparts in the USA, is not present in Finland.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)225-247
Number of pages23
JournalEuropean Journal of Criminology
Issue number3
StatePublished - May 18 2009
Externally publishedYes


  • Finland
  • Gender
  • Sentencing
  • Sex disparities

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Law

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