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Gender and the Criminal Punishment System: What’s Different About Women and Girls?

  • St. Francis College, Room 4202 180 Remsen Street Brooklyn United States (map)

Fall 2019 St. Francis College Senior Citizen Lecture Series: American Studies & Social Justice

Tuesdays @ 11:10am in Room 4202

Open to the Public // Reception to Follow

Organized by Athena Devlin (English) & Emily Horowitz (Sociology & Criminal Justice)

Contact Dr. Devlin (

Dr. Venezia Michalsen will address why the American Criminal Punishment system is by far the largest in the world, with millions of people behind bars.  While the vast majority of these people are male, the rates at which females are criminalized and incarcerated has been rising dramatically while male rates have leveled and overall crime rates continue to fall to lows not seen in decades.  In this lecture, Michalsen will cover the personal characteristics of criminalized women and girls, the ways in which they get involved in the system, and also the ways in which larger national trends are gendered.  Michalsen will also talk about potential policy solutions.


Venezia Michalsen, Ph.D. is Associate Professor of Justice Studies at Montclair State, whose work focuses on gender and imprisonment and reentry from incarceration.  She started her career at the Women’s Prison Association until she joined the Justice Studies Department at Montclair State in 2008.  Her research and teaching focus on incarcerated and formerly incarcerated mothers and their children.  Her first book, Mothering and Desistance in Reentry was published in 2019 by Routledge.  She is currently involved in fighting for no-cost phone calls for incarcerated people in Connecticut, where she lives.