Gender, socially desirable responding and the fear of crime: Are women really more anxious about crime?

Sutton, Robbie M. and Farrall, Stephen D. (2005) Gender, socially desirable responding and the fear of crime: Are women really more anxious about crime? British Journal of Criminology, 45 (2). pp. 212-224. ISSN 0007-0955 . (The full text of this publication is not available from this repository)

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Abstract

In this article, the authors use survey data to explore relationships between gender, fear of crime and socially desirable responding. The data show that for men, but not women, reported fear levels are inversely related to scores on a so-called 'lie scale', which measures the tendency to provide socially desirable rather than totally candid responses. This pattern holds irrespective of age and suggests that the genders are affected differently by social pressure to downplay fears about crime. Statistical analyses suggest that this tendency is likely to be responsible for the observed inclination for males to report lower levels of crime-related anxieties. In fact, males may actually be more afraid of crime than women when this tendency is quantified and corrected for. The results raise concerns about apparent gender differences in fear of crime, and about the use of fear of crime measures more generally. The present findings may also go some way to resolving the victimization-fear and fear-risk paradoxes which for so long have mystified criminologists. The article ends with some recommendations for research into the fear of crime.

Item Type: Article
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
Divisions: Faculties > Social Sciences > School of Psychology
Depositing User: C.A. Simms
Date Deposited: 16 Jun 2008 10:24
Last Modified: 06 Jun 2014 08:47
Resource URI: http://kar.kent.ac.uk/id/eprint/4498 (The current URI for this page, for reference purposes)
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