Tuesday, January 12th, 2010
33

Here Is Why You Crazy Bitches Cannot Get Enough True Crime

Scary stuffAt the risk of inciting those whose antennae are always up for any perceived gender-based bias, I think we can pretty much all agree that chicks love them some crime stories. The continuing popularity of your "Law & Order: Extra Rape Edition" or pretty much any made-for-TV movie on Lifetime serves as testament to that fact, and if you've attempted to divert the attention of the fairer sex during one of these victim-porn orgies you're MORE THAN AWARE of how involved these broads are with their shows, am I right, fellas? But why? Why are they so captivated by these terrifying depictions of events that are extremely unlikely to occur in their own lives when they could be doing something more productive or fulfilling, like ironing? Science has an answer!

According to researchers Amanda M. Vicary and R. Chris Fraley, the ladies are learning! Learning valuable life-saving information!

Our findings that women were drawn to stories that contained fitness-relevant information make sense in light of research that shows that women fear becoming the victim of a crime more so than do men (Allen, 2006; Mirrlees-Black et al., 1996). This sex difference in fear is intriguing because, in actuality, men are more likely than women to be the victim of a crime (Chilton & Jarvis, 1999). Many reasons have been suggested for why women experience more fear, including the fact that certain crimes, such as rape, do occur more frequently for women (Riger, Gordon, & LeBailly, 1978). Other researchers have suggested that the media are to blame in that unusual and rare crimes (which usually focus on female victims) are reported more often than other crimes (Ditton & Duffy, 1983). Regardless of the reasons behind women's heightened fear of crime, the characteristics that make these books appealing to women are all highly relevant in terms of preventing or surviving a crime. For example, by understanding why an individual decides to kill, a woman can learn the warning signs to watch for in a jealous lover or stranger. By learning escape tips, women learn survival strategies they can use if actually kidnapped or held captive. In addition, the finding that women consider true crime books more appealing when the victims are female supports the notion that women may be attracted to these books because of the potential life-saving knowledge gained from reading them. If a woman, rather than a man, is killed, the motives and tactics are simply more relevant to women reading the story.

Despite the fact that women may enjoy reading these books because they learn survival tips and strategies, it is possible that reading these books may actually increase the very fear that drives women toward them in the first place. In other words, a vicious cycle may be occurring: A woman fears becoming the victim of a crime, so, consciously or unconsciously, she turns to true crime books in a possible effort to learn strategies and techniques to prevent becoming murdered. However, with each true crime book she reads, this woman learns about another murderer and his victims, thereby increasing her awareness and fear of crime. It is not possible to state with certainty from these studies whether or not this vicious cycle occurs, but we do know that women, compared to men, have a heightened fear of crime despite the fact that they are less likely to become a victim (Allen, 2006; Chilton & Jarvis, 1999) and that women are drawn to true crime books that contain information on how to prevent themselves from becoming the victim of such a crime.

See that, silly women? Learning IS dangerous! You are just scaring yourselves. Don't you worry your pretty little head over it. So can I watch football now, please? Etc.

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33 Comments / Post A Comment

mathnet (#27)

It has nothing to do with perceived hotness of Noth and/or Meloni.

Alex Balk (#4)

It doesn't appear that they tested for that.

kneetoe (#1,881)

Ravage fantasy play into this?

garge (#736)

I am a Goren fan, myself.

mathnet (#27)

Thor/Always-Reminds-Me-Of-Gilbert-Blythe? Likely factor.

garge (#736)

Nail/Head

Bittersweet (#765)

Linus Roache, anyone? Yummy.

kneetoe (#1,881)

And the reason women are less likely to be crime victims is that they have learned how not to be crime victims from watching/reading crime stories, and the more they watch/read, the less likely they will be victims, creating a non-vicious cycle . . . .

La Cieca (#1,110)

So this explains why men are so seldom the victims of attacks by gigantic alien saucers that blow up landmarks.

kneetoe (#1,881)

And to think what chick flicks have down to what women expect from relationships.

Mindpowered (#948)

Because true crime stories are the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth. Salacious marketing and semi erotic book jackets notwithstanding.

A nice does of fear is very important, why if women were unafraid SUV's, drive throughs, and guns would all be hit. It's American to be deeply paranoid and fearful that the world is coming after you, only you and no-one but you. (and your Jack in the Box chicken club salad)

HiredGoons (#603)

My dad likes to refer to Lifetime as 'The Misery Channel.'

I laugh.

Finally, the male corallary explains my heterocrush on Bear Grylls?

lempha (#581)

Were there really a "Law & Order: Extra Rape Edition", I would watch the shit out of it.

mathnet (#27)

10 PM Nightly on NBC Coming This February

katiebakes (#32)

Particularly heinous sexually based offenses are particularly heinous.

6h057 (#1,914)

Meh. Whatever it takes to keep 'em out of Brooklyn.

kneetoe (#1,881)

Did they use gay men as a control group?

tenfoot (#2,977)

Next explain Real Housewives, please.

mathnet (#27)

Exact same principle, minus any attractive men.

It's like a roller coaster, except that instead of a car, you're sitting in a pile of razor blades, and instead of a seat belt, you have someone driving an auger through your skull.

"because they learn survival tips and strategies,…"

I watch "Snapped" so I can learn how to kill my husband and get away with it. Don't want to make the same mistakes as those ladies.

deepomega (#1,720)

Number one lesson from CSI: Don't sprinkle your pubes around the crime scene.

A cop told me that unfamiliar pubes in the marital bedroom/bathroom is a common cause of domestic disputes.

kneetoe (#1,881)

It's a housework issue?

Kneeto, personal hygiene. The thoughtful spouse will request their cheater partners to shave/wax.

slinkimalinki (#182)

@ kitten: what the..? how the..? who the hell can identify pubes on sight?

deepomega (#1,720)

@slinkimalinki: I almost asked this question, but then got all self-conscious worrying I was the only one who cannot immediately identify pubes!

slinkimalinki (#182)

@deepomega: i'm thinking that the solution is just "don't bang redheads".

I consider it criminal that Seth Colter Walls isn't here with a counter-point!

Or even a counterpoint!

crookedE (#1,817)

"Becoming murdered" is a strange turn of phrase.

IronicYouth (#2,983)

Wonder if they bothered to adjust for class in this study. Seems rather relevant if we're talking about media consumption and nation-wide statistics.

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