Following on from previous blog posts, there's a very interesting article in the Guardian by Angela Neustatter on why girls turn to violence and become gang members. She talks to both gang members and those who work with them. She says, 'It is important not to overemphasise girls' violence - but it does help to recognise that gender plays a large part in criminal identity, and is potentially the key to helping people change.' Reading the girls' stories, it's striking how many of them have suffered violence themselves in one form or another when they were young.
She quotes Susan Batchelor, from the University of Glasgow, who has done research into girls and violence and who says, 'Powerlessness defines the experiences of most young women who turn violent.' She adds that they have often experienced, "high levels of abuse of all kinds. They believe they have no value except for their sexuality. The women's movement has not reached their consciousness.'